Why you might want to replace older plastic windows (upvc double glazing).

Upvc double glazing (or plastic windows) isn’t just for replacing old wooden or aluminium windows, or first time installation in new build properties.
There’s a steady stream of households replacing old upvc double glazed windows and doors too.
There’s a variety of reasons why you might want to replace existing upvc windows – we’ll look at some of the more obvious ones below.
Purely for the look.
Frame styles and manufacturing techniques are always evolving – better, slimmer, more period-like designs are always being introduced, and todays woodgrain or foil frame finishes make them virtually indistinguishable from real wood, until you’re up close.
Broken handles and openers.
Handles and hinges get a lot of use and without any maintenance (a little oil lubrication will really extend their life), can quickly become worn or broken.
When the inconvenience of broke handles or windows that won’t open becomes too much, you can either explore sourcing replacement handles, locks and hinge mechanisms yourself, ask a local company or the original installer to come and repair, or replace the lot.
Energy efficiency.
Double glazings original big selling point was its insulation properties – remember Ted sitting in the draughtiest pub in Britain? Of course, they were  great improvement on anything we’d known before, but comparing first-generation windows to todays pieces of engineering is like comparing computer technology between 10 years apart.
Todays frames are truly engineered to offer the best thermal protection from the inside to the outside, using multi chambered designs to achieve a-rated energy efficiency levels.
Of course, the frame is only part of the picture – glass technology now offers us gas filled cavities, special heat reflective coatings and even self-cleaning options.
The technology now exists to recycle old upvc windows so when you’re replacing your old upvc (or plastic) windows with more modern, energy efficient ones, ask your installer if they’ll recycle the old ones and you’ll even be saving the planet from landfill.
This story first appeared in our weekly homeowner newsletter dated 6th February 2012. Click here to read the full newsletter, which also included a round up of the weeks top home improvement offers.

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