Guttering & UPVC Maintenance & Cleaning Tips discussed by Eco Solutions
Even if you get your uPVC windows cleaned regularly the uPVC casings and frame can become really grimy and dirty and it is difficult to remove with just soap and water. Our Guttering & uPVC Maintenance & Cleaning Tips will tell you everything you need to know about having good working order, bright and clean uPVC windows, frames and guttering.
PLEASE NOTE: The manufacturing processes of PVCu/UPVC have changed, in particular in respect of coloured PVCu/UPVC. These are now manufactured with an overlying coating with either paint or a grain effect foil. Our uPVC cleaner is incredibly powerful and will give you fantastic results on white uPVC. It may remove the paint or foil from coloured uPVC and so it is advised not to use our product on coloured (non-white) uPVC.
What is uPVC?
uPVC or PVCu is a form of plastic and stands for unplasticised polyvinyl chloride. It is also known as rigid PVC due to the fact that it is hard and not flexible. It is a resistant form of PVC that is most often used for pipework and most window frames now.
How long do uPVC Windows last?
uPVC windows will generally last around 20 years, but this can vary between 10-35 years depending on their quality and how much you look after them. Older style uPVC windows won’t last this length of time and will not be as thermally efficient as new uPVC windows which are now installed.
How do you know if your uPVC Windows need replacing?
- Water leaking through the frames
- Condensation between the panes
- Condensation inside
- Cracks or chips in the glass
- Draughts coming through the frames and panes
- They are damaged, warped or broken
- The handles no longer shut the window
- The hinges are broken
- Your energy bills are increasing
If none of these apply then we have some simple hints and tips on how you can maintain your uPVC windows and give them a really good clean which will often prevent you from having to replace them completely.
uPVC Maintenance Hints & Tips
What should you do if your Window won’t open or close?
If your uPVC window or door doesn’t open or close easily then never use any excessive force on the locks or handles, or when opening or closing them as this can damage the whole window frame and casing. If it won’t open or close easily then check around the frame for any obstructions or build-up of dirt, mould or moss. Make sure the lock is clean and doesn’t have a build-up of residue or dirt inside as this can cause your windows to stick and not open or close as they should do. If there is buildup in the lock then spray some lubrication oil into it, insert the key and gently move it to the open and closed position several times and this should then clear any blockages or dirt. Wipe away the excess oil with a dry piece of kitchen roll.
Working Part uPVC Maintenance
Like any mechanism a uPVC window needs regular maintenance to keep it in good working order, unfortunately, windows are one of the major components of our homes, however, they are always the ones that are forgotten.
Use a spray like WD40 or a lubrication type oil and spray it into the working parts of your window every 6 months. Once you get started it really doesn’t take long and you will feel satisfied after you have done it.
Handle uPVC Maintenance
When the window is closed spray a small amount of oil onto the windows keyhole and insert the key into the lock. Gently move the key to the open and closed position and in and out several times to ensure the oil works itself into the lock. Wipe away the excess oil with a dry piece of kitchen roll when you have finished.
Locking System uPVC Maintenance
Open the window and spray some oil onto the locking strip and then wipe away any excess with a dry piece of kitchen roll. This ensures any dirt or grime doesn’t hinder the locking system and if it is sticking it will release it.
Hinge uPVC Maintenance
Whilst the window is open, spray a small amount of oil onto the friction hinges and gently open and close the window to ensure the oil works into the hinge. Sometimes the hinges can feel loose after you have sprayed them and if they do you can re-tighten the hinge screws, be careful not to over tighten them, a slight turn will do the job. Wipe away any excess oil with a dry piece of kitchen roll when you have finished.
Seal uPVC Maintenance
Window seals are a really important part of a uPVC window, without effective seals your windows won’t be draft and waterproof and you will see your energy bills increase. It’s amazing how much dirt and debris can build-up on your windows seals so the first step is to take a soft paintbrush and brush them all over. This will remove any loose of clogged up areas. Then take a soft cloth soaked in diluted washing up liquid and water and gently rub around the seals, being careful not to rub too hard as this can damage them. When they are clean pat them dry with a soft clean cloth and make sure they are all in the correct place before you shut your window.
uPVC Maintenance for Windows with Lead Detail
If you have a uPVC window with lead included as part of the design you should clean them regularly as products with lead in them can often stain if they aren’t cleaned enough. The stain comes from the lead being exposed to elements during the natural oxidising process. Use diluted washing up liquid and wipe them clean with a soft cloth and then dry and buff with a dry microfibre cloth.
Inner Chamber uPVC Maintenance
It is important to keep the inner chambers of your uPVC windows clean and clear of dirt and residue. First, open your window and use a soft toothbrush and diluted washing up liquid to clear and clean away any dirt and residue and wipe dry with a dry piece of kitchen towel. You will see there are drainage holes at the bottom of the frame which should always be kept clear. If they become blocked then water will get past the rubber seals, into the frame as the drainage holes release the water which will then seep into the wood of the sill and cause it to rot or mould will grow. If you find there is a build-up of residue and dirt then use a thin screwdriver in the hole and gently move it from side to side, then use a vacuum to suck up anything that has been dislodged. You can test they are clear by pouring a little bit of water down the hole and see if it drains away.
