UPVC doors are by far the most common type of door in use throughout the UK at present. They are often thought to be maintenance free as they do not require painting or varnishing to maintain their appearance and water proof qualities. However UPVC doors can develop problems and if these problems are not rectified quickly they can develop into more complex and costly problems quite quickly. Let’s have a look at the various problems that can occur on a UPVC door.
Door catches on side or bottom of frame.
UPVC doors are heavy and expand and contract with temperature changes. This means that the hinge can wear and the door can become misaligned with the frame. The easiest way to check if this has happened to your UPVC door is to look at the mitred joints at the corners of the door and the frame. If the mitres do not line up then the door needs to be realigned with frame. Look at the hinges to see how to adjust the door to move towards or away from the hinge. If the bottom corner of the UPVC door is too low then the top hinge should be adjusted to move the door towards the hinge and the bottom one away from the hinge. Adjust the middle hinge to halfway between the top and bottom hinges. If you cannot get the door realigned with the frame then it will need to be ‘toe and heeled’ which involves repacking the panels within the frame to alter the shape of the door.
Handles are stiff to operate.
If the handles on your UPVC door are stiff when being lifted up or pushed down then the multipoint lock mechanism is not lining up correctly with the keeps on the frame. The keeps are the metal parts on the frame which the hooks, rollers, deadbolts on the multipoint lock locate in when the door is locked. If the door is square in the frame (see above) and the handles are still stiff then the multipoint lock is probably very worn and quite likely to break very soon. It would be advisable to get it looked at by a locksmith before it fails and you are unable to open the UPVC door as the lock has broken.
Handles go up but key cannot be turned
If the key in your UPVC will not turn fully to lock the door after lifting the handles either the locking points are not moving fully into the keeps on the frame or the cylinder is damaged. If the door is aligned with the frame (see above) then cal a locksmith to look at the lock.
Door is unlocked but handles will not go down
This happens when the multipoint locking mechanism breaks, usually after the handles have been stiff or difficult to operate for a while. If this happens to you do not be tempted to try to open the door yourself as you can cause a lot of additional damage doing so. The best approach is to call a locksmith who will be able to open your UPVC door without damaging it. They will then be able to replace the broken parts of the multipoint locking mechanism and realign the door to prevent the same thing happening again.
UPVC door can be closed but does not stay shut
If your UPVC door swings open after being closed then the latch is not catching in the keep. This can usually be cured by moving the keep for the latch towards the door. there are usually two screw which need to be loosened to allow the adjustment to be carried out.
UPVC door handles are floppy or loose
This is usually caused by wear and tear on the handles or lock mechanism. If the handles are loose on their backplates then they will need to be replaced. If the handles are floppy then emote the handles and look inside. If they have small cassettes with springs inside then replace these spring cassettes and your handles should be floppy no more. If your handles do not have spring cassettes in then the spring in the lock mechanism has worn and will need to be replaced or you could fit sprung handles if possible.
Key only works from one side or key will not come out of lock
If the key will only operate from one side of your UPVC door then the cylinder will need to be replaced. Similarly if the key cannot be removed from the lock then you will need to replace the cylinder. Call a local locksmith and ask their advice on replacement cylinders as there is a bewildering array of different types available.