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Help identifying broken part/manufacturer of vinyl window.

Help identifying broken part/manufacturer of vinyl window.


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Old 11-04-10, 11:35 PM
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Help identifying broken part/manufacturer of vinyl window.

Hi,

I bought my 1st house about a year ago. One of the things I liked is that it has modern, double paned, vinyl windows that slide nicely and have tabs that allow you to pop the window out on the top and pivot it in to clean.

Well, one of those windows (the top portion) doesnt like to stay closed unless locked. I checked it out and in the channel I see a metal piece that should be up attached to the top window at the bottom where it pivots. Looking at other windows it appears this is what allows it to pivot.

First I thought I'd see if it was still under warranty. The sticker on the side of the window has a bunch of numbers and a date of 2002, so I don't know what a typical warranty is. I found stickers on the inside top of each frame, but they don't tell me much either. In the middle it says "Randys Quality Home Imp". I can not find any Randy's Quality Home Improvements or Randy's Quality ANYTHING in the Milwaukee, WI area, so I'm guessing this wasn't a big company doing the install. I cant find anything regarding the manufacturer. There are a lot of numbers and codes. The only other word is "ROMANS". Any way to figure out the manufacturer with these numbers/codes?

If not, how can I fix this problem? When I move the top window down it appears to slide over this part, but it doesn't latch on. I dont know if the part is broken, something on the window itself is broken, or if it's just out of alignment, or something else entirely.

Any thoughts from your more experienced window gurus out there?
 
  #2  
Old 11-05-10, 04:03 AM
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Welcome to the forums! Most likely a spring has broken and the attachment point has fallen in the track. Take some pictures of the stickers (good clear pictures so we can read them) and post them on a site such as photobucket.com and copy/paste the IMG code to your reply. That will give us more information to go on.
 
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Old 11-05-10, 04:25 AM
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It may be that a screw is missing or the pivot bar is broken. This is how to replace a typical pivot bar: how to replace a tilt bar vinyl window - Google Search
The pivot bars on many windows are generic and can be gotten at a local glass shop or windows dealer. You must bring a sample.
 
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Old 11-05-10, 05:10 AM
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Here is the best I could do with my phone.

This is the part in question. It's detached from the top window, still in the channel, but pushed all the way down at the bottom. It's difficult to move. It appears to be intact, but I don't know what I'm talking about or what to look for.






Here is the view looking up into the top window as if the camera were in the channel the part is in. This is where that part should be connected to the top window.




This is the big sticker in the top frame of each window.




This is a sticker from the side of one of the windows.
 
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Old 11-05-10, 06:14 AM
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What you have is a constant force (or coil) balance. I have rarely had problems with these types of windows, so you probably just aren't putting the sash back in correctly.

First, ensure that the pivot shoes are in the correct position. They have a U-shaped saddle that needs to be pointing up. To move the pivot shoe, take the largest straight screwdriver you have (#3) and turn the U-shaped saddle 90 degrees so that it is closed (horizontal). This is the position the saddle should be in in order to move. If you can slide it up and down and you feel tension, then there is nothing wrong with it. Check this on both sides. Once you have tested them to make sure they both have spring tension, raise them to the same exact level and turn the u-shaped saddle so that it is open again (vertical). You should then insert the window sash, making sure you are holding it HORIZONTALLY (flat- perpendicular to the window frame). Both pivot shoe bars should then sit down into those u-shaped saddles in the pivot shoe. Once they are engaged, you can then tip the window up and close it. It should now operate correctly.
 
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Old 11-05-10, 02:40 PM
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Originally Posted by XSleeper View Post
What you have is a constant force (or coil) balance. I have rarely had problems with these types of windows, so you probably just aren't putting the sash back in correctly.

