FAQ's

Get answers to our most commonly asked questions

Why do my UPVC Doors (French Doors & Back Doors) not close as well in hot weather?

All UPVC products expand and contract in different weather conditions.  Sometimes (particularly with French double doors) in hot weather when they have been open all day, it is difficult to close them late afternoon / early evening because the frames have expanded in the heat.  This is perfectly normal and the solution is to close both doors together at the same time.  When they meet you will find that they do then shut correctly.  We don't recommend adjusting them because when the temperature returns to normal, they may not be sealed properly. 

Category - Doors

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Will replacing my windows and doors cure Condensation?

The installation of new products will not eliminate condensation but modern A Rated windows will certainly help to reduce the problem.  Click the link to see the GGF "Guide to Condensation".

Category - Windows

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What guarantee do you give with your windows?

All our window frames come with 10 year manufacturer guarantee. Giving you peace of mind.

Category - Windows

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What security features do your windows have?
All our windows are hard wearing and Rigorously tested to BS7950, along with 8 point locking system, 400% more shootbolt contact, supaglide gear box action, Eurogroove lock-out design. The windows are among the best in the market.

Category - Windows

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What type of windows do you offer?

We offer many different types of made to measure uPVC windows from Casement, Sliding Sash, Tilt & Turn to Bay & Bow.

Category - Windows

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Can I have my windows in different colour?

We offer 16 different colour foil finishes for our uPVC windows, other than the standard white. Ranging from wood effect to black.

Category - Windows

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How often will I need to clean my conservatory roof?
All of Academy’s conservatories are installed with our Pilkington Activ Blue roof panels. These panels are specifically designed to be low maintenance because they are self-cleaning. They combine dual-action, self-cleaning properties, as well as solar control to keep your conservatory at an optimum temperature all year round. So the answer to your question is: Not very often! Enjoy!

Category - Conservatories

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Is a conservatory suitable for my home?
As you may already know, Academy Home Improvements used to be known as Academy Windows & Conservatories – a company which over the last three decades has specialised in double glazing. We’ve installed big budget conservatories, and we’ve installed smaller budget ones, ones with loads of space and ones with limited space. It doesn’t matter if your house is old or new, we’re confident that our experienced teams can create something for your home.

Category - Conservatories

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How long does it take to install a Conservatory?
Obviously installation periods will vary depending on the size and the style of the conservatory you have chosen. However there are two important factors to consider when figuring out the completion date of your conservatory: Planning and Lead Time. Planning Without making it too complicated, the general rule is you won’t need planning permission for conservatories up to a 3 metre projection from the original back wall of the house. You may need planning permission however if: - Your conservatory will be larger than a 3 metre projection from the back of the house - You are planning of having your conservatory built onto the back of an extension (i.e. not the original back wall of the house). - You want your new conservatory anywhere else but the back of your house (i.e. round the front). (Various other restrictions do apply, for more information contact your local council). As you can imagine, if you do need planning permission, this may delay the start of your build for at least 6-8 weeks, perhaps more depending on the wait time at your local council. If you’re going through planning right now, you will already know the company you are buying from can’t do anything to speed this process up as it has to be carried out properly by law. So all you can do for now, is sit back, be patient and know that it will all be worth it in the end. Lead Time The term ‘lead time’ basically means how many weeks you have to wait until your installation starts. For most companies it could be anything from 4-8 weeks – perhaps more during the busier months of the year. What you’ll want to consider is that if you are going through planning permission, your lead time will be added on top of that. So in the worst case scenario, you could be looking to start the installation 4 months after you’ve place your order. Don’t panic! This is completely normal. The planning process can get very confusing, which is why companies like Academy Home Improvements do it all for you. Once we have visited your home and given you a free quote, we will be able to give you a more accurate idea of how long it will be until the project starts.

Category - Conservatories

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Will I be able to use my conservatory all year round?
Yes. Academy have specialised in the double glazing industry for the last 35+ years. Modern day manufacturing means that all of our glazed units installed to your conservatory, including the roof, are the most energy efficient ever. With the ability to reflect solar radiation during the summer, and retain heat during the winter months, you’re conservatory will be comfortable to live in all year round.

Category - Conservatories

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We don’t have much space, will I be able to fit a conservatory in my garden?
This is a very common question, but one that you needn't worry about. No matter how small, how oddly shaped, or how sloped your garden is, we can create a bespoke design to maximise the space you've got. Contact your local branch, and one of our team members can come out and quote you for the conservatory of your dreams.

