Specialist UK Timber Fenestration – Testimonial

September 23, 2019

Dr & Mrs Dar had a timber fenestration installation completed earlier in the year. It comprises an entrance door, some full height windows, arched feature windows and a set of hardwood bifolding doors, installed in their new extension on the side of their barn conversion home in Ackworth, West Yorkshire.

The Client was initially visited in October 2018 by Robert, North Country’s design consultant, representing our preferred specialist manufacturer, Totali Timber Solutions in South Kirkby. He was kind enough to write a testimonial following Robert’s visit in August 2019. As Robert was mentioned by name, we thought it worth including it in a post.

A very happy Dr Dar with his newly completed garden room extension

Dr Dar wrote:

When we decided to build a garden room extension on our recently built barn conversion, we thought it was only prudent to contact the company who had supplied the timber windows and doors for it. They sent us an estimate by email, based upon the measurements which we took, as suggested by them. The quoted price did not include installation. I wasn’t happy with this arrangement and started looking for a local firm where I could see and talk to the experts. Luckily Totali happened to be in my neighbourhood. They arranged a visit of their design consultant.

Robert visited us. He knew the company who had supplied the above quote. He was quite up front with us, saying that Totali’s price was likely to be higher for the following reasons:

  • Totali will provide hardwood doors and frames as compared to softwood which was quoted by the other company
  • The price will include installation
  • Totali’s team will come to take measurements
  • The price will include a 10 year warranty

The Totali price was indeed higher, but half of the difference was down to better hardwood. Robert invited us to visit Totali’s workshop and showroom. We were impressed with the manufacturing methods and higher standard specifications. The bifold doors were slim and operated smoothly. We felt confident and decided to pay extra for the products and services.

The whole process was easy and smooth. Totali’s surveyor and installers were very professional. Although we had few teething problems, they were quick to return and rectify everything.

Robert returned in August 2019 and took some photos of the completed project.

We are extremely pleased and satisfied with the results and the services provided by Totali. We will be happy to recommend them if the opportunity arises.”

Dr Dar chose beautiful slimline hardwood bifolding doors and full height windows
The new side door was built to match the Client’s existing main entrance door
A beautiful space, with the cosiness of Totali’s glazing units, 1.0 U-value as standard
Arched windows feature to add to the traditional style

At Robert’s initial visit, the Client kindly showed him the quotation they had already received from the other company. They had told him it was for hardwood products. In fact, it clearly stated all the products were made of ‘European Redwood’ – he politely suggested they ‘Google’ the timber, which they found was actually a softwood!

Although the door cills were hardwood, we would never recommend softwood doors – indeed we would refuse to price them! Softwood, in our opinion, is not stable enough, and therefore durable enough, to be used for doors.

The Client’s existing products, only 18 months old, are already showing signs of degradation. This is partly down to design, components and manufacturing. All of which are superior in our recommended products.

The existing units feature ‘stuck-on’ bars and silicone-fixed glazing
These existing French doors features unsightly use of silicone sealant

Other significant differences, such as design, hardware and glazing units, were not mentioned in the testimonial, but collectively they made a difference to the initial cost. Long term however, these differences will prove to be highly cost-effective due to reduced maintenance, and a far longer lifespan.

We have written a few blogs about what to look for when selecting the best products such as ‘Why Shoud I Pay More For My Timber Windows?‘ and ‘Timber Windows – What’s The Difference?‘ amongst others. Please check them out.


Robert Goldsbrough

Robert Goldsbrough

Robert has been developing and building period & contemporary homes since 1995, and has installed all types of external home improvement products.