General Care & uPVC Maintenance
Condensation can be an issue that can cause problems in many homes.Keep your home well ventilated by opening your windows every day for a short while to prevent any condensation damage
Keeping your home at a consistent temperature which will reduce the number of cold surfaces, making it harder for condensation to form
Using an extractor fan in your kitchen when cooking to prevent too much moisture and condensation forming
Opening the bathroom window when showering or having a hot bath to allow the moisture in the air to escape and prevent too much condensation
Never use an abrasive sponge to clean your uPVC windows as this can scratch the frame and windows and trap the dirt as well as making them look old and tired
Clean your uPVC window frames every 6 months to keep them shiny and new
Lubricate your uPVC working parts every 6 months to keep them in full and efficient working order
Never force your uPVC windows or doors open or closed as this can damage its frame and casing
Window Frame uPVC Maintenance and Cleaning
You should clean your uPVC Window frames twice a year to remove any grime or dirt and the more regularly you clean them the easier it is next time.
Start by opening the window and using a soft paintbrush to loosen any dust, dirt and cobwebs, then use a vacuum to remove anything you have dislodged. Next spray the insides of your window with Super Strength PVCU Cleaner, trying not to get too much of the product on your window seals. Leave for a couple of minutes and wipe it clean with a soft damp cloth. Repeat as you need to, although in our experience one spray will clean a really dirty window easily. Wipe it clean with a soft dry cloth.
Next, close your window and repeat the same process with the Super Strength PVCU Cleaner.
That’s it, your window frames will look sparkly and new again.
If your window frames are extremely dirty and they haven’t been cleaned for a long time then you may need to repeat this process again, although we have used the product on moss, mildew, dirt and mould build-up which has been there for years and the Super Strength PVCU Cleaner has cleaned them the first time.
Super Strength PVCU Cleaner can be used on the insides and outsides of your uPVC Windows.
Cleaning your Window Sills
Spray your window with Super Strength PVCU Cleaner, leave for a couple of minutes and wipe it clean with a soft damp cloth. Wipe it clean with a soft dry cloth.
Cleaning your Guttering
Spray your guttering with Super Strength PVCU Cleaner, leave it to work its magic for 5 minutes and then wipe it clean with a soft damp cloth. Finally, wipe it clean with a soft dry cloth.
Cleaning your Facias
Spray your Facia with Super Strength PVCU Cleaner, leave it to work for 5 minutes and then wipe it clean with a soft damp cloth. Finally, wipe it clean with a soft dry cloth.
Removing Paint Splashes from your Windows and Window Frames
Spray the area of paint splashes with Super Strength PVCU Cleaner and leave it to work for a couple of minutes. Wipe the paint away with a damp cloth and then polish with a soft dry microfibre cloth.
About Super Strength PVCU Cleaner
Super Strength PVCU Cleaner will remove stubborn marks and dirt that have been there for years.
It removes heavy grime, dirt, oil and paints in minutes with no strenuous cleaning needed.
One product does all with no pre or after treatment needed.
It is suitable for all uPVC types including; windows, doors, conservatories, guttering and facias.
It is a safe water-based, non-hazardous, non-toxic, non-caustic, non-flammable, PH neutral, solvent-free cleaner
There is no risk of skin burns when using the product (always follow the instructions on the product).
It is a water-based product and there is no impact on the environment when using it.
Super Strength PVCU Cleaner is “Tough not toxic” and has No H (hazard) or P (precautionary) statements on the label.
It was researched, developed and manufactured in the UK and was developed from the most advanced, innovative water-based technology using ” science not solvents” by Eco Solutions.
Here are some examples of the types of things the Eco Solutions Home Use Product Range can clean quickly and easily
Cleaning an Oven
Wipe away as much of the grime and dirt using a soft damp warm cloth, spray with Grime Go and leave for 5 – 10 minutes. Wipe away the Grime Go with a wet cloth and then polish with a microfibre cloth.
Cleaning a Hardwood Floor
Mop your floor using warm soapy water. Spray your floor with Grime Go and leave for 5 minutes. Using clean warm water mop wipe the floor clean. Polish with a soft dry cloth.
Cleaning and Removing Marks and Dirt on Upholstery
Spray the area you want to clean on your upholstery with Grime Go and leave for 10 minutes. Using a clean, warm damp cloth gently wipe away at the stain, this part is not always needed as the Grime Go will often dissolve the stain without the need of you wiping it.
Spray your trainers with Grime Go and leave for 10 minutes. Using a damp cloth wipe away the dirt and marks.
Removing grass stains from Clothes or any Fabric
Spray the grass-stained fabric with Grime Go and leave for 10-20 minutes. Wash in the washing machine as normal and the stain will be removed.
Cleaning Outdoor Furniture
Spray the furniture with Grime Go and leave for 30 minutes. Use a soft scourer or brush to gently rub the dirt, grime and mould away. Wash the furniture down with clean warm water.
Remove Crayon from your Painted Walls
Simply spray the Grime Go on the area, leave for 5 minutes and then wipe clean with a damp cloth. If the crayon is deeply engrained then you may need to do it a couple of times for the crayon to lift and be wiped away.
