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Trent Valley Windows

Windows, Doors, Conservatories
Bespoke service from Trent Valley Windows

Which Material is Right for Your Windows?

If you are considering new windows for your property, you might know exactly which material you want, or you might be reviewing your options. Perhaps you just assumed you would replace your existing windows with the same material that’s there now, without giving it much thought. Either way, here’s a handy guide to PVC-U, aluminium and timber windows and where each material is generally best suited.

PVC-U is the most popular choice of material for homeowners buying windows or doors in the UK. As always, there are good examples and bad, but on the whole the PVC-U home improvements sector has come on leaps and bounds. Security and energy efficiency are second to none and the options in aesthetics from style of window, to timber look-a-like, to a vast range of colour options, available readily, have boosted its popularity further still.
A limitation of PVC-U in the past has been where listed properties are concerned. Even in this sector, the industry has come a long way with outstanding innovations that offer solutions that work seamlessly in all styles of property and that are often now approved for use in conservation areas.

A rising star in recent years, aluminium has gathered a lot of momentum in home improvements thanks largely to property programmes like Grand Designs which promote large aluminium bi-folding doors bringing the outside in, and sleek and modern windows to match.
Slightly more expensive than PVC-U, aluminium can now often be found in high end homes and bespoke projects, although the properties that make them desirable for these projects are increasingly making them desirable for home improvements in all kinds of properties.

In many ways the timber window doesn’t compete with PVC-U or aluminium because they are in a different price range. It’s still the material of choice for many heritage property owners, to maintain character and if cost isn’t an issue, it is a beautiful natural product to have in your home. Timber windows also now come with improved security and weather performance and have come a long way in terms of necessary maintenance.
As with all products, there are low quality and high-quality timber windows so it’s important to do your research and choose a supplier you trust. Trent Valley Windows offer timber effect windows that look like wood. Our timber effect windows look like wood, feel like wood and out performs wood.Which is right for you?

There is no right or wrong answer here, but the good news is that you have a lot of choice, which can only be a good thing. Within each material sector, there are endless options to choose from in terms of style and colour and as long as you buy them from a reputable supplier, all will come with similar standards of energy efficiency, security and weather performance.

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solid roof for existing conservatory

Buying a Conservatory

Conservatories continue to be a popular home improvement choice in the UK and as we enjoy some Spring sunshine, it’s often the time of year that people take the plunge and place an order. However, before you decide, it’s important to think about how you’ll use the new space, how you want it to look as the finished room and what style of conservatory would best suit your needs.

How will you use the space?

One of the very first things to consider is how you will use the new room. Do you plan on it being a garden or pet room? Is it somewhere peaceful to escape on a sunny day? Or will it be a more integral extension to your existing living space? Each of these potential uses will suit a different kind of conservatory style and design.

For example, one used for plants and pets can probably be added onto the house and entered through an existing doorway. For a room that will only be used on warm sunny days, you only need a simple build, but you will need to think about the impact on the temperature of your whole home. As for a conservatory being a genuine extension of an existing living or dining room for example, this will require more thought and will be a slightly more complex project.

Conservatory Styles

There are so many different types of conservatories to choose from, and that’s before you even start to think about orangeries. So here are some of the most popular types on the market as well as a little bit of information about each.
The Victorian and Edwardian conservatories are very similar in style. The Victorian has a bay front with a pitched roof, as well as an ornately designed roof ridge. The Edwardian is very similar but features a flat front and rectangular shape.
The Lantern conservatory features a stunning glass ‘lantern’ roof and is supported by firm and solid structures. They offer a more modern look and offer great appeal aesthetically.
The Gable conservatory differs from most in terms of its roof design. Unlike most, the roof does not take a slow slope back to the centre. Instead, it remains upright for a greater sense of height and overall size.
Shaped conservatories also exist, usually in a T or P shape, but increasingly in all sorts of shapes to fit around unusual house shapes and garden spaces.
Research. Order. Enjoy!

Adding a conservatory to your home is an exciting project to undertake and a great way to add space to your house. Whether you plan to enjoy it by yourself or with friends and family as a more social space, they can add a whole new dimension to the way you live in your house and use the space. It’s important to do your research before you buy, as with any big-ticket item, but once you have decided on its use and the best style to suit your needs, in no time at all you can sit back and enjoy the result.

If you need any help or advice on the best conservatory for you, our friendly team are always here to help.

Problems With Your Doors?

What does your front door say about you?

