Maybe your son accidentally hit it with a baseball? Perhaps there was a hail storm? In any case, your window is cracked and is in need of repair.
You could call up a professional to fix it for you but you don’t really want to spend the money. As such, you’re trying to figure out how to fix it by yourself.
Fortunately, you’ve come to the right place. Without further ado, here’s how to repair a broken window.
Buy the Necessary Equipment
First and foremost, you’ll need to buy the necessary equipment. For safety’s sake, this includes a thick pair of work gloves as well as a pair of safety goggles.
In addition, you’ll need a utility knife, a putty knife, sandpaper, a pencil, paper, a tape measure, a putty, and maybe even a hammer, pliers, and a screwdriver. These will be used to facilitate the window removal and window installation processes.
You’ll, of course, also need replacement windows. This can be purchased online or in home improvement stores like Lowe’s and Home Depot.
To start the removal of the broken window, you’ll need to loosen the putty that holds it in place. This can be done with a utility knife or a putty knife. Just press one of these against the putty until it starts to separate and then continue around the entirety of the window.
Be careful not to shatter the window, as doing so could create a dangerous and time-consuming situation.
Though it’s not true of all windows, some are held in place by either nails or clips. If yours is, you’ll need to remove these nails/clips. This can generally be done with the help of a pair of pliers.
Dispose of Broken Glass
Now that you’ve pulled the window out, you’ll need to dispose of it in a receptacle of some kind. Glass can be recycled, so if you have a recycling bin on hand, put it in that.
Remove Existing Putty
After the windowpane is gone, you’ll need to smooth down the edges of the window frame. Take a piece of sandpaper and run it over any putty that’s jutting out. The goal is to eliminate putty and get the inside of the frame as smooth as possible.
To ensure that all putty is gone, run a wet rag over it as well. This will grab microscopic pieces of putty and ensure that they’re removed.
Find Your New Window
Hopefully, you’ll already have a new window in your possession. But if you don’t, you’ll have to find one. Measure the inside of your window frame to see what size is necessary, choosing a pane that is just slightly shorter (we’re talking millimeters) on all sides.
Place Putty on the Insides of the Frame
Next, you should place putty on the insides of the frame. This will be used to hold the new window pane in place. Though you shouldn’t put a ridiculous amount on, you can be a little liberal with its use (you’ll be scraping most of it off after the window is set).
Set the New Window Pane
Now, it’s time to set the new window pane. Press it against the window frame, making sure that it sticks to the putty. You’ll have to hold it in place for a few minutes to ensure that it doesn’t move.
Then, after the window is able to stand up on its own, take more putty and apply it to the edges on both the interior and exterior of the window. This will provide it with a tight seal, holding it in place for the long-haul.
Remove Excess Putty
Finally, you can scrape off any excess putty. Do your best to be precise, as the way the putty dries will affect the look of the window overall. Once it’s dry, the window will be good to go for years to come.
There Are Temporary Fixes You Can Make as Well
If you can’t replace your window immediately, you might be interested in getting it by with a temporary fix. These fixes will help the window to function for the time being but will eventually need to be followed by a permanent window replacement.
Applying Nail Polish
If you’re dealing with only a small crack, you can help to close it by putting clear nail polish over it. Spread it over the crack on both sides of the window and wait for it to dry. Do this a few times throughout the course of a day and it should create a fairly tight seal.
Applying Masking Tape
Another thing you can do to fix your window on a temporary basis is to apply masking tape. Put a piece of masking tape on each side of a crack and will prevent that crack from spreading any further.
If you’re trying to keep a crack from spreading, specifically, you can apply a piece of mesh over the crack. Place super glue on the edges of the mesh and press it against the window until it sticks. It won’t look great but it will keep the damage to a minimum (and it might even prevent the inward flow of insects).
Applying a Tarp/Trash Bag
You can also patch up your window with the help of a piece of tarp or with the piece of a trash bag. Stretch the tarp/trash bag so that it’s tight across the window and then tape it around its edges. This should help to prevent the inward flow of air, insects, and moisture.
And That’s How to Repair a Broken Window
And there it is, that’s how to repair a broken window. Follow the instructions above and your window will be back in one piece in no time. If you’re having trouble, or if the damage is too extreme, you might be better served by bringing in a professional for a window repair.
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