The most important part of vinyl replacement windows is critical, that you
measuring your old window opening properly and accurately. Vinyl windows are custom built and can’t be returned if they don’t fit. Most are manufactured in 1/4″ increments, and you’ll want to get the closest fit possible.
Raise the lower sash and measure the jamb-to-jamb width in three places near the
top of the window, at the middle and close to the bottom, measure from the head
jamb to the sloped sill just past where it meets the inside window stool. Don’t
assume that all your windows are the same size.
Draw a rough sketch of your house and number each window, then measure each of
them separately. When installing vinyl replacement windows, first remove the old
sash. Double-hung window has two sets of removable stops. All have an inside stop
that holds the lower inner sash in place and a blind stop that separates the two
sashes. The outside stop is nailed to the edge of the sash and is not removable.
Take off the inside stops carefully so you can reuse them. Cut the sash ropes and
remove the lower sash, then pry out the blind stop and remove it. Remove the upper
sash. Set the vinyl replacement window in the opening. It should fit snugly between
the stool on the inside and the outside stops of the old window on the outside. If
the new window is narrower, you may need to nail a strip of wood to the jamb to fill
the gap between the window and the outside stop. Some vinyl replacement windows
have stop extrusions on the bottom that match the sloped sill of your old window,
others are flat.
If the bottom of your new window is flat, you may be able to use a piece of filler or
doorstop as a support for the front edge of the window.
Center the vinyl window in the opening. Use a carpenter’s square to make sure the
window is square, and then shim the sides of the window directly behind the
predrilled screw holes in the jamb. Screw the vinyl replacement window in place
through the side jambs, then replace the inside stop.
Go inside and check the vinyl window to make sure it operates properly. Then go
back outside and run a narrow bead of caulking all around the window to seal the
gap at the outside stop.
Roger King has been writing articles on home decorating ideas [http://www.all-homeinteriordesigns.com/index.htm] for several years, and has been helping people find and review the best value for interior design solutions.