Replacement Windows: uPVC & Steel

Is uPVC or steel an option for you?

uPVC Replacement Windows

For a huge number of householders, the main appeal of uPVC is the cost. For £6,000 they can replace all their rotten windows with fresh, bright plastic ones, while doing the same in wood would cost more like £18,000. As Richard Hair points out,
'For most of the market cheap and cheerful is the most popular.' uPVC units have excellent security features, top-of-the-range insulation and you never need to get up on a ladder to repaint them. Innovations in plastic technology means they are more durable, too, lasting as many as 35 years.

Environmentally, modern uPVC windows will make your home more energy efficient, yet according to the WWF, they are made from non-renewable oil, use eight times more energy to manufacture than a timber frame, generate 43% more waste than a timber frame and when incinerated release hazardous chemicals into the environment. Other negatives include the rapid ageing seen in many plastic units - with discolouration and fading that can't be reversed - plus for some buyers, uPVC is about as welcome as an avocado WC with a fluffy seat cover and an alligator down the pan.

It is harder to avoid than find providers of uPVC windows - another reason the industry has a bad name. Get a personal recommendation from a friend for a reliable company that offers good customer service and a quality product. Never allow yourself to be browbeaten into a sale by a pushy salesman - if they have to coerce you into buying, it's not exactly a reassuring sign.
Guide To Replacement Windows

Steel Replacement Windows

It's been a quiet shift but metal windows are making a return to the windows scene. Some period homes positively demand them, but steel is a funky modern choice for contemporary developments, too. Most steel windows sold in the UK are made from recycled metal and they have great natural strength, making them durable and a good burglar deterrent. Modern steel window frames are coated with a specialist film to make them virtually maintenance and rust free and the frames are generally slimmer than wood or uPVC versions, giving you more light. On the downside, they are not cheap, although no more expensive than wood, and in some cases cheaper. Installing steel windows is taking a risk - they may not be to everyone's taste - and they might look out of place on certain styles of home.
A Guide To Replacement Windows
Contact the Steel Window Association for details of a steel window supplier in your area.

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