It would be ideal if you could just go right out and order up some replacement windows as soon as you had the whim to do so, but if you are like most homeowners, buying replacement windows is an expense that you may have to save for to afford. While your eventual goal may be to get replacement windows, there are a few things you can do to keep the dated wooden windows you have now functional and aesthetically appealing for a little bit longer.
1. Avoid opening and closing your wooden windows more than necessary. - Wooden windows are notorious for getting stuck, out of line, and damaged due to swelling and contracting of the wood and compromised aging components. Therefore, opening and closing the windows can be not only a chore for you, but a source of stress on the windows as well. It's also possible that you could easily cause damage if the window gets stuck open or closed. If you believe your wooden windows are breaking down, try to avoid opening and closing them as much as possible to prevent adding stress to the well-worn frames.
2. Make sure the exterior of your windows is protected. - If your wooden windows are left open and exposed to the elements from the exterior of your home, they will deteriorate much more quickly than usual. You may be able to preserve what life is left by keeping storm windows in place over the outside of each window, which will ward off excess moisture and prevent further damage. If you do not have storm windows available, you can cover the outside with a sheet of clear plastic or even a sheet of clear plexi-glass.
3. Avoid using harsh chemical cleaners on your wooden windows. - Harsh chemical cleaners will never fare well with wooden windows--especially those that may already be showing signs of decay. Abrasive chemicals will strip off protective sealers and coatings and slip their way into the fibers of the wood. This type of damage will leave your wooden windows vulnerable to moisture, mildew, and dry rot.
In the end, if you feel that you cannot make your wooden windows make it through another season, make sure you talk to a replacement window sales and service professional. Not only do many of them offer financing for qualified individuals, they will work with you to help you get your windows replaced at an affordable price.