As usual it’s been a busy week here on DGB, so it’s that time of the week where I recap the posts and stories I covered on here, as well as mention a couple of other industry nuggets that didn’t make it on to DGB properly.

But before I dive into the weeks posts, it’s worth mentioning that the site traffic on DGB has been immense. On Monday next week I’ll be comparing the past week to my previous best week to show exactly the performance of the site. But already on page views alone this has been the site’s best ever week, and we’ve not even had Saturday or Sunday yet. I think the reasons are two-fold. The industry is starting to get quiet now, so there is more browsing time available for people, hence the extra page views. We’re also at the time of year when external condensation on windows is massive. I have a couple of posts on DGB covering that subject and looking at the posts read this week, these have done very well.

Thanks to everyone who has taken a minute to browse the site this week! Now then, down to business…

Kolorseal Are Ten Years Old!

I started the week off on DGB by celebrating the tenth birthday of site residents Kolorseal. A decade in business is always a great milestone to mark, especially now after the UK economy had suffered such a damaging recession.

So in comes Kolorseal. A company started with the sole purpose of providing a quality spraying service to the PVC and aluminium sectors who were looking to explore the possibilities in colour. At first Kolorseal was also a suppliers of windows and doors. But as the colour market exploded, that very quickly became a second string to the business. The market for coloured windows and doors was about to explode, and Kolorseal could not have got the timing better if they had tried!

Timing has been the key for Kolorseal I feel. Had they started in business now, or about 5-10 years before they did, they might have struggled. But the business was formed just as composite doors were starting to shake up the doors market and showing that colour was they way to go. Their mix of first class customer service and product quality has also been a factor of their success. As the years roll on, they stand to profit from a market quickly embracing colour.

Since they have come on board with DGB, we have started using them at our installations business. Expect to see pictures of their work in the coming weeks!

Should Window And Door Prices Be Falling?

Tuesday saw me explore the idea of window and door prices actually falling in the future. This was a different road to take as normally I take the position that prices should rise as we move forward in time. But as I explained in the post, we are living in a time of transition and the normal patterns don’t exist any more.

Over the last few years, the glass and polymer sectors have been the two specific areas of our industry which has seen the most increases in price. It seems like every six months we are informed from our glass syscos that prices are going up due to increased transport or energy costs. But here’s my argument: oil has been dropping for a good 12 months now, why haven’t those increases caused by a rise in oil been scaled back due to the decrease in oil? Surely now petrol and diesel costs have come down, any price increase based on energy surcharges and increased transportation costs should be reversed? It’s only fair.

Shares are down, oil is down and inflation is down. All the things that have caused prices to increase over the past few years are now dropping quite strongly. It would be only fair from our suppliers to see prices come down as their costs start to decrease too.

Synseal Reveal What Warmcore Really Is

Now I wasn’t lucky enough to be invited to the press day for the Warmcore launch at Synseal. However I was given a copy of the press release by Synseal which detailed the product more clearly. Turns out I wasn’t wrong about it being a PVC/aluminium hybrid.

At the heart of WarmCore products is a core of PVC-U which significantly out-performs the polyamide thermal breaks commonly used to reduce the threat of cold bridging on aluminium windows and doors.  The result is an innovative “warm aluminium” frame construction, carefully dimensioned to provide an optimised 70mm front-to-back overall sash frame depth for UK applications while ensuring market-leading thermal performance thanks to the multi-chambered insulating core.

I would like to see the Warmcore bi-fold in person, to get a real feel for what it is all about. I have had an invite of sorts from the good man that is Phil Parry from Synseal. I would also like to know if the Warmcore profile would be used to make other things in the future. Could we see Warmcore windows? Warmcore entrance doors? I guess that would depend on the success of the bi-fold, which isn’t guaranteed given the fact the bi-fold market actually shrunk 7% last year.

Reliability As Important As Quality For Ecoglass

It was time for some sponsored content on DGB Thursday morning as I took a look at what was important to the guys at Ecoglass. For them, being reliable was one of their major factors of their success. For me, reliability has been part of a wider customer service problem caused by a skills shortage in the industry this year. In fact it’s safe to say customer service has been one of the major issues for many this year.

You don’t stay in business for over six decades by fluke. You stick around that long by having good business principles, one of which is reliability. One of my own biggest personal gripes is poor reliability. For example, if a manufacturer says something is going to be delivered on a certain day at a certain time, I expect that delivery to be made – excluding things out of the control of the drivers of course i.e. weather or vehicle break downs. But other than that, late or non-deliveries are unacceptable in this day and age. This is why Ecoglass have lasted so long. Their customers have been able to rely on their services to ensure that their own businesses function as smoothly as possible.

If you’re a supplier, customer service has to be your number one priority right now. The industry has picked up massively in the last 18 months and installers need the best service possible to ensure their own businesses run smoothly.

#TNMP2 Update

Later on on Thursday I gave everyone a quick update about the upcoming Tweet N Meet Part 2 event coming up very soon next Saturday evening in Birmingham.

Upon arrival you’ll be given a green wristband with #TNMP2 on it. You will need this in order to get your free drinks at the bar. It also helps the hotel to know you’re part of the #TNMP2 party. Don’t take it off!

There are plenty of us actually staying in the Jurys Inn hotel, so if you want to book a room, do it now, as the hotel is either nearly fully booked, if it isn’t already. Don’t panic though, there are plenty of other hotels on Broad street. You can find out more by going to the #TNMP2 website byclicking here.

This is a great opportunity to have put some faces to some names you may only speak to online or over the phone. It’s a relaxed event where everyone is welcome. No agenda. Just an industry gathering to have a good time!

The night is set to be a great one with absolutely everyone welcome!

External Condensation 2

Last but not least, Friday saw me cover a subject that is continuing to irritate installers and homeowners alike during Autumn and Spring seasons. Now is the time for homeowners to be calling installers to report that their windows have condensation in a morning and that there must be a problem.

The only way to try and preempt this sort of thing is to educate the customer right at the beginning of the process. Tell them straight away that on some occasions, usually in Spring and Autumn, when the temperatures are at certain points, the outside of their windows may get condensation. But don’t just say it, tell them why it happens. If you need an example, here’s what it says on the Saint-Gobain UK website.

My posts on condensation have been by far the most read posts on DGB this week, which makes sense given the time of year. I hope that is homeowners have come on here and read the posts, they have understood why their windows are condensating in a morning and that there isn’t actually a fault with them. We can look forward to these calls for quite a few weeks to come.

Elsewhere in the industry…

Well, if you ask me it was a bit slow in terms of any major industry news. Lets see what next week brings!