It’s all about colour in the world of windows and doors in 2018. Following the trends in the interior and building design arenas, windows and doors are keeping pace with changing tastes.

Property programmes such as Grand Designs remain an authoritative voice in property design and there are an increasing number of programmes educating us in how to make our homes look better, more welcoming, more on trend. We all love to dream about living in our own Grand Designs home, but as a second-best option, we try to bring elements of what we like into our own homes.


And of course, the Spring and Summer months are the best time to think about updating your home and what better place to start than with your front door? But what’s on trend for 2018?

While 2017 saw more pastel and neutral choices, this year it’s more about being bold and making a statement. While Anthracite Grey is seen as the ‘new black’ and is still popular, there is a shift towards slightly greener or bluer shades of grey – dark grey in cities and blue-greys in rural areas – as well as going back to more traditional creams and blacks. Pantone colour of the year for 2018 is Ultra-Violet, so we’re sure to see more dramatic purple/blue tone doors.

What Does Your Door Say About You?

London estate agent Marsh & Parsons teamed up with international colour consultancy, Pantone, to carry out research on what the choice of front door colour can suggest about the type of person living inside the home and here’s what they concluded:

Green: a sign of loyalty and affection. More pastel tone like Sage is calm.
Black: timeless and traditional choice that represents creativity. Elegant, powerful, and prestigious, it will never go out of fashion.
Yellow: the colour of sunshine. A bold choice that shows a friendly and nurturing attitude, warm and welcoming.
Grey: subtle, stylish, timeless and classic. Another one that won’t go out of fashion.
Red: represents a touch of glamour and intimacy, but also commanding, dynamic, and engaging. What is more classic than telephone box red.
Blue or Lavender: introverted by nature and like a private oasis. Blue symbolizes strong qualities like trust, loyalty, wisdom, confidence & intelligence.
Dark Blues: Authoritative and trustworthy, they suggest someone strong and stylish
who likes classic designs.
Dark Greens: calm, quiet and soothing, suggests strength and style, with classic design tastes.
Light Blues & Pastels: Peaceful and tranquil, lighter colours suggest the home is a haven from the rest of the world.
White: the colour of perfection and associated with light and goodness, safety and cleanliness. Simple, crisp and pristine, it supports a minimalist look.
Cream or Neutral: shows someone is likely to be practical in nature.
Pink: Needless to say, a hopeless romantic. But, also someone who is either and exhibitionist, or thoughtful, cheery and generous.
Natural stain: traditional choice, rustic and comforting.

Your view

We’d love to know what you think. Have they got it right? And which colour door will you be buying to best reflect your personality?

Contact Us Today!

We are here to help you find out everything you need to know, and we'll give you all the advice you need. Whether you need to know more about our products, or you would like to speak to a customer advisor.
wooden doors with double glazing

What to do about expanding PVC-U

Modern PVC-U is a precision-engineered, sustainable, fully recyclable material whose superior thermal efficiency offers significant energy savings in the home. And it’s a responsible choice; PVC-U has an expected lifespan of at least 35 years, and when it does reach the end of its life it can be recycled up to ten times.

But don’t just take our word for it… the Building Research Establishment’s authoritative Green Guide rates PVC-U as equal to or better than timber in a number of key areas, including sustainability, environmental impact and energy efficiency.

PVC-U in the warmer weather

PVC-U is a popular choice of material for construction materials such as windows, doors and guttering because it’s a strong and rigid material that can withstand the elements and everyday use it goes through. However, like all plastics, it can suffer in the heat and expand in higher temperatures, which can make it difficult to shut or lock your windows and doors when we experience a sunny spell, as we have been lucky enough to witness over the May Bank Holiday weekend.

How to combat PVC-U expansion

When the temperature cools into the evening or when the windows or doors become sheltered in the shade, they will return to their original form and you will be able to shut and lock them as normal. If you simply can’t wait, you can try and cool them down quicker with cool water on the frame, although on a really hot day, this may not make a lot of difference.

Another short-term solution is to adjust the hinges of the door you’re struggling to close. It’s easy to do but beware, because you may then struggle with the door closing in the frame when the weather cools down again and so the hinges may need adjusting back again.

When is it time to replace?

If things get really bad, it might be worth talking to your local window and door installer to see if it’s worth having the items replaced. It might simply be time for new products. It’s worth remembering too that although this can be a downside to PVC-U products, on the whole, PVC-U comes out on top for cost, maintenance and life span so if you can make it work, it remains the most popular choice of window and door material for good reason.

