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Bad idea to remove sashes before installing windows?


Reisen's Avatar
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VA

03-05-12, 08:21 PM   #1  
Bad idea to remove sashes before installing windows?

Getting ready to install some more Anderson 400 Tilt-Washes (new construction windows). I'm doing it myself, and the last one I did was pretty heavy (38'x58' or so).

I'm thinking I could make the job a lot easier, and with less risk of accidentally dropping a window, if I remove the sashes prior to installation. One installer I talked to said they often do that.

Anyone see a downside? I know Anderson ships the windows with a strip of nylon around them to keep the jambs from bowing / and the sashes coming out, so I'd obviously need to cut that first.

Also, I'm planning on using jamb clips instead of a nailing fin, due to these going in block-construction walls. I'll be building bucks, but only with 1x PT lumber. I haven't ordered anderson's own jamb clips, but it looks like they're basically corner braces (L brackets). Anyone see a downside to just buying them from the lumber tie section of a big box store (they'd be galvanized that way)? I used the nailing fin last time, but had to trim it way down with tin snips to get it to fit in the opening, which was a PITA. The ends of my buck weren't perfectly even either (I had to rip the 1x PT lumber to a certain width to set the window at the proper depth), which caused additional problems. With jamb/masonry clips, it shouldn't matter.

I suppose the other option would be to pull out the jamb liners and drill tapcons through the jambs, the buckframe, and into the block.

 
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XSleeper's Avatar
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03-05-12, 08:53 PM   #2  
Andersen's jamb clips are actually straight. They are shipped attached to the window and folded down, and you flip them 90 and tighten a set screw to set them for installation. Once the window is installed, you can either attach to the rough opening, or fold back over the face of the studs, depending.

I would order them from Andersen rather than dink around buying and installing 10 of them on each window, plus the appropriate screws. Just simpler. To my knowledge, Andersen's clips are galvanized. Also Andersen "could" void a warranty by not using "their" recommended installation methods. Not that they would ever know...

Yes, you can remove the sashes, (i do that all the time to make them lighter to install) but I would recommend that as soon as you have the frame set in the rough opening level and plumb (maybe you've got a few shims in place to keep it level and plumb) then loosely attach the jamb clips with 1 screw at each corner. Measure the entire frame for square, and adjust as needed with your shims. Then put the sashes back in and ensure that all the reveals on the tops and bottoms of the sashes are running straight and true, then close and LOCK them. Double check your width through the middle to make sure nothing is spread. Shim the sides as needed to keep the window from spreading. Then go about attaching the rest of the jamb clips.

 
Reisen's Avatar
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03-06-12, 09:27 AM   #3  
From what I can tell from Anderson's website, they actually have two different masonry/jamb clips. One is straight, and for Windows with optional jamb extensions (the one you linked). The other is pre-bent, and for windows without jamb extensions. Those are the ones I found the equivalent lumber tie for.

That said, you actually reminded me that, in the meantime, I decided to go with jamb extensions for the remaining windows. The decision was actually made because I did the first window (the sole window in the basement) without jamb extensions, which meant I had to hang blinds using an outside mount. For the other 9 windows in the house, I'm going to rip jamb extensions from pine. This was the way the old windows were installed anyway, and I like both the look, and the look once blinds are installed.

So I'll be either going with a straight tie, a larger L bracket, or ordering the correct ones from Anderson. Part of it will be how long the shipping times are, and how much they want for them (I bet something like $50 a window, compared with maybe $8 a window using galvanized lumber ties).

I'm also aware that the 400's have a dado cut into them for the extension jambs and stool. I already rabbeted the stool on the first window to fit into the dado using a bench router. I figure I'll do the same thing on the remaining windows, then use a pocket-hole jig to attach the 1x dimensional lumber I'll use for extension jambs to the windows. I checked Anderson's website, and it says their extension jambs are 11/16ths (which I assume is equivalent to 1" lumber after it dries).

Without the nailing fin, I'll lose some flashing, so I figure I'll be careful with caulking and spray foam between the window and the buck frame, as well as the buck frame and the block, and when applying the PVC brick mould.

If my buck is PT, think I should wrap it in butyl flashing to avoid the chemicals negatively affecting either the window or the cladding? I did this on the first install as an additional safety measure.

 
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03-06-12, 10:06 AM   #4  
You'd be surprised at the price I think. When I ordered them for a neighbor when I worked at HD...they were very reasonable as I remember. I think we ordered them after the fact (I was still learning) when he was replacing the wood windows in the house and didn't want to be peeling back siding (details are a bit fuzzy). He did 4 windows on the front initially (thats when we had to order separately)...then had them factory done for the rest.

If you order from a lumber yard or box store...you get a discount over the list price from Andersen directly.


