Vikram S. Shriram explains that an inclination towards green buildings in both residential and commercial sectors has increased with a surge in the use of uPVC windows and doors.
Windows and doors play an important role in design aesthetics of the interiors of any place or home décor. They provide both physical and visual connections between the inside and outside and enhance the overall appeal of the house and make it look a lot more spacious. A well planned window is one which possesses good material with good texture. A good window not only provides a house with enough light and air but it also protects it from heat, dust and rain. The windows during the older times primarily consisted of wood, aluminum or iron. As time passed, technology made usage of other alternate material as well as possibility of various design. Also, with people becoming more and more conscious of the visual appeal, a mere iron or aluminum window did not satisfy the aesthetic desires that they have in mind for their residences. Wood though was widely used; the drawbacks of weathering and termite attack as being extremely expensive made its usage restricted to only that could afford them.
The rising demand for well-designed windows has led to innovations in the quality and the texture of the windows. Today, windows are expected to perform various functions such as letting in light, keeping out heat or cold, noise attenuation, as well as being aesthetically attractive, needing lower maintenance and using energy saving, efficient materials. The latest technology in architecture has played a major role in the enhancement of new homes with smarter products. The new age material which is now being used in smart windows and doors is uPVC.
There has been a clear shift towards uPVC as a preferred windows material. Apart from its functional superiority, uPVC is also a green material. While wood promotes deforestation, aluminum windows waste a lot of energy, an inclination towards green buildings in both residential and commercial sectors has increased with a surge in the use of uPVC windows and doors. Wood windows are on their way out with the movement towards green. With the growth of the premium segment in housing, size of windows and doors is gradually getting bigger. Premium homes now have much larger windows and doors than the ones used earlier.
Globally, uPVC windows and doors have been well accepted, with wide usage, due to better aesthetics and excellent insulation characteristics. We have seen a shift towards the usage of uPVC windows in India now as a result of the growing focus on energy efficient performance for homes and buildings. It is poised to achieve a higher and faster market penetration in the years to come. Double glazed windows with uPVC frames are proven performers in reducing energy consumption for heating and cooling and consequently over their whole lifecycle can reduce a building’s greenhouse gas emissions by as much as half compared to the use of aluminium framed windows. uPVC is effectively replacing aluminum , steel and timber now.
As a comparatively new product in the market, uPVC windows organized players are meeting International standards. Standards suitable for Indian conditions are being formalized as players pitch in their energies to give the customers the best deal. In a market where standardization is an issue, several bodies are taking a lead in helping to establish standards and there is a need to define profile width, formulation and environmental safety. Additionally, environmental bodies like IGBC associated with LEED ratings and GRIHA are also helping promoting uPVC for energy saving initiatives.
Since windows and doors play a major role in a home, it is important to select the right windows and doors for your home. Today it’s not just about safety or beauty, it is actually the confluence of both, in a way to provide complete style package for home. Needless to say, the future holds bright for the fenestration industry, and opportunities are up for the alternate material especially uPVC in the door and window market.
(The author is Vice Chairman & Managing Director, DCM Shriram Ltd. Fenesta Building Systems is one of India’s largest windows company and a division of DCM Shriram Ltd.)