In this guide, frame-in windows are covered, as opposed to widows with frames. Removing and replacing windows with their frames is completely different from replacing windows while leaving the frame in. The fit has to be far more precise, and the installers have to be much more careful with the demolition of the old windows. This guide covers the demolition of the old windows that are being replaced in detail, as it is the most challenging part of the repair.
Removing the old windows while leaving the frame in can be very dangerous, as you are essentially dealing with individual panes of glass. You can expect to break a lot of glass, depending on the style of window and frame. Start by removing any window dressings from the inside, as you will need to spend a lot of time in the interior area, as opposed to the minimal effort that is required on the interior for window and frame replacement.
On both inside and outside, remove the weather stripping and any guides or runners from the old windows. If you don’t know what this means, you are specifically looking for whatever holds the pane of glass inside the window, so look where the glass and the window sash actually meet. It might be rubber, plastic, metal or even wood, but there is always something holding these panes in. Once you have removed all of this material, you can begin pushing on the insides of the windows to remove the panes. Use a gasket scraper, putty knife or a razor knife to separate the window panes from any caulk or sealer used to secure the panes to the frames.
Since you can expect to have broken glass, keep a wheelbarrow nearby. Fill the wheel barrow with debris from your window remodel and load in onto a trailer or truck bed on top of a sturdy tarp. Once you wrangle your load to the dump, it’s a simple matter to pull the tarp off the end of the trailer or truck bed, being careful to roll the tarp off starting from the front.
After you have removed the window panes and any remaining debris from the window frames, you’re ready to install the replacement windows. While this can be very tricky as well as delicate, there is essentially only one task to master in the frame-in replacement window installation process; Push. Simply line up the bottom of the window to the bottom of the frame and work your way up, pushing the window in as you go. Stop when the window sash is flush with the frame exterior. Screw the windows into place via the sills and install any clips, keepers or weatherstripping included with the replacement windows.
Remember to caulk around the windows and install any trim that is required. A good way to test your windows for leaks is to light a match and wave it around the sills on the interior of the windows. If the match blows or flutters, you may have a leak. It’s imperative that your windows be sealed from the elements, so use as much caulk as you can afford to seal your replacement windows from the elements. Never use house foam in window replacement and check your caulking every year for damage. If you find a break in the seal, fill it immediately with the best caulk you can afford.