Being a little handy around the home is useful at times when the repairman you trust isn’t readily available, or when trouble occurs outside working hours. The instructions below should address the majority of issues you might experience with windows in your home.
Cosmetic Scratches Can Be Repaired
For surface only damage, you won’t need to go to the hassle of replacing the window. Purchase a bottle of clear nail varnish and carefully apply small amounts to the affected area. For a job well done, the pock mark or scratch will not even be visible from a fair distance.
Preventing Further Damage to the Window Pane
Flying debris can cause chips in glass, although it’s more likely to see crack from either structural stress or erosion from the expansion and contraction of moisture in small fissures. The window pane may hold up for weeks or not, so your best bet is to arrange for a professional to take a look sooner rather than later. Until then, use masking tape to cover the crack along its length and on both side of the glass. Keep away from the area in the meantime as a safety precaution.
What to Do with a Broken Window
Wear thick gloves and remove broken glass from the area carefully. Vacuum the area underneath to pick up slivers of glass. Using a construction stapler, staple a garbage bag or thick plastic material to the sash, frame or jamb of a wooden window. Heavy duty duct tape may also do the job.
Trouble with Opening and Closing a Window
Wooden frames change according to the environment more than ones made of synthetic materials. When humidity increases in the summer, wood absorbs the moisture and expands to the point where windows may be difficult to open. As a temporary fix, aim a blow dryer around the sash to encourage evaporation, and once free, lubricate the area with wax from a candle. If this issue occurs summer after summer it may be time to call a specialist to take a look.
For the ambitious, try fixing the problem yourself by enlarging the channel guides. Using a mallet and small wooden block, tap the channel guides outwards, but be careful when applying force as too much pressure will loosen the path too much.
Fixing a Window Screen
During the winter, you’re not going to see much use of the window screen, and the urgency of the repair falls; however in the summer, to prevent air conditioning costs, you’ll want to be able to open your window. A hole in the screen lets flies, mosquitoes, and other small pests through, which isn’t a serious issue, but no one wants pests in their homes. An easy way to repair large holes is to simply cover it up with a spare piece of fabric. It’s an unsightly fix but will do the job until you replace the screen altogether. If you have nylon to spare, affix the patch using superglue. And in case if you think it can’t be repaired, replacement windows can be installed but make sure that you install some energy efficient replacement windows. Other adhesives may work as well, although the patch might not survive windy conditions.
Mark Clair is a 46 year old interior designer, decorator and planner. He is a prolific writer and enjoys putting his thoughts into words on pretty much anything around that evokes an interest in him. Happily married and the father of a new born girl, Mark is now exploring the many little joys and challenges of parenthood. For more information, follow him on twitter.