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Marlin 11-03-2007 05:13 PM

Replacing a window in a foundation wall?
I've installed plenty of windows in my time but have never installed one in a brick or cinder block casing. The windows I'm pulling out are very old. It seems on one of them they just put wood around the hole creating a frame for the window. The other one seems to be just a pane of glass cemented in place. I suppose any structure is covered by cement.

Right now my thoughts are the best route may be just ripping all the wood out of the frames and starting from scratch. Problem is I'm not sure how to install a window in a cinder block or brick surround. Do I just fasten two by fours creating a frame then install a window to that? How does the nailer get sealed/hidden with that method though?

PKHI 11-03-2007 05:24 PM

If there is an existing wood frame, that cannot be re-used, I strip every thing down to the bare brick or concrete. I then make what is called a buck frame out of pressure treated 2x6 and i will apply sealant between the frame and the wall and then use masonry screws to attach it to brick, or a ramset to attach it to cement. Then I install the new window in the buck frame.

If there is a steel frame embedded in the concrete, I remove the sash and cut off the hinges, or break out the glass if it is non operable, and install a custom sized window against the old steel sash from the inside using silicone. I then install a frame around the inside of the window screwed to the wall to hold the window in place.

PKHI 11-03-2007 05:27 PM

I made the assumption you were talking about a basement window. a regular window would be very much the same thing. Usually most of the existing wood frame can be saved and a replacement installed in the old frame and then the old wood wrapped with aluminum. OR everything is ripped down to the brick and we install what is called a block frame window made especially for a masonry opening.

Marlin 11-03-2007 06:00 PM

Yes these are basement windows. Part of my foundation is brick, and another part (an extension) is block.
This is the window in the block portion I want to change.
This has a frame build around it as you can see. So far as I can tell this frame is good. I would like to remove the middle section and install one large window but if it's a lot more work or I discover some load bearing structure in there I'll go with two smaller ones. The outside is stuccoed and the window recessed in the foundation. So I suppose if the wood needed to be changed I would need to chisel out some of the stucco to do this?

This is the window in the bricked portion I want to change.

Marlin 11-03-2007 06:00 PM
I take it here I need to chisel out that cement that's obviously been added around the window to really see what I have. Then I should do something like they did with another window in the bricked portion.

This window as you can see is nothing more than some 2x and a swinging framed pane of glass. I would like to replace these as well but they arn't a priority. I probably need to frame around that opening in a similar fashion to this right?

Another question though. All the windows I've installed have had the nailing flange around the front. That would make it impossible to install without removing the stucco outside or removing the wood inside, nailing the window to the frame, then re-installing the frame. Is this another type of window without that flange that would go in easier?

Thank you very much for your help.

PKHI 11-03-2007 06:06 PM

If you could provide me with pictures of the outsides, I could answer all your questions and tell you the best way to do it.

Marlin 11-03-2007 06:20 PM

Here is the small one.

Marlin 11-03-2007 06:20 PM

And the larger one.

Marlin 11-03-2007 06:21 PM

PKHI 11-03-2007 06:31 PM

EWWWWW thats yucky... for all of those except the steel sash, I would rip out everything right down to the foundation. and build a new buck frame out of most likely 2x8 PT and then order a "replacement" style window that fits into your new buck frame. Make sure you use plenty of sealant between the buckframe and the wall, and the window and the buck frame. Ideally we would wrap all the exposed wood on the outside with aluminum coil stock.

As for the small steel sash window, open it from the inside, remove the sash, break off the hinges, and install a replacement style hopper window into that steel frame. IF the steel frame has so much rust that it disintegrates when you touch it you are going to have to either, chip it all out if it breaks really easily, or, we would leave it, and install the window on the outside of the steel frame, and block it in with scraps of 2x and then wrap it with aluminum.

AtlanticWBConst. 11-03-2007 07:10 PM

You culd also install PVC composite trim work over the PT famework on the exterior. Use the proper urethane white sealant caulk as needed.

PKHI 11-03-2007 07:37 PM

Yea the PVC is a good Idea, I have found however that sometimes those windows go in so funny that the only way to make up the differences are to use aluminum, most people don't have access to a brake though

Marlin 11-04-2007 05:04 AM

I don't quite understand what you're saying AtlanticWBConst. I'm not sure what you're referring to by PT frameword. And what do you mean by that, you're just suggesting using PVC trim on the outside instead of wood?

AtlanticWBConst. 11-04-2007 06:08 AM


Originally Posted by Marlin (Post 71553)
I don't quite understand what you're saying AtlanticWBConst. I'm not sure what you're referring to by PT frameword. And what do you mean by that, you're just suggesting using PVC trim on the outside instead of wood?

Yes, we just did one last week (large basement replacement double windows). We ripped out the old. Kept the PT wood that was already installed in the opening. Reframed the opening a bit. Installed the New construction style windows (all vinyl). And then, instead of installing wood around all the windows, we installed composite trim, including a composite vinyl lower sill. Sealed it all up with PL brand white Urethane caulking.

Wish I had pics of the new set up.

The new set up looks similar to the old, except that the windows are vinyl and the trim work is all composite.
Tho, to get the look of the installed composite trim right, you would need some basic carpentry skills and some of the right tools (table saw,compound saw)
Here's a pic. of the before, I'll take an ''after shot'' - later this week when I go out to check on the progress on that particular job:

PKHI 11-04-2007 09:21 AM

The ones that suck are the ones that are in deep narrow window wells, and there is no room to swing a hammer

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