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Should I Repair or Replace my Sash Windows

Should I Repair or Replace my Sash Windows

If you are a homeowner with sash windows, then you may be wondering if you need to have them replaced or look for a sash window restoration service to restore them. Here is some information on the differences between sash window replacement and restoration that can help you make your decision. 

Sash window replacement involves taking out the old windows and installing brand new ones. This option is best if your windows are in poor condition and need to be completely replaced. 

Restoration, on the other hand, involves repairing the existing windows rather than replacing them. This option is best if your windows are still in good condition but need some repairs or updating. 

So which option is right for you? That depends on your specific situation and needs. If you're not sure what to do, contact a local.



Replace or repair sash windows

Although it might be tempting to simply replace your old, drafty sash windows with new ones, you may want to consider restoration instead. Restoration can mean a number of things, from partially repairing or replacing individual parts of the window to complete refurbishment. By restoring your windows rather than replacing them, you can save money and maintain the character and history of your home. 

Restoration also does not require planning permission in case you live in Grade 2 listed property. 

Quality restoration vs quality timber windows 


If you compare quality windows made from durable Accoya wood and quality restoration the cost difference is significant. The quality restoration will probably last for around 10-20 years until some re-painting is required. The new sash windows made with Accoya will also need to be repaired after 10 years but if you neglect this, the risk of timber frame decay is very low thanks to the rot resistance of Accoya.


There are also modern sash window refurbishment methods which also make the restored frames as durable as new Accoya windows, this method uses Tricoya MDF which has identical properties to Accoya. During frame refurbishment, the old timber is laminated with Tricoya and this makes the old frame extremely rot-resistant. Even if not regularly maintained.


How to restore a sash window? 


Restoring a sash window is not as easy as it may seem. In most cases, you can not do it yourself unless it is something very basic or you have a lot of free time and are ready to spend time researching and learning a trade.

If you have many sash windows in your house it is worth learning how to change the broken sash cords or replace the broken glass pane as this is the most common issue you will experience with your windows.

If the windows joinery starts looking rotten it means that the damp has got in through cracks in the paint or putty and you probably need to refurbish your windows.


New windows joinery parts 

Sometimes you can replace the whole parts of the windows. such as:

    • Lower rails
    • Window sills
    • Architraves
    • Sashes

Some of the new joinery parts you can order online, like windows sill are widely available in all DIY stores. But other parts like sashes are harder to find and usually need to be made to measure and installed by professionals.

Patching frame repairs


This is the most common way to repair a window frame. You might need to do this if you have a small hole or crack in your frame. Frame patching involves taking a piece of new wood and cutting it to fit the space that needs to be filled. The piece is then glued or screwed into place and sanded so that it blends in with the rest of the sash window frame.

This method is used by many window restoration companies, but it is not as effective in preventing future rot as the sash window lamination method mentioned earlier.


Wood filler and painting 


If your windows are in relatively good condition and you just want them to look good for the next three or so years until another re-painting, the wood filler will do the job.

This basic window restoration technique is used by professionals and DIYers. The wood filler is applied to the cracks and holes in the frame and then sanded down. Once the filler is dry, you can paint it with a matching colour.

It is important to use good quality wood filler that is designed for outdoor use as it will be exposed to the elements. It is also better to use two-component fillers. Those are a bit tricky to fix and apply but two-component fillers last longer better performers compared to more basic fillers.


Can I only replace sashes in my window? 

If you want to keep the original window frame but replace only the sashes, it is possible as all parts of box sash windows are repairable and replaceable.

You will need to measure the inside of your frame very accurately and then order new sashes that fit those dimensions. The new sashes will come with all the necessary joinery and can be installed by a professional or a handyman. The new sashes can also be double glazed at the factory which will make your window more energy-efficient.


Double glazing and property value 

Many homeowners wonder about do double glazed sash windows add value to your property. While it is true that new energy-efficient windows will make your house more attractive to potential buyers, you need to keep in mind that installing new windows is a costly investment.

But you can now order glazing retrofit service and replace your single glazing with double gazing. This is done by installing a new double-glazed unit into your existing frame.

Can you put double glazing in sash windows? 

The short answer is yes, but it is not a job for a novice DIYer as it involves removing the existing glass and then measuring, ordering and installing the new made-to-measure double-glazed unit.

You also need to make sure that the sashes are sufficiently counterbalanced by weights as they will become heavier after new glazing units are installed.


Is it cheaper to replace the glass or the whole window? 

Yes, it is cheaper to fit double glazing to existing frames than to replace the whole window. You can also get secondary glazing which is even cheaper than double glazing.

As you can see, there are a few different ways that you can restore your sash windows. If you are considering replacement, we urge you to get a quote for restoration first.

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