Awning windows are a common type of crank out windows that open outward from the bottom-up. They are most ideal in kitchens when placed above the kitchen counter because they are easy to operate. The fact that they open from the bottom also means that you can open them year round, regardless of the air condition, to allow for good air circulation in your kitchen.
These windows are preferred over sliding windows because they are easier to operate (by cranking a handle to push or pull the bottom), offer superb ventilation while keeping rainwater out, are more efficient, and are generally harder to break.
Despite their durability, awning windows are prone to wear and will eventually need replacement. This can be done by a trained professional or the homeowner. Here are the basic steps for an awning window replacement if you choose to do it yourself.
Step 1: Measure the old window
Before going shopping for your replacement window awning, you should first get precise measurements of your existing window and frame to ensure a good fit. Open your old window to see how far it extends and whether there are any obstructions to take into account when getting new awning windows for them to open fully.
Step 2: Remove the old window
Remove the old window and any debris, including pieces of wood and nail heads from around the opening. Inspect the wood framework for stability, rot, or damage that may compromise the strength and functionality of the replacement windows.
Step 3: Flashing
Put up the flashing, making sure to overlap the pieces so they perform better. You can use silicone caulking to attach the final piece of flashing to the frame and create a proper seal.
Step 4: Position the replacement window
Slide the new awning window into the opening and ensure that it is completely plumb and level using wood shims. When satisfied, place the window in its rightful position and secure it by nailing down the mounting fin to the frame. You can then add trim pieces or finishes or make other adjustments to your new window.
Installing an electric awning window
If you installed a manually operated window, you can still replace the hand crank yourself with an electric awning window operator by simply following the manufacturer’s instructions.
Alternatively, you can install a replacement motorized awning using the steps below:
Step 1: Prepare the window opening
Start by taking measurements of the awning width and the wall where the awning will be mounted, while staying clear of any downspouts and outdoor lights.
Step 2: Secure the header board
If you have vinyl siding, you will need to cut and remove it to allow for header board installation.
Simply mount the awning header board to the studs using washers and lag bolts. It is important that the header board be firmly attached to the wall to ensure that it can sufficiently support the weight of the awning window. Check to ensure that the header board is level before attaching it to the studs and then apply caulk to all the joints.
Drill holes in the studs and secure the header board using an adjustable wrench to tighten the bolts.
Step 3: Install the mounting brackets for your new window
Use the lag bolts and washers to install the mounting brackets, making sure that it is level to the wall where the awning will be installed. You should allow about 12 inches of mounting space.
Step 4: Install the awning replacement
Ensure that the mounting brackets are level, and then place the awning on the brackets while ensuring that there is sufficient clearance between the bottom of the window and the base of the opening where it is being mounted. If you don’t have enough clearance for the awning you can instead use a roof mount kit to mount the window from the roof.
Mounting the awning is usually a two-person job, as you will need one person to position the awning into the brackets while the other lifts and slides it into the brackets. Once done, use bolts to secure the mounting bar to the brackets and tighten them.
Step 5: Install the motorized crank
Simply replace the existing hand crank by placing the motorized crank mechanism over the former hand crank. Use an Allen wrench or screwdriver to remove the hand crank handle so you can lock and tighten the electric awning mechanism in place. Test it to check if it has installed properly and operates as designed.
Finally, Enjoy Your New Awning Window Replacement
Awning windows are great options for most traditional and contemporary homes, including Victorian, mid-century, Cape Cod and craftsman homes, cottages, Tudors, farmhouses, and ranch homes. There are different styles to choose from to suit your home design.
The cost of replacement awning windows depends on the size of the windows, their insulation, quality of the frames, and several other factors. In some cases, replacing worn windows may be a more cost effective solution compared to performing repeated repairs over time.