Contractor FAQs | How To Install Windows

New windows improve your living space by adding natural light and great views. But if your windows are not installed properly, all those benefits will fade away in the wake of rising heat bills and a lack of security. Your contractor knows how to install windows efficiently and effectively, providing a durable, attractive home exterior.

Replacement Windows or New Windows?

The steps of window installation depend on whether you’re looking at replacement windows or new windows. With replacement windows the exterior trim, siding and interior moldings are left alone – you only need to replace the window and possibly the sash, depending on the style of window.

The basic steps of replacement window installation are:

• remove existing windows and repair frame and sill, if necessary
• pry off the stop, parting stop and sash
• caulk on interior side of the blind stop, as well as along back of the stool
• tilt the window in place, pushing it firmly against the blind stop once fitted
• loosely attach window into the frame with a half-tightened screw in opposite corners (top left and bottom right or top right and bottom left)
• check the corner-to-corner measurements with the window closed and locked – use shims on the window until these measurements match exactly
• insert partially tightened screws in the other two corners of the window
• use shims to ensure the window is plumb, tighten all screws and test by fully opening and closing it several times
• hang the interior stop back up using finishing nails
• insulate any gaps using spray foam or fiberglass insulation and install a filler strip to hide gaps
• caulk the exterior to prevent water leakage and weather damage

New windows, like those seen in new construction and home additions, require more precise fitting and trim work. While replacement windows may be a DIY project for skilled men and women, new windows need to be installed by an experienced professional to ensure a good fit.

The basic steps of new window installation are similar to those outlined above, but more work is done on the exterior of the home to ensure a watertight fit. The window frame and sill are built to fit the window, but shims are still used to ensure the window is level and plumb.

Measurements Are Key

No matter what type of windows we’re looking at, accurate measurements make all the difference. Always be sure that horizontal measurements are made at the top, bottom and middle of the window opening. Vertical measurements need to be taken on the left and right side of the opening, as well as down the middle.

Compare each set of measurements to ensure the window opening is level (horizontal measurements) and plumb (vertical measurements). Not only will these measurements be used to order the new windows, the comparisons also determine whether or not any work needs to be done on the opening.

Always check the windows when they arrive on site to verify the size against your measurements. This helps to avoid surprises during the window installation process.

Understanding how to install windows helps ensure a smoother project, whether you’re going the DIY route or hiring an experienced contractor. All of the steps are important, and come together to ensure your new windows fit well and operate dependably for years to come.

If you are looking for dependable windows for your home and want a quality installation, contact Revived Exteriors for a complementary consultation.