If you have existing timber sash windows in your home, they could be of any vintage.  Sash windows started to appear in Europe in the late 17th century and became one of the most popular windows to be installed.

Georgian and Victorian sash windows are still very much in evidence today.  In America, the term ‘hung sash windows’ is used to describe these installations and they are equally as popular.

There are various points which should be noted if you wish to regularly clean and maintain your windows and have them still be looking well and functioning properly for the next generation.  Traditional problems with timber sash windows include rot to the timber work, noise due to creaking or rattling in windy conditions,  sticking of windows due to overpainting and the inability to open the windows properly due to cord damage.

Cleaning: The glass and timber should be washed and cleaned regularly as this helps with brightness within the residence and helps keep dirt free from moving parts.  As you may have 12 small panes, (or more) in each window, there is more work and care involved than in a more modern single or double paned unit – however it is well worth the effort to keep the windows fresh looking.

It is important to remember to keep safety as a paramount consideration when cleaning any windows – do not over reach at any time. Given the design of these  windows you should be able to safely reach all surfaces of regular sized windows without over reaching or bending out of an opened window.

Painting: Painting of window sashes is extremely Double Glazing Sash Windows Kent important for the preservation of the timberwork of long periods.  Windows may require re painting every 4-6 years depending on the aspect of the residence, local climate conditions, etc.  Do not wait until very visible signs of damage to the existing paintwork are visible.  Try to have a regular pattern of inspection and repair for your sash windows and they will reward you with much less costly replacement of timberwork in the long term.  As was pointed out earlier one of the problems with over painting sash windows is that they can become difficult to open so care is need with paint application.

Most older sash windows have sash window counterweights in place, which allow you to open a large window vertically and to have it stay in place, seemingly defying gravity.  In actual fact this is achieved by having these sash counterweights set into the hollow sides of the window case.  The weights are attached to cords that pass over a pulley and it is important to regularly inspect these cords at reasonable intervals to ensure that they are still in good condition.  If they do need replacement the sashes will need to be removed from the frame, which is ideally a task for 2 people.  It is also advisable to get a trained carpenter to carry out this task.

We have a site dedicated to discussing all aspects of sash windows, timber and uPVC, old


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