With spring right around the corner in Kansas City, it’s time to get windows prepped and ready for a summer of use. To maximize the life of your windows and your enjoyment of the beautiful weather, follow these simple steps:
1) Wash exteriors thoroughly from top to bottom. A winter’s worth of grime will cut down on your exposure to the sunlight. Be sure to wash the sash and window casing as well. To wash like a pro, take it from Brent Weingard, owner of Expert Window Cleaners in New York and avoid the newspaper, spray cleaners, and rubbing. He says “You’re just moving dirt around from one spot to another and putting a static charge on the glass, which attracts dust and dirt.” To find out how to get a spotless exterior wash, read Brent’s step by step instructions:http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/how-to/intro/0,,20364019,00.html
2) Inspect glass, window sash, and hardware for damage. Once everything is clean, it’ll be easier to see if there are cracks in the glass. If there are, secure with duct tape and contact a repair shop immediately to avoid injury. Sash rot is a common occurrence through the winter months, so look carefully at your window fittings and make repairs as needed. All About Doors and Windows has a great video with instructions on replacing rotten wood. Snow and ice can also be hard on your locks, cranks, and other hardware, so look for loose or missing locks and cranks. The Family Handiman has more resources on inspecting and replacing hardware and replacement hardware can be found at a local hardware store or from your window vendor.
3) Check, wash, and install screens. First check the screens for any holes or other damage. If necessary, repair or replace screen using these step by step instructions from Martha Stewart. During removal and storage, screen frames can be bent or damaged. Any that have bent or warped should be replaced before they are installed.
4) Wash interior windows and channels. Now you’re ready to tackle the inside of the windows. Real Simple recommends using a multipurpose cleaner on window frame, sill, and hardware. Starting from top to bottom and left to right, use a microfiber cloth or newspaper on a cloudy day to avoid streaks. For a step by step how to, watch the Real Simple video on their site. Finally, With the window open, use warm water to rinse vinyl window channels, or a dry stiff brush for wood.
Once you’ve taken care of those four items, you’ll be able to enjoy your windows for the next several months. However, you can make it easier on yourself – new windows from All-Weather offer many features that make cleaning more manageable. From tilting in for an easy exterior wash to an innovative glass coating, these new models make this chore a little less daunting. Stop by one of our showroom locations to see for yourself!