How To Install A Window
How to install a window involves some basic tools and a lot of elbow grease. Window replacement is an important step in home energy savings and a good way to modernize the looks of an older house. Window replacement may be a bit different, depending on the type of window taken from the opening. Some old window frames may need to be replaced by a professional, especially when the materials on the house exterior include brick or stone. Once the framing is done, or if you're using the original window opening, installing a new window just requires the correct tools and patience.
You'll need a few basic supplies, including:
- Insulation materials
- Replacement window
- Hammer and nails
- Screw driver and screws
- Measure for the replacement window. Measure width, height and diagonals for the window to make sure your replacement window fits the opening. Most window makers have fliers, both online and in the store, to describe any special measurement requirements for their product.
- Buy your replacement window. Give yourself lead time. Some windows, especially unusual measurements, need special ordering.
- Remove the old window. Taking the old window out involves more than simply wrenching on it, although shows on TV take sledge hammers to things for renovation. Careful window removal includes first taking off the interior framing, then removing the exterior framing and then taking out the actual window. Do this in a careful manner, examining the window to remove screws and brackets, depending on the window design. Under no circumstances, simply wretch on the window or attack it with a hammer!
- Prep the window frame. Clean out any old nails, screws, pulleys for sash windows and excess wood pieces.
- Prep the replacement window. Take off any wrappings or wood protective pieces.
- Put the window in place. You may need a helper to lift the window into place.
- Straighten the window. Use the level to make sure the window is placed evenly in the frame.
- Add interior insulation. Use more insulation around the window, between the frame and the new window.
- Add interior framing. Trick out your new window by adding framing materials around the new window. If you've done a sane job in taking out the old window, the frame material may be reused. If something has broken, you'll need to shop for a replacement piece, although just buying all new materials may be cheaper, and take less time.
- Add exterior framing. Do the same as you did for the inside. This time trick out the outside for a finished look.
- Test the window. If it sticks, use your level to make sure the window is straight and even.
Tips and Warnings:
- Check local codes. Don't get caught doing home repairs without a permit. Putting in new windows in areas requiring permits may mean trouble when you go to sell your home. It's better to get the inspection when the windows go in. Later approvals may mean fines, and penalties, and having to meet new local codes when you finally do obtain a permit.
- Recycle your old window. Use your old window with a wood or plastic support box to plant some seeds. The windows make perfect small green houses for seed germination. If you aren't interested, put a free ad in the papers offering the windows to others.