How to Install Windows
Windows are one of the most important aspects of home design. Not only do they allow for airflow and natural light, but they help define the look of your house. This is why it’s helpful to hire professionals when buying replacement windows. If installed improperly, water and dirt can accumulate around window trim, leading to rot or mold.
The Process of Window Installations
Removing the Old Window
The first thing to do is take out the old window trim, jamb extension, and casing. Carefully pry away the trim with a crowbar. Be sure not to harm the jambs, which are the strips of wood that form the window’s frame.
Next up is the actual removal of the window. Gently unscrew the window from the jamb. Don’t let the glass pane fall and break while unscrewing. If possible, have someone stand outside to hold the window and prevent it from falling. Remove windows with two or more sashes piece by piece along their sliding tracks.
Looking for Damage
After taking out the old window, inspect the empty jamb for signs of damage. Evidence of rot or waterlogging will require a frame replacement. Take this opportunity to clean the jamb of any dirt, insects, or leaves.
In addition to the frame, check the condition of the window stop. This is a piece of wood on the jamb’s exterior side that keeps the window from falling out of the house. If it isn’t decayed or chipped, most people reuse the window stop for the replacement window.
Measure the rough opening to ensure your new window fits the space. The area needs to be 1/4″ to 3/8″ bigger than the window’s outer dimensions.
Test fit the new window into the opening. Look for cracks or uneven spots. To avoid drafts and leaks, address any fitment issues before moving ahead with window installation. The window should sit in the opening, requiring little effort to insert or remove. If you have to fight to get it into the space, it probably doesn’t fit correctly.
Putting the Window into Place
The steps to install a window are fairly straightforward:
- Use silicone to seal the inner edge of the window stop.
- Slip the window into the opening.
- Check that the window sits evenly within the frame by setting a level on top of the window. Slide shims between the bottom of the frame and jamb to correct for unevenness. The window needs to sit square inside the frame, so take your time during this step.
- The replacement window should come with four screws. With the window sitting level, use these screws to secure it to the jamb. Put two screws through each side of the window near the top and bottom. Use the pre-drilled holes in the frame as a guide.
Getting Rid of Gaps
Fill cracks near frames and wall studs with window insulation. This process will help to prevent unwanted air from entering around your windows. Use expanding spray insulant foam for small areas. Stuff larger gaps with chunks of roll insulation.
Installation of Window Molding and Extension Jambs
The next step is to install the window casing, also called trim or molding, that matches your home’s style. Measure the window’s length and width. Using a miter saw, cut strips of window molding to the right length. Shape the edges at 45-degree angles so the pieces fit together nicely like a picture frame.
Use finish nails to carefully attach the trim to the wall. If there’s space between the window and drywall, insert jamb extensions within the window frame.
Use stainable or paintable wood putty to plug remaining nail holes or imperfections. To make the window pop and stand out against the wall, stain or paint the trim in accordance with your decor.
Be Cautious with DIY Window Replacement
Before replacing your own windows, it’s vital to double-check their warranties. You may qualify for free repairs depending on when they were installed and the type of problem.
However, some companies void warranties if homeowners attempt their own repairs. As a result, it’s best to leave remodeling work to trained professionals. Experts have the proper window repair tools and experience to get a job done right the first time.
For the highest degree of quality control, Canton Aluminum uses employee installers rather than subcontractors. This allows us to make sure your window installation is every bit as good as your windows.