We've already talked about what makes upvc double glazing so energy efficient, but of course lowering energy bills is only part of the appeal of modern upvc windows.
Homeowners are equally attracted by the low maintenance and long life of upvc installations, and with good reason.
Upvc windows have been with us for over 25 years now and many of those early installations are still going strong.
But tastes and technology moves on in leaps and bounds and many homeowners are now replacing first-generation upvc windows with new installations.
Aside from a little cleaning and the occasional lubrication of moving parts like hinges and locks, you can expect a long life from your 'plastic' windows.
Compared to wooden windows, which require a re-coat or fresh paint every few years, and it's not hard to see why so many of us choose upvc windows.
They never rot or split, and the first generation problems of some warping occurring have long been addressed with frame design and installation techniques.
Discolouration? That's another problem from another era. Modern plastic extrusion - the stuff frames are made from - includes ingredients that fix the colour and prevent the fading effects of strong sunlight.
Culturally, the amount of 'free' time we now get and how we spend that free time has changed dramatically. One sign of this is the increase in low-maintenance gardens with larger patio and decked areas. In the modern age, we simply don't seem to have the time to do all those exterior maintenance jobs we once used to. This included stripping, prepping and re-painting the exterior of wooden windows.
*This article first appeared in our weekly homeowner newsletter - issue 21st February 2011.