Like any other industry, during the first Covid year 2020, the uPVC industry too witnessed de-growth and consequently, the uPVC Hardware market witnessed the same trend. However, in 2021 despite the Covid impact, the growth was positive and it continued in 2022 as well. The growth of the uPVC Industry, being part of the construction Industry, is dependent on the housing demand.

The uPVC industry has been steadily growing at 15-20% and the major portion of the growth is attributed to growing demand for housing. Apart from this, conversion from conventional window materials like wood, steel, aluminium, etc. to uPVC also contributes to the growth. The growing need for energy conservation also contributes to the growth of the uPVC industry since uPVC windows & doors reduce energy consumption in air-conditioning to an extent of 25-30% compared to windows made out of conventional material.

Mantri Synergy, Chennai
Mantri Synergy, Chennai

The majority of uPVC hardware are imported into India from China and Turkey though small volumes come from European countries. Unlike architectural hardware, the uPVC hardware market is small in size and the hardware cannot be used for any other applications. The growth is directly related to uPVC profile consumption. The manufacturing activity of uPVC hardware has been gathering momentum in line with the “Make in India” initiative. Though there are a few manufacturers in India, their production is limited to a few items and the majority of the items continue to be imported.

Metal fittings are made out of Aluminium alloy or Zinc alloy. To ensure quality, it is important to use virgin metal in the die-casting process without adding any scrap. To reduce the dependence on imported hardware, we need to focus on R&D, get the required technical know-how and set up world-class production facilities, and follow global processes in manufacturing to ensure product quality including high corrosion resistance. We will then have much more opportunities in the export markets.

uPVC Hardware is an integral part of the uPVC systems (windows & doors) and can be broadly categorised into:

3D Hinge, adjustable roller, bathroom door lock, ESPAG, (clockwise from top left)
3D Hinge, adjustable roller, bathroom door lock, ESPAG, (clockwise from top left)
  • Handles
  • Hinges (Friction, 3D, 2D/Butt, Concealed, etc.)
  • Espagnolettes (Multi-point locking gear rods) & Strikers
  • Rollers (Single & double wheel)
  • Cylinder locks
  • Brush seals (Wool piles) & Gaskets
  • Plastic parts
  • Mechanical jointing parts (Mullion blocks, L-clamps, etc.)
  • Fasteners (fabrication & installation)
  • Silicone Sealants

Rising Demands & Trends in Hardware for uPVC Products

Sattva Greenage, Bangalore
Sattva Greenage, Bangalore

The urban housing demand is for flats promoted by large-scale builders. As their volumes are large, they are very price conscious too. As a result, uPVC window suppliers (fabricators) look for good hardware solutions with competitive pricing so that they can offer competitive pricing to builders. This is possible only through new product development/ value engineering. uPVC windows are mainly of two types – casement (open out/in) and sliding. The demand for sliding windows & doors is around 80% and hence preferred for flats, whereas Casement and other systems account for 20%. Therefore, the demand for sliding hardware such as touch locks, rollers, handles, espagnolettes, etc., has been growing much faster than the casement hardware.

Standardization and Certification

IIT Hyderabad campus (Phase 1)
IIT Hyderabad campus (Phase 1)

uPVC hardware is developed based on the euro-groove concept, worldwide. As a result, most of the uPVC profile systems will have euro-groove to facilitate hardware compatibility. There is no specific BIS standard for uPVC hardware. However, some of the British Standards are followed, such as EN 1670:2007(E) for Building hardware corrosion resistance, which specifies various grades (0 to 5). Grade 0 is for no defined corrosion resistance and Grade 5 is for exceptionally high corrosion resistance. The corrosion resistance of Espagnolettes or any other metal fitting can be determined by the grade it has passed in the test. Testing can be done in various accredited laboratories and the reports can be used as credentials in support of quality.

uPVC Hardware Industry Growth: Vision 2030

In the window market, the current share of uPVC is around 20% whereas in Europe and China, it is more than 60%. The uPVC market in India is currently at a growth stage and there is huge growth potential. As far as uPVC hardware is concerned, in view of the unorganised nature of the market, exact sales data is not available. However, the estimate for 2022 is around Rs.350 crores. Assuming that the current growth of the uPVC industry would continue, the market appears to be heading close to Rs.1200 crores by 2030.

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