Woodland Windows and Doors Blog

This is where we will post relevant articles, information, and how-to's related to all things windows and doors. Check back often for updates and new information!

Stuck Windows This Winter - What You Need to Know About Hard to Open Windows

The simple anatomy a window
 
Windows operate on simple mechanical principles. Understand these and you can diagnose your window problem.
 
Single and double hung windows simply move up and down in channels in the window frame. Balancing mechanisms, such as rope and pulley, spiral or block and tackle, assist in raising and lowering the window sashes, and prevent them from sliding downward.
 
Andersen Casement Crank
Casement and awning windows operate by a crank handle and a track. The windows are opened and closed by means of a crank mechanism, which resides against the frame on the inside. The crank houses a series of gears inside a metal housing, which moves a control arm, attached to the sash, which slides along a track.
 
Sliding windows rely on rollers and a sliding track, like a sliding door. To open and close simply requires just a push.
 
Eliminate obvious maintenance problems
 
Often, the reason windows are hard to open and shut is because they’ve not been properly maintained. Windows are finely engineered, rely on moving parts, withstand extreme weather, and are built to last a long time. A well-maintained window will operate smoothly, year after year.
Pella Sash Removal
 
Single and double hung windows become difficult to open if there’s a buildup of dirt, dust, and debris. Over the years, friction from the buildup increases making the windows difficult to open and close. Try cleaning the window frames and spray with a non-silicone, solvent-free lubricant, opening and closing the window several times to work the lubricant.
 
If you have old painted windows check the sides of the sash to be sure they have not been painted (never apply primer or paint to the edges of the sash). If excess paint has been applies around the window frame and sill, gently slide a putty knife between the sash and the frame to release the paint. You might try using a hair dryer to blow hot air around the edge of the sash until you can move the window. After successfully releasing the window, lubricate the window frame interiors, channel guides, with pure paraffin candle wax, such as an unscented white votive candle.
 
Casements and awnings that are difficult to open and shut will require removing the sash (consult the instruction manual for your windows) and checking for stripped or loose screws. Lubricate the hinges with a non-silicone, solvent-free lubricant, and then open and shut the windows several times to work in the lubricant. It is helpful to keep the gears lubricated to make turning easy by applying a few drops of oil around the base of the handle if it’s difficult to turn.
 
Easy to clean sliders
Sliders that are difficult to open and close may simply require cleaning the roller system and track with a simple soap and water solution. If this doesn’t solve the problem, try lubricating the rolling system.
 
If the problem persists
 
After eliminating the obvious causes of hard to operate windows if you windows still don’t open with little effort, you’ll need to eliminate the most common repair problems. Failed or worn out pulleys or tension springs are common repairs for single and double hung windows. Chipped, broken or bent gears require you to buy a whole new casement crank unit for your casement window. Broken wheels may need replacing on sliding windows.
Double Hung Balancer: ProSalesMag
 
Windows are basically simple mechanisms requiring only regular maintenance to work well.  Mechanisms can be faulty or wear out, which requires replacing parts, re-installing the frame or other repair.  These repairs may appear easy enough, but they can actually be tedious challenges better left to professionals who have mastered the art and science of window repair.
 
Woodland’s window manufacturer’s websites offer tips on window maintenance; check out Marvin, Andersen, and Pella.
Don’t get stuck inside this winter.
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Foggy Windows - Repair or Replace?

As soon as fall breaks toward winter and outside temperatures drop, some windows in your home may appear a bit cloudy. Depending on where the fog is occurring, the problem may be as simple as excess moisture developing due to the difference in indoor and outdoor temperature or it might be more serious because the window seal is failing.

Condensation on the Glass Surface

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Skylight for Chicago Winters

Skylights are an antidote to our long, dark cold Chicago winters when we tend to use more artificial light in our homes. Consider adding Velux skylights with high visible light transmittance (VT) for natural light while reducing the energy costs of keeping interior lights on throughout the day. VT doesn’t directly affect heating and cooling of your rooms, but it is a measure of how much light gets through the skylight into your home. A skylight with a high VT can be visually beneficial in winter for us humans, trapped inside our homes and starved for natural light.

Select glazing’s for maximum visible light

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Marvin Replacement Windows & Doors This Spring

When we think about remodeling our homes, we imagine a kitchen, bathroom, more space or maybe an outdoor patio. Few people dream about remodeling their home’s infrastructure, windows, doors, siding, heating and cooling systems, that sort of thing. If you’re thinking about remodeling your home, start by improving your infrastructure with Marvin replacement windows and doors this Spring.

170616 Kroiss 193

Marvin Replacement Windows

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Versetta Stone and Insulated Vinyl Siding Transforms this Old House

 

Nothing lasts forever and that includes siding. When the day comes that your old siding makes your home look tired and dated, don’t just replace your existing siding, instead, with a little creativity you can transform your old house into a neighborhood gem. How can you transform your home and budget for the cost of the project?

2b After edit1

 

Watch the makeover of this home in Elmhurst.

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Fiberglass Entry Doors Are Best Choice for Chicago Climate

There are certain facts of life that simply can’t be ignored and one of these is that Chicago area entry doors take a beating. The region’s warm, humid summers and its cold, bitter winters are a life fact that should be a top consideration when selecting an entry door for your home. Wood entry doors are an option for homes with well protected entries, but for the majority of homes in our area, Fiberglass doors are your best choice.

WeekThree FC814 Crystalline Brn 1 copy 2

Therma-Tru Entry Door

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Condominium Doors - First Impressions Matter

First impressions and Curb appeal

Whether you’re a homeowner or the property manager for a homeowner’s association (HOA) you know that your building’s curb appeal directly impacts property values, so old beat-up entry doors don’t bode well for what’s inside. Let’s face it, first impressions matter and an entry door is one of the first things guests will see. In HOAs, exterior doors are usually “limited common elements”, which when replaced benefit everyone.

Manor chatham in buffalo grove ilE copy 2

                 Manor Homes of Chatham

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Avoid Costly Window Repair With a Simple Walk

 
It’s enjoyable to walk neighborhoods and look at beautiful homes and landscapes. Since windows are my business, my trained eye can’t help but notice potential trouble spots on some homes.
 
Topping the list of trouble spots are window sills. They’re in various stages of disrepair from peeling paint to unpainted exposed wood to rotting to rotted trim boards. As a homeowner, you can avoid costly window repairs if you take a simple walk around your home.

Older homes with original windows are likely to be made from wood. The woods used were typically hardwoods, giving them an enduring quality if maintained. Over time, wood windows were manufactured from softer woods that may not be as rot resistant as the hardwoods. In either case, quality wood windows will last a long time if maintained.

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Stuck Windows This Winter – What you need to know about hard to open windows.

If you find yourself crouched low to gravity, feet hip width apart, abs firm, elbows tucked, arms ready to lift and you’re not a sumo wrestler, you may have a problem of stuck windows.
Windows
Don’t get stuck inside this winter. If you’re wrestling with old or new windows you can do something about it before winter arrives. First, understand that humidity causes wood windows to swell, accumulated dust causes tracks to increase friction, and loose or faulty tension springs fail. It’s also possible that the installation wasn’t done correctly. If the window wasn’t installed perfectly square, if too much insulating foam was compressed in the wall cavity, or if setscrews weren’t properly adjusted - your window can be hard to open.
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