A guide to replacement doors and windows (2024)

Replacing your home’s doors and windows is a great way to give it a fresh new look and also save money on your energy bills. In this guide, we look at the benefits of installing new doors and windows, as well as the costs and styles available.

By Katharine Allison

October 19, 2023
Beautifully bright modern living room

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If you’re considering upgrading to double glazing windows, it’s well worth thinking about replacing your doors too. Not only will replacement doors and windows save you money on your heating bill, but they will also improve your home’s security and increase your property’s kerb appeal. 

Many double glazing installers also include front and back doors as part of their range, making them easy to add to a new installation project or retrofit later. 

In this article, we’ll cover all you need to know about installing new doors and windows, including:

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Door and window styles

The first thing visitors to your home will notice is the front door and window style you’ve chosen. Numerous designs, materials and colours are available, and it’s an opportunity to make a property uniquely yours, reflecting your taste and giving a lasting impression. 

Door styles

Door styleDescriptionSuited to


A smooth flat slab

Contemporary home


2, 3, 4, 6, or 8 moulded panels

Period, traditional, or contemporary home


Part-glazed front door or fully-glazed back

Contemporary or period—Victorian or Edwardian


Two independent halves—often used as back doors

Cottage or country home


Pair of doors opening outwards—often used as back doors



Sliding or opening fully-glazed door

Contemporary or mid-century

Many homeowners choose panelled front doors, as these offer versatility with plenty of room for the furniture to be attached. Glass panels can be incorporated, with a good choice being frosted glass, as it allows light in but retains a sense of privacy. 


New homes often feature uPVC doors as standard, and this material is a popular choice for retrofitted front doors. Maintenance-free and low-cost, uPVC lends itself particularly well to panelled front doors, and with a wide range of colours available from installers, your home can look stunningly stylish. If you are looking for replacement windows alongside your new door, complementary colours can be striking, whilst using the same colour for both doors and window frames provides a pleasingly well-finished appearance. 

Timber doors are often more suited to period properties, require looking after, and can be expensive. Wood-effect uPVC is a good alternative, since it has the appearance of wood but is maintenance-free and costs less. 

Composite doors are another alternative to solid timber. Featuring reinforced steel  around a hardwood frame, a foam-filled core, and a glass-reinforced plastic outer skin, they are tough, long-lasting and require little care. They sit between uPVC doors and timber for pricing. 


When considering the style of your doors, you also need to think about the furniture that needs to be incorporated into your front door. This could include the key plate, letterbox, and, for added security, a spy hole. These are available in a range of designs and materials. From the organic swirls of a brass Art Nouveau-style letterbox to one that’s a more functional brushed steel, the architecture of your property should be considered before choosing a design.  

Window styles

Double glazing window styleDescriptionSuited to


Side hung like a door but can open from the bottom or top

Contemporary but also versatile, they can suit any home

Tilt and turn

Side hung to swing fully open with bottom hinges to tilt inwards for ventilation



Two panels that slide up and down, or one fixed and one sliding

Period—Victorian, Georgian, or Edwardian


Projects out from the wall with extended brickwork to the floor

Contemporary or period


Projects out from the wall without any brick extension

Contemporary or country home


The window above a doorway, also known as a fanlight

Contemporary or period

The highly popular casement window is the most versatile design, and many double glazing suppliers offer a range of configurations for every style of property. These can include smaller panels within the window, top hung, or a double window of side-hung casements opening outwards, creating a large aperture, with or without a central mullion. 


Depending on who carries out your installation, double glazing windows are available in the same materials as doors, with uPVC windows offering the best value for money. Some suppliers also include aluminium frames in their product range, and although less popular, they can deliver a sleek, unfussy look to 1920s Art Deco period homes or 1950s post-war properties. 


Window furniture is most commonly the handle and lock, which are often included in one unit; however, handles come in many shapes and sizes. Cockspur and espag  handles are popular choices when it comes to uPVC windows. Similar in design, espag handles feature a straight handhold, while the cockspur’s is gently curved. Easy to manoeuvre, with the lock built into the unit, they can lock the window slightly open for airflow and offer good security.

