How to Paint uPVC Windows

uPVC, otherwise known as Unplasticised Poly Vinyl Chloride, is one of the most popular materials used for windowsills and frames across the globe.  Specially designed to withstand harsh weather and with a life span lasting 20-35 years, uPVC windows are an investment! But that doesn’t mean that you won’t get a little bored of how they look.  To help you out, we’re here to teach you how to paint uPVC windows – so you can give yours the refresh they deserve. 


Can you paint uPVC windows? 


You can buy uPVC paint that can be applied directly to your windowsills and frames. Or, you can use an exterior paint – but only if they were fitted over 12 months ago. This is because the uPVC stops secreting and interacts with the exterior paint in the same way it would on wood.  

The benefit of using exterior paint over uPVC paint is that you’ll have a lot more colours to choose from. So, if there’s an exterior paint that you’ve got your eye on, this guide will walk you through the steps you need to follow for a perfect finish.  


How to Paint uPVC Windows

If you need to use a ladder for the window frames on the higher floors of your house, do so with care. Place the ladder on a stable surface that is completely flat and dry – and with someone nearby for supervision and assistance.  

We also recommend you take a look at our DIY safety tips before you begin. 


Thoroughly clean your uPVC windowsills and frames 

When it comes to showing up streaky marks, flecks of paint or lines, uPVC can be particularly unforgiving, so it’s important to make sure that your windows are free from any caked-on dirt or pollen.  

It’s best to open the windows fully, to get into all those hard-to-reach corners. A wet all-purpose cloth should do the trick, and ensure you dry your windowsills and frames afterwards. 


Sand the base 

To help the exterior paint stick to your uPVC surfaces, you’re going to need fine grade sandpaper for the windowsill and frames. Make sure you don’t use too much pressure – as this will show through once the paint has dried. 


Remove all dust 

Next, you’ll need a high-quality microfibre cloth to wipe away the dust from your sandpaper and prepare your surfaces for priming. 


Add masking tape  

Masking tape will ensure that you keep your brickwork and panes of glass clear of any marks or paint splatters. Apply to the outside edges of the uPVC windowsill and onto the panes of glass.


Apply your uPVC primer 

With the windows prepared, it’s now time to apply your uPVC primer.  

It’s best to use a primer that matches the colour of paint you’re using on your uPVC windows. 

Gently use a clean paint brush to apply the primer around the uPVC window.  

For a professional looking finish, you may need to add two coats of primer to your uPVC windows. This will mean you have to wait until the first coat is fully dry, before applying the next.  This can sometimes take a few days, depending on the time of year.  

Top tip: Be careful not to put too much pressure on the brush or operate in a circular motion, as this can cause the paint to flick onto the brickwork. 


Time to paint your uPVC windows! 

With the primer fully dry, it’s time to apply your paint to your uPVC windowsills and frames.  

Apply the paint carefully to the uPVC frame, softy dragging your brush up and downwards to reach into the corners. This will take a at least two coats, until you get the right pigment, so be willing to take some time with it and leave each coat to fully dry before starting another. 

Top tip: Although a sunny day may seem like the perfect time to get cracking with painting your uPVC windows, the heat can cause the paint to crack and therefore stop it from drying naturally. 


That’s how to paint uPVC windows! Now it’s time to sit back and admire your new on-trend frames and show them off on social media – don’t forget to tag us @homebase_uk. Discover a while range of DIY projects for you to get stuck into on our dedicated hub 



Writer and expert