Aluminium: Industry Fad or the Future?

In May's Glass Times magazine, Keystone Market Research’s Director, Charlotte Hawkes, looks at the data behind one of the most debated topics currently in fenestration


The choice of material for windows and doors is currently a topic of much debate in the industry. While there's been a noticeable buzz around aluminium, how do companies sift through the marketing hype to decide if it truly is worth investing in or expanding their range to offer? Market reports tell one side of the story, and there is undoubtedly interest in the product and growing sources to buy from. But will this continue? In our Fenestration Trends report we uncover the true preferences of the people whose opinions matter most: UK homeowners.


According to our latest research, overall uPVC remains the top choice for 65% of respondents when considering window replacements. Aluminium follows with 10% of the market, leaving timber in third position with 8%. Notably, 17.5% of homeowners expressed no preference, indicating they would require further information on the energy efficiency, price, and other qualities of the materials before making the choice.


However, a closer examination of the data reveals huge variances. While uPVC dominates overall, this preference is particularly pronounced among older and less affluent homeowners. In contrast, the younger demographic, particularly those aged 18-24, showed a majority preference for aluminium. From the underlying data, we anticipate continuing demand for aluminium products in the future as homeowners look for a more modern aesthetic for their properties.


However, it’s important to note conflicting priorities for homeowners; while the younger audience prefer aluminium, they are also extremely sensitive to price, so necessity may well win out in the end.


A significant contributor to the rise of aluminium has been the increase of sliding and bifold doors sales, with homeowners seeking to enhance natural light and connect indoor and outdoor spaces. Our research indicates that when it comes to patio door styles, bifold doors reign supreme, favoured by 33% of homeowners, followed by French doors (31%), and sliding patio doors (25%).


Interestingly, while our analysis of search trends aligns with these findings, a decline is visible in overall search interest for both bifold and sliding doors. To offset this growing homeowner apathy, installers should consider expanding their patio range to include emerging trends like black frames and heritage steel-effect designs.


Understanding the evolving preferences of homeowners is crucial for businesses in the fenestration industry. The Keystone Consumer Fenestration Trends report offers independent insights to help companies separate marketing noise from reality, and focus on products that truly align with consumer needs.


How well do you know your target audience, or what the future of fenestration looks like? The Keystone Consumer Fenestration Trends report can help you find out. For more information visit: UK Consumer Fenestration Trends Report - Annual Subscription (