The Double Glazing Conservatory Ombudsman Scheme (DGCOS)

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Nick Dardalis

The Double Glazing and Conservatory Ombudsman Scheme, or DGCOS is a rapidly growing organisation that works to offer consumer protection to those purchasing double glazing.  Additionally, they work to help improve the negative reputation that many consumers continue to associate with the glass and glazing sector and double glazing industry.

the double glazing conservatory ombudsman scheme (dgcos)
the dgcos is a growing consumer organisation that offers huge benefits to its members and the consumer.
The DGCOS is a growing consumer organisation that offers huge benefits to its members and the consumer.

The DGCOS has been unfairly criticised by some in the home improvement industry but over recent years, the organisation has grown into a credible and highly professional body that is working hard to ensure window companies are vetted and operate in a professional manner and for consumers that they have extra peace of mind.

How The Double Glazing Conservatory Ombudsman Scheme (DGCOS) helps when buying double glazing

It is important to remember that some home improvements can cost substantial amounts of money.  It is not unheard of to spend upwards of thirty thousand or even fifty thousand pounds on conservatories, windows and doors.  With so many negative media reports of shoddy workmanship, bad installations and companies taking customer deposits and never commencing any work consumer protection is at the heart of what the Double Glazing and Conservatory Ombudsman Scheme is all about.

However it is also important to remember that the vast majority of the double glazing industry is ethical, highly trustworthy, professional and above all honest.  Business owners do not set up in business to rip of the customer and these scare stories are few and far between.  It is also important to remember that the media will never report positive window installations and satisfied customers as this does not make for news or programmes that would be of interest to viewers and readers.

Despite window companies being reputable, consumers often need added peace of mind.

The DGCOS offers peace of mind to prospective purchasers of double glazing that DGCOS members have been highly vetted, are credible, competent and profession with the right systems and procedures in place.

DGCOS offer a 12 point check as part of their accreditation process that prospective members must fully satisfy before membership is offered.  This accreditation process includes:

  • Credit and general background history on the company owners/directors including whether they have been involved in phoenix companies, CCJ’s, credit scoring and other checks.
  • Any customer testimonials or references submitted are verified with the customer themselves.
  • Supplier references to ensure companies are ethical and professional in their dealings with suppliers.
  • Possess the required levels of Insurance and the right health and safety policies
  • Comply with building standards and regulations for window installations
  • Provide the right insurance backed guarantees and other necessary paperwork.

DGCOS membership goes beyond the initial vetting process

The DGCOS also operate an ongoing vetting and assessment procedure many of which should also give peace of mind to consumers.  Some of these include monitoring of ongoing installation via direct customer contact, annual review of financial stability, performance reviews and much more.

What does membership of the DGCOS mean for window companies?

We must remember that with over 12000 window companies in the UK, many are not members of any professional organisation other than the legal ones and these companies continue to trade professionally, profitably and with an excellent local reputation.

Companies such as these may see added value in becoming a member of the DGCOS as a further avenue in increasing their credibility to their customers.  In the same way that companies enter awards for what it means to the business, the same can be said for membership of the DGCOS.  If membership of such a scheme can benefit your business, then joining is recommended.

What does the DGCOS provide for consumers?

Consumers today about to embark on the purchase of new windows and doors have substantial information available to them as to how best to choose a window company.  Recommendations include reviews, testimonials, local recommendations and much more.  For a consumer that has done their research generally, they are able to purchase new windows and doors with peace of mind.

The Double Glazing and Conservatory Ombudsman Scheme offers a further benefit in that consumers can clearly see how their local DGCOS member has been vetted and verified and in the unlikely event that things do go wrong, there is help and advice on hand offered by the Double Glazing and Conservatory Ombudsman Scheme.

The DGCOS member companies spoken to by this website are all highly positive of what membership means to them and in offering peace of mind to their prospective customers.  From the initial signing of the contract through to the duration of the guarantee period there are many valid reasons why choosing a DGCOS member to install their windows and doors is a positive thing for homeowners.

The DGCOS offers a nationwide network of vetted and quality window firms, manufacturers, systems companies and others involved in the home improvement sector and any organisation that continues working to raise standards is to be welcomed and applauded.