If you would like any more advice on looking after your existing windows and doors or on whether it’s time to buy new, there is a friendly and experienced team at Trent Valley Windows waiting to take your call.

bespoke conservatory with solid tiled roof

The All-Year-Round Conservatory

We have witnessed some pretty extreme weather conditions already this year and so fast changing too! Snow piling up one minute and completely melted the next and then not many weeks after, soaring temperatures. It’s hard to keep up! It’s also clear to see why solid roofs continue to be so popular! Depending on the configuration of existing conservatories, some struggle to keep up with the quick changing weather extremes we experience in this country. The age-old problem of being too cold to use in winter (whenever that winter weather may arrive) and too hot in the summer, particularly hits home when the weather is extreme and consumers have conservatories they genuinely can’t use. Glass roofs today are a fantastic option and are a vast improvement on the polycarbonate option that was the favourite conservatory roof for some years, but solid roofs have perhaps had the biggest impact on the ability to create a genuinely useable room, all year round.

New Vs Replacement

We sell the Guardian Warm Roof solid roof solution which is still the UK’s most popular tiled replacement roof today. Interestingly the majority of solid roofs we sell seem to remain in the replacement sector, i.e. they’re installed on top of existing conservatories, but they are also proving popular on new conservatories to ensure an all-round additional room in the home from the start.

What are the benefits?

Fully tested and approved to all thermal and structural standards, the Guardian™ roof is a high performance insulated roof system comprising of a pre-engineered lightweight frame, two layers of rigid insulation board, internal insulated plasterboard, exterior grade plywood and a vapour membrane. Altogether this creates a thermally efficient living space; keeping the warm air out in the summer and preventing the heat from escaping in the winter. The result? A thermally efficient room that can save you money on your heating bills.

LABC Approved

If you’re considering replacing an existing glass or polycarbonate roof with a solid roof, you need to be aware of the relating Building Regulations. In August 2013 the Local Authority Building Control (LABC) released some basic guidelines about the Regulations applicable to the replacement of a translucent roof (glass or polycarbonate) with a solid roof – onto to conservatory or porch. The GuardianTM solid roof is a strong, lightweight tiled roof that is fully approved by the LABC so we’re able to offer peace of mind to all our solid roof customers.

Experience & Expertise

As with everything we sell, the most important thing for us is that you feel comfortable with your chosen home improvement product. That’s why we have a friendly, no pressure team to talk you through all of the options and who will also be on hand to help with additional factors such as Building Regulation considerations.

If you’d like to find out more about our Solid Roof offering, please get in touch today.

leaded aluminium windows with double glazing

Feeling Grey?

The demand for coloured windows and doors continues. Fuelled by on-trend interior magazines and property programmes, coloured windows now account for a much larger proportion of total windows sold and it’s not hard to see why. With all the benefits of white PVC-U windows including thermal efficiency and low maintenance, coloured PVC-U can also help a property stand out from neighbouring houses on the same street and inject a bit of personality into the overall look of your home.

What’s trending?

Grey remains the base colour of choice, but colour choices are also getting bolder. As is often the case, travel is having a big influence on interior design this year and the magazines are suggesting global-inspired patterns of earthy shades of clay, terracotta and ochre on soft furnishings. Tropical trends are still popular, but instead of carnival brights, it’s all about mixing lush, energising greens and bold leaf patterns. Even ‘grey’ is evolving as we see a significant shift towards more blue and green tones.

Of course, the interior design savvy, are often braver in their design choices than many homeowners but we do tend to choose a version of the styles and colour schemes we like, and even with brighter colours coming to the fore, grey, either in its darker anthracite form or a new variation of the palette, remain the most popular base choice.

Aluminium look alike

Part of the reason for the continuing popularity of grey windows in particular is again design-based. Industrial inspired architecture and interiors is a popular theme on programmes like Grand Designs, which we all dream of recreating, albeit often on a smaller scale to the properties featured on the programme. This look is often created through the use of aluminium products, or products that at least look like aluminium. For those who want to recreate this look but don’t have the budget for aluminium products and don’t necessarily like the material for their homes, PVC-U grey windows are a fantastic alternative. More cost effective than aluminium like for like products and timber alternatives, PVC-U remains the number one choice of window material for most homeowners.

