How to replace a window pane with your own hands
Replacement of broken glass panes always needs to be done properly. It needs patience and practical turn of mind. If you are looking for an answer to the question how to replace a window pane with your own hands you should take into account the following aspects, rules and recommendations.
First you should find out the type of glass you have to deal with. There are several types of glass panes:
- float glass panes,
- tempered glass panes,
- laminated glass panes.
Most of the windows have float glass panes with glass of 3, 4 or 6 mm thick. Large window panes and glass in areas that are not protected from shocks, such as doors, panel doors or near low-lying are usually safety glass. It’s a single pane type of windows.
Tempered glass is carefully processed and has the longest life, that’s why if it breaks, it breaks into very small fragments. In this case you deal with a single pane window too.
Laminated glass consists of two thin sheets; between them a synthetic layer is installed. If it breaks, its pieces are glued to this layer. In this case you have to think on how to replace a double pane window glass.
As you may already understand, the golden rule is to replace the broken glass with the same type of glass. To avoid spilling broken glass fragments of windows in a wooden frame, a vinyl frame (PVC) or an aluminum frame while working, cover it with a tape in a crisscrossed way.
Removal of broken glass
- Don’t forget to wear thick gloves in order not to injure your hands.
- Collect all the pieces of a broken glass and bring them away to the outside garbage can.
- To remove the dried putty from the slots of a window in a metal frame use an old chisel. You shouldn’t take a new chisel as it may serrate its blade on the studs on a metal frame. Pull the pin or pins and remove all the old putty from the slots.
- Pull the pins out of the window frame using pliers.
- Lay a thin layer of putty into the corners of the window frame.
- Insert the new glass and around the perimeter of it make gaps between the walls of the grooves.
- Score pins for glazing at a distance of about 1 foot from each other.
- Seal all cracks with putty and smooth the surface at an angle of 45 degrees.
- Remove any excess putty from inside and outside the window.
- Wait until the plaster hardens.
Measure the distance in a few places between the opposing grooves of the frame height and width. Dimensions of glass that you need have to be 3 mm less than the distance between the grooves. If you have doubts, cut the template out of cardboard and show it to the glazier. Also you should purchase a certain number of new pins or clips to secure the glass in the frame and the desired type of putty: for wooden, PVC or metal windows.
Recommend: How to measure for a replacement window.
Installing the new window pane
- Check out how the new glass fits the slots, then put it in a safe place for a while. Take a small amount of putty and knead it until it is soft. When the plaster is ready, start to dent its as a layer in the grooves, squeezing it out of your hand between the thumb and the index finger, just like squeezing toothpaste from a tube.
- Put the new glass to its place, substituting two wooden matches for its lower edge, press it lightly. Do not press down on the center of the glass, only on the edges.
- Remove the putty on the inside of the window.
- Using the technique mentioned above (“the thumb and the index finger”) lay an additional layer of putty on the outside of the box until you get an extra seal around the perimeter of the platen glass.
- Take a spatula and flatten the roll with an angle of 45 degrees, pushing the putty into the edge of the frame during you work on the trowel frame. Make accurate bevels on the corners.
- Leave the putty for its full-time for hardening – it’s about bout two weeks. Then paint it to cover and seal the places of its contact with the surface.
Typical mistakes while working with glass
- Wrong measurements. The measurements must be accurate. Works with special glass cutter, ordinary cutters are not suitable.
- Do not use a blunt instrument. It can damage the metal or plastic profiles and lead to the replacement of the whole window.
- Mallet blows on the end spatula or chisel should be stable, with no differences. The best way is to work it out previously at some other surface. When the stroke is developed, it will affect the quality of work – the installation process will be performed faster.
- If your old glass has been just broken, neglecting cleaning before installing the new glass is a crucial mistake. For this it is best to use a very powerful up-to-date vacuum cleaner, it will find all the pieces of the broken glass, even ones invisible to the eye. Before starting the cleaning work put a special brush onto the vacuum cleaner for the glass dust not to be blown away.
- Once the work is finished, you need to click on the frame and glass separately several times – they hey need to be monolithic. You will feel they are a bit separated if something goes wrong.
We hope this article helped you to find the way how to replace a broken window pane with your own hands.