Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

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bill18163
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Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#1 Post by bill18163 »

These windows are the original ones that were installed when the house was built 13 years ago. They are Andersen 400 series windows. The one I'm having trouble with has two 6x3 sashes. The outside of my house is brick and under the windows the sill is made of individual bricks on their sides. After doing some investigation it looks like when the window was installed the bottom of the window was bowed. Over the years I have had to replace the openers and cranks because of it being very hard to crank closed. The parts wear out because of the force being applied. Using a level shows the window assembly is bowed up at the bottom and if you close the window you can tell by looking at the gap at the bottom of the two sashes. The gap gets smaller and smaller as you go toward the center of the window. I don't know how they did this except maybe when the window assembly was installed they shimmed it into this position and put pressure in the downward direction because the bottom of the window is tight to the brick sill. So if I have explained this problem sufficiently, can this window be repaired in some way or does it have to be removed and reinstalled? By the way, there are many other windows in the house like this but they can be closed without too much trouble although they do bind.

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TheWindowNerd
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#2 Post by TheWindowNerd »

Your issue is a common new construction compression settlement issue, especially with masonary.
This is really an install failure, the builder mason did lot leave any flex at the base of the unit.
the fix is to remove the roll out course of brick and reinstall them allowing for the settlement/compression.

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HomeSealed
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#3 Post by HomeSealed »

Are these single or twin units (like French doors) that we are talking about? Casements are notorious for sagging over the years, so sounds about right if this is a twin unit. In the event this is a single and the bottom corners both have clearance but the center gets tight that would be odd. Even then, I'd look at the hinge side reveal to see if it gets larger as you go up, and the top reveal to get large moving across from latch side to hinge side.

If they are sagging, yes that can be fixed. I'm not intimately familiar with that era Andersen, but if they have adjusters and any room left to move, that is an easy fix. If not, the adjustment would require some remounting of hardware to get things straightened out.

If the top and sides look good and this is truly an issue of crowning of the sill, then you may have larger issues.

bill18163
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#4 Post by bill18163 »

So: "TheWindowNerd" I assume that the roll out course of brick at the base of the unit is what I called the sill in my post? I referred to them as bricks laying on their sides. If they were removed and replaced leaving space then the pressure would be relieved at the bottom of the window? Do you think that the window would then go back to being level at the bottom? Or could the window have taken a "set" and remain bowed even if the bricks were reworked?

"HomeSealed" :I guess this window would be what you are calling twin units. Two windows side by side. One sash opening left and the other opening right all in one big window. I'll have to look at the two places you referred to for reveal gap. I know some Andersen windows can be adjusted but this unit is not one of them. I checked it out on the Andersen web site. Could you describe "remounting of hardware"? How would you do it? Would the "crowning of the sill" be taken care of as "TheWindowNerd" mentioned by reworking the brick? Any suggestions would be appreciated.

To either of you guys: How big of a job is it for a brick layer to rework that sill?
Thank you both

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TheWindowNerd
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#5 Post by TheWindowNerd »

The 400 series casements you have do not have adjustment.
The brick does not move ( or hardly), When the lumber shrank and the load compresses the opening it pulls the window down. You might have to pull the nails out of the bottom flange for it to relax.
How thick is the mortar joint under the roll out course? Can you just remove the roll out, clean off all the old mortar reinstall with a tighter course joint. Or do you have to cut them to get enough clearance. How many openings do you have to do?
"crowning of the sill" tells me this is not sagging and remounting the hardware will not help. But that is confirmed by doing what Brandon refers to by checking the reveal, both horizontal and vertical.
You could also look for an AW Certified Service Tech to eval for you. Call where the windows were supplied from or the nearest circle of excellence dealer.

theWindowNerd

bill18163
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#6 Post by bill18163 »

Right now I have only one window that I would have worked on. Others are hard to close but they can be closed with the crank without too much trouble. This one bad one requires that I go outside and push it shut while my wife cranks. Is it possible to put photos in a post on this site? I still have to get outside and check the reveal but it would be great if I could show a photo. What is a "AW Certified Service Tech" and where do I find this person? What would a "circle of excellence dealer" be? The largest Andersen window dealer I know of here in Erie, Pa. is our Home Depot. I don't know where the builder purchased the windows and I don't think he wants to be of any help. I called his number a while back to just talk it over with him and his recording was still the same on his phone but he never called me back. It's been 13 years since he built the house for me and I know he is the same age as me which is 77 so maybe he isn't well or just doesn't want to get involved. I would really like to get a good window guy in here that I can trust to give me good advise and I don't mind paying him for his thoughts.

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TheWindowNerd
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#7 Post by TheWindowNerd »

The other windows have you cleaned well. Clean the guides/tracks top and bottom, once try spray with silicone spray.
Spray silicone spray on a rag or paper towel wipe the contact surfaces of the sash.

Andersen Window Certified Service Tech is just what you think, factory trained service tech for AW products. They are usually attached to a " Circle of Excellence Dealer", an AW dealer that is authorized to sell and service AW products.
HD aint any of the above.

Call AW directly and ask for a referral, specifically the Certified Service Tech or perhaps a well seasoned AW Authorized Contractor.

theWindowNerd

bill18163
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#8 Post by bill18163 »

Here are some pictures of the window:
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DSC_0003.JPG
DSC_0002.JPG
DSC_0001.JPG

bill18163
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#9 Post by bill18163 »

DSC_0004.JPG
DSC_0005.JPG
DSC_0006.JPG

bill18163
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#10 Post by bill18163 »

DSC_0007.JPG
DSC_0008.JPG
DSC_0009.JPG

bill18163
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#11 Post by bill18163 »

DSC_0010.JPG

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TheWindowNerd
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#12 Post by TheWindowNerd »

Looks like what I thought.
But you can simply check to see if the lower rail of the sash has bowed.
Open the window and put a straight edge on it.

bill18163
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#13 Post by bill18163 »

Could you be a little more specific about the lower rail of the sash. I don't know what that is.

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TheWindowNerd
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#14 Post by TheWindowNerd »

You know what the sash is, right?

The bottom horizontal is the lower rail.
To see if you are looking at two opposing issues. the frame of the window crowned up, which is what I think your major issue is. But then to check the sash lower rail to make sure it is straight and not bowed/smiling.

bill18163
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Re: Casement Windows Bind When Trying to Close

#15 Post by bill18163 »

OK, I think I have it now. I opened the window(sash) and to get a good reading using the level I removed the window operator and also the track that the operator slides in. This will allow my level to sit on the flat surface of the lower rail with no interference from the opening hardware. The surface is level. Perfectly straight. So I think we have determined that the frame of the window is bowed up. Correct?

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