In the last decade or so, the popularity of uPVC doors and windows has shot up, and why not! It is an incredibly durable, safe, and non-toxic material that also offers stellar aesthetics. uPVC stands for Unplasticized Poly Vinyl Chloride, which is essentially a form of tough and inflexible plastic. It is also known as rigid PVC. The tenacity of uPVC makes it ideal for constructing door and window frames. It is no secret that uPVC structures offer a host of benefits, but like all other materials, they are also susceptible to expanding.
What Causes UPVC to Expand?
Otherwise, a sturdy material that can comfortably withstand extreme weather conditions like thunderstorms, torrential downpours, wind loads, etc., uPVC suffers from heat expansion. Prolonged exposure to extreme heat alters the physicality of uPVC just a tad. If you use uPVC doors and windows, you must have noticed that they feel stiff and can give trouble in opening and closing when it’s sweltering outside.
Experts point out that uPVC frames can expand up to 2.4 cm at 40°C. But, as soon as the temperature goes down, which often happens during the same day, these frames go back to their original size without sustaining permanent damages. While this sound like a downside for uPVC, there are ways in which you can easily prevent uPVC from expanding.
How Can You Stop UPVC Doors and Windows from Expanding?
Since the heat-related expansion of uPVC doors and windows is natural, it is nothing to be alarmed about. Remember, this expansion might only cause issues with operability, and won’t permanently damage your frames. However, difficulty in opening and closing expanded frames can be genuinely bothersome for many people. The best way is to wait for the plastic to cool down before you open and close these frames.
If you cannot wait for the uPVC to retract because it suddenly starts raining or there is a dust storm, here are a few things you can do to reduce the heat-led expansion.
Option 1 – This one is a simple home remedy. During scorching heat, when you notice your uPVC frames are expanding, spray them with cold water. The convenient way to do this is to take a cold water bottle out of the refrigerator and douse or spray the frame with it.
Alternatively, you can also soak a soft piece of cloth in cold water and generously wipe down the uPVC structure. Make sure you don’t use an abrasive material as that will likely damage the surface finish of the frame. This trick can quickly retract uPVC, which will allow you to operate the structure. Be sure to use the contraction time window correctly. If you wait too long after spraying cold water, the frame will again expand due to the heat.
Option 2 – This solution requires re-adjustment of the uPVC frame hinges. Sounds complicated? It’s not! uPVC doors and windows have hinges designed in such a way that you can adjust them easily. Even during heat expansion, you can slightly move these hinges to open or close the structure smoothly. Again, this quick fix is useful only until the frame is in the expanded state. Also, once the window or door frame cools down, you most likely will need to readjust the hinges for the windows and doors to operate normally.
Given the Heat Expansion Problem, Should I Avoid uPVC Doors and Windows?
Not at all! In fact, uPVC doors and windows come with so many benefits that the expansion problem is just a minor issue. This material is incredibly easy-to-clean, has a robust design, withstands extreme weather conditions, and remains rot and termite proof for its entirety. You can also pair uPVC frames with low-E glass to enhance the thermal comfort and insulation inside your home. This combination also reduces the need for artificial lighting and takes away the stress on your heating and cooling devices during extreme temperatures.
Add to it, uPVC doors and windows offer unbeatable security as they are usually equipped with multi-point locking systems. Meaning, you can close these structures at different places within a frame, thus making unwarranted intrusions a distant possibility.
Over to You
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