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I want to replace my aluminium windows

7904 Views 6 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  bretto
I am trying to make head-tails of replacement vinyl windows. From what I gather, there are windows that cover the existing aluminum frames if you go that route. Doesnt that leave a rather big ledge or frame all the way around in the sill before it actually gets to the glass cutting down on the actual size of the previous window? I dont want to pull any siding off to put in new construction.
I am wondering if you can pull/rip the old aluminum frames out and just add a pocket window and screw them into the sides of the frame to mount thus giving the same window size. That is where I'm at at not finding an answer to. Also if that was an option is there a problem with sealing them up? Anyone know if anyone manufactures double hung pocket windows?

Thanks!, hope someone will have the answers
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Yes, you can pull the frames out with a come-along. Of course that is easier said than done. The trick is to collaspe the frames in evenly on all sides. (remove the glass first, duh) Sometime the nails come along with the frame, sometimes the frame tears and the nails are left in. No problem either way. Most windows with a center rail, that rail will needed to be removed first. Windows can be ordered without a nail fin. When ordering a fixed window (one that does not open), order the window with a slider stock frame. This will allow you to screw the window frames from the inside to the existing stud framing. Although this is not the best way to replace windows it can be done. Additional flashing should be installed at the top if exposed to weather. Use plenty of caulk.
Not a necesity to remove the old aluminum frames.

Windows come two ways, be they vinyl or wood. Replacements fit into an existing window frame, and use the outer edge as a stop for the new insert window. New construction types-the only difference is a nailing fin attached to the new frame for nailing to the house framing. For these, the old window/frame has to be completely removed, which usually requires removing some of the exterior siding. That can get complicated, and sometimes the siding cannot be matched. If it is brick, that is not an economical option. I often use the aluminum frame(after removing the sash) as the stop for a new replacement window. You bed the new window in a layer of caulk on the aluminum frame and secure the new frame with screws to the house framing. Careful measurements need to be taken to insure a proper fit.

Hope this helps.
Couldn't you cut off the fins of the existing aluminum frame? Allowing the newer windows to bed on the sills which would allow the window to be ordered roughly an inch bigger all aound. This would then leave the nailing fin intact and in place. I could see that taking some time but aluminum is fairly soft and a sawzall is quick. I'd rather not have to loose any window view if I can help it
Yes you can cut off the existing nail fin from the outside. The problem in doing that is running into the interior window liner with your sawsall blade, often resulting in the blade bending. Some are wood, some are sheetrock. More than likely if it's wood you will need to remove the liner prior to cutting the fin to prevent the blade from bending. If it's sheetrock, more than likely it will have to repaired or replaced. I have found the collasping the frame in saves time and money. The way your siding is nailed next to the window is also a factor. If the siding is nailed thru the nail fin of the window, then cutting off the nail fin would probably be the best option.
Im not saying cutting the nailing fin but rather the fins the sash's are slotted. That way the new window would sit closer to the sill (2x4's)instead of on top of those fins. And it would be close to same size as the old window.
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