First, ensure that the pivot shoes are in the correct position. They have a U-shaped saddle that needs to be pointing up. To move the pivot shoe, take the largest straight screwdriver you have (#3) and turn the U-shaped saddle 90 degrees so that it is closed (horizontal). This is the position the saddle should be in in order to move. If you can slide it up and down and you feel tension, then there is nothing wrong with it. Check this on both sides. Once you have tested them to make sure they both have spring tension, raise them to the same exact level and turn the u-shaped saddle so that it is open again (vertical). You should then insert the window sash, making sure you are holding it HORIZONTALLY (flat- perpendicular to the window frame). Both pivot shoe bars should then sit down into those u-shaped saddles in the pivot shoe. Once they are engaged, you can then tip the window up and close it. It should now operate correctly.
The side Im having trouble with does not engage. When I pivot the window to be perpendicular to the frame the broken side comes loose from the frame and the working side will no longer move up and down, and seems to be able to be lifted from the saddle as well. This makes sense based on what you told me. However, when I position the two sides to be level, open the saddle up (it is already in an open position) and then place the window down into the 2 saddles, only the working side engages and moves with the window when I pivot it back up to vertical and raise the window up. The part I've been referring to stays where it is.

How can I replace this?
 
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Old 11-06-10, 07:29 PM
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So you're telling me that you've taken the sash out, and checked the pivot shoes with a screwdriver... raising them up and down? And that the "broken side" turns open and closed normally and has spring tension on it, just like the pivot shoe on the side that "engages properly"?

In that case, I'd take the window sash out, turn it over, and inspect the pivot bars that are screwed onto the bottom of the window. Compare one with the other, perhaps one is broken or something. If they both look fine, I'd say that the sash is not being seated into the open pivot shoe correctly. Can't explain why that would be. I'm sure if I could take a look at it, it would be easy to figure out but it's a little hard to diagnose and explain without being there. If you want to snap more pictures we will certainly take a look.
 
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Old 11-06-10, 08:39 PM
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Originally Posted by XSleeper View Post
So you're telling me that you've taken the sash out, and checked the pivot shoes with a screwdriver... raising them up and down? And that the "broken side" turns open and closed normally and has spring tension on it, just like the pivot shoe on the side that "engages properly"?

In that case, I'd take the window sash out, turn it over, and inspect the pivot bars that are screwed onto the bottom of the window. Compare one with the other, perhaps one is broken or something. If they both look fine, I'd say that the sash is not being seated into the open pivot shoe correctly. Can't explain why that would be. I'm sure if I could take a look at it, it would be easy to figure out but it's a little hard to diagnose and explain without being there. If you want to snap more pictures we will certainly take a look.
Honestly I dont know because I dont know what the sash, the seat or any of these parts are. Here is what I do know.

That part that is "broken" is also on the working side of the window. It connects to the window and moves up and down with it. The broken side does not. When I tilt the window in, it pivots, on the working side, at this part. On the broken side it doesnt pivot, rather the whole window pops out because it's not connected to anything. It appears to me that I can lift the working side of the window out of the u shaped saddle when it's tilted in. When it tilts back closed the U shaped saddle appears to close, locking it to the window and allowing it to be pulled up and pushed down with the sliding of the window. On the broken side the U shaped saddle is open and ready to accept the post, for lack of a better term, of the window. It does this just fine, but when I do this, it wont latch on. If I slide the window down into the saddle with the window tilted in or not, it doesnt engage when I tilt the window back up and raise/lower it. It appears, but I could be wrong, that there might be some plastic tabs that are supposed to be there and arent. Could this be possible? Am I missing something? How would I replace this entire piece?
 
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Old 11-06-10, 09:28 PM
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The "sash" is the glass and the frame around it which slides up and down. You will want to tip it in, and remove it from the window frame and set it aside to perform some simple tests that can help us diagnose your problem.

The "pivot shoe" is the part you have pictured. It is also the part that I am asking you to turn with a screwdriver and check as to whether it operates correctly or not.

The other thing to check are the pivot bars that Johnam mentioned- they sit into the u-shaped portion of the pivot shoe. They are on the bottom of the window sash, and you would inspect them by removing the sash and looking at the bottom of the window, comparing the left one with the right one, seeing if the metal "ears" are broken.

