Selling the savings
With the latest Ofgem price cap increase coming into force, and inflation defying the odds by rising once again, the importance of selling energy efficiency and sustainability has never been greater, according to Deceuninck UK MD, Rob McGlennon.
The price of wholesale gas continues to rise: the ongoing conflict in the Middle East, fears over possible sabotage to the Finnish gas Baltic-connector with Estonia, and industrial action at gas production facilities in Australia have all played their part in the 5% increase in the Ofgem energy cap that came into force on 1 January. This 5% increase equates to almost a £100 annual price rise for consumers.
“We’re not seeing the improvements in the cost-of-living crisis that we thought we would be seeing by now,” said Deceuninck UK managing director, Rob McGlennon. “Inflation was forecasted to drop to 3.7% but in fact it has increased to 4%, which is double the Bank of England’s 2% cost of living target.
“And with the cost of our energy increasing too, there is clearly a consumer demand for increased energy efficiency which fabricators and installers can meet.”
Calculating the costs
Deceuninck is supporting its customers to take the energy efficiency message to the homeowner through its energy calculator.
Available to Deceuninck customers as a website plugin, it powerfully demonstrates how replacing old windows can save homeowners money while reducing their carbon footprint.
According to the energy calculator, owners of a detached house on mains gas will save over £18k in 10 years if they upgrade from single-glazed wooden windows to triple-glazed Heritage 2800 from Deceuninck. The calculator estimates it would also save around 28 tons on emitted carbon.
“We are in an industry where the benefits for homeowners are quantifiable and tangible, if you have the correct tools to produce the figures,” said Rob. “We’ve provided the energy calculator as a free plugin, to allow our customers to really sell on these benefits.”
Deceuninck is also channelling its energy saving ethos into its products, with the Elegant system.
Available in Deceuninck’s extruded insulated thermal reinforcement, which maximises design potential without the need for traditional steel reinforcement using embedded steel wires in a low-density insulating foam core, it is said to deliver a 30% increase in thermal efficiency with 40% savings on materials and weight, when compared to windows manufactured using a traditional steel reinforcement.
Elegant is also easy to recycle at the end of life, and – according to Deceuninck – it feeds into a model of window manufacture that not only delivers significant carbon saving during its lifetime, but also lowers carbon in manufacture, for example by using renewable energy and recycled raw material.
A sustainable approach
This low carbon manufacture is a subject that is on consumers’ minds: last year, the Google search ‘ways to reduce my carbon footprint’ increased by 101% (ThinkWithGoogle).
“At Deceuninck, we not only provide our customers with the most energy efficient products, but also ensure that we are playing our part for the environment in operating efficiently and sustainably,” Rob said.
Deceuninck has committed to ambitious targets to reduce greenhouse emissions through the corporate carbon reduction scheme, Science Based Targets (SBTi).
Significant progress has already been made, with Deceuninck cutting its CO2 emissions from its operations by 21% in just two years.
“If you’re a fabricator or an installer and you did nothing but continue to buy Deceuninck windows and doors, your business and products are automatically becoming more sustainable, simply from the work we are doing upstream,” explained Rob.
Setting the standard
“The Future Homes Standard really was a bombshell, in terms of its decision to retain notional U-values at 1.2W/m2K,” said Rob. “However, just because increased energy efficiency has not been forced upon us, we as an industry cannot rest on our laurels.”
“Energy efficient and sustainability are driving consumer demand today,” Rob concluded. “Understanding the sustainable benefits and improved thermal efficiency of products could be winning you work now.”