Tips on How to Unstick a Window

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Sometimes seemingly taking on a life of its own, wood can expand and contract depending on the changes in the weather. While that is not always a bad thing, it can become quite problematic when wood swells up around your windows – making them difficult to open and sometimes even resulting in the hassle and costs associated with the damage from using aggressive methods to force them open.

Next time you have a window that is stuck shut, instead of wielding a big, scary tool to pry it open (or more likely breaking something), here are some things you can try:

This may sound obvious, but first things first. Check to see if your window is locked or nailed shut. 

If your window is swollen due to humid or rainy weather, try using a blow dryer. Aim high heat between the window and the window frame for about five minutes and just repeat the process until it opens. Running a dehumidifier in rooms with sticky windows can help too.

If paint is your problem, don’t curse the idiot who painted your window shut. Instead, gently run a putty knife between your window and your window frame inside and out to free things up. If you still have issues, wrap a hammer in thick, cushy cloth so you don’t leave any marks and lightly tap the corners of the window frame.

Preventive measures are a good idea too. Clean your tracks. You can also run either candle wax or soap across them to keep them slippery. Silicone lubricant is best for vinyl tracks. If your windows continue to stick, you can always sand them down and repaint them.

Gary Wells

Owner of Window Expressions, Annapolis' premier custom window treatment specialist. With years of of experience in the industry, Gary takes pride in his keen eye for design and his ability to transform clients' visions into reality. He finds joy in leading a local, family-owned business committed to putting the "custom" in customer service.

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