uPVC vs. Composite Doors – Which is Best?

Customers often ask us about the various pros and cons of composite doors vs. uPVC doors; not least because when you’re choosing a front door it can be difficult to fully appreciate the differences between the two.
While both uPVC and composite doors remain a popular front door choice, composite doors have now rapidly overtaken their uPVC counterparts in popularity. We’ll assess the reasons for that in this article.

Visitors to your home can get a first impression of your personality just from your front door. It’s a focal point for all other exterior décor, whether you live in a modern dwelling or a period property. That means that choosing the right front door is key to preserving or enhancing your home’s individual style and character.

What Is A uPVC Door?

uPVC doors became increasingly common in UK households throughout the 1990s as a timber replacement. Put simply, a uPVC front door is constructed with a fully insulated panel and steel frame at its core. This is then encased in Unplasticised Polyvinyl Chloride to create a strong, durable product. uPVC doors are more hardwearing than the timber alternatives and shrug off the worst that the British weather throws at them. However, their plastic appearance and feel tend to give an outdated look.
In recent years, composite doors have overtaken uPVC models in the popularity stakes. That said, the latter remains a popular option for products such as patio, French and sliding doors.

What Are Composite Doors?

As mentioned, these models have grown considerably in popularity in recent years and are now overtaking uPVC as the most popular type of front door. They’re a more realistic, alternative to timber versions when compared to those made from uPVC.

Composite designs combine a classic look with the best of modern technology. They typically feature a solid timber core, surrounded by other materials such as uPVC, laminate or fibreglass, depending on the specific range of composite doors. These are available in an array of different colours so you can add a little of your own personality.

How do composite and uPVC doors compare?

To help you decide on the best front door for your home, we’ll take a look at the various features of both composite and uPVC models.

#1 Security

Both uPVC and Composite front doors are highly secure and carry the “Secured by Design” status. With hook bolts (a claw-like locking system), at the top, centre and bottom of the doors, these doors can deter entry by force and stop attempts to lever the door apart!

However, the structure and enhanced features of composite doors mean they provide an enhanced level of security and are a more solid choice compared with uPVC options.

#2 Thermal efficiency

Similarly, both composite and uPVC perform well when it comes to thermal efficiency, especially when you compare them with their timber counterparts. However, once again composite front doors typically have the edge. This is due to their extra density and thickness, so they are the obvious choice if you’re keen to reduce both your carbon footprint and heating bills, while also keeping chilly draughts at bay.

#3 Maintenance

Both uPVC and composite doors are very low maintenance, with neither type requiring more ongoing upkeep than the occasional wipe-down to stay looking as good as new. So if you’re considering upgrading a traditional wooden model which typically needs a lot more time and care, you will find both uPVC and composite options hassle-free in terms of maintenance.

#4 Design and Style Options

When it comes to style and design, composite doors definitely have the advantage. uPVC front doors come in a range of varied styles, so they can still enhance the appearance of your home. However, for the most part, they are white, with a coating that’s typically a standard plastic or uPVC untextured surface.

Composite models feature a high-quality, laminated, woodgrain effect finish that is almost indistinguishable from genuine timber, giving your home a far more elegant look.

Additionally, if you choose a composite front door, you’ll find a greater variety of available styles and colours to match everything from the latest new build to a traditional property. If you’re lucky enough to own a period property, composite doors are the superior choice when it comes to retaining or enhancing period character, or if you are replacing a timber front door.

#5 Affordability

You’ll find composite and uPVC doors do have different price tags, with the former typically costing more. However, choose a composite front door and you can look forward to many more benefits, from higher thermal efficiency to a longer-lasting, better-looking door. Plus superior security.

So if you have the budget to do so, fitting composite doors is always worthwhile. However, if you are improving your home on a more limited budget and need to replace your front door, you should find uPVC a perfectly suitable choice.

#5 House Value

There’s never any cast-iron guarantee that any home improvement will actually raise the value of your property. However, if you’re thinking about selling up, and your budget allows, then composite doors will certainly help enhance that all-important first impression and make your home appear more desirable. So consider joining the numerous homeowners who are now replacing their uPVC doors with composite versions.

Looking For a New Composite or uPVC Front Door?

At R&M Windows, we’ve been installing front doors for more than three decades, and we make sure we keep across all the latest industry innovations. We offer both composite and uPVC front doors to customers in our home town of Bracknell as well as the surrounding areas in Berkshire, from Windsor to Ascot, Maidenhead and Wokingham. If you’re looking for a complete renovation of your home, we also fit a great line-up of windows, patio doors and conservatories.

Get in touch today for an informal chat and a no-obligation quote. We don’t give anyone the hard sell, so you’ll never feel pressurised into anything.