Government called upon to expand Better Homes Scheme

Wexford Viking Glass is calling on the Government to expand its Better Homes Scheme operated by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) to include glass and frame upgrades. The Wexford based company currently provides a glass scrappage scheme which has the potential to create up to 100 new jobs through retro-fitting houses nationwide if recognized under the home improvement grants scheme.

Currently under the Government-run Better Energy Homes Scheme, grants are not available to homeowners for energy-efficient window products such as energy glass or improved window frames. At present homeowners can avail of grants to install solar panels, and upgrade insulation and heating systems.

Wexford Viking Glass Director Peter Campbell believes various grants should be made available to homeowners to cover window pane and/or whole frame replacement which will significantly reduce CO2 emissions and help curb energy costs.

“There is an estimated 1.2 million homes in Ireland which could benefit from upgrading either their current glass panes or window frames to more energy-efficient glazing allowing serious energy savings to be made. If the Government recognises this initiative under their Better Energy Homes Scheme it could have the potential to create up to 100 new jobs for every 1% of the available market upgraded through retro-fitting contracts,” added Campbell.

The Wexford glass company has developed an innovative window scheme, Change the Pane – Keep the Frame, allowing homeowners to upgrade existing inefficient glass panels to new energy-efficient double and triple glazing without changing window frames, costing up to 50% less than a complete replacement.

By switching to energy-efficient glass, significant savings on heating bills can be achieved up to an estimated €350 annually on the average four-bed semi-detached house, depending on the amount of glass used.

“Our glass scheme will help budget-conscious homeowners to improve the energy efficiency of their home without major expenditure or redecorating. Reducing energy costs is a major priority for homeowners as they face rising energy and fuel costs not to mention the new household charge which will put extra pressure on household budgets,” concluded Campbell.

For more information on the energy-efficient glass scheme see