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Have you been wondering if buying plastic windows is worth it? Or how you can install them yourself, and clean them to perfection? Plastic or uPVC windows are very popular, but why? Read on for the best information and tips.
How much do plastic windows cost?
Plastic windows (otherwise known as uPVC) can cost anywhere between £150 and £900 per unit.
Cost is one of the biggest unknowns when it comes to buying windows – the cost of plastic windows can vary greatly depending on any number of factors such as:
- The size of the opening
- The floor it is on
- The type of glazing
- The style of window
- The type of window
- Installation costs
Since there are so many variables, it can be hard to quote a price without knowing the exact specifications of the window needed. This is where we can help! We have created a run-down of the costs involved in different kinds of windows. The following table gives you the price of different sizes of plastic windows in the two most common styles:
|Dimensions (mm)||Casement uPVC Window +|
|Sash uPVC Window + VAT|
|600 x 900||£290||£580|
|1200 x 1200||£375||£720|
|1200 x 1800||£540||£935|
For a broader overview of how much you can expect to pay for the full window installation job in different kinds of houses, you can look at our next table.
Cost of uPVC Windows (materials + installation)
|Type of home||Number of Bedrooms||Windows needed||Expected cost of Casement style uPVC Windows||Expected cost of Sash style uPVC Windows|
|Flat||2||4 windows||£1,450 - £1,700||£2,400 - £3,200|
|Terraced||2||5 windows||£1,800 - £2,250||£3,000 - £4,350|
|Semi-detached||2||7 windows||£2,500 - £2,800||£3,700 - £5,200|
|Semi-detached||3||9 windows||£3,200 - £3,500||£4,400 - £6,600|
|Detached||3||12 windows||£4,200 - £4,700||£6,200 - £7,550|
|Detached||4||15 windows||£5,300 - £5,800||£7,200 - £9,400|
If you are trying to decide between double and triple glazed plastic windows, look no further! Here you will find prices for white or woodgrain uPVC windows with both types of glazing.
|Material||Double glazing cost||Triple glazing cost|
|White uVPC||£320 - £380||£410 - £500|
|Woodgrain uPVC||£500 - £600||£600 - £680|
The best way to save money: compare lots of quotes
It’s not fun to overpay for things, especially big purchases like windows. They are a serious investment that can affect your quality of life for better or for worse. For this reason it is important to shop around and take your time before making a decision. Enter some details in our confidential portal and you will get up to 4 personalised quotes in under two days. You’ll be under no obligation to buy anything, plus you’ll be able to find the best deal for your requirements.
How to restore plastic windows?
uPVC or plastic windows can become sun-damaged after time, and may lose their glossy finish after a while. What can you do to make them beautiful again?
Plastic Window Restoration Guide
|Your windows are yellow and discoloured||Find a specialist window restoring spray that you can easily apply and wipe away - this strips away the first layer of plastic and makes it look almost new. You can make them glossy again by polishing clear wax into your restored frames.
You can also paint over the plastic with a specialised paint
|Your windows are really grimy||Find a dedicated window cleaning spray - one that will not damage the plastic
You can also go the eco-route and use a vinegar and water-based solution to clean dirty window frames
|Your window frames are scratched or gouged||For shallow scratches, you can use an abrasive cleaner, but do not use on woodgrain finishes.
You can buy a gel coat refinisher for deeper gouges
|You have new windows you want to maintain well||Consider painting them to give them extra protection|
In general, if you are unsure about how to restore your plastic windows, it is best to contact a specialist. They will be able to tell you whether you are able to restore them or if they need replacing completely.
How to install plastic windows?
Installing or replacing a uPVC (or plastic) window is a tricky job that is best done by professionals. However, if you are confident in your DIY skills, you can give it a go! Do some extensive research and watch videos before beginning. The basic steps to follow are as follows:
- Measure your opening and window carefully
- Place the frame inside the opening with even spacing between the frame and the opening
- Shim window in certain spots (depends on the style of window)
- Install opener, plastic cover and handle
- Screw the window to the framing – not too hard or you could warp the frame
- Make sure it operates smoothly
- Ensure the exterior weatherseal is even all the way around
- Insulate frame to the opening (use expanding foam with caution)
- Caulk all the way around. With new builds using a membrane seal is best.
- Clean the window and you’re done!
How to clean plastic windows?
One of the great advantages of plastic windows is that they are very easy to clean and are generally low maintenance. Here’s the best way to clean them thoroughly and carefully:
- Vacuum all of the loose dirt out of the nooks and crannies all around the inside of the window
- Wipe down the window with soapy water with a soft sponge
- Dry with a tea towel or other soft material
- Newspaper is a great bet for removing smears on the glass
- Avoid using any abrasive or corrosive materials or chemicals – the plastic is fairly easily damaged
Will plastic windows save me money?
There are plenty of upsides to buying uPVC windows over aluminium or wooden windows for instance, the biggest one being the cost! Windows with plastic frames are the most cost-effective and low maintenance variety. For this reason, you will save money on your initial purpose and in the long run you will save time as opposed to wooden windows especially that need stripping and staining every once in a while.
In terms of energy savings there are many debates over whether plastic windows are better. It depends more on the glazing you choose than on the framing material. uPVC used to be preferred over aluminium since metal conducts heat better and therefore would not be such a good insulator, but nowadays thermal breaks in aluminium frames prevent this. You can read more about aluminium windows over at our dedicated article.
Save up to 40% on plastic windows
The most surefire way to save money on home improvement is to inform yourself as much as possible. Local providers will give you the most accurate quotes for your project. For this reason we provide the service of putting you in touch with up to 4 nearby professionals. Enter your information and get quotes in a couple of days. This no-obligation process ensures you have the best information and the best possible price.