How do I make an old window sticky again?


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Old 05-29-21, 04:34 PM
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How do I make an old window sticky again?

I live in a very old apartment that has incredibly heavy wooden windows. Several of them were brutally hard to get up. A friend said squirt Armor All into the outside tracks (on both sides) only (see red arrow in image), and I was amazed that it worked. The windows really loosened up. The problem is I used the Armor All on two windows that were not sticky. Those two windows worked properly: I could pull them open to whatever level I wanted and they stayed there. And when I sprayed the Armor All into those windows, the windows would open to say 75% open and above and stay open. But anything below the 75% open level they are in absolute free fall. If they were to fall from that level, I'm sure they would break, so to be safe, I got 5 gallon paint stirrers to prop them up.

I'd like to return those two windows back to their original condition of working properly. Is there any way to make them sticky again? Thank you.



These are the windows closed.

This is what I used to unstick them.

This is the outside track I sprayed the Armor All into.

Paint stirrer propping up window.
 
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Old 05-29-21, 05:24 PM
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Is there any way to make them sticky again?
You coated them with a silicon compound, you can try removing with an aresol solvent or give it some time to revert!
 
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Old 05-30-21, 02:30 AM
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Most any solvent along with elbow grease should remove the silicon. It's not uncommon for folks with old windows to use a stick to hold the window up, just cut one to the desired height. I'd want something heftier than a paint stick.
 
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Old 05-30-21, 03:03 AM
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Have you checked to see if you have counterweight springs in the window tracks?
 
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Old 05-30-21, 05:12 AM
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One or both balances may be broken. If you didn't put the Armor All at the top of the tracks, they may be staying up by friction. If they are free falling toward the bottom, the Armor All is doing that and I bet the balances are broken because you said they are very hard to get up. Balances help raise the window and hold it at any height.
 
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Old 05-30-21, 06:11 AM
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This photo of discontinued parts looks similar to your window components. https://www.lowes.com/pd/Ply-Gem-Win...Window/1071967
I show this so you can understand how your window worked originally. There was likely a spring in that vertical slot that connected to your window sash. It has likely broken comprising the window operation. Since you are not going to be rebuilding these windows I would agree your best solution as previously suggested is using a stick to prop them open.
 
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Old 05-30-21, 10:34 AM
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Marq1 Thank you
marksr Thank you
jrsickjohnam clancy Thank you. I never thought to check above the bottom windows. (attachments) Both of those bad windows have broken and or disconnected balances/springs. Is there a way of reconnecting them or replacing them? Or perhaps it would be best just to use the solvents to remove enough silicone so that the windows are not stuck but also not free falling?



This from one of the bad windows.

This from one of the good windows.

 
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Old 05-30-21, 10:44 AM
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You would need to raise a good window up a few inches then tip it down by pushing the spring loaded jambs to the side as you pull the sash in. Do that on each side to tip it down. Then examine the good window, compare it to a broken window and figure out what's wrong or broken.

That would be the start of identifying what part is broken and whether or not it's repairable or whether or not anyone still sells the parts you need.
 
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Old 05-31-21, 04:36 AM
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Your "bad" window should have a metal pin on each side of the lower sash. This pin will fit inside the groove in the side jambs. You'll need to get those pins inserted into the lower rings of those springs. You'll have to take the window out, but it comes out easily.
 
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Old 06-01-21, 10:27 AM
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XSleeper jrsick Thanks guys! Will give it a shot.
 
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Old 06-02-21, 06:12 PM
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jrsick I wanted to try your solution first but how do I get the window out (easily)? (I couldn't see how it comes out.) Thanks.
 
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Old 06-02-21, 06:15 PM
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You would need to raise a good window up a few inches then tip it down by pushing the spring loaded jambs to the side as you pull the sash in. Do that on each side to tip it down.
...........................
 
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Old 06-03-21, 10:26 AM
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XSleeper Thanks Sleeper. How do I push the spring loaded jambs to the side? I found this video and it talks about pushing against the jamb liners to remove the window. But I have the other kind, as you can see in the above photos. Then once I've somehow neutralized the jamb liners, do I pull the sash from the top (as in the video)?

https://youtu.be/H821-EEFk3Q
 
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Old 06-03-21, 12:34 PM
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Yes, it is probably similar to that video. You use your hand to press on the jamb just above the window while you pull it forward.
 
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Old 06-03-21, 08:17 PM
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I'll try it. Thank you.
 
 

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