Home Window Repair "101"

Making home window repairs doesn't have to be a "pane"

Take a moment and think about the many jobs a window in your house does: it let's light inside, it gives you a view to the outside world, it keeps insects and other intruders out, and it's an easy opening for fresh air to come into your home. Whew...and we're just getting started.

Window Repair photo

Honestly, you and I probably don't even think about these functions every day...until there's a problem of course: cracked glass or becoming stuck are by far the most common window repairs handymen face. Lose the glass or the ability to open and close a window, it's pretty much a show-stopper (like a car without wheels!).

Of course there are many other ailments a window can have not including the glass or beging stuck shut. I once looked at a small condo for sale as a potential fixer-upper investment property, and our fix-it list had just about every kind of window repair you could think of on it.

The previous tenants had been foreclosed on and didn't exactly leave the place happily. Either that, or they simply had a severe vendetta against windows and glass!

The front window had been pried open and the window frame needed straightening out. A second window nearby had been cracked and previously repaired with duct tape. The bathroom window had plywood instead of glass, only to be outdone by the kitchen window, which was just missing altogether! The bedroom windows were immovable, having been painted shut by an overzealous paint job around the window frame.

Needless to say there wasn't a window screen in sight. And the only window that was intact and still moved, was stained with a hard water film, having been the victim of repeated sprinkler overspray. Whoever bought that condo would have their fill of window repair to make it livable again.

As a civilized homeowner, your home is bound to better off than that condo. But that doesn't mean you're immune to problems that require you to repair a window or two.

Window repair and replacement projects alike have their own challenges. Repairs deal with parts and glass maintenance that help the window work correctly, while installing new windows requires sizing and proper insertion to make it look good and last.

In most cases you should have no trouble fixing minor problems with your windows, screens and window coverings. As usual, a little knowledge and the right tools go a long way to bringing you the delight and satisfaction you get from making such an important part of your house work without any hitches.

Beyond the basics, installing new glass or replacement windows is a little tougher. You can do it, but I'll give you the scoop first so you can decide if "window installer" is a hat you want to don.

  • Multi-pane windows come with lots of perks to help save you money as you heat and cool your home. Along with being more expensive, they can be a little more complicated to fix. Learn more about double pane window repair and what options you have before replacing or calling in a pro to make things better.
  • Broken windows come in many flavors, but the end result is always putting in new glass. Learn some of the essential techniques for home window glass repair, from preparation and sizing to cutting and installing.
  • Window screens are a must in the warmer summer months. Put these handy accoutrements don't last forever; frames get bent and screening material eventually succumbs to the elements and misuse (i.e. pets and children!). See how easy it is to replace or repair window screens so you can feel good about opening your windows again and let the breeze (and not the bugs) come inside.
  • Window condensation is usually only a minor nuisance... at least until excessive amounts start damaging window frames, walls and floors of your home. Find out how what causes it and how you can help control it in your house.
  • While a window shade isn't actually part of a window, it does go hand-in-hand with one. For privacy and comfort, window coverings of all types give us a chance to control the windows in our homes. Shades in particular come with a variety of special problems. Check out how to repair a broken window shade should you find yourself struggling with this shady invention.

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