Removing Wax from Carpets and Furniture
Soften the wax with a hairdryer on a warm, not hot setting, blot as much of the wax away as you can and then spray the softened wax with Grime Go. Leave it to work for a few minutes and then wipe clean with a soft damp cloth.
Removing Mould from Wood
Spray some Super Strength PVCU Cleaner onto the areas with mould. Leave to work for 5 – 10 minutes and wipe the mould away with a clean damp cloth. Repeat as necessary. If this doesn’t remove the mould then you can paste some Home Strip Paint Remover onto the mould, leave to work for 30 mins and wipe the area clean. Be aware that the Home Strip Paint Remover will remove any surface paint or varnish as well as the mould so you will need to repaint or varnish after.
Removing Paint Splashes on Walls
Spray Eco Solutions Super Strength PVCU Cleaner onto the wall and after a few minutes wipe away gently with a soft damp cloth.
Removing Paint Splashes or Spills from Carpet or Furniture
The easy way to remove paint from carpet is to use Eco Solutions GrimeGo or Super Strength PVCU Cleaner with no risk of your carpet being forever marked or damaged. Blot as much of the paint away as you can with kitchen roll and then spray the product onto the marked area, leave for a few minutes and then wipe away with a damp cloth. If it is a big spill you may need to repeat this a few times.
Removing Paint Splashes and Spills from Plastic
For no risk of damaging the colour of your plastic or removing its top protective layer use the quick and easy solution of Eco Solutions Super Strength PVCU Cleaner. Spray with the product, leave for a few minutes and then wipe the paint mark away.
Spray the glue stain with Home Strip Paint Remover and leave for 10 minutes. Use a soft scourer or brush to gently lift the glue away. Wash the area with clean warm water.
Removing Zinc Oxide from Clothes
Zinc oxide shows as a white powder that is insoluble in water, it can get onto clothes or any type of surface and you may think you have washed or wiped it away but it will come back.
Spray the zinc oxide stain with Home Strip Paint Remover and leave for 20 minutes. Wash away with clean water. Wash in the washing machine as normal.
Paste X-Tex Artex Remover onto your Artex and leave to work. When it has softened scrape off with a long-handled blade scraper which helps to lift it from the surface rather than spreading it around the wall, which usually happens when using a standard steel scraper.
Removing Paint Splashes and Spills from Bricks or Brickwork
The quick and easy way to remove paint from brickwork is to use Graffiti Go, simply spray on the product, leave as per the instructions and wash away with warm water using a hard bristled brush to get into any cracks or porous areas on the brickwork.
Removing Marker Pen
Spray the Graffiti Go onto the marker pen stain, leave for 5 minutes and then wipe away with a damp cloth.
Removing Oil Stains on any Surface or Material
Spray the oil stain with Super Strength Degreaser and leave for 10 – 20 minutes. Wipe away the Super Strength Degreaser with a soft damp cloth.
Removing Dirt and Grime from an Oven
Wipe the oven down using a soft cloth and warm soapy water. Spray the oven with a generous amount of Super Strength Degreaser. Leave to work for 15 minutes and use a scouring ball and warm soapy water to wipe away the dirt and grime. Wipe clean with a wet soft cloth and polish clean with a soft dry cloth.
About Eco Solutions Home Use Product Range
Removes all types of grease, oil, dirt, stains, adhesive residues, paint splashes too! – preparing surfaces for re-painting or just to clean and brighten the substrate.
Degreases & de-waxes, removes stains, grime, mould, dirt and much more, ideal for surface preparation
HOME STRIP® PAINT REMOVER
Removes lead-based paints, oil-based paints, solvent-based paints, water-based paints & emulsions, polyurethanes, stains, varnishes and waxes, intumescent paints, works as a rust-preventative surface coating.
Ideal for use on all types of surfaces including wood (hard and soft) – marble, stone, brick, concrete, plaster, ceramic tiles, GRP, aluminium, brass, cast iron and other soft metals.
X-TEX® ARTEX® REMOVER
Allows the easy removal of textured coatings such as *Artex® without causing dust from harmful asbestos fibres.
Widely used throughout the licensed asbestos removal industry.
Ideal for use in sensitive and occupied premises such as homes, hospitals and schools.
Removes all paints including car spray paints, graffiti shadow, leather dye, marker pen, crayons, fly posters, chewing gum.
Works on all woods, all metals (including Aluminium), stone (including soft and porous stones), brick, marble, concrete, most plastics (may etch certain types of Perspex and polycarbonate).
SUPER STRENGTH DEGREASER
Removes all types of grease, oil, grime, glue, even light carbon build-up from virtually any surface, amazing for cleaning ovens, baking trays and BBQs.
All of the Eco Solutions Cleaning Products are water-based, solvent-free and non-toxic making them safe, quick and easy to use. Having the products in your home makes any cleaning tasks quick and easy and you will always know you will have the right product to hand.
Our Eco Solutions Home Use Products can be brought in Brewers, Buildbase, Jewsons or at Travis Perkins and you can find a list of our stockists here.