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Upvc Door Problems in Barnsley

21st July 2019

So, a customer emailed me, requesting that I write about my experiences with PVC. A bit unusual, I thought, but I guess it’s nice to share. The first time I felt it on my skin, it changed my life. So sensual and exciting that I knew things would never be the same again. And when I met other people who shared my passion… wait, what’s that now? Oh, I’ve just reread the email and they said UPVC, not PVC. I guess they meant doors and not well…let’s gloss over that and wipe the slate clean. PVC is very wipeable too, you know…no, no. UPVC, UPVC, let’s get back on track. 

UPVC doors pretty much come as standard on the majority of homes now, replacing the old timber doors which were more commonplace back in the 60s and 70s. UPVC become prevalent over the timber doors for a few reasons – lower cost, convenience, hard wearing, and most importantly they come with their own locking mechanism within the door. This gives the ability to lock at multiple points, an important advantage over the single point deadlocks generally found on old timber doors. 

However, there are things to be wary of with UPVC doors. Here I’ll look at a couple of these and then see how you can best look after your doors in order to prevent the most common problems occurring, and hopefully ensure your door stays in working order.  

A strength can also be a failing, and this is the case when it comes to the complexity of the locks in UPVC doors. The additional locking points provide extra security, but because the locks are more complicated, more can go wrong, and locks or parts of the locks can break or fail. It’s also a fact that, like anything, UPVC doors do not last forever. After a decade or so of regular use, the mechanisms will start to suffer from wear and tear and be more liable to break. 

If this happens, your best option is to get a locksmith out right away. We can often repair mechanisms or, if the damage is too severe, can replace the locking mechanism within the door. This is an issue for which you really do need specialist help as attempting your own fix can often make the problem worse and leave you with a door that cannot be shut.

UPVC doors are also affected by changes in temperature which, as the last few weeks here in Yorkshire can testify, certainly applies to us. As we all remember from our school days, these variations in temperature cause materials to expand and contract. This can cause issues because of the nature of the multi locking systems whereby up to 5 locking points must exactly match up in order for the locks to slot in and out. Severe temperature variations can lead to misalignment, so if you’ve had a sweltering day hot on the heels of a cold one and then find the door is jamming, it may well be that the weather conditions are the culprit.  

The locks on UPVC doors can also be broken by too much pressure being put on the centre of the lock. When the handle on a UPVC door is pushed upwards, all the bolts have to work together to go into place. Sometimes, this causes friction which, over time, can put pressure on the central section of the case, leading to a breakdown within the mechanism. Again, this can cause you to get locked out or in a property. 

So what steps can you take to look after your UPVC doors?  First of all, be gentle when lifting the handle. You want to prevent the bolts grinding together as this is the cause of pressure on the centre case, leading to many breakdowns.  Next, applying some WD40 on the bolts in the door can help the parts move in and out more smoothly, and also clean the mechanism, preventing dirt building up and jamming the bolts. 

Security-wise, you need to ensure that the locks on the UPVC doors are of the anti-snap variety. I’ve talked about lock snapping many times and it became a real scourge a few years back. Lock manufacturers have caught up, but old UPVC doors will still often have the snappable locks in place which can be breached in seconds. If in doubt, call out a locksmith to have a look – they will be able to advise you if the locks need changing, and will also be able to assess the rest of your home security at the same time. 

Finally, if you are needing to replace a door, there is no reason for you to automatically choose a UPVC door purely because of their popularity – in some instances a timber or composite door may actually better meet your needs. Put some thought into which door would be best for your personal requirements – again, this is something that most local locksmiths would be happy to advise you about. 

For any assistance at all with any lock or security-related matters, please call me on 07990 573857


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