Monday 27 November 2023

Why UV Testing for Doors is Increasingly Important to Avoid Costly Remediation Years Later

For building components exposed to the elements, such as doors, more and more, housebuilders are seeking assurances that these products meet the highest standards and have undergone rigorous testing to make their properties stand out against the crowd. 

Daisie Lane, Application Sales Engineer at Element Materials Technology, explains:

“While weathertightness and security testing is expected as standard, there is another layer of testing that can protect against a somewhat invisible issue, ultraviolet (UV) rays.”

According to recent data, England needs 340,000 new homes, including 145,000 affordable homes, before 2031 to meet current demand1.

Between January and March 2023, there were 45,050 new homes built across the UK2 and the pace has to be maintained to iron out the UK’s housing crisis.

However, it’s crucial that these houses are not just thrown together too as otherwise, it becomes a costly exercise for housebuilders to fix later down the line, both from remedial works and reputation.

Now more than ever, housebuilders are seeking reassurance that the products they use in new homes are built to last.

Housebuilders will be well versed in the importance of having reassurances upfront before working with any product.

Doors are often the first point of security for many homes and so professionals will understandably seek evidence that all doors are tested in line with the appropriate industry standards.

While weathertightness and security are often the main areas that are considered when purchasing doors, the issue of UV rays is continually overlooked throughout the industry.

Even though the human eye cannot detect them, UV rays can cause substantial damage to doors.

UV radiation exposure can lead to colour change, reduction in gloss levels, cracking, crazing, chalking, blistering, hazing or complete product failure in relatively short periods of time.

Any product which has intermittent exposure to natural light, even indoors behind glass or which is exposed to fluorescent light, should undergo some form of UV testing.

Doors are a prime example of where this degradation can occur, as a result of the effects of sunlight on the material that the door is made from.

UV testing: how does it work?

To reproduce the impact of ultraviolet radiation exposure, accelerated UV testing can be conducted in a controlled laboratory environment.

The process uses a combination of intense UV, heat, and moisture to test materials and components for degradation.

To give housebuilders and homeowners complete peace of mind, it’s vital to find industry experts with the right laboratories and testing equipment to ensure the process is as accurate as possible.

Specialist laboratories, such as Element Materials Technology’s Wednesbury laboratory, can perform a wide range of UV tests with programmable temperature, humidity and irradiance, including Xenon Arc and Fluorescent QUV, as well as testing that mimics outdoor exposures experienced in Florida and Arizona, where the climate is more extreme.

The laboratory can also perform assessments pre- and post-test, and at various intervals.

These include colour and gloss measurements, weight, AATCC Greyscale readings, as well as mechanical, impact and strength testing, to give a comprehensive picture of a product’s performance and provide a deeper understanding of a material’s behaviour.

Usually, technical standards will detail out test durations, but would depend on factors such as the location of the door, the face being tested and whether it is in direct or indirect sunlight.

Supply chain advantages

Ultimately, UV testing provides housebuilders and door manufacturers with vital data quickly, and this data may otherwise have taken years to gather via customer feedback.

The information generated from testing is enormously valuable and beneficial in terms of product design, quality assurance and any potential liability issues, as well as allowing manufacturers to sell products as superior in terms of performance and durability.

Not only this, but these tests give a certain amount of protection against reputational damage and potentially costly remediation with homeowners in the future.

UV testing also benefits door manufacturers who can avoid any potential product recalls for insufficient product standards in the future.

In such a saturated market, being able to declare strength under the duress of UV light reinforces customer confidence and demonstrates that UV testing is an excellent way to stand out from competitors.

For more information about Element Materials Technology, visit:

1National Housing Federation - Building new homes

2House building data, UK - Office for National Statistics (

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