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03-06-12, 10:23 AM   #5  
I figure I'll do the same thing on the remaining windows, then use a pocket-hole jig to attach the 1x dimensional lumber I'll use for extension jambs to the windows. I checked Anderson's website, and it says their extension jambs are 11/16ths (which I assume is equivalent to 1" lumber after it dries).
Pocket screws are the best way to attach them, provided you have the room in the rough opening to get a long 6" driver bit in there. Don't worry about the 11/16" - 3/4" difference... just be sure you get the tongue for the dado in the right place to give you the correct reveal around the perimeter.

Without the nailing fin, I'll lose some flashing, so I figure I'll be careful with caulking and spray foam between the window and the buck frame, as well as the buck frame and the block, and when applying the PVC brick mould.
After the window is installed, I'd recommend you install the appropriate sized foam backer road around the perimeter of the window prior to foaming the interior side. Provided it's tight, it will act as a dam to keep your foam in check. You don't want it coming out the front, and you want to keep it away from your caulking. I've seen foam expand through a freshly caulked window, and that's not a good scenario.

If my buck is PT, think I should wrap it in butyl flashing to avoid the chemicals negatively affecting either the window or the cladding?
It certainly wouldn't hurt, but that's really only a concern if you will have aluminum directly in contact with the PT wood. It should not affect Andersen's vinyl/pvc cladding.

 
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03-06-12, 12:58 PM   #6  
Pocket screws are the best way to attach them, provided you have the room in the rough opening to get a long 6" driver bit in there. Don't worry about the 11/16" - 3/4" difference... just be sure you get the tongue for the dado in the right place to give you the correct reveal around the perimeter.
Good reminder on the pocket screws. I will not have much space in the RO at all, only enough to shim. I guess that leaves me two options: Either apply the jams before I fit the window into the rough opening, or drill the holes for the pocket screws on the inside of the extension jambs, and fill with wood putty prior to painting. The jambs are going to be painted white to match the white trim in the house.

Any reason why pre-applying the jambs would be a bad idea? They're not going to be so long that I couldn't get to the frame to shim once they're on.

Also, should the extension jambs be secured to each other (ie. forming a sort of "box) if I apply them in advance? How about secured to the framing once installed? Or are the pockets screws attaching them to the window, and the trim nailing, enough to keep them secure? I could technically shim the jambs then drive screws through the jambs, shims, and into the framing, to make the whole thing more rigid, but I'm not sure if that's overkill.

After the window is installed, I'd recommend you install the appropriate sized foam backer road around the perimeter of the window prior to foaming the interior side. Provided it's tight, it will act as a dam to keep your foam in check. You don't want it coming out the front, and you want to keep it away from your caulking. I've seen foam expand through a freshly caulked window, and that's not a good scenario.
This is a good call as well. Foaming will be fairly minimal as the window will be such a tight fit, so I'll be careful to avoid letting it overexpand. But the foam backer rod will effectively take the place of the nailing fin to provide a barrier for the foam. The backer rod would be between the window and the buck. Then I'll put the brickmould over both of them, with the side a quarter inch or so away from the clad part of the window (or whatever gap Anderson recommends).

How about caulking / foaming the bottom in such an installation? Ie. the gap between the window and the rough (brick) sill?

It certainly wouldn't hurt, but that's really only a concern if you will have aluminum directly in contact with the PT wood. It should not affect Andersen's vinyl/pvc cladding.
I was thinking more if it somehow came in contact with any staples on the outside of the window, but I think, again, that's probably overkill. There will be a small, foamed gap between the buck and the wood of the window.

 
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03-06-12, 01:42 PM   #7  
You only need the rough opening to have a 1/2" gap... put the screws in the holes first, then put the jamb in, then all you have to do is find the head of the screw with your long driver bit within that 1/2" space. I wouldn't recommend putting the pocket screws on the face unless you absolutely HAVE to. You could use a little PL in the dado, shim and nail to the woodbuck instead.

Preapplying the jambs isn't a bad idea, although it does make it harder to properly shim and foam the window perimeter if the jamb extensions are very wide. If you preapply the jambs you would need to use the "bent" jamb clips.

I apply the extension jambs one at a time, then once they are all installed, true up the corners so they are square, then just pop a finish nail at each corner to keep the jambs from moving independently. I don't like to attach them to the rough opening unless I have to... ie if they are bowed and need to be shimmed straight- yes, otherwise the casing nails will hold the jamb straight. You can also install temporary spreaders between the jambs and foam them (spreaders will keep the foam from pinching the jambs at all if you leave them in until the foam is cured) and once they are foamed they aren't going anywhere.

IMO foaming to the brick is a waste of time and foam. Window to rough opening is all I care about. Trim the exterior side of the window and caulk the trim to the window and to the brick and you're done. I like OSI Quad for vinyl to vinyl, vinyl to wood, vinyl to masonry. But its not the sort of caulk that you tool.

 
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