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How to revamp stained & discoloured uPVC window frames

If you're planning an exterior spring clean over the coming bank holiday, check out these step-by-step photos to see how I completely revamped my old, stained PVC window frames to make them look as good as new...

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We’ve got a few bank holidays coming up in May, which is the ideal time for tackling those tasks you never get around to. If you’re planning a spot of house cleaning over the bank holiday weekend and want to make the exterior of your home look as fresh as the interior, here’s how to completely revamp your PVC windows.

I don’t know how long ago the windows were fitted in my home but, judging by the staining and discolouration of the PVC, it must have been many, many years. I’ve started to clean one corner in these pics and then thought I should snap a photo so that you can see just how tatty and grey-stained the white PCV frames look. I’ve tried to clean them multiple times but haven’t been able to remove the discolouration.

It’s my plan to eventually replace all the windows and have new patio doors fitted, complete with retractable screen doors to keep the bugs out but, until that project comes to fruition, I still want my existing old windows and doors to look clean and fresh.

A while ago, we paid a local window cleaning company to add a treatment to the frames to refresh them. The treatment promised to remove the staining and bring them back to bright white. However (despite the expense) the treatment didn’t appear to work on our frames – it didn’t make them look any worse but it certainly didn’t have the fresh like-new look I was hoping for.

So, I decided to try out another option – a thorough cleaning using a uPVC cleaning solution by Astonish. Seeing as it was only a few pounds, I figured it would be worth the experiment to see how well it worked.

I’ve always used leaping-bunny-approved Astonish cleaning products in my home as part of my cruelty-free commitment to only use non-animal-tested products. They’re also vegan and Vegetarian Society-approved. The uPVC Outdoor Cleaner is part of their Eco Care range and it comes with the correct sponge to apply the formula.

The uPVC cleaning solution is a paste, which makes it easy to apply. You just need to buff it on and then wipe it away with clean water. It’s a good idea to test it in an inconspicuous area before scrubbing the entire frame, just in case it doesn’t have the desired effect on your window frames.

One thing to note is that it makes the water chalky (spot the drips on the concrete path in the above photos!) so it’s a good idea not to let it drip onto the brickwork otherwise you’ll be spending even longer scrubbing the whitish residue off the brick. Also, keep it off the glass to prevent smears on the windows.

The picture above shows you just how grey the frame was before and the much whiter finish after cleaning the lower corner. Sure, it takes a bit of effort to clean all around the window frames and scrub into the corners but it didn’t require too much elbow grease as the solution went onto the uPVC frames easily and just needed buffing in a circular motion to remove the stains.

It’ll probably take a while to get around all the windows to clean them but the result is worth it. The windows look much smarter now, much more like new windows with a brighter white finish. With windows that look newer, the whole exterior of the house looks so much fresher and it adds lots of kerb appeal (and value!) to have neat, clean window frames.

Just to mention another option for really old, stained PVC window frames that can’t be cleaned – if you find the right exterior paint formula for uPVC you might be able to paint them. I’ve previously spray-painted the internal side of my uPVC back door with Rust-Oluem paint, which worked really well. Here’s the link to my PVC door revamp project if you want to see how I did it.

After many years of use, the handle needed repainting but, other than that, it looks great. I’ve not tried this option with the exterior side of the door though so I’m not sure how well it would work outdoors. If you have any experience with painting external PVC doors, please let me know your tips and product recommendations in the comments below. Thanks!

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This article is a sponsored collaboration. The pink links in the content indicate a sponsored link or information source. The blog post reflects my own experience and the sponsor hasn’t had any control over my content 🙂

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Cassie is a freelance writer with a Masters degree in Lifestyle Promotion Studies and is trained in Personal Money Management. She loves to ‘get the look for less’ so regularly shares thrifty-living advice, DIY interior design ideas and low-cost recipes on her blog.

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