I had most of my windows done in my apartment this week. There is a long story involving one of my glass panels being smashed in the middle of the night (from memory of when I heard one hell of a crack)
When I woke up in the morning, I walked into the living room and shouted something pretty rude and got on the phone to our residents liaison (that is a whole different story). Didn’t get through so sent emails but the builders were already ripping out the shatter glass. I talked with them through my restricted window. Long story short, they were able to get the panel of glass to installed the next day (Thursday 6th). In actual fact they put in the panel next to it too. Nice present for my birthday weekend, but friends couldn’t believe the pictures when I showed them in the party.
I was asked if I could allow access to my whole flat for a complete glass refit on Tuesday 11th. I agreed as I was going to be away and after coming back from a spa weekend. After coming back on Tuesday evening I found the new windows except in the second bedroom. I expect that will take another 5-6 weeks.
There is a lot more to this all including moving everything away from the windows, the endless back and forth getting a date and being let down. Will it make a difference to the heat? Its hard to tell because the original designs have changed and the windows are clearly less able to open as wide. There was always plans for two open windows to provide a in and out draft but in the Living room there is one. Plus its actually smaller than the original one and can’t open so wide.
One thing I do have is the temperature sensors in the living room and bedroom which I’m planning to map alongside the historical temperature over the last year (which I also have), to really understand the difference the new windows are making.
A few years ago I bought switch-bot temperature monitors, but it was only recently I decided to setup the sync feature. Till then I kind of thought it would save all the data but it turns out, it only saves a month at a time.
In the living room the peak was 33.7c, while the lowest was 21.7c which is better. I suspect with the 20 inch gym fan running and the one window off its restrictions, that might have brought the temperature down. I do have timings for the temperatures but I’m not going to work that out now.
In my bedroom the temperature started at 28.2c (yes the lowest!) and 29.7c was the highest. Imagine trying to sleep all the time between those ranges. Now you can see why I have to sleep with no sheets. The temperature will be higher, because I can’t sleep with the window wide open without the blinds down. This traps the heat inside even with the doors open.
You have a terrible night from suspected flu and have to cancel plans to head down to Bath for a festival you are talking at. You are slightly concerned it might be Covid but having recently survived it, expect its not. Regardless you are hot and cold then decide to leave your 31c bedroom for a living room with a bigger fan and window which opens wider.
In your light dressing-gown, you attempt to open the window which you left open the night before. Thinking well maybe I got it wrong, heck flu does that to you. You go to the window and its stuck, looking at the inner restrictors which can be taken off if you choose so with a little key, which was given to us. The restrictors is off but one bent like someone pushed the window back on its self under some pressure from outside. This something which couldn’t have been done with the wind you puzzle.
Its not long after trying the window you come to notice a white plastic wire attached to the outside window and the outside frame. The temperature is high (31.8c) and the 20inch fan is simply blowing around hot air in the apartment. You start to wonder why this has happened?
You start to think its the window cleaners or builders as a temporary solution for me opening the window off its inner restrictors. So you look at the facebook group for the development. This is when you see a large thread about the exact same thing, which has happened to others.
So of course I demand answers from the management agent (who didn’t know anything about it) and also the owners (Waterside places). It turns out that at some point they may need to put extra restrictors on windows for when they are changing the glass on the building but failed to gain any consent from any of the residents. It was decided the day before and that was it! Zero notice.
This is the email response I got from Waterside places…
MS will be removing these first thing tomorrow and a formal notification of this will follow next week before any restrictors are reinstated.
Apologies for the inconvenience caused today. We have acted as soon as we were made aware of this.
In the meanwhile I had already started cutting my way out, I just don’t trust that they will do it the next morning. Plus its still a greenhouse in my flat.
The biggest problem is anything which could cut the cord was too big to fit between the window and the frame. So ultimately I was left to using tiny pliers, knifes, etc.
The next morning, they did remove the restrictors but they float around like they can be reapplied at any time. Foreshadowing whats coming back soon?
Here is their message the next morning, with some kind of apology?
You may be aware that Morgan Sindall Construction installed window restrictors on a number of Block B apartments yesterday. The purpose of these restrictors was to ensure that the mast climber could safely operate on the façade of Block B without clashing with open windows.
Due to the high temperatures currently, residents raised concerns regarding available air flow into your apartments.
Accordingly, Waterside Places immediately instructed for these external restrictors to be removed promptly yesterday, and we have had confirmation this has been completed this morning.
We are awaiting our contractor’s revised proposals for dealing with the safety of the mast climbers. We will come back to you shortly on how we intend to proceed, ahead of the restrictors being re-instated and sincere apologies to those affected.
Due to the architecture of Islington Wharf, when we have window cleaning (meant to be 3-4x a year, lucky if we get even 1) the window cleaners abseil down the building. All residents are informed this will take place and to not take their windows off the safety restrictors. This mainly works but there is lots of notice beforehand. Obviously this wasn’t true of a few days ago and I like others think this might actually be illegal?
Wall climbers, abseiling window cleaners, whatever it may be. You can’t actively restrict peoples windows from the outside.