A Window Into Our History: What Were Windows Like 40 Years Ago?

As you may know, SCI Windows & Doors has been in the business for almost 40 years. Starting out in the 1970s, we officially opened a showroom at the start of the 1980s. We haven’t moved our showroom in all this time, and we’re still based in Morden, Surrey. As we head towards our 40th anniversary, we thought it would be a good idea to look back and see how things have changed since we started out in the window industry. So here’s a quick history lesson on how our windows have changed during our time. So what were windows like 40 years ago?

Little did we know when we started out in the 1970s, the window industry in the UK was about to experience some huge changes. The new technology that was introduced was able to improve our homes, making them much more energy efficient.

what were windows like 40 years ago

What were windows like in the 1980s?

You may have fond memories of the 1980s. You might remember some of the great things that happened during the decade. Such as the benefit concert Live Aid in 1985, the US drama series ‘Dallas’ was a hit for the whole decade. The pop artist Madonna was releasing hit singles such as ‘Papa Don’t Preach‘ and ‘Open your Heart‘. But in the early 1980s, you may not have had fond memories of warm, energy-efficient windows that insulated your home from the cold.

Before the 1980s, the windows that were considered the best in the industry were, in a word, atrocious. These were single-glazed aluminium frames that were awful at keeping the heat in, and the cold and wind out. They certainly couldn’t hold a candle to the windows we have available today.

However, the 1980s saw the introduction of quite a few huge advancements in the window industry. Some of the technologies that were introduced around this time are still in production today, albeit with some minor improvements.

The introduction of Double Glazing

Double glazed windows are still widely used for around the UK and are commonly recognised as windows that are highly efficient. Since the introduction of double glazing in the 1980s, there have been some minor improvements to the design. This includes switching from primarily using aluminium frames to PVCu, as these frames are more energy efficient. The paint used on these windows has changed from lead-based to calcium-based. This means the windows that we fit now, there will be no fading with age, and your windows will look fabulous for years to come. Whilst we still stock aluminium framed double glazed windows, PVCu is the most commonly used for new window fittings.

what were windows like 40 years ago


Security Measures

In the 1980s, there was very little in the form of integrated locking for windows. Most of the time you would have had to buy an aftermarket lock to fit on your new windows. Now, we wouldn’t dream of selling a window that didn’t have integrated locks as standard. At the moment, the types of security features we offer include hidden steel reinforcement and they are heavily tested. This means that our locking mechanisms meet BS7950 standards (A standard which ensures security against attempted forced entry). We also offer optional hinge guards which makes sure both sides of the window are equally protected from attack.

The latest multi-point shoot bolt locks and locking handles are very strong and help keep you and your family safe, providing constant peace of mind.

what were windows like 40 years ago

Our Windows today

The windows we have today are continuously becoming more and more advanced, than their predecessors from 40 years ago. We currently fit “double glazing” as standard, meaning that all of our windows have great energy ratings. We offer our windows in many styles, including standard casements, SlimSash FlushSASH, Sliding Sash, Aluminium and even secondary double glazing if you’d like to keep your original single glazed windows intact. Your windows can also be decorated with stained glass, extra bars, dummy sashes and more.

The amount of choice you have in terms of colours and extras have also massively improved since the 1980s. If you want your windows in a different colour we have plenty; black, cream, Chartwell green or even wood effect to match the style of your home. In fact, we can match your windows to any colour, based on our RAL colour swatches. The window handles can also come in a range of colours from white and black to gold and graphite.

We’ve even moved on from double glazing to provide triple glazed PVCu windows which have up to A+9 energy ratings. The better the energy ratings, the better insulation you have on your home providing you with even more efficiency.

If you have double glazing from the 1980s, the advancements in the window industry over the last 40 years means that getting new windows would drastically reduce your energy loss, and subsequently your heating bills. All window and door installations are covered by SCI’s 10 Year Guarantee. SCI also offers all its customers optional additional cover provided by the Independent Warranty Association (IWA) insurance scheme.

If you’d like to get a quote for new windows, please get in touch with us, and we’ll provide you with a no-obligation quote to help you reduce your heating bills.