The Full Range

We sell a full range of options at Trent Valley Windows so that we can meet every need. Whether you’re looking for aluminium, grey PVC-U that looks like aluminium, timber appearance, or any other white or coloured PVC-U option, we have a wide range of options. What’s more, we appreciate what a difficult decision it is to make, and the balance between achieving the dream Grand Designs look to your home, and the practicality of design and cost limitations. That’s why we have a team of friendly, no-pressure experts on hand to discuss your requirements and help you decide which option is best for your home, whether that be traditional white PVC-U or a more on-trend grey alternative.

Double Glazed Windows Derby

What’s Trending?

It’s a busy time for the home improvements industry as we enter Spring and look forward to summer. Now is the time homeowners find the enthusiasm to spec out which home improvements they need, and which will make it to the top of the priority list. So, which products are likely to make the grade in 2018?

At the beginning of the year there were lots of reports about which products are performing well and which are likely to continue to perform well for the rest of the year. There are definitely certain products that seem to be proving popular with no sign of slowing down this year.

New Openings

Doors continue to be high on the list of priorities for homeowners. Whether aluminium or PVC-U and whether bi-fold, French or patio. This is as a result of the fact that we’re all still searching for the best of open plan living, including between indoors and outdoors in the summer months – bringing the outside in and vice versa. Aluminium products, or PVC-U and composite products that look like aluminium, also remain popular for its modern, sleek aesthetics.

A Splash of Colour

Colour is also something that homeowners are choosing over the more traditional white windows, doors and conservatories. The more colour spreads, the braver we become to opt for something a little different. Grey windows are one of our biggest sellers at the moment. We also saw it with composite doors – housing estates gradually changing from white front doors to black. However now, we’re moving onto the next stage with homeowners considering a wider range of colour options for their doors, windows and more.

Don’t Compromise on Service

Of course, for suppliers like Trent Valley Windows, it’s imperative that we deliver the products you’re looking for – products that are on trend and give your home the wow factor. However, we also recognise the importance of supplying these products with excellent service to match. Quality is the most important thing as far as we’re concerned, whether of the product supplied or the service that it comes with. We understand the importance of the decisions you take to improve your home. It’s a significant investment that you want to enjoy.

This is precisely what we aim to deliver, every time.


Download a brochure or get a quote today!

solid roof Easy installation on new and existing conservatories

Leaning Towards a Lean To?

As we approach what are classed as our summer months in the UK, thousands of homeowners will be considering adding a conservatory to their home. Homeowners everywhere still crave extra space for dining, working from home, or simply enjoying the garden, whatever the weather. But which conservatory is right for you? Here we get up close and personal with the lean to style.

Little or large

Sometimes people think they need a lot of space to add a conservatory, but this isn’t the case. You can add an extra room and enjoy all the benefits that brings, including flooding your home with natural light, in even the smallest of areas. The lean to is a great option for small spaces, although can be used in almost any size plot. If used in a limited area however, it’s good to do your research for ideas on clever ways to decorate small spaces to ensure the room is finished to maximum effect.

Alternatively, the lean to can be used to create large additional space, by for example running across the entire width of a property.

Straight forward simplicity

Whatever the size, the lean to is perhaps the most straight forward of all the conservatory designs. It is a good choice for a minimalist scheme because of its simplicity and a bonus for those on a tight budget, is that it’s often among the most affordable options.

Lean to conservatories can be square but are most often rectangular and feature a sloping roof (usually sloping down away from the house, although there is a current trend for the reverse lean to where the roof is sloping up away from the building it’s attached to).


The lean to is an option that can be considered for single storey properties, unlike a lot of its counterparts, because it doesn’t have to be as high and is usually quite easy to add on.

When thinking about how the new space will work with your existing room, you can have your existing back or side door opening into the new conservatory, or you can have the doorway widened so that you can install a set of double doors opening out into your new additional room. With the superb advances that have been made in conservatory roofs in recent years to keep them warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer, many homeowners are also opting for no doors between the house and the conservatory, so that it truly becomes an extension of the existing space.

Moving out into the garden, the lean to offers the option of a door at either end, or one in the middle of the new structure, opposite the house wall. Bi-folding doors can be a great option for the longer side, to really open up the space.

In summary…

So, the humble lean to, is a sleek, modern, minimalist design that is often one of the most affordable options for both large and small spaces that can be used in single storey properties as well. They offer flexibility whatever the size of plot and whatever the requirement for the home extension.

If you would like more information on lean to conservatories, or any other style for that matter, talk to our team of friendly experts who can guide you through the entire process to make sure your new addition gives you everything you’re dreaming of, and more.

