A Guide to Trickle Vents
6th May 2015
6th May 2015
Trickle vents, head vents, night vents… slot vents… Call them what you will, they are often the Marmite of the double glazing world. People either love them or hate them. Whatever your feelings they serve a purpose though. We’ve put together a brief guide to save you losing your head over them.
In basic terms, when a window is manufactured a slot is drilled into the plastic frame and a cover is placed over it. The cover has a control on it which allows you to open and close the slot at will to let air gradually trickle into your home.
Through Frame Design: This is where the trickle vent it often positioned through the head of the frame.
Over Frame Design: When it is not possible to fit the trickle vent through the frame. Ventilation is routed over the frame or head of the window.
Glazed In: The trickle vent is fitted into the glazed area along the top of the sealed glass unit.
Framing Materials: Trickle vents can be fitted in all types of framing materials such as UPVC, timber, steel and aluminium.
If you are replacing your windows, and your old windows have trickle vents installed then you will have to have replacement windows with trickle vents in order to comply with Building Regulations. Trickle vents help to combat damp and moisture problems in your property, ensuring your home is extremely well ventilated.
In recent years the drive has been more focussed towards increasing the energy efficiency of our homes. But whilst we have been busy making sure our homes don’t leak too much energy, it has also made them more airtight. Which can have a bad effect on the air quality inside your home and contribute towards problems with condensation.
Although we want to keep our homes warm and avoid draughts, we actually need a certain level of ventilation. In order to provide a healthy and comfortable internal environment. So before when we had draughty old windows that would let in a breeze, we didn’t need to have trickle vents. Now that we have new windows with better seals against the elements, we need to find a way to allow a change of air within our homes.
There are three main kinds of ventilation:
Purge: Where we want to rapidly circulate the air within our home, this is when you open a window.
Extraction: If you have a room where occasionally it is exposed to air pollutants and you want to control when it is ventilated. For example, when you turn on your extractor fan in a kitchen or bathroom.
Background: This is a small ventilation opening that usually always allows the air to circulate slowly, and this is your trickle vent.
The main purpose of ventilation is to remove polluted air from your home and replace it with fresh air from the outside. Ventilation of your home is necessary to provide a healthy and comfortable environment.
An open window can leave your home vulnerable to a break-in, providing an easy point of entry. Window trickle vents provide you with a consistent supply of ventilation without compromising your home security. You can benefit from fresh air whilst leaving your window locked in a closed position.
If your windows do not have trickle vents and you are replacing them then you don’t have to have trickle vents installed. However you might like to consider them if you –
All new houses and new build extensions must now have trickle vents fitted as standard in order to comply with building regulations. So if you are buying new windows for this purpose you will need to bear this in mind.
Lastly, it is sometimes possible to retrospectively fit trickle vents to existing plastic windows. So if you are experiencing a problem with condensation and do not have a form of background ventilation, you could consider fitting trickle vents to your existing uPVC windows. It can be a time consuming and tricky job, but might be worth it if it could alleviate your problems.
Starglaze offers a full window installation service which includes the fitting of trickle vents with our double glazed windows. For more information, please contact us using our online enquiry form. Alternatively, you can give us a call on: 01522 512020.