3 "old window" questions

Old 01-21-06, 12:12 PM
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3 "old window" questions

Here are three window questions for a friend of mine.

They are buying a house and the house has old windows. It is an historic property and has very old windows with ropes.

1) The windows have been painted shut, and they have to get them open to get financing. What is the fastest, easiest, and best way to do that so that it looks nice?

2) There is some paint splattered on the window panes, what is the best way to get that off?

3)Also, because this is an old house they need to do some things to increase energy efficiency. My friend has heard of a process called reglazing for windows.

How do you do this, and does it really help energy efficiency?

Thanks so much!
Old 01-21-06, 12:40 PM
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Answers to your questions.

1) They are probably painted shut on the inside & outside. Use a wide blade
putty knife and force in between the sash and the stops.

2) Remove paint from the glass with single edge razor blades.

3) Reglazing of the windows to make them energy efficient?????? If you
mean removing loose and missing glazing compound, that will help the
appearance and maybe stop some cold air from coming in but will not
make the windows energy efficient.
Old 01-21-06, 12:46 PM
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To free up the window sashes, you will need to run a razor knife along all the painted intersections, inside and out. Take a 5 in 1 tool and lightly insert it at the top and bottom of the sides of the window on the outside and inside. Now, from the inside, you should be able to pry upward slightly on the middle of the rail of the bottom of the window. You may have to rap the frame with the heel of your hand to free the last of the holding paint, but it should free up.
As far as removing paint splatters, of course you could use a single sided razor blade to scrape it off, but if that is not an alternative and the paint is latex, you could use "Oops" brand latex paint remover, or Methyl Ethyl Keytone. Just remember to ventilate the area, as this stuff will let you take a trip and never leave the farm.
Reglazing involves replacing the glass itself, whether it be the same type glass or an upgraded glass product. I doubt, since it is an historic home, you will be able to install thermopane units in the sashes due to width restrictions. Also, find out from the preservationists involved in your town, exactly how much of a change you can make to the window design. Quite often, they will require you to replace it all with the exact original design, limiting you somewhat in what you can do.
Good luck with the project, and post back if we can help further.
Old 01-22-06, 06:07 AM
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Since these are older windows, I would suspect that they have an oil-based paint.

To remove paint from the glass surface, use a single edge razor blade as suggested, but first make up a solution of dish soap and water or a solution of isopropyl alcohol and water (50% alcohol to 50% water). Using a spray bottle, spray the solution over the glass where you are going to scrape. This will lubricate the glass and make it much less likely that you will scratch it.

Scrape only in one direction (never back and forth) and clean the blade between scrapes. Make sure you are using a sharp blade and if necessary change it between scrapes.

If you choose to use MEK (methyl ethyl ketone) be very careful and follow all directions...even in dilute stage that stuff can injure you.
Old 01-22-06, 10:39 AM
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Thanks so much for all of the suggestions and help. I will pass this on to my friend. We will probably be helping them do much of the work, so this is great information to have.

Thanks again!

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