Preparing for your replacement timber window frames

Preparing for your replacement timber window frames

Windows are a key feature of your home. They keep the cold out and the heat in, and contribute significantly to the aesthetics of your property. Timber frames, especially, are chosen to create a certain appearance. So when the time comes to decide whether to repair or replace, there are many points to consider.

Whether you are dealing with peeling paint, broken seals, rotten wood or damaged sash cords, the advice below from our team of experts at Hamilton Windows should help you to make the correct decision.

What is worth repairing?

Replacing the windows in your home means expense and we understand that you may want to repair the current frames instead. And the good news is that there are certain circumstances when repairing is perfectly possible:

Paintwork – as long as the timber is in good condition, a new coat of paint can last 2–8 years, depending on the quality of the paint. A word of warning, though – if the current paint dates back to before 1960, it may contain lead. This can be extremely hazardous when scraped off and inhaled in dust form.

Rotten sills – if the rot is caught early enough, sills can be replaced separately from the rest of the frame by splicing in new treated wood.

Snapped sash cords – sash windows operate on a pulley and cord mechanism. Over time, the cord can fray and eventually snap. This is a straightforward problem to rectify by simply replacing the cord.

When replacing is the best option

The need to replace windows is welcomed by some, as it opens up the opportunity for a fresh new look, or the chance to make a house warmer. These are some of the reasons why people might opt, or need, to replace their timber frames:

Style – like any other trend, window styles change and replacing timber frames with a different style or material can give your property a new look. Bear in mind, though, that listed buildings often have to conform to regulations when replacing windows.

Single glazing – double or triple glazing enormously improves the heat efficiency of a property. If your timber frames house only single panes, the cost of replacing your windows will be offset by the amount you will save on heating.

Broken seals ­– the efficiency of windows is maximised by sealing the panes into the windows. When one of these seals fails, mist forms inside the glazing units. If isolated, a pane can be replaced on its own. However, if it becomes a widespread problem, or involves windows with multiple small panes, it may be time to look at replacements.

Rot – when rot isn’t found in the early stages, it can spread to the point of compromising the entire timber frame. As a rule of thumb, if there is more rot than solid wood, the advice is to replace rather than repair.

When deciding to repair or replace your timber window frames, keep in mind that you do not have to opt for uPVC. Although easier to clean and maintain than wood, it is not the only option on the market. Aluminium frames are long lasting and low maintenance, and available in a variety of finishes. You could also opt for a more modern timber frame, which, when treated correctly, can last for decades.

If you would like further advice on whether to repair or replace your timber window frames in Cobham, Epsom, Hook or the surrounding areas, contact Hamilton Windows today.