How to Open Old Windows


Old windows can add a sense of nostalgia to a home. Unlike the more modern windows there are no plastic parts to worry about breaking, and if fitted properly and given proper maintenance, these older windows will last forever and make a great statement in your home. The first step to enjoying these windows however is to get them working. That would mean getting them to open and close with ease.

Without maintenance, old windows can become stuck and difficult to open. There are several reasons for a window becoming stuck but paint buildup and weather conditions are the most common.

Things You'll Need

  • Rubber mallet Exacto knife Wide putty knife Candle wax W-D 40

Loosening Window

  • Opening stuck windows begins by loosening the edges. Using the exacto knife, carefully cut around the window frame loosening old paint or varnish from window.

  • Place a putty knife between the window and the frame and lightly tap with rubber mallet. Repeat this process all the way around the entire window, inside and out. Be careful not to damage wood frame.

  • Gently tap the window frame with rubber mallet to break loose any remaining paint or varnish.

  • Attempt to raise window. If this is not possible, repeat steps until window opens.

  • Once window is open, apply candle wax to the tracks to prevent further sticking and if the window is on a counterweight, spraying a few squirts of W-D-40 down the sides and onto the weights will help them to move smoothly.

Tips & Warnings

  • Talcum powder can be used in place of candle wax but will gum up over time. Use powder only if wax is not available.
  • Do not hit window frame hard enough to break glass Do not attempt to open old window with broken panes. Remove pane first Once window is up, place a block of wood beneath it and the sill while completing repair so the window will not slam shut on hands

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  • Photo Credit freerangestock
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