What are the benefits of having a PVC front door instead of wood?

PVC front door

Now that you’ve decided you definitely want a new front door, all you have to do is choose a style and the material it will be constructed from. 

Easier said than done? Yes, but that’s simply because there is so much more choice these days than ever before. At least with this guide to choosing uPVC over wooden doors, we hope it will give you a better idea when it comes to buying your own exterior door.

Why choose uPVC doors?

The abbreviation uPVC stands for the rather long-winded term unplasticized polyvinyl chloride. This is a material that has a plastic-like finish. The door itself has a fully insulated steel frame which is then encased in uPVC. The result is a strong, long-lasting door that is very energy-efficient, meaning you’re not going to lose a lot of heat through it.

These doors aren’t expensive compared to wooden doors and they do have a contemporary look, thanks to the fact they’re available in a range of different colours, as well as styles. You’ll find them on a lot of new-build homes, in particular.

@RealHomes: “uPVC is a form of plastic, however, it is essentially made completely from recyclable materials. You can paint uPVC with caution but, usually, there will be no need as these door types are readily available in a number of finishes and normally at a fairly pocket-friendly price too. Making them ideal if you need a quick door replacement.”

Benefits of uPVC doors

  • Very secure. That’s thanks to the insulated metal frame and tight-fitting seals.
  • Insulating. You don’t have to worry about warm air escaping or cold air getting inside your front door with uPVC doors.
  • Very little maintenance. A big benefit of uPVC doors is that there’s not a lot of upkeep. Unlike wooden doors, you don’t have to paint them every couple of years to keep them looking good.
  • Not expensive. uPVC doors are one of the least expensive door types around.

And the case against…

  • Modern design. Because they look so modern, uPVC doors don’t look great on period properties.
  • Door hardware. It’s not as easy to change the handles and locks on a uPVC door. 
  • The material breaks down. Over time the whole door will need to be replaced – but that’s only after a number of years.

Why choose wooden front doors?

Built with solid hardwood or timber, wooden doors have a frame and panel make-up. They can be from solid wood i.e. one type of wood with sections glued together, or engineered wood which is an insulating core and a wood veneer on the outside. 

Wooden doors are more expensive than uPVC, unless you buy a cheaper version and in which case the door won’t last very long (nor will it be as secure).

Benefits of wooden doors

Wooden doors do tend to be very durable – especially if they’re made from high-quality wood. They also work well in both contemporary and period homes and, like uPVC doors, can be very insulating. 

The problems are in warping over time (unless it’s an engineered wooden door, in which case you don’t need to worry).

Also, when it comes to cost, wooden doors are at least twice the cost of a uPVC version.