Side- or top-hung timber double glazing windows often require a stay to keep the window open, and these can be bought to match the handles. Curled cast iron monkey tail sets are perfect for period properties, whereas chrome or brushed steel straight styles suit more modern homes. 

New doors and windows in a beautiful period home
A beautiful period property, enhanced with new doors and windows (Image credit: Adobe)

How do replacement doors and windows improve your home’s energy efficiency?

Homes can lose between 10% and 20% of their heat through inefficient doors and windows. Upgrading to double glazing windows and new doors will reduce heat loss, save money on your heating bills, and keep your home comfortable. 

Double glazing units have three main contributing factors to their energy efficiency performance—how much heat is let in, how much escapes, and how tightly fitting the windows are. Thanks to the air- or gas-filled space sandwiched between the two glass panels, the windows offer an insulating barrier, which minimises the amount of heat that can pass through, while modern double glazing frames are designed to fit snugly, leaving no gaps. This results in a warmer home and reduced heating bills—in some cases up to £235 annually

New external doors can also contribute to your home’s energy efficiency. If your chosen door design includes a glass insert, this is usually double-glazed—although the space between the panels is much narrower than that of windows. To prevent heat escaping, doors are designed to fit snugly, and uPVC doors often include a thermal layer between the door and the frame to ensure no gaps. Both timber and uPVC are poor conductors of heat, meaning that significant savings can be made by replacing your old doors with more efficient models. 

Benefits of new doors and windows

Home security

According to research carried out by Compare the Market, there are, on average 255,000 domestic burglaries in Wales and England yearly. But this figure is predicted to rise 24% year-on-year by 2026, after a slight decrease during lockdown. 

Replacement doors and windows can prevent criminals from breaking into your home, and many manufacturers have incorporated high-tech designs into their products, giving you an extra layer of security. Internal beading and anti-jemmy technology can stop burglars from gaining entry by removing windows from the outside, while multi-point locks secure doors and windows closed. 

Secured by Design, the official police accreditation scheme, has seen large numbers of manufacturers’ replacement doors and windows meeting its Police Preferred Specification

Reduced condensation

Condensation forms when the moisture that’s present in cold air comes into contact with a cold surface, such as glass. It can cause mould, which, in turn, can lead to asthma and other health issues developing. The damp atmosphere may damage your furniture, warping wood and causing soft furnishings to deteriorate.

However, thanks to the double panes of glass and the space in between, the inner pane keeps warmer than the exterior one, meaning there’s a greatly reduced risk of condensation.

Increasing the value of your property

By upgrading your old doors and windows, you not only increase your home’s kerb appeal, making it easier to sell, but increase its value by around 10%. Buyers want their new homes to look fresh and clean but will also enjoy the other benefits replacement doors and windows bring, such as lower heating bills and added security. 

Attractive Victorian town houses, with new four panelled doors and sash double glazing windows
Attractive Victorian town houses, with new four panelled doors and sash double glazing windows (Image credit: Adobe)

How much do replacement doors and windows cost?

Most of the larger names in double glazing windows also produce and install new doors and other home improvement products, such as conservatories, and often advertise special deals for ordering replacement doors and windows together. Everest, for example, offers discounts for buying two or more products as part of its Multi-Buy savings. So it’s well worth shopping around to find the best quote.

Many installers make doors and windows to measure, and generally, there aren’t any price lists giving off-the-shelf costs. 

The cost of double glazing windows 

The prices for one double-glazed window unit of approximately 60cm x 90cm in size vary substantially depending on the style and material you choose and the company you book to do the installation.


uPVC windows

£250–£570 (A++ rated)

£350–£570 (A+ rated)

£250–£570 (A rated)

£160–£450 (A++ rated)


Timber windows



Composite windows





Aluminium windows





The cost of replacement doors 

The lower door prices listed below reflect the average costs of a basic four-panel exterior door, while the upper figure is the average price for a high-end part-glazed period-style model.

