These days the most popular material for double glazed window frames is PVC-u (Poly Vinyl Chloride Unplasticised). Its popularity is based on several factors and most notably the fact that is the cheapest material for frames. However, it also has excellent heat insulation properties and is very durable which makes it ideal for variable climates. It is not only excellent at repelling heat, but it is also effective at reducing noise and draughts. This help creates a comfortable peaceful environment in any room.
As mentioned above one of the primary benefits of The main selling point of PVC-u frames is the fact that it is a poor conductor of heat and therefore has ideal insulation properties for a window frame. Of course heat insulation is primary objective of double-glazing as the knock on effect is reduced heating and fuel bills. In this respect PVC-u frames have the advantage over aluminium and to a degree wooden frames. Also, PVC-u are economical, durable and easily maintained. This easy maintenance further adds to the economic benefits of PVC-u frames particularly over wooden frames, which require regular attention and maintenance. PVC-u frames are not prone to warping or discolouration. They do not need regular painting or protective coating. The only regular maintenance required is the oiling of hinges and locks.
The attributes of PVC-u windows are clear in that it is cheap, has excellent insulation properties and is easily maintained. However, there are two notable downsides to PVC-u frames. Firstly, it lacks the strength of aluminium and wooden frames. This means that the frames have to be strengthened with either aluminium or steel. Also, the frames are prone to expansion during hot weather. This means that the expansion gaps have to be provided. These gaps can provide weak points and targets for would be intruders. The second disadvantage is the look of PVC-u. Whilst there is an improvement in the finishes of plastic frames it is still no match for the real thing. As you are probably aware, plastic frames can completely spoil the look of some period properties.
PVC-u frames remain very popular and are the preferred solution in many cases. However, traditional buildings that need to maintain the classical look suit wooden frames much better and commercial or public properties that have strong security concerns will suit aluminium frames. However, for modern homes PVCu frames are still the most economical option for a comfortable and peaceful home.