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Can You Paint uPVC Windows?

In this article, we will cover:

  • The feasibility of painting UPVC windows
  • A step-by-step guide on painting UPVC windows
  • The disadvantages of painting UPVC windows

In everyday DIY, giving something a fresh lick of paint is a shortcut to giving it a new lease of life. It makes sense then that homeowners may want to repaint their UPVC windows. But is it a good idea?

UPVC windows are one of the most popular types of windows in the UK. They are low-maintenance, long-lasting, energy-efficient and offer good acoustic insulation, providing they are double or triple-glazed. If you have had your UPVC windows for a while, you may want to give them a spruce up or change the colour. But can you paint UPVC windows, and more importantly, should you?

The short answer to the first question is yes. It is possible to paint UPVC windows. It is relatively inexpensive compared to replacing your UPVC windows with new ones, appealing to many homeowners. Whether it is the best idea for your home includes other considerations.

Do Not Paint New UPVC Windows!

Firstly, you should never paint new UPVC windows. The main reason is it is highly likely to void the warranty if you paint new UPVC windows. It could also compromise the performance. For example, if the paint causes the windows to stick rather than open smoothly. Always check your warranty, but as a rule of thumb, never paint UPVC windows 12 months or less old. 

Secondly, you shouldn’t need to. Manchester Window Factory offers UPVC casement and sliding sash windows in a wide range of colours, from classic white to natural green. If you are looking for something a little different, you can also get your windows colour-matched to any RAL code or paint brand. The colours can also be applied as a paint or powder coating.

Maintenance and Longevity

If you have decided to paint your UPVC windows, you must consider the maintenance your repainted windows will need. 

Repainted external UPVC windows should last around five years, but you will still need to clean them regularly and check for chipping and flaking.

Interior UPVC windows should last longer as they are not exposed to the weather. However, remember to clean and follow our guide to stopping condensation in kitchens and bathrooms. 

Colour Options: 

You can paint UPVC windows in any colour available in specially formulated UPVC paint. There is a wide range of colours available. But be aware that you are unlikely to find many exact shades and can’t colour-match UPVC paint to a specific tone.

Painting Process: 

You’ve decided to paint your UPVC windows but may not know how to get started. Here’s our step-by-step guide to help you achieve optimal results:

  • Wait for a day when the weather is warm and dry but not too hot so the paint doesn’t dry too quickly, leaving an uneven appearance
  • Ensure you have the correct equipment, eg a sturdy ladder for upper windows
  • Fully open the windows
  • Remove any loose debris from the window sills and frames
  • Clean the sills and frames with warm soapy water and a soft microfibre cloth
  • Clean all glass using the above or a glass cleaner spray
  • Wear old clothes or protective coverings such as overalls, a mask, and goggles
  • Cover areas not to be painted and/or use masking tape to ensure the paint doesn’t get on the glass
  • Gently sand the UPVC using sandpaper or a sanding block to create a slightly abrasive surface for the paint to adhere to
  • Apply a thin, even layer of primer
  • Spray paint your window frames – you will need at least three coats of UPVC paint for a professional-looking finish
  • You may need to add more coats depending on the colour
  • Allow a minimum of 30 minutes for each coat to dry before applying the next
  • Remove the protective coverings and masking tape
  • Re-clean the windows if necessary to remove fingermarks
  • Enjoy your ‘new’ UPVC windows

The Disadvantages of Painting UPVC Windows:

Voiding your warranty

The main problem with painting UPVC windows is that you could void the manufacturer’s warranty. This may be stated in the terms and conditions, but don’t just assume it’s fine to make alterations if it isn’t. Your best bet is to contact the manufacturer or seller before going ahead.

It’s hard to get right

Unless you have experience painting window frames and UPVC, it is unlikely to look professional. It can be tricky to get a smooth and even finish on UPVC surfaces and even more difficult when they are vertical.

It may not last 

If you don’t use the correct paint, it may peel or chop over time, requiring regular touch-ups to keep it looking its best. This is potentially far more maintenance than the original windows required. 

It’s hard to get right

Unless you have experience painting window frames and UPVC, it is unlikely to look professional. It can be tricky to get a smooth and even finish on UPVC surfaces and even more difficult when they are vertical.

They may need replacing

If your UPVC windows are old enough to look like they need a fresh coat of paint, you may need to replace them. 

Coloured UPVC can fade over time, particularly in older models, due to exposure to sunlight, but this shouldn’t happen for at least 10 years. If the colour has faded, you may have old UPVC windows that may not be optimal for modern living.

Limited colour options

You may struggle to find many colour options in the correct paint.

How Manchester Window Factory Can Help

At Manchester Window Factory, we offer a wide range of UPVC windows in a kaleidoscope of colours and finishes, including dual colours, so you can switch up the interior and keep the exterior classic for potential future buyers. Alternatively, using colour on the exterior of your home can help you put your stamp on it. 

If your budget allows, upgrading to new UPVC windows in the precise colour you want may be a better option than painting your existing UPVC windows.

We’ll help you choose the colour, size, shape, glazing and hardware of your windows, so you can be sure you’ll find what you are looking for. 

To learn more, fill in our online contact form for a free, no-obligation quote, email us, call us, or visit our Altrincham showroom. You can see our latest opening times on our website. 

We look forward to hearing from you.