Clearview National August 2018 - Issue 201 - Page 12

PROUD SPONSOR OF INDUSTRY NEWS INDUSTRYNEWS WHAT IS THE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT WHEN THE END IS NIGH FOR WINDOWS AND DOORS? » » AUTHORED BY CHRIS COXON, Head of Marketing at Eurocell plc - the leading manufacturer and distributor of high quality, cost efficient and sustainable PVC-U solutions Manufacturers of PVC-U, wood and aluminium window and door frames have been battling for many years to try and win over both specifiers and homeowners. The ongoing argument over which material is most suitable for each project appears subjective, with the three materials all beneficial in different ways. However, the increased responsibility that consumers are feeling to become more sustainable poses another consideration - which material is the most environmentally friendly? Overall, PVC-U has enjoyed a larger share of the replacement window and door market than wood and aluminium. The dominance of PVC-U in the fenestration sector can be attributed to its economy, flexibility, strength, security and all-round appeal, but how does it match up in terms of its environmental impact? Homeowners are increasingly taking into account energy efficiency and sustainability when making purchasing decisions so it’s important to take a fresh look at how the three competing materials compare in the environmental stakes. EXPERT’S VIEW There’s not much to make a distinction between the main door and window frame materials in terms of environmental performance. No specific material has an obvious advantage in the relevant standard impact categories. Some will argue that aluminium frames contribute to heat loss more than wood or PVC-U frames because of the inherent conductivity of metal, for example, but in general there is little to choose between each of them when it comes to performance, with A and A+ ratings largely the norm. Where the differences really begin to emerge is when you compare the environmental impact of each material at the end of its life… DIFFERENT ENDINGS FOR DIFFERENT MATERIALS It’s very easy to recycle and reuse PVC-U and the replacement window and door industry has an impressive record for recycling old frames and using them to make new ones. Over 560,000 tonnes of what is referred to as ‘post-consumer’ material is recycled across Europe every year, aided by companies like Eurocell, who operate an advanced ‘close loop’ system for the recovery, recycling and reuse of PVC-U frames. PVC-U actually gets stronger when it éɕ危ٕѥӊéɕ危ѡ)ɽѥѥٕ̀Ս́)̤ѡɔѕ)ѼɔЁ́́ɕѠQ́)AY Tɔɽ͕͕Ѽ)܁ݥ̰́ѡͅɽՍ)ЁɽȁمՔaɕd)ɕ危)ѕɹѥٕ䰁ѡɕ́ݽɕݸ)ѕݡӊéɕ危)䁉͕ѼՙɔݕȁՅ)ɽՍ́ɐѡȁܵɅ)ѥȁӊẽaݹɕdɕ危)ѡ՝ЁٕѕѼ)ՕɹѼɽՍɕɝ)ɽѥѕ䁙܁ݽɅ́ɔ͕Ё)ɕ危%аӊéѥѕѡЁѼ)ȁЁѡѥȁݥ́ɕٕɽ)ɕɉ͡Ёɽ́ѡU,))I危Ʌѕ́ȁյմɔ)ɕͥٔɕȁЁɽ́ɽ)ȁѡՍѥٕɥ̸)%Ёͼɕ危͕Ѽ)ݥ܁ȁɅ̰)!ݕٕȰɥͽѼAY T)ɕ危յմյ́Ёɔ)ɝ䁅ɽՍ́ɔ̸ͥAY T)́ɕɽ͕ЁЀɕ)ѥɅɕѼѡɕ)ѥɅȁɔɕեɕѼЁݸ)ɕ危յմ)AY T =5L=UP=8Q=@)]Ё́ѼݡЁ́Ѽѡ)ѕɥЁAY T́Ё)ѽݥѠѡ٥ɽх́ͥ)ѡѕɥѕݽȁյմ)ȸ%ɕͥ䰁٥ɽх䁍͍)յ́ݥѽȁѡ́Ѽѡȁͥ)ɔѡٕȁɔӊé)ѡЁAY TݥѥՔѼ䁄ɝ)͡ɔѡɕЁݥ܁)ɭЁ́ɕձи)]]\UI= 10