Category - Conservatories

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What guarantee will I receive when I've purchased my new conservatory?
For complete peace of mind, Academy give you a full 10 year guarantee on all uPVC conservatory frames. This covers a wide range of common problems such as, discolouration, warping and cracking to name a few. All of our conservatories have a life expectancy of at least 25 years.

Category - Conservatories

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Do I need to pay for the whole thing all in one go?
If you are buying your conservatory as supply only – then yes 100% payment is required to place your materials on order. However, a sensible option is to have your conservatory supplied and installed by Academy’s qualified and experienced fitters. This also means you can pay for your conservatory in 4 stage payments: 15% deposit, 40% payment at base stage, 40% payment for your roof delivery and 5% final balance payment on completion. We understand that sometimes money doesn’t come all at once – that’s why we’ve put these staged payments in place to make the process easier for you.

Category - Conservatories

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How much will it cost? And why can’t I get a price on-line?
Here at Academy, our conservatories offer excellent value for money. How much your conservatory will cost in total depends on so many different factors. The reason you can’t get a price on-line is because every conservatory, house and garden is different. Unfortunately for a quality conservatory built to meet current building regulations, there is no “one size fits all” option. One of our dedicated team members will go through all these options with you, and even produce a 3D image to help you visualise what you are choosing. If you’d like a price, contact your local branch and retrieve your FREE quote.

Category - Conservatories

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My existing roof is quite old and in need of replacing, is this something Academy do?
We have carried out plenty of conservatory roof replacements over the years, installing our Pilkington Activ Blue roof, making older conservatories a room to enjoy once again. Do you need a new conservatory roof? Contact us for a FREE quote.

Category - Conservatories

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How secure will my conservatory be?
Academy fit high security concealed shoot-bolt locking systems on all doors and opening windows. All of our frames and glazed units comply with current British Standards. Being a FENSA registered company, you can be assured that your conservatory will be of the highest specification, as well as receiving a full 10 year guarantee. If you want to see how these shoot-bolts work, visit your local branch and speak to one of our advisor's.

Category - Conservatories

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What is a composite door?
Firstly, the word composite can be linked to any item that is made from glass reinforced plastic (GRP), so not all composite doors on the market will be exactly the same. At Academy our composite doors are manufactured to the highest standards using the industry materials available to the market. With a strong, timber inner frame and a high-insulation condensed foam core, not only is your door going to be robust and secure, but it will also help to reduce energy bills and keep out noise. On the outside of this, you’ll find a completely weatherproof GRP (Glass Reinforced Plastic) skin, which has excellent resistance to knocks, scratches and whatever the weather throws at them. All of our designs are Secured by Design as a police standard, meeting all the requirements demanded from a 21st century entrance door to keep you and your home safe.

Category - Doors

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Why are composite doors better than solid wood doors?
As mentioned previously, the core of our doors are made from a high-insulation condensed foam which sits inside a timber frame. A composite door with a solid wood core can sound like it’s going to be stronger, however that’s not necessarily true. Changes in temperature throughout the seasons can cause the wood to shrink and expand causing both problems shutting the doors, and also cracks. This will ultimately compromise security immediately. Another issue to watch out for is low-insulation. A foam-core composite door will insulate your home up to 5 times the amount compared to a solid wood door. Therefore not only will you have some shutting and cracking issues with a solid wood door, you’ll also be chilly through the winter! If you’re looking for security, installation and low maintenance, a composite door is the right choice for you.

Category - Doors

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What guarantee do you give with your doors?

All of our doors have a 10 year guarantee, from our supplier giving you peace of mind.

Category - Doors

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What colour can I have my door?
All of our composite doors come in seven standard colours: White, Black, Red, Green, Blue, Light Wood and Dark Wood. However, if you’re feeling a bit funky, you could have your door any colour on the RAL colour chart – just contact us now for a FREE quote.

Category - Doors

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How much will my new uPVC or Composite door cost?
Both styles of door come in a range of sizes, with a wider range of optional extras such as a knocker, numbers, side panels, letterboxes etc. To be sure you’re receiving the right price, Academy would recommend visiting or calling your local showroom to discuss requirements with one of our double glazing advisers.

