We are delighted to announce that we have recently joined one of the most stringently controlled schemes for promoting quality in the construction sector, the Solid Wall Insulation Guarantee Agency (SWIGA).
A partner you can trust: working with the SWIGA guarantee
Our formal accreditations include the following:
- ISO 9001
- ISO 14001
- ISO 45001
- Contractors Health and Safety Assessment Scheme (CHAS)
- Constructionline membership
Now we have added to that, by passing through the exacting process of becoming a full Installer Member of SWIGA. A not-for-profit promoter of quality and best practice, SWIGA is a guarantee-provider for solid wall insulation materials and works. It is not a government scheme, but was set up by the solid wall insulation industry, essentially to serve three purposes:
- Provide reassurance to those seeking insulation that creators and installers of solid wall insulation are of the highest level of professionalism
- Provide robust 25-year warranties for wall insulation work
- Arbitrate efficiently and affordably in case of dispute
We differ from insurance companies in that we are a not-for-profit organisation and in the unusual event of installation issues, we will arbitrate directly with the home owner on any disputes, working with our network to obtain the best outcome for the owner. Our prime focus has always been on prevention, not cure. Our Quality Assurance framework is key and our pre-vetting procedures do more than any other to avoid issues from the outset.
–Andrew Champ, Executive Director of SWIGA
Since the organisation must take responsibility for failed installations, it is very strict in its membership requirements. Guarantees are honoured for companies that have ceased trading, so membership criteria include financial strength as well as professional competence.
- Approval and endorsement by a System Certificate Holder (i.e., SWIGA member who owns the intellectual property of an insulation system)
- Submit to SWIGA technical audits as required and an ongoing third-party surveillance scheme, as well as rigorous initial assessment
- Participate in a scheme for the assessment and manufacturer-training of trainee operatives
- Perform ongoing monitoring of trained operatives
- Adhere to SWIGA ratios ensuring a high level of fully trained operatives on site
SWIGA was set up because it is increasingly common for owners of installation systems, and sometimes installers, to offer long 25-year warranties through some mechanism for the work completed. This has in part been driven by government schemes that require such guarantees:
ECO – the Energy Company Obligation provides grants to homeowners so that they can install insulation and other energy-efficiency measures for free. It is part of the government’s new Green Deal Energy Efficiency program.
TrustMark – a government-endorsed non-profit social enterprise that oversees a trade accreditation scheme for work done in or around the home. To be registered with TrustMark, you must offer clients an appropriate guarantee for the work done; in the case of wall insulation completed under ECO, a 25-year warranty is required.
PAS 2030 – Publicly Available Specification 2030 regulates the installation of energy efficiency measures such as insulation and double glazing; one requirement for becoming PAS 2030 certified is to be registered with TrustMark.
All traders must offer a 25-year warranty when completing the specific government-funded work described above, but often the guarantee involved is less comprehensive than under SWIGA, even when offered, and frequently it isn’t offered by installers for other work. SWIGA requires members to apply for a guarantee for all relevant installations.
The SWIGA scheme covers both high-rise and low-rise buildings, but high-rise installation is considered a specialist field, and not all member installers are able to offer SWIGA-warranted work on taller buildings. At Eden Facades, we have a long history of such work, and we are approved to offer SWIGA warranties on high rise buildings.
We are specialists, and we know that the peace of mind we afford our partners means they can leave the work in our hands with the confidence we will complete it to the highest level of quality. Now we are able to offer a formal, 25-year guarantee of that.