You Need a New Sash, Not a New Window

You need a new sash, not a new window: This statement is the justification of why Fenster Components exists. This is why we got into the window business in the first place. 

The practicality of sash replacement is a superior method to window repair with all the benefits of a full replacement window.

We’ve created a whole new approach to window replacement that is, by far, less expensive, less mess and less hassle than the traditional idea of window replacement. Just so we’re on the same page, let’s dig into what the “act” of window replacement really is and how the Fenster process is better.

Traditional Wood Window Replacement

This process has to start with an apples-to-apples comparison of what is being replaced. I’ll be talking specifically about an aluminum-clad casement wood window in a typical mid-range custom home. For this example, let’s look at a home $300,000-700,000 in value with roughly 40 windows in it, and let’s assume a white plastic vinyl insert window is not an option for this home. 

Traditional window replacement would require the entire frame of the window to be cut out from the wall. This can have a significant effect on the surrounding surfaces. Interior trim has to be removed, damaging drywall and paint. Exterior trim will also have to be removed, and if you have brick, stone or stucco, the window frame literally has to be cut out of the opening. 

And all exterior treatment has the potential to create water infiltration issues when sealing the new window unit. So, now you have an entirely new frame that has to be secured into the opening, flashed and sealed properly. 

My argument to this process is, ultimately: Can you fully get proper attachment and watertight seal with a replacement window long after the home was built originally?

Fenster Sash Replacement

Our process removes the entire frame seal question from the equation. 

The frame is never removed or altered in any way. The surrounding surfaces are not disturbed in any way. The sash panel is simply removed from the existing frame. 

For operating sashes, the sash is pulled from its hinges and operating hardware. The original hardware is then transferred to the new replacement sash and the sash is reset in the frame just as the original was. 

For stationary sashes, there are two common mounting methods. Some windows have exposed screws through the interior jamb or through the edge of the sash itself. The sash is simply removed by backing out these screws. The second method is to have brackets hidden behind the interior trim around the sash called the screen stop.

Why Replace Just the Sash and Not the Whole Window?

Let’s first examine what is wrong with the windows and why you want to replace them. 

Now, if you’re someone who just wants new stuff for the sake of having new stuff, then you can stop reading. For those of you a little more practical or without an endless budget, this is an important read. Ask yourself these questions before you rip out your entire window.

  1. Is there anything wrong with the frame? The answer is probably no, and there probably never will be. Then why tear it out?
  2. Poor seal? The weatherstripping can be replaced and even upgraded without tearing out the entire frame.
  3. Foggy glass? This is specific to the sash itself. Replacing just the sash solves this issue without a full tear-out.
  4. Rotten wood? An aluminum-clad window traditionally has an all-metal frame with a cladded wood sash. If the frame has no potential to rot, but the sash does, why not replace only the part of the window that needs to be replaced?
  5. Poor efficiency? Upgrading efficiency is probably the most common reason for replacement. Here’s what I’ll say to that. The materials, construction and assembly techniques for clad wood windows have changed little-to-none over the past 40 years.

By design, an aluminum-clad window frame of today looks no different than a frame from the 80s. The technology is in the glass, and nothing else. The bells and whistles like trendy hardware, blinds in the glass, roll-up screens and fancy colors are all great, but do nothing to improve efficiency: It’s about the glass. There’s the reason to tear them all out, right? Wrong. Fenster sashes come with the same Energy Star approved glass units that any major window manufacturer can offer you. 

Ready to get started? Great! Check out our sash replacement line and gather all the details you need about ordering a sash window replacement for your home here. Then contact us today!

8 Comments

  • Steve
    Posted May 23, 2020 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

    Norco sash pack tilt windows installed around 1990. Used a vinyl jamb liner. Square sash ends. Any reason to be concerned your kits will not work? The width of the liners is 3.5 inches. They attach to clips. Thanks

    • Posted May 26, 2020 at 8:44 pm | Permalink

      Steve, Technically yes. That would require a bracket mounted liner. My concern is there seems to be some odd sizing that comes along with other sash packs. While our kits are sized to fit the original opening, we would not be able to coach you on correct sizing to fit someone else’s after-market sash pack. BUT, that is irrelevant at this point. As of 5/26/20 as I type this, we are currently not producing any jambliner products. Our supply chain has been decimated by the pandemic. We have no prospects of a new supplier at this time. Production is suspended indefinitely.

      • Mark
        Posted May 28, 2020 at 8:12 pm | Permalink

        Is there any hope that you’ll resume production? Are you seeking out new suppliers?

      • Posted June 2, 2020 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

        We certainly hope so Mark. Two major product lines are in jeopardy if we don’t.

  • Posted July 1, 2020 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    Everything on you need a new sash not a new window is explained and what are the things we should know and keep it in our mind are discussed over here. So, anyone searching for same topic may find their shelter over here. This is a great article and you are banged on with your points about. Come across https://foreverblinds.com.au/ and hope you can visit this too to get more information.

  • Posted July 17, 2020 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    All the best information regarding why you need a new sash not and a new window with a brief analyzed discussion and data on them. Such articles are not only knowledge enhancers but also very interesting to read and to learn to compare from. This resource Conceptblindsandshutters.co.nz i came across recently and is nice too as this particular site

  • Chris
    Posted July 27, 2020 at 8:48 pm | Permalink

    I have some norco windows in my house built in 1990. Years ago I ordered some replacement sashes on fixed windows using a number in the inside frame i think. Is this still possible? I think the outside is either clay or sand. The actual glass is about 14.5 by 41.25. Cannot read the stamping now but i also have a new replacement that I got about 10 years ago that I have not put in yet. I need 3 more. I wonder if you still have my name in your database. Thanks.

    • Posted July 29, 2020 at 11:55 am | Permalink

      Hey Chris, I’m sure we can help you. “Years ago” might be an eternity for us. We are changing so rapidly to meet the growing need for our products, our systems have changed nearly from year to year. I recommend filling out a new quote request form with your info and order specs and we’ll get you into our current system.

Post a Comment

Your email is kept private. Required fields are marked *