Many homeowners leave window repair repair and maintenance to the experts. However, this is not always necessary. There are a few things that you can learn yourself which will help you fix common window problems on your own. You will also end up saving a lot of money in the process.
Stuck Wooden Windows
In wet weather, wooden window panes can swell. A good remedy for this issue is to rub some candle wax along the edges that are stuck. If this doesn’t work, gently pane away parts of the wood.
Sometimes, fasteners can be difficult to operate. That’s why you need to adjust the position of the fasteners.
Rotten Window Sills
If you notice that a part of the window sill is rotten but the rest of it is okay, you should only replace the rotten part. Cut into the sill until you get to the good wood, then use the cutout as a template.
Make sure the cutout is slightly bigger than the rotten bit. Screw the new patch into the groove and then plane it to perfection. The screws have to be countersunk so they don’t interfere with the plane.
In case the rot has spread wider, it would be a better solution to replace the whole window.
Adjusting a Mortise-Plate
Your window cleaning will barely close properly in case the mortise plate is not fitted properly. The only solution is to remove it and fit it again. Unscrew the plate from the frame, reposition it, and then use a pencil to draw around the inside and outside of the plate.
Where necessary, adjust the size of the mortise plate with a chisel, attach the plate and make sure it has a snug fit.
Vinyl Window Maintenance
Generally, there is very little maintenance involved with vinyl window installation besides cleaning. You will, however, need to lubricate the hinges, and perhaps check if the catch needs to be replaced.
For a broken catch, use a screwdriver to pry off the cover, replace it, and put the cover back in place. For lubrication, always use low-viscosity oil. If you have plastic hinges, make sure the polish you use has silicone.
Always clean vinyl with warm water. If there are stubborn marks, use a mild detergent and rinse properly when you are done.
Safe Glass Removal
Broken glass is very dangerous. Before you do anything, have the right clothing (boots, gloves, and goggles). Clean the old putty and rabbet off before reglazing. Remember to remove the old caulk and bare wood.
Shards might fall when you are removing the glass, so put some masking tape strips on the surface to prevent this. You should also have a drop cloth to catch any of the broken glass, and then dispose of them safely.
Before you install a new window pane, dust off the surface and use a proper wood primer.
Replacing Glass in Lead Lights
For single glazed lead lights, a caulking sealant should be enough. Cut a template on a cardboard and then take it to your supplier for replacement. You can also repair old putty with caulk.
Use a chisel to fold the lead around the broken window pane. To make things easier, run a knife under the lead. Use a dispenser to apply caulking sealant and then reposition the window pane. Fold the lead into position and smoothen the edge. Use a cloth to wipe away excess sealant.
Removing Vinyl Bead Trim
Be careful when removing the trim so that you can reuse it. DIY is only advisable on double glazed units that are really old. Otherwise, make use of the manufacturer guarantee when you need repairs.
Carefully work the scraper blade under the first bead and pry it up, then insert a packer under it and another one on the opposite side of the scraper.
Push the packers outside to free the bead off its frame. Do the same thing for all the others and then remove the unit.