Can you paint uPVC doors and windows?


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Can you paint uPVC doors and windows?

We tell you how to paint a uPVC door, if you really want to, but explain why we recommend you shouldn't do it.

Can you paint uPVC doors and windows

A common question that we get asked is - can you paint uPVC doors and windows?

The short answer is - yes, uPVC doors can be painted IF it's done the right way.

Should you paint a uPVC door - no, because uPVC wasn't designed to be painted.

Why do you want to paint your uPVC door?

Before you go ahead, ask yourself, why you want to paint your uPVC door:

  • Did you inherit the doors and windows when you bought the house?
  • Do you not like someone else's choice of colour?
  • Are you tired of the colour you chose 15 years ago and want a design refresh in a contemporary colour?
  • Do the doors and windows look tired and shabby?
  • Are they miscoloured or faded?
  • Has the white door gone a shade of yellow that looks like cream left out in the sun?

For any of these answers, it might be time to consider replacing the door.

Would a different door be a better choice?

Instead of painting the uPVC, it might be a better option to consider investing in a new door. The technology and production of uPVC have advanced and uPVC doors today are much better quality than what was produced 30 years ago at the rise of uPVC popularity.

If the door has faded or discoloured this is a sign of cheap uPVC that hasn't worn well and the reality is that painting over a worn-out door is not the best way to solve the problem. You will just end up with a shabby door that has a coat of paint on it and unless you can get a perfect finish, it could look worse.

If you want to stay in your house, considering a new front door in the style and colour that you want could be a better investment for the long term.

If you're thinking of selling the house, then also consider that well-maintained windows and doors are a key decision factor for a house buyer. Unless your uPVC door is painted with a seamless and professional finish it could devalue the house and potentially turn off would-be buyers.

With a uPVC door, you get high quality, at a reasonable price. uPVC exterior doors are strong, hard-wearing and durable, making them extremely secure. See our range of uPVC doors…

Choose the right door colour for your home

The Everest range has 40 colours so you can find your perfect front door.

Before you paint your uPVC front door - consider these factors

  • Never paint uPVC that is less than 12 months old - it continues to secrete the resins used in the manufacturing process for up to a year and these resins will stop paint from binding to the surface.
  • uPVC is not designed to accept a paint or varnish to its surface and the main challenge is for the paint used to gain adhesion to the surface and to bind with it.
  • Apart from adhering to the surface of the uPVC, paint has to cope with thermal expansion as the door (or window) expands and contracts through the seasons. Even more so if the doors and windows are south facing.
  • We've all seen shabby looking guttering with cracked and peeling paint which is caused by the paint not having the same expanding properties that the plastic does. A common DIY mistake.
  • Also, if your door and windows are south facing and enjoy plenty of sunshine you also need to consider that the paint used is stable under UV exposure and won't become sun-bleached over time.
  • Lastly, most people are not aware that any DIY attempts, including painting your uPVC door or windows can void the warranty. Always check with the supplier before you get the urge to do it yourself.

If you really want to paint your uPVC

Okay, if you've read so far and still want to go ahead, this is how to paint a uPVC door, if you really have your heart set on doing it.

Be aware, uPVC is an unforgiving surface to paint on and it will highlight and reflect all brush marks, ridges and drips in the paint. If you're not confident then think twice about doing this as you could ruin a good door.

Ideally, you would remove the door and use a spray gun to apply the paint for a smooth finish but removing and rehanging the door is not a quick and easy option. Plus, you need to wait for the paint to dry between coats (this can take days) and you would be left with an unsecured house without a lockable door as you do it.

If you must, this is how to paint a uPVC door

The secret to getting a good finish when painting is all in the preparation.

  • First of all, thoroughly clean and degrease the door to remove any substance that could affect the paint adhering to any part of the surface.
  • Dry the door completely.
  • Then you need to create a surface that a primer can bind to, you do that by lightly sanding to 'key' the surface with fine sandpaper. Be careful not to use rough paper or to rub too hard or you will end up with scratches that will show through the paint.
  • Dry clean the door to remove all the dust from sanding.
  • The next stage is to use a special uPVC primer that will create a surface that the paint can bind to. This might need more than one coat and you must wait for each coat to dry before applying another one. Then wait a few days for the primer to fully 'cure' before you apply the topcoat. This isn't a job that is suitable to do in winter or bad weather.
  • Advice online suggests using exterior gloss or satinwood for the paint finish, but it's far better to use an acrylic or polyurethane-based paint that will have better expansion properties to avoid the dreaded gutter cracking effect.
  • The most difficult part of painting a uPVC door is to get a seamless professional finish without brush marks and it's nearly impossible to get a smooth finish without using a spray. So, be realistic that you will have brush marks and ridges once the paint has dried. Also, watch out for the brush shedding hairs in the paint. Nothing looks more amateurish than brush hairs trapped in paint.
  • Use a good quality brush, take your time and don't paint on a hot day as the paint will dry too quickly and can affect the finish.
  • Once done, make sure your dog doesn't rub against it, your kids don't put their hands on it and no one scratches the paint with a bag until it's fully cured.

Should you paint a uPVC front door?

Technically, you can paint uPVC, but you shouldn't paint uPVC as it goes against what it was designed for.

uPVC was designed to be low maintenance and resistant to the elements and weathering without the need to paint. Therefore, painting uPVC is contradicting what it's designed for and you're setting yourself up for a lifetime of maintenance and repainting.

And, unless you are an expert with a brush, your uPVC door or window might look a lot worse for being painted as it's very difficult to get a smooth paint finish.

Instead of painting uPVC, you would be far better to opt for investing in a new door that suits your style and tastes, in a colour you can live with.

Don't ruin your uPVC front door with a bad paint job

Everest uPVC doors are custom-made to your style and colour and finished with a range of accessories. We offer a full lifetime guarantee against discolouration of white uPVC profiles and 10 years for the door and installation.

An Everest uPVC door is energy-efficient, weather-proof and low maintenance

Everest uPVC doors feature A++ rated, energy-efficient triple glazing, they meet British Security Standards and come in 12 colours and a wide range of designs.