The significant increase in turnover of more than 50% compared to the previous year was achieved both through organic growth and through the acquisition and integration of other companies. The expertise of the “Service Friends” in questions of renovation and retrofitting of windows, but also the organisation’s outstanding reliability are the basis for the many years of success enjoyed by Roto Frank Professional Service GmbH (RPS), according to Dr Faden. He expects that RPS will continue to write its story of successful company development in 2024 in the face of political measures for the sustainable use of older buildings and energy efficiency improvements to these.
33 sites in Germany, Austria and Switzerland
Two more trade businesses offering door and window services were acquired and successfully integrated this year. In all, RPS opened 13 new sites in the current year. This brings their total to more than 33 locations in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The RPS “Service Friends” can reliably assist new and existing customers thanks to this rapid growth and highly efficient processes, explained Dr Faden. The range of services is growing just as much as the organisation itself. Improving the energy efficiency of older windows and doors could continue to gain importance in 2024 in the face of high energy costs.
Relevant for environmental protection
By actively engaging homeowners, building managers and companies in the housing sector, RPS was committed to communicating an important message: regularly checking and, where necessary, updating older windows is relevant for the carbon footprint of the building sector and should be done as a matter of fact in consideration of both sustainability and functional safety.
During the Trade Press Day 2022, we showed how our technicians carry out window upgrades – Dr Faden reminded the audience.
At RPS, a window upgrade refers to replacing hardware and gaskets – a measure that improves both the function and energy efficiency of older windows.
Anyone working in the field knows that hardened window gaskets and worn hardware cannot ensure reliable sealing of the window rebate.
Traffic noise reaches the living spaces even with the windows closed as a result of the poor sealing. Heat dissipates to the outside. There is an unpleasant draught. But do poorly sealed windows really have a measurable impact on the required heating energy?
This is what we wanted to know in detail – continued Dr Faden, introducing an interesting scientific report.
RPS initially contracted a test laboratory to record comparative measurements on a 30-year-old timber window before and after a window upgrade. Professor Dr.-Ing. Andreas Beck of the Centre for Acoustic and Thermal Building Physics at Hochschule für Technik (University of Applied Sciences) in Stuttgart used the measurement results to determine what the effects of the window upgrade on the energy requirements of a residential unit could be. He presented his calculations himself during the Trade Press Day.
A window upgrade that can restore the sealing properties of windows can reduce heating costs by up to 15% – is his assessment.
While 30-year-old windows are not comparable to new windows, the amount of energy wasted by existing buildings could still be reduced.
The experienced scientist described in detail the wind pressure to which windows are exposed depending on their position in the building envelope and why even small leaks on windows significantly impair comfort and cause energy losses. According to his calculations, energy savings of up to 300 kW/h for room heating, corresponding to approximately 30 m3 of gas per year and window, are possible after a window upgrade.
Insufficient window sealing has a measurable impact on the energy efficiency of a residential unit – a fact that should be taken into account when seeking to improve the carbon footprint of the building sector.
On the window examined in the laboratory, with external dimensions of 100 x 150 cm, the cavities in the window rebate no longer filled by a gasket added up to an area of 5 cm². Room air was able to dissipate unimpeded through this area. Before the upgrade, the timber window with its 30-year-old original hardware and gaskets only achieved the worst sealing class 1 as per DIN EN 12207. By installing modern gaskets and hardware, the “Service Friends” were able to reduce the possible passages for room air to only 0.3 cm².
Put and end to draught and heat loss: By
upgrading the window gaskets and hardware, even older windows can achieve the
highest sealing class 4 again
The air permeability decreased by a factor of 15. The window now achieved sealing class 3 during high wind loads and the best sealing class 4 during normal wind loads. If installing new windows is not possible due to economical or technical reasons, an upgrade performed by experts could help significantly reduce the energy requirements of older properties, Dr Faden concluded.
Solution with immediate effect
In view of this insight, I think it makes a lot of sense to offer inspections of older windows by qualified specialists to a breadth of people – explained Dr Faden.
Property companies and owners’ associations are already regularly placing orders for window upgrades, mostly for technical or economical reasons: Windows in transom / mullion facades or element facades with integrated external shading can be upgraded on-site if a full facade renovation is not planned because it is not economical.
Owners’ associations whose reserves are not yet sufficient to cover new windows, or landlords letting just a few units, for whom it is essential to avoid rent reductions caused by building measures due to financial reasons, are also contracting the “Service Friends”. For these clients, a window upgrade is a “first step with an immediate effect”, Dr Faden described their motivation.
Lowering CO2 emissions remains a central goal of our society and the requirements for existing buildings will become more stringent – he concluded. – This is why we expect the demand for window upgrades to keep growing in the coming years, even if this growth is not quite as steep as that in the demand for new windows.