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How to unstick old wooden windows (& when to just replace them!)

Claw hammerAlthough wooden windows are not without their charm, years of weather exposure can cause them to shrink, expand, and warp. Too much can even cause them to stick, making them difficult to open. This is a common issue for timber windows that are fairly old. However, in certain cases, they can be unstuck and, if all else fails, they can always be replaced with Residence 9 windows. But first, here’s how you can unstick any old wooden windows.

Using a cloth, a wooden block and a hammer to unstick a window

The first method and the least drastic you should use when unsticking a window is to wrap a cloth around a block of wood, place it against the window frame at the bottom of one side, and gently tap the block with a hammer. Next, move onto the bottom of the other side of the window frame and do the same thing. Continue using this method to work your way up the window frame until you reach the top, taking extreme care not to break the glass.

An alternative method for opening a stuck window

If the first method doesn’t work, we recommend trying the one below:

  • Grab yourself a putty knife and a pry bar. Slide the putty knife into the cracks between the window sash and frame, using the hammer to gently tap it into place. Continue doing this until you’ve worked your way around the whole window sash.
  • Next, take your block of wood and place it on either the inside or outside of the window sill. Put the pry bar under the bottom of the sash and over the block of wood, gently rocking the bar backwards to lift the window up slightly. Repeat this step on the opposite side of the window, working your way into the centre until you’ve lifted the entire bottom sash.
  • Try opening the window.

And if all else fails…

Residence 9 windows in whiteThe last method and one that should only be resorted to if necessary involves cutting the seal with a Stanley knife. Due to the sharpness of the blade, make sure to proceed with caution. Start by carefully running the knife through the crack between the frame and sash. Once you’ve worked your way around the whole sash, gently rattle the sash to free it from the window. After doing this, try opening the window to see if you’ve been successful.

The methods mentioned in this piece should work in most cases. If they don’t, however, it’s time to replace your old wooden windows with a suitable alternative. Associated Windows recommends our Residence 9 windows, which are a high-performance uPVC alternative to timber windows.

Timber-alternative windows from us at Associated

Residence 9 windows are designed in accordance with 19th-century timber window designs so they look just as good as the real thing. For this reason, they’re perfect for retaining a property’s historical character, however, they’re built from high-quality uPVC instead of wood. This means they never need retreating and only require the occasional clean to keep them looking their best. Featuring a Window Energy Rating (WER) of ‘A’ as standard, they provide year-round comfort along with ample opportunity to save money on your energy bills.

If you’ve tried all our methods but still can’t get your sticky windows open, give us a call on 0117 9311777 or contact us online to arrange some high-quality window replacements from Bristol’s leading double glazing installer.

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