Learn from my experience
If you live in flats and are only replacing some of the windows,
insist, really insist, that the dimensions of the new frame are as
close as possible to the existing - so that the new frames do not
stand out like a sore thumb. I guess that UPVC is structurally much,
much weaker than wood or metal hence the UPVC frame needs to be much,
much thicker to support the glazing units. If they are very much
thicker than the other unchanged units, they will look ridiculous.
Look at a mock-up of the style of the window. Other windows in my
block have a simple mitre between the frame and the glazing unit. My
new windows have some ridiculous extra fillet between the frame and
the glazing that irritates the shit out of me. I am trying to get that
rectified but I don't hold out much hope.
My new windows look clumsy in comparison to others in the block and
only because the previous metal windows were so ghastly (constant
mould, constant paint flaking, constant condensation) am I not going
to take an axe to the new ones.
uPVC windows have always had thicker sections than other types - although
some of the modern ones seem better than previous models in this respect.
They *can* look very heavy - particularly on smallish windows, where the
glass to aperture ratio is particularly poor.
It is for this very reason that all the windows in my house are thermal
break aluminium - and I believe that they are well worth the extra cost.
Was it much extra, out of interest ? I have two west-facing upstairs
windows which do not have much life left in them and being above a
conservatory, access for painting and cleaning is limited. Mind you, I
would rather struggle by than consider uPVC.
Press any key to continue or any other key to quit.
A fair bit I think (maybe 50%?) but I don't have any accurate figures. It is
quite some years since we had the whole house done - and I remember at the
time that uPVC would have been cheaper, but we didn't get any proper quotes
for these because there was no way we would have had uPVC.
The differential may now be even higher in the light of the latest building
regs. Because the frames (even with thermal break) transmit more heat than
uPVC, you end up having to have more exotic glass in order the achieve the
required thermal efficiency.
I'd go along with that. There is a rather unfortunate case in a house near
The house in question is a small victorian workers terrace house, flat
single fronted. There is a small bay window at the front (possibly about
1.5m x 1.5m) and it's been replaced with uPVC, and has three separate
vertical glazed sections, the side two opening. The glass area looks to be
only about 1/3 of the total window area, the rest being frame. I don't know
what went on there, but it does look truly awful.
I'd also go along with that! We had an old aluminium framed window replaced
with a pair of opening doors in the dining room a few years ago. uPVC would
have required pretty thick frames, but the Monarch coated aluminium doors
look completely natural, and have an operational precise feel to them that
none of the uPVC windows in the house come close to. When we get round to
replacing the large sliding patio door in the kitchen I want to put another
one of those into it, and will only be looking at the coated aluminium
I'm hoping the the reduction in glazed area compared to the existing
door/window will allow for some reduction in required u values for the
email me at
richard at olifant d-ot co do-t uk
Internally beaded uPVC windows have very much thicker frames,
specially for any opening parts, but are not normally required
any more as the means of fixing the glazing units has changed.
I asked installer to point me to some previous installations.
He also took me to the factory and went through their store
area of completed frames so I could see what all the different
options looked like. This was very useful, and I changed the
spec of what I ordered as a result. This was a small local
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