Working Windows by Terence Meany

Category: Home Improvement

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A great primer that convinced us to restore our classic six light double-hung windows instead of replacing them.

Our Review

So why would someone want to restore old windows instead of just replacing them? Well, in our case:

A) They're gorgeous, practical works of art...the eyes of the house. Our windows are "six-lite prairie style, double hung" windows. They're one of the more archtypical syles for bungalows in the Midwest, and are simply a big part of what make our house the thing we lofe.

B) When restored properly, they will be weathertight as well as beautiful. (They are NOT maintenance free, however. If you are looking for maintenance free, restoration may not be for you.)

C) It will cost us less to restore these windows than to replace them with a vinyl clad wood window. This is based on the number of windows we have (25) and the shape that they are in.

So if those benefits are interesting you you, then you might be interested in this book. Terence Meany has written a fun book useful for the do-it-yourselfer as well as those just hoping to learn about how window restoration works. In our case, we ended up hiring someone to do the initial work (cracking open windows sealed by paint, replacing broken ropes and building a few replicas) but we'll be doing some ourselves, too (striping and refinishing).

With years of experience, Terence brings both wisdom and humor (and some nice diagrams) to his writing. He gives beginners a realistic preview of what you're likely to encounter. Those with experience might find the book a bit basic but will appreciate his bredth of experience and his recommendations on how to handle a few unusual challenges.

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Unbiased reviews of tools and resources based on our experiences restoring an old home.

a neighborhood of home improvement blogs

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