Storm Window Repair
Storm window repair can be worth the time and effort compared with the cost of replacing a storm window. The other option includes vinyl replacement windows. Energy savings can be realized with either option. Energy Star ratings can help you determine what is the best option for you: replacement or a fix. Although, storm window repair is so inexpensive that it is almost always the best option.
Absolutely Free Storm Window Repair
There are a couple of repairs that are free, and easy like vinyl window repair. For instance, simply cleaning the storm window will help repair it. If you notice any condensation building up, it can often be a matter of finding the drain holes on the storm window, and just poking through to clean out any debris. That is as simple as it gets. It is also a free and simple repair you can do yourself.
Also, do yourself the favor of annually cleaning the storm window. This will give you a chance to also inspect for any breaches in the integrity of the glass or plastic glazing (second pane that creates insulation). This will help you determine what repair needs to be made, if any, prior to the whooping winds of winter, or the heaviest rains of the year. For instance, notice any condensation building up, and it could mean that the sashes need to be re-caulked, or glass or plastic acrylic needs to be replaced.
In addition, annual or semi-annual cleanings will also allow you to help make your storm window perform optimally. The channels that the sashes sit in can get clogged with dirt and soot from outside elements, such as sitting on a busy street, or in an area with much pollen. Once you have jimmied the sash out of its channel, it is good to simply scrub the channels with a brush to remove dirt, grime and anything else that might prevent easy movement of the sashes. This is a time to perform cosmetic updates, such as priming and painting the frames too (not the sashes or channels!) Simply prime and paint after brushing off grime and dried caulk. Silicone lubricant will give the channel needed juice to help the sashes move smoothly.
Be sure to use the appropriate primer and paint for the surface you are painting, whether it is aluminum, vinyl, wood or plastic. Talk to a paint or window dealer to find out the optimal solution for your surface. In addition to cleaning, lubricating and painting, you may periodically need to replace the glass or plastic when performing storm window repair. You might notice the condensation does not improve when you have cleaned out the weep holes, or drainage holes, or that the plastic acrylic is scratched or the glass has shattered.
Storm Window Repair and Glass or Plastic Installation
Then it is time to make a repair by installing new glass or plastic that creates the barrier for your home during the winter months. It is not as daunting or dangerous as it seems. And, it is a relatively inexpensive and simple fix.
Basically, again, assuming you have already shimmied the storm window sashes out of the channels, you are ready to make this repair. Then, remove the glass or plastic acrylic from the frame. Usually a screwdriver or awl will do the trick. The glass will need space in the frame to adjust to heat and cold throughout the year. Just bring your old glass or plastic acrylic to the dealer to ensure you buy the proper size. The rule of thumb is to allow 1/16 of an inch for this expansion and contraction.
To replace the glass or acrylic, to finish this repair, insert the glass and screw the frame back up around it. Or, just open the vinyl that might hold it in place, and complete the insertion of the glass or plastic acrylic. If it is the throes of a long-time winter cold blast when you notice a crack, it might be best to just cover with plastic film or tape until you can make a determination if you want to replace the glass or the whole sash.
Sometimes it just is not possible to make a fix until that last winter storm passes through town. When it is time to revisit the situation, and you determine that a repair will involve installing new glass, it is a great time to find a storm window repair professional or a storm window dealer who fits your budget. Repair the glass if you can, but do also know that there are experts out there who can help you stay warm for less in winter.
Storm window repair involves a whole host of affordable and even free options. Break out the elbow grease and a fine wire brush and some water and, or paint. Or, call a professional.