Free Quotation

Simply take a moment entering your details for a free no-obligation quotation. Click the submit button and a customer advisor will get back to you, usually within 24 hours or sooner!


orangery with bi fold doors and glass roof


For those of us living and breathing windows, doors and conservatories, we’ve witnessed first-hand the ebb and flow of different products as tastes change and as newer, better versions are brought to market. In the last couple of years particularly though, as an industry, we have risen to the challenge to provide more choice and the very best products across the board.

Homeowners have become more discerning, they want more choice, better quality and they’re happy to pay for the right product from the right company. A slight adaptation of Henry Ford’s famous statement was entirely relevant for the window industry some years ago: “You can have any colour as long as it’s white!” Almost all windows were sold in white. However, over the last few years we’ve seen a seismic shift towards colour to the point that some of our top-level suppliers are boasting that 50% of their entire production is now dedicated to colourful windows and doors.

Which roof would you like with that conservatory?

It’s not just colour that has moved on in terms of choice though. Conservatories for example offer so much more choice than they ever have before. You can buy a new one with a glass roof, a tinted glass roof or a solid roof, or if you’re happy with your existing conservatory building, you can simply replace the roof on top to improve the temperature and look of the room. Or of course you have the option of an orangery instead now – a variation on the same theme of providing more space in the home.

And finally, doors. The product variations in this sector have increased significantly and more companies are offering a much wider range of options than ever before. Composite doors, aluminium, PVC-U, bi-fold, patio, French and stable doors are the main groups but within each of those groups there are many more choices to be made.

A choice that makes sense

At Trent Valley Windows we don’t want to go over the top and overwhelm our customers with choice – we’ve all been there, wanting to scream at the coffee barista for the barrage of questions when all we want is a cup of coffee! But we do want to be able to deliver exactly what you want. We think we’ve struck the perfect balance with a sensible choice of windows and doors and most importantly we’ve been doing what we do for 25 years so we have an experienced and friendly team on hand to talk you through the options and advise you of the best fit for your property and your requirements.

grey bi folding doors and windows

How to Improve Your Home this Spring

Having just experienced the coldest days on record for March with snow, gales and blizzards, you’d be forgiven for thinking we’re still in the depths of winter. But Spring is just around the corner! The days are already getting longer, the daffodils are trying to bloom and it’s the time of year that many of us feel invigorated to get on with some home improvements.

Where to start?

Near the top of the list for Spring home improvements is adding some colour to our homes – a quick and simple solution to significantly change its appearance and give it a fresh style for the new year. However, many of us have bigger plans at this time of year.

As the evenings become lighter and the weather starts to get warmer, we’re more likely to think about open plan living and how we can encapsulate this into our homes. Research shows that 77% of us spend our leisure time at home, including time spent entertaining friends and family. So, whether it’s opening up your dining area into the garden, adding a new conservatory or upgrading your existing conservatory into a more usable room, we want to create wide open spaces that will enhance our lifestyles.

Let the sunshine in

In addition to opening up our homes, Springtime often creates a renewed desire to let more light in. On the smallest scale, it’s worth giving your existing windows some TLC – they take a battering from the elements in the winter months and could do with a good clean to ensure your view of the outside world isn’t being marred by murky windows. Of course, if once you’ve given them a bit of attention, they’re still not looking great, Spring is a good time to consider replacing them – there are a lot of high security, energy efficient windows to choose from these days, in all sorts of colours to give your home a facelift too!

For those of us that have already replaced our windows and made sure they’re sparkling clean, is there anything else we can do to let more natural light into our homes? There is indeed! Adding roof windows to an extension or replacing the roof of your existing conservatory from polycarbonate to glass, or even to a solid roof with roof-lights, are all great ways to ensure your home continues to light up your lifestyle!

So, it’s time to put that Spring enthusiasm to work to make sure you have the secure, warm, light home you crave, while saving yourself the expense and hassle of future essential maintenance in months to come.

If you’d like to see our conservatories, windows or doors for yourself or get expert advice from our team, pay us a quick visit at one of our showrooms.



Contact Us Today!

We are here to help you find out everything you need to know, and we'll give you all the advice you need. Whether you need to know more about our products, or you would like to speak to a customer advisor.

Free Quotation

Simply take a moment entering your details for a free no-obligation quotation. Click the submit button and a customer advisor will get back to you, usually within 24 hours or sooner!

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Book your FREE appointment to see a customer advisor. We will contact you to arrange a free visit to your home at your convenience and advise you on the best choice of product to suit the style and character of your home.
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