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22 September 2016

Conservatories - UPVC, Aluminium or Timber?

There is no denying that adding a conservatory to your property is usually the simplest way to create additional living space. Once you have decided on the addition of a conservatory, your first priority should be choosing the right material - UPVC, aluminium or timber. Our advice is to take advice from experts – like West Country Windows.

The advancement in materials and design has resulted in conservatories often becoming the most used room in the home. How do you ensure both the design and material you choose is right for your project? Let’s look at each material in turn.

Aluminium Conservatories – although more expensive than UPVC, aluminium can last for many years if properly maintained. Other than durability, aluminium also has several other advantages. As a material it is much more flexible than both UPVC and timber, which can be useful for more design-led projects where there might be a need for curves. Although UPVC conservatories come in many different colours, aluminium can be sprayed any colour.

Timber, and slightly less so, UPVC, can be prone to expansion and contraction over many years, especially if poorly maintained. Aluminium is much more stable – but it must be well maintained.  We must also take into account the fact that because aluminium is so strong and light it can be used sparingly giving aluminium conservatories a much more delicate appearance that allows in much more light.

UPVC Conservatories – The most common of all materials used for modern conservatories and orangeries, UPVC is durable, cost effective and looks great. With its natural resistance to moisture it will never rust or rot and, if maintained effectively, will last decades. Due to the nature of the material, UPVC conservatories can be manufactured very quickly and additional finishing touches such as cornices, handles and lighting can be easily incorporated into the design.

Timber Conservatories – many homeowners choose timber over aluminium and UPVC because of its visual appearance. There is no denying the beauty of wood, when used in the right setting and combined with contemporary or classical design. Timber is by far the most environmentally friendly material when comparing it with aluminium and UPVC. In a world where we are all now much more aware of our impact on the planet, this can be a deciding factor for many projects that make the decision to use timber.

Properly maintained, timber conservatories could last 100 years, whilst a UPVC conservatory will be looking tired after 30 years, and should be replaced after 35 years. Maintaining timber is time intensive and the wood should be treated every five to seven years. Applying the treatment can be time intensive, but many homeowners cherish the process of bringing the timber “back to life”.

Whatever your view, the experts at West Country Windows will advise you on which material is best suited to, not only your project but also your budget. We can work on your designs and ideas and create a conservatory at your home the way you want.

Please speak to us for more information by calling 0800 378 371.

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  • Chartered Trading Standards Institute
  • Glass and Glazing Federation
  • Fensa
  • Conservatories Association
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