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cowboy double glazing firmsChoosing the right double glazing company can make a vast difference to the quality and efficiency of your home’s doors, windows and insulation levels. Double glazing is one of the most effective ways to boost the energy efficiency of your home, so there are plenty of trustworthy traders out there that offer honest, quality installations and repairs.

Unfortunately, the double glazing industry is not immune to ‘cowboy’ traders. These dishonest firms or individuals can leave you with substandard work, unexpected costs, or even legal issues.

To help you choose a trustworthy double glazing company to work with, we have put together this guide. Here are five tell-tale signs of a cowboy double glazing firm that should help you steer clear.

What is a Cowboy Trader?

First, let’s explain what a cowboy trader is. A ‘cowboy’ trader is a person or firm that may appear to be a reputable tradesperson; but does not have the skills, qualifications, or insurance required to complete the projects they offer.

Many cowboy traders operate by creating the illusion they are doing the work. They will wear high vis jackets, drive a van, and have all the tools required to hand. Despite this, they either do not complete work to an acceptable quality or leave jobs completely unfinished.

They avoid accountability by taking ‘cash in hand’ and failing to provide proof of services. Here’s how to spot (and avoid) them if you’re looking to upgrade your double glazing.

Approaching you for Work

In the home improvement industry, reputable traders are in high demand and have enough work on their books. They don’t have time, or the need, to go hunting for jobs!

If anyone from a double glazing company – or any home-improvement firm – knocks on your door unsolicited to offer services, it’s a red flag. They may even take advantage by offering to repair damage caused by severe weather events, or offer their services immediately in an emergency. These types of traders may also pressure more vulnerable individuals such as the elderly or those that live alone.

While not all cold callers are disreputable, it’s better to be cautious. If they seem too readily available to offer work, check their credentials. Choose a company based on referrals, customer testimonials, or professional accreditation. Take the time to read customer reviews from a range of companies. See if there are any photographs added by previous clients that can prove a quality standard of work.

Poor Service

Customer service is often a reflection of a company’s professionalism. Cowboy traders might display a lack of respect for their clients, whether through rudeness, not keeping their word, or repeatedly missing appointments.

Professional companies, however, will present themselves and the traders that work for them as best they can. Look for firms that value your time and respect your property. Legitimate companies will ensure their workers communicate effectively and stick to their commitments.

Avoiding a Paper Trail

If any double glazing company seems like they are avoiding a paper trail, be cautious. Cowboy traders often avoid written contracts or insist on cash payments upfront.

A dishonest trader may be vague about the scope of work, failing to adequately explain the tasks they will complete and when this will be done. In comparison, a professional firm will provide a detailed written quotation before any work begins.

This quotation should clearly outline any work that be undertaken, materials used, timelines, and costs. They’ll also offer various payment options and give you a receipt. An absence of such transparency could suggest you are dealing with a company that has something to hide.

Too Cheap to be True

That age-old adage, “if it seems too good to be true, it probably is” should be remembered throughout your search for home improvement companies.

If a quote for double glazing work comes in significantly lower than others, it may be tempting to see it as a great deal. However, this could indicate substandard materials, poor workmanship, or hidden charges. In the worst-case scenario, a cowboy trader might vanish midway through the job or leave you with incomplete or poor-quality work.

Reputable firms understand the value of their expertise and don’t compete solely on price. They calculate costs based on the materials required, the complexity of the work, and the time it will take to complete the job to a high standard. Always get at least three quotes to gauge the average cost for the job, and remember… If a quote seems too good to be true, it probably is. It’s wise to invest in quality double glazing now, rather than having to face potential costly repairs or replacements later.

Lack of Licensing

Cowboy double glazing fitters might lack necessary licenses or insurance to carry out their work. This can leave their customers exposed to potential issues, and they won’t be covered if anything does go wrong – or if they drop a project and leave halfway through.

A credible double glazing company will be happy to provide proof of relevant licensing, insurance, and memberships with trade bodies like FENSA or the GGF (Glass and Glazing Federation).

These credentials not only provide reassurance of quality, but will also protect you if any problems arise.

Invest in Quality Double Glazing by Cloudy2Clear

Navigating the sea of double glazing firms doesn’t have to be daunting. At Cloudy2Clear, we pride ourselves on our professionalism, transparency, and commitment to providing exceptional service. We hold all necessary licenses, are fully insured, and our double glazing services come with a 25-year guarantee. Our positive reputation and customer satisfaction levels speak for us, as we work across over 35 areas nationwide. With over 2,000 reviews on Trustpilot, you can rest assured our engineers will provide the best possible service and expertise.

Don’t let anyone cut corners when it comes to taking care of your home. Instead, contact Cloudy2Clear for our trusted and reliable double glazing services. Get in touch with us today by calling 0800 61 21 119.