Category - Doors

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How long will it take to install my new door?
Entrance doors can be fitted within a day, which means that you can lock your door, and your home remains safe and secure. Any final adjustments, if any, may sometimes have to be completed in addition to the fitting.

Category - Doors

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What’s the energy efficiency of your Aluminium Bi-fold doors?
All of our aluminium bi-fold doors meet the 1.8W/m2/K U value required by current UK building regulations.

Category - Doors

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Which are better? Aluminium or uPVC bi-fold doors?
At Academy we will always recommend having Aluminium bi-folds installed, instead of uPVC, simply because of their enhanced performance and durability. Aluminium is a much stronger material than uPVC meaning panels can be made wider, in other words you’ll have more glass, and a much better view. On top of this, Aluminium can be powder coated in an extensive range of RAL colours, so you could pretty much have them any colour you’d like. However, Aluminium is a more expensive material than uPVC, so if you’re not looking to spend the extra money, uPVC is the way to go. The quality is not compromised, but the wider range of options is. We recommend coming to view our Bi-fold doors range in our selected showrooms, just give us a call or visit us at any time.

Category - Doors

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Are your kitchens supply only, or do you do installation as well?
All of our kitchens are available to purchase either as Supply Only, or with Installation. Our installation service can also include plumbing, electrics and plastering. This means that we can finish the whole job for you, and there’s no need for anyone else! Both purchase options include our free home measure service

Category - Kitchens

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Will you come out and measure, or do I have to bring measurements to you?
At Academy we offer our free home measure service. All you have to do is make an enquiry, and one of our experienced designers will give you a call to arrange home visit. The purpose of the visit will be to take all necessary measurements, go through aspects of your kitchen that may/may not work for you, work out what new appliances you’ll need and determine a budget. With this information, our designers can create a plan, a 3D image to help you visualize your new kitchen, and also an accurate costing. Don’t be put off however, if you’d like to bring in your own measurements, we can sit with you and start the design in the showroom, whilst discussing all the necessary options.

Category - Kitchens

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What guarantee do you give with your kitchens?
A 5 year guarantee comes with all of our cabinetry that we sell. If Academy also install the kitchen, our 5 year guarantee covers our installation, and any necessary remedial visits, giving you complete peace of mind.

Category - Kitchens

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Only 5 year guarantee? A lot of your competitors give 10 or 20 year guarantees – why is this?
Our 5 year guarantee covers any necessary remedial visits. This means if something went wrong a year or so after installation, you’d be covered for us to come out and assess/repair damage that may have occurred due to a faulty unit. Academy can do this because our installers are in-house. With other, much larger companies however, you may be in for shock when you’re told you have to collect the faulty item in store, no matter if you’re under guarantee, and have it fixed yourself. This is because they sub-contract installers; they are not covered for remedial visits, and the guarantee only covers their cabinetry. For more advice, ask one of our kitchen sales team.

Category - Kitchens

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Are your kitchens good quality?
Yes. All of the kitchens we sell at Academy are manufactured in the UK and meet the highest European standards. Not to mention, all of our cabinets arrive at your home rigid-built, with hardbacks ready to be installed – much better than the old fashioned flat packs.

Category - Kitchens

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Where can I see displays of your kitchens?
We currently have kitchen displays in 6 out of 9 of our showrooms. Our largest display is in our Reading, however you will also find a select few kitchens on display in Ruislip, Basingstoke, West Byfleet, Maidenhead and Frimley. Why not give your nearest showroom a call and arrange a visit?

Category - Kitchens

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What happens if you shut down after my kitchen has been installed?
Academy Home Improvements have now been successfully trading for nearly 40 years – a lot longer than some of the larger companies! It’s very unlikely that we will have to close, but in the event that we do, our supplier still covers your 5 year cabinet guarantee – so no need to worry!

Category - Kitchens

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What materials are you doors made from?
All of our kitchen doors are either made of solid wood, foil-wrapped MDF or PVC-wrapped MDF depending on the door style. This is specified in our brochures across the different ranges.

Category - Kitchens

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Do your doors and drawers come with soft close?
Yes! All of our doors and drawers come with high quality, soft-closing hinges as STANDARD!

Category - Kitchens

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I have a problem with my Academy kitchen post-installation, who can I contact?
Ring the head office number at the top of your contract and choose: Option 2 (installations) then Option 4 (for kitchens). You will get through to our Kitchen Installation Manager who can help you out with any advice or queries.

Category - Kitchens

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