Wooden window restoration: giving your windows new life
Wooden frames have an undeniable charm, superior to more modern alternatives such as PVC or aluminium. It is no coincidence, in fact, that these solutions often use a wooden cover, to take advantage of its beauty and aesthetic performance.
In this regard, we recommend you to read our article about the pros and cons of aluminium, PVC and wood frames.
Wood, however, needs periodic maintenance to preserve its beauty and functionality, because it is more vulnerable to the weather and atmospheric aggressors.
How often maintenance needs to be carried out depends on the climatic zone and the type of windows and doors.
Since wooden windows are expensive and valuable, there is a tendency to be proactive with preventive practices to avoid excessive damage. In extreme cases, however, a real renovation will be required.
Let’s see the optimum way to maintain and restore wooden windows and doors.
What we are talking about in this article
All windows and doors need periodic maintenance to prevent deterioration, but wooden ones are made of a natural material which is subject, over time, to deformation and deterioration, so they need special precautions.
To prevent wear and tear, it is very important to remove dust. This is a precaution that is often underestimated, but it must be remembered that those small grains are also acid residues of pollutants, which corrode the wood.
To clean wooden frames it is recommended to use natural products and brushes with soft bristles. It is better to avoid chemicals but, if this is not possible, at least choose non-corrosive products, such as ammonia, bleach or alcohol, for example.
You can use steam, but keep the brush at a safe distance of about 30 cm to prevent the wood from deforming or detaching.
For metal parts, such as handles and hinges, there are many non-corrosive products on the market, which will not damage any protective coating, but the ideal is to use neutral soaps and soft rags.
For the best possible wear prevention, it is advisable to oil the hinges, handles and joints at least once a year.
For this, unlocking sprays, which create friction between mechanical moving parts, are not recommended. The preference is for the use of Vaseline or grease.
Wooden frames should be retouched once or twice a year, depending on the visible damage, such as scratches, imperfections and dents, and also taking into account the characteristics of the frame, such as the type of paint and wood.
Before painting, it will be necessary to clean and dry well, sand down any more damaged areas, remove the dust and protect both the glass and the metal parts with rubberised paper, if any retouching will be done near those points.
Next, apply a coat of paint with a soft bristle brush, which guarantees an even application. Let it dry and proceed with a second coat of paint after 12 hours.
Every 3 or 4 years, depending on use and exposure to weathering, a complete painting of the windows and doors should be carried out. At this time, you can also think about changing the finish or choosing a different color.
Since this operation takes longer than retouching, it is better to remove the wooden window and place it on two trestles, to make it easier for you.
Before starting, you will need to choose the color you want and buy the appropriate paint and brushes.
It is always advisable to cover glass and hardware with rubberized paper and, above all, clean the surface thoroughly and sand it down well to eliminate imperfections.
At this point you can proceed with two coats of paint and then let it dry well before reassembling the frame.
Restoration of wooden windows: when and how to do it
Restoration is a more elaborate job than just complete painting. It is a matter of giving new life to old windows that are extremely worn.
First, remove the windows from the frame, carefully remove the glass and metal parts. Place the window on two trestles and proceed as follows:
- Remove the paint entirely by applying a paint stripper;
- Sand the wood;
- Remove any rotted wood;
- Treat damaged parts with a wood preservative and apply a woodworm treatment;
- Level cracks and crevices with a good filler;
- Sand down and apply an impregnating agent to protect the frame from atmospheric aggressors;
- Dust and proceed with the first coat of paint, diluted with white spirit;
- Leave to dry, sand and proceed with the second coat of paint, undiluted;
- Leave to dry, reinsert glass and hardware and reassemble.
Replacing windows and doors is expensive. The cost varies depending on the product chosen.
On average, wooden frames are more expensive than those made from other materials, and, as illustrated in this article, need more attention and constant and complex maintenance.
Wood after all is a natural material and in some cases very valuable but its aesthetic appeal and the warm feeling it offers are unparalleled.
So it’s better to take good care of it.