MaterialAverage cost of doors (inc installation)







What should you ask your door and window installer?

Although many door and window installers will provide an initial online quote, they will need to come and take measurements, should you decide to use them. This is your chance to ask any questions you may have to drill down into their service. 

How much will my doors and windows cost? 

This is an excellent question to start with, as it may determine whether you carry on with this particular company. Find out whether the quote includes the installation, door and window furniture, and whether there are any special offers to consider. 

What customisation options can I choose?

Depending on the options available, this could impact the prices charged, but if style and appearance are important to you, designing the doors and windows offers a tailored look to your home. 

What guarantees are in place?

Some companies provide guarantees for the installation and the products, whereas others deliver more tailored cover, such as white uPVC discolouration or warping of timber doors and frames. 

How long will the project take?

Most installations will take a couple of days, depending on the human resources available and size of project. Also, ask if the installer anticipates any potential delays, such as waiting for parts to be delivered. 

Do you recycle the old doors and windows?

Aware of being eco-friendly, more installers are starting to recycle old doors and windows. Safestyle, in particular, recycles 95% of its waste as part of a bigger commitment to being green, giving you up to £100 towards your new installation for every door and window it recycles. 

Can I see examples of previous installations? 

It’s helpful to see the projects the installer has worked on, not only for inspiration but also to give an idea of the finished results. Most companies are keen to show off their work but also ask about any negative reviews you’ve seen online. You may have friends who have employed the company for their replacement doors and windows and can provide a better idea of their services and products. 

Do your installers hold industry certification?

Companies often employ in-house installers, but some contract the project out to local teams. Either way, you’ll want to know that whoever is installing your doors and windows is industry certified. Usually, this means a FENSA accreditation, which allows the holder to self-certify when the job is completed. 

Independent third-party certification provides peace of mind, knowing that achieving the level required demonstrates dedication, trustworthiness, and skills. 

A stunning new build with uPVC doors and windows in complementary colours
A stunning new build with uPVC doors and windows in complementary colours (Image credit: Adobe)

Doors and windows FAQ

What’s the best colour for uPVC doors and windows?

Manufacturers of uPVC doors and windows have increased their available colourways to include pastels, vibrant primary shades, and contemporary colours. However, if you can’t find the exact colour you want or fancy something completely unique, they can be painted. Do check this doesn’t invalidate any existing guarantees before you begin. To create the perfect painted finish, spend time preparing your doors and windows by rubbing down the surfaces and applying a coat of solvent-based primer. Finish with a top coat, which should also be solvent-based.

What is the biggest disadvantage of double glazing windows?

Being manufactured as a sealed unit, double glazing windows can be challenging, if not impossible, to repair. If the seal has blown and condensation is collecting between the panes, for example, the seal can be replaced by a professional installer, but the repair doesn’t always work. It can be cheaper in the long run to replace the whole unit. 

How do I know when to get a replacement front door?

If your existing door is letting draughts in or is sticking in wet weather, it may be time to consider getting a new one. Many installers offer special deals if homeowners buy replacement doors and windows together, and homeowners regularly choose this option, giving the exterior of their property a fresh, new look. 

Is it worth getting replacement doors and windows?

If your doors and windows are becoming draughty, letting rain get in, or developing issues with locking mechanisms, it’s time to start thinking about getting replacements. uPVC doors and windows are readily available through installers, and there are often discounts for purchasing both together. Other materials are popular, such as timber, which complements period properties extremely well, and a composite combining wood and uPVC, which offers the best of both materials—maintenance-free, durable, and very attractive. 

How do I stop draughts from my uPVC doors and windows?

If your doors and windows develop draughts, letting cold air in and warm air out, there are several things you can do. The most effective solution is to invest in new windows and doors. If you choose not to do this, however, you could consider buying a roll of draught sealer. Stick the foam strip around the door or window frame to form a cushion when the unit is closed. While this is not particularly effective nor aesthetically pleasing, it is a cheap and immediate solution.  

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