Here’s How To Replace A Window Pane, Really

Try googling “how to replace a window pane.” Try it now, and click on a few results that you think are good and trustworthy enough. Notice anything? These guides aren’t really guides, because they don’t get into the actual “how” part. They’re so full of fluff, which can get pretty confusing, especially for those with no experience replacing window glass.

Well, this article is here for you. Read on and you will learn how to replace a window pane really well. Not necessarily like a pro, but you’ll be able to trust yourself to do the job when the time comes that you need it. So let’s go! You can also learn more about A Step By Step Guide On How To Replace Window Glass.

Step 1: Measure the window for the replacement glass

Take a tape measure and get the dimensions of the window pane. Do not measure exactly where the glass and the frame meet. Make sure that you start the measurement from the rough opening, taking the width first. When you have the width’s dimensions, round your measurement to around 1/16th of an inch.

Next, measure the height, rounding it off again to 1/16th of an inch. And lastly, subtract around ⅛ inch from both the width and height of the window’s rough opening. After you get the measurements, double and triple check to make sure they’re correct. Then call up your local glass manufacturer to order the glass.

Step 2: Scrape off old putty

Take a paint scraper or any sharp-enough tool and start scraping off the old putty from the window frame. Then take a brush to clean off any leftover residue, to make sure that the area is clean enough for the new coat of putty.

Step 3: Prepare the rabbets

A rabbet is the recess or groove that is cut into the window frame to allow the glass to sit in it. Prepare the rabbets by taking out old metal glazing points. Next, take a sander or some sandpaper and sand the frame down to bare wood. Next, apply exterior primer on the wood using the brush.

Step 4: Take the putty and put it in the rabbets

Take a handful of putty and knead it until it’s warm and malleable enough. Afterward, press the putty into the rabbets. Make sure to completely fill the rabbets. It doesn’t matter if it looks messy or uneven. Just fill the rabbets.

Step 5: Put the glass in

Assuming that you already have your replacement window pane, bed the glass into the frame. Gently apply pressure on the glass using your fingertips until the glass is fully centered in the opening, and until about 1/8 inch of putty remains between the rabbet and the face of the glass. If you see any voids develop under the glass, pull it out, add more putty, and do it again.

Related Page: Window pane replacement

Step 6: Install the glazier points

Place a glazier’s point at the center of each side of the window pane, laying it flat on the glass and fitting the putty knife’s tip against the point’s raised shoulders. Then, slowly rock the point side to side until it gets seated flush in the wood.
Apply a little bit of downward pressure, and repeat on the other side. Also install on the two remaining sides. Afterward, flip the frame over and scrape off excess putty that might’ve squeezed out the opposite side.

Step 7: Make putty rope and put it on the frame

Take some putty and roll it in your hands to make putty rope around ¾ of an inch thick. Then take this putty rope and apply it around the edges of the glass, making sure to press it down firmly against the rabbets. Smooth out the putty with a putty knife afterward, doing it at a 45-degree angle. Take care to fine-tune the putty so it doesn’t look too messy, then wait about a week for the putty to harden.

Step 8: Prime the frame and paint it

Once the putty is hard enough, take some oil-based primer and paint, then thoroughly coat the frame, applying the oil-based primer first. Then apply the paint next, doing a few coats until the paint is even.

How To Replace A Window Pane: Final Thoughts

And there you have it! It’s that simple! Replacing a window pane isn’t rocket science, so don’t be intimidated by it. Plus, it’s a handy life skill to have. And if you have a window replacement project going on, make sure to call us at Peninsula Glass and we’re more than willing to help you out with your made-to-measure glass needs.

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