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Sash Window Repair


What are Sash Windows?

Repairing & Restoring Sash Windows

A sash window or hung sash window is made of one or more movable panels, or “sashes”, that form a frame to hold panes of glass, which are often separated from other panes (or “lights”) by glazing bars. The term is used almost exclusively to refer to windows where the glazed panels are opened by sliding vertically, or horizontally in a style known as a “Yorkshire light”, sliding sash.

Sash Window Repairs Sydney

We offer a full range of sash window repair and restoration such as soundproofing, draught-proofing, window replacement and refurbishment, re-cording, and resealing.

How Does a Sash Window Work?

The window works by balancing the sash with a counter-weight of steel, cast-iron or leaden weight hung on a cord which is concealed within a hollow box frame. Insulation can be retrofitted in these pockets in older windows.

Why do sash windows have draught issues?

Over time buildings move which may cause gaps between the sashes and the frame, or the sides of the window, or gaps around the middle rail. These gaps enable cold air draughts to enter and may cause a rattling noise. As much as 25% of heat loss is caused by the air leakage where your draughts are likely coming in around your windows. Draught proofing will prevent rattles, and provide insulation for your home

How to draught-proof sash windows?

The best way to approach sash window seals is to use the right size and type of draught excluder, such as a rubber seal, for the different parts of the window.

Cost of sash window repair

The cost of repair of sash windows depends on several factors including whether height-equipment needs to be used, difficulty of access, and deterioration of the windows.

What are some of the common issues with sash windows?

Typical sash window problems likely to be encountered include: Cracked and flaking paintwork (the outside of the windows should be repainted at intervals of five to eight years), sticking windows ( usually the result of either careless replacement of staff bead, following repair or re-cording, which is easily remedied, or a build-up of paint which needs to be removed), failed putty and broken glass panes (these are relatively easy to replace), broken cords, and
timber decay (particularly to the bottom rail).

How do you lubricate a wooden sash window?

Once you have cleaned the window tracks, you can lubricate the window channels by rubbing the wood surfaces with ordinary wax, such as that from a white candle. Open and close the window several times to distribute the wax and lubricate the surfaces.

Can you use washing pegs to seal drafts on sash windows?

Pegs do not provide an effective seal against draughts or air infiltration. They only exert localised pressure on specific areas of the window frame or glass, leaving gaps that allow air to pass through. Applying excessive pressure with pegs can lead to cracked or shattered glass, especially if the window is already compromised or weakened in any way. Pegs can also damage the window frame, glazing, or other components, potentially causing further issues or accelerating the need for repairs or replacement.

Why is it important to replace deteriorated glazer's putty on windows?

Replacing deteriorated putty is important because over time, putty can deteriorate due to exposure to weather, temperature changes, and aging, becoming brittle, cracked, or falling apart, and losing its effectiveness as a seal. When the putty deteriorates, it compromises the seal integrity, allowing air, moisture, and even pests to infiltrate. Properly sealed windows contribute to energy efficiency, while draughts caused by deteriorated putty can lead to heat loss in winter and heat gain in summer, affecting your home’s comfort and energy bills. Additionally, the putty protects the glass from shifting or rattling within the frame, and without a reliable seal, the glass may become loose, impacting the window’s stability.

Why retrofit timber windows with proper draught sealing solutions?

In Australia, many timber windows lack proper draft sealing, which can lead to energy inefficiency. Draughts allow heated or cooled air to escape, impacting both comfort and utility bills. By retrofitting their timber windows with effective weather seals homeowners can address this issue and benefit from improved energy efficiency and reduced noise pollution.

Why is it important to replace antique hardware?

Replacing the antique hardware serves several crucial purposes. It ensures functionality and safety by addressing worn, corroded, or malfunctioning components that hinder smooth operation, secure locking, and ease of use, while also mitigating risks associated with faulty hardware that compromises window opening, closing, or locking mechanisms. New hardware contributes to better energy efficiency by facilitating proper sealing and locking to prevent drafts and air leakage, reducing energy loss and minimising air infiltration around the window frame. Moreover, replacing worn-out pieces with period-appropriate replicas maintains historical accuracy, enhances the overall charm and character of vintage windows, and preserves their authentic aesthetic appeal.

Sash Window Repair Case Study

Strata Complex in Mosman

A strata committee of an art deco apartment complex in Mosman contracted 3 Colours to carry out remedial work and painting of all sash windows at the property. This is a typical request as many buildings still have sash windows – with correct maintenance and professional care, they can have considerable longevity.

On such a large project, owner and tenant communication is crucial to co-ordinate the works as each resident needs to provide access. Aware of the intrusion that can be felt when working on windows, 3 Colours treats each project with sensitivity and professionalism.

The height of the work made it necessary to use scaffolding on part of the building. Erecting scaffolding is always a precise exercise which 3 Colours undertakes with all relevant safety precautions and fully trained professionals. Repairing and painting sash windows is a 3 Colours speciality as it is time-consuming and requires experience in the treatment of timber. Correct preparation is essential to the success of the job. Many 3 Colours sites are within 5 km of the sea – so salt, sun and moisture are the main cause of deterioration of the timber. ​

Additional preparation is fundamental (but not always carried out by all painting companies). At the Mosman complex, 3 Colours removed the old paint with paint stripper and by sanding, then washed off salt residue and mould so the surface was free of any corrosive/harmful substances before application of primer or paint. An oil-based undercoat was then applied, followed by two different coatings. 3 Colours uses marine enamel on the sash part of the window as it provides maximum protection without increasing paint build-up, avoiding any hindrance to the sash window mechanism. ​

Acrylic Weathershield is applied to the window sills to provide additional protection as these horizontal surfaces are more exposed to the harsh elements. 3 Colours has been using this combination successfully for nearly 10 years. Inevitably, unforeseen issues arose. Some windows had previously been painted while closed so were unable to be opened. 3 Colours’ expert painters had encountered this problem before so they knew to scrape all the old paint out of the mechanism, clean it up, prepare it and paint as the other windows. ​

Additionally, some areas of fascia and eaves were in a state of disrepair which would have deteriorated rapidly without attention. 3 Colours notified the strata manager and provided a quote which was substantially lower than a separate quote on a new project. As the scaffolding was already in place and the painting team still onsite, this saved time and money – not to mention inconvenience. ​