Hi All, apologies if this is a duplicate post, I don't start many. I purchased a flat in June 2007, the windows in the place had been replaced in the February by the previous owners. In short, the windows have no structural support, they are a three bay flat window that faces directly onto the sea, the winds howl in off the West coast and they get the full force. The bay flexes around the two vertical axis ans across the top which has no lintle. The things leak like seives and have bowed visibly inwards with striations appearing in the roof above as the thing settles and cracks. The firm claim I have no warranty with them as this was with the previous owner. I wrote Without Prejudice Dear Mr xxxx, in our dealings with Allerdale Windows/BB Glass we have always maintained that the original problem was that the windows leak significantly which Allerdale/BB Glass conveniently seem to have tried to avoid recently. Your e mail of the 23/10/2008, a copy of which I have attached below is therefore incorrect in its content I am afraid. The leaks manifests themselves under wind loadings which cause the window structures to flex around the three axis on the marked up photograph. this causes weak points which open to allow water to enter the building structure. The problem was due to the inadequate structural support during installation. Despite clear and concise instructions from your Clients designer for additional sealing measures (written onto the original spec sheet) the windows were never adequately sealed from outside (this was apparently due to lack of scaffold) and this lack of sealant to the frames also exacerbates the leaks which can not be adequately sealed from the inside as has been proven over the eight times that Allerdale have been out to try to rectify the problem. If Allerdale could not carry out a fit for purpose installation using these methods they are duty bound to point this out to their client and to refuse to do a substandard installation. We have entered into discussions with Allerdale/BB Glass over the last eighteen months trying to resolve this matter amicably. After such a long period of time and despite promises and assurances from your client, nothing had materialised and we had to take matters further. The structure is weak due to the lack of an overhead brace/support/lintel. UPVC windows are not load bearing unlike the wooden windows pre 1930 which were designed to transmit loads around and into the structure. this is well documented and appears in numerous articles in the Glazing federation publications. With Winter coming and the first of the storms arriving I need these windows (there are two which leak both supplied and 'fitted' by Allerdale/BB Glass) rectified which will unfortunately require Allerdale to carry out works which they should have done in the first instance. Please also note that water damage to carpets, plaster and paintwork will also require remedial works. Since the leaks manifested themselves the window in the main bedroom has bowed in by 1.5" from the centre to the outer edges, the structure above on the right hand side has started to show striations and cracks to paintwork and plaster showing settlement. Allerdale as 'Subject Matter Experts' were employed to provide a fit for purpose installation which they as designers and manufacturers are obliged to supply. The lack of structural strength in the replacement frames supplied by Allerdale is an issue I am afraid as is born out by the photographs and physical evidence. The frames are not attached adequately to the existing structure to tie the two together. When our surveyor made his report the problems arising from the lack of support which the new windows are not providing did not at that time manifest itself in the now progressive failure of the structure - it can take a time for this to happen hence this was not apparent to the surveyor at the time of inspection. Settlement occurs gradually and in this case is compounded under wind loadings, the recent inspection has since confirmed our concerns. The structural problem now appears to be showing itself above the 'new window' hence the 'new windows' are not offering the longevity of support which they should be. Removal of the existing window has obviously degraded the structural integrity of the installation- Support is obviously required which the 'new windows' are failing to provide with the structure above settling on the window assembly which is not able to withstand these forces. If you look at the marked up photograph you will see the axis that the wind loadings are causing bending moments around with weak points at the joins. This being the case, then the new windows should be considered as being not fit-for-purpose, and if a lintel was not observed by the installers, then they should have designed their windows to carry any structure/loading from above it - Allerdale undertook a survey also and as Subject Matter Experts, therefore have a duty of care, that they do not design / install /leave any installation in such a situation that it will degrade shortly after they leave site. Regards, Their Solicitor wrote the following. We acknowledge receipt of your without prejudice email dated 23rd October. Our clientâs position both legally and factually are set out in this Firmâs open letter to you. With the greatest of respect you are missing the point. 1. Our Client Company has no legal contract or relationship with you and is not liable to you in any respect. You have no cause of action against our Client Company even if they were at fault. 2. As you point out PVCu windows are not structural items and are not designed to be load bearing. The windows installed for your predecessor in title were of course not, by definition, load bearing. 3. The problem is clearly that the structural integrity of your property was compromised years ago when one of the previous owners removed the existing wooden windows and who can say what else and arranged for PVCu windows to be installed. 4. We repeat that our clients have simply replaced one set of PVCu windows with another. 5. The problems that you describe are clearly due to the inadequate structure of your own property, which has clearly existed for some time. Our Client Company is not responsible for rectifying the structural defects with your property which were caused years ago by some third party. We can only repeat our suggestion that you should seek legal advice. Your proposed claim against our Client Company is based on a misconception and our Client Company has no offer to make. We are instructed not to engage in any further correspondence. How you proceed from this point is entirely a matter for you. Yours faithfully Question now is, do I bite the bullet or have I got enough to go to court with? I have obtained three quotes for replacement, all agree the things are rubbish but then they want the rework job. I have also had a structural surveyor out, he has rubbished the work too. Any advice welcomed as I have never had to go the whole legal hog before.