With winter on the horizon bi-fold door manufacturer and supplier, Vufold, is urging anyone thinking about installation and building works in 2015 not to be caught out by the changeable British weather.

The warning comes on the back of the company witnessing a dramatic increase in demand for its external doors as soon as the weather picked up at the back end of last winter. Vufold supplies a wide range of external bi-fold doors to customers from the English south coast to the Scottish borders from its warehouse and offices in Cheshire, and is keen to advise home owners that late orders could mean significant delays to their plans.

Marketing Manager for Vufold, Kerry Murphy-Kaytan explains the knock on effects the company witnessed earlier this year.

"Last winter gave us some late cold and wet weather which we think made people hold off from placing orders. When the weather picked up in late March/April we had an unprecedented high demand of orders. Fortunately, we keep our warehouse well-stocked with ready to deliver door sets so it did not cause our customers any problems, however, if homeowners suddenly shorten the deadlines to which they plan to work it can impact on suppliers as well as builders. We know builders that simply could not cope with the demand from customers wanting installations done before the summer as everyone had the same idea and rushed to get their plans completed. If spring plans are set back customers could be looking at having doors fitted in the summer holidays when they were hoping to be away on vacation. Our advice to anyone looking at projects for next year is to talk to builders and suppliers in plenty of time about supply times and availability. Having a contingency plan in place if the weather changes can mean the difference between getting the project finished on time or it dragging on throughout the year."

One of the biggest problems homeowners face is the issue of ordering bespoke door sets. Lead times for these can be much longer than for ready-made universal sized doors, not only that, but once they are manufactured the supplier will expect to deliver them. If the supplier does not have the space to store a customer doors this can cause even more problems, as most respected manufacturers advise against on-site storage.

"From a storing point of view, householders should look for a supplier that can offer short-term or emergency storage options just in case they have to make changes in the installation plans. The other option is to ask about delayed dispatch times and whether they are flexible enough to take account of disruptions to installations. Not all suppliers do, and homeowners are well advised to see these as added benefits rather than an expected service." says Kerry Murphy-Kaytan.