I really can't give you further advice unless you have tried the things I mentioned and report back.

What you are describing almost sounds like one pivot shoe is open on one side, and it is closed on the other. If that's the case, you would remove the window sash, turn the pivot shoe with a screwdriver (like I mentioned before) so that it is open, and the pivot bar will drop into place when you reinsert the sash.

If you haven't followed the directions to test the pivot shoes with a screwdriver, well, as my grandmother would have said, "I can't help you then."
 
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Old 11-06-10, 11:08 PM
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Originally Posted by XSleeper View Post
The "sash" is the glass and the frame around it which slides up and down. You will want to tip it in, and remove it from the window frame and set it aside to perform some simple tests that can help us diagnose your problem.

The "pivot shoe" is the part you have pictured. It is also the part that I am asking you to turn with a screwdriver and check as to whether it operates correctly or not.

The other thing to check are the pivot bars that Johnam mentioned- they sit into the u-shaped portion of the pivot shoe. They are on the bottom of the window sash, and you would inspect them by removing the sash and looking at the bottom of the window, comparing the left one with the right one, seeing if the metal "ears" are broken.

I really can't give you further advice unless you have tried the things I mentioned and report back.

What you are describing almost sounds like one pivot shoe is open on one side, and it is closed on the other. If that's the case, you would remove the window sash, turn the pivot shoe with a screwdriver (like I mentioned before) so that it is open, and the pivot bar will drop into place when you reinsert the sash.

If you haven't followed the directions to test the pivot shoes with a screwdriver, well, as my grandmother would have said, "I can't help you then."

Thanks for the help. This description helped a lot in my confidence of what I was looking at, what to play with, etc. That, and when I went to tilt the bottom window in, and pull it out I found that it wouldnt come out of the shoe easily until I moved it around a little and it lined up just right. I tilted the window back in and noticed that now one of the shoes for the bottom window stayed behind. I knew it wasn't broken and when I played with turning the U shaped portion on this one and the shoe shot up from the bottom of the frame to the bottom of the window sash. When I opened it back up I noticed on this one (having a better view of it and understanding of the parts) that it didn't seat fully unless I played with the tilt of the window. It would go in part of the way and look like it was in, but it wasn't. When I'd tilt it up a little more it would drop down further. Then when I put it all the way back up, it was locked on to the window and would move with it... very touchy. I couldn't get this angle on the top window because it's set further into the frame, so I never saw that full top down view of the shoe. It still looks like there is a plastic tab missing on it, but I was able to get the shoe moved up, though not as easily as the one for the bottom window, and the bolt seated into the shoe by feel when manipulating the tilt of the window. Now it is all functioning, but the top window moves a little stiffly. Perhaps this can be adjusted, or perhaps this shoe still needs replacing? It stays in place though, so I don't have to use the lock to keep the window closed, so thank to you all again for the tips and the help in understanding what was what, what it's called, and how it fits together.
 
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Old 11-06-10, 11:13 PM
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Originally Posted by johnam View Post
It may be that a screw is missing or the pivot bar is broken. This is how to replace a typical pivot bar: how to replace a tilt bar vinyl window - Google Search
The pivot bars on many windows are generic and can be gotten at a local glass shop or windows dealer. You must bring a sample.
Ha, the #1 result is this thread. #2 helps. That wasn't what's wrong, and the shoe pictured there has some locking mechanism mine dont, but this makes me comfortable replacing the bar if necessary and seeing how this all goes together. Most of my problem is ignorance from never having had to work on windows before.
 
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Old 11-07-10, 05:26 AM
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Glad you got it. Yeah sometimes if the window isn't tipped down evenly, the sash will come out of the pivot shoe when you tip it down to clean... and sometimes it does take a bit of wiggling to get both pins seated into the pivot shoes, so that it works properly when you tip it up again.

Nice job.
 
 

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