It happens to everyone, one day you’re looking out a perfectly fine window, and the next, that same window has a crack or chip in it. Worse if it’s not leaking water and letting in a draft. The first reaction for many homeowners is to get the window replaced. But replacing a window can be a large investment, and it can take time for a window repair company to come out to assess the window.
So what can you do in the meantime? Check out some these quick window fixes that can buy you some time to assess what windows to get, and tie you over until the order arrives.
Fixes for cracked glass
If you have a crack in your window there are a few things you can do to keep it from spreading. It is important to help keep your house sealed against drafts while you decide if it is something that can be repaired or if you need to look into window replacement.
For smaller cracks from gravel or small hail, you can use transparent shellac or nail varnish to fill in the crack. This can take a while though, as you need to put on new layers after the old ones have dried until it is flush with the rest of the window. If it is a bit larger you can fill the crack with super glue. Again you will have to layer on top of the dry layers so it can take some time. In both cases, make sure that you clean the window area completely before applying the fix.
Another quick, but decidedly temporary fix, is to apply masking or clear packing tape to both sides of the crack. This only works if you can access both sides of the pane. In the winter, this is not the best fix, as the colder weather will hinder the adhesive’s sticking ability, and in the hotter summer months it can melt the tape. But for a temporary fix until you can get someone out to take a look at the crack, it is a pretty useful one.
What to do if the glass shattered
If the glass is shattered, put on some gloves and eye protection and clear out the broken pieces. Then you can put two-ply plastic like heavy duty trash bags, and tape it securely within the empty frame, or you can fill in the hole with wood for a temporary barrier from the outdoors. Of course, both of these fixes aren’t pretty, but they will do the job until you can decide if you want to put in a new sealed unit, or if you need to replace the entire window.
Should the damage be very severe you will likely need to replace the entire window, glass, and frames. After dealing with the hassle of a broken window, it would be understandable for you to want to replace your old window with one that requires less maintenance, and has better energy efficiency. Getting triple glazed windows to replace the broken ones will add to the safety and security of your home, and you can work with a project consultant from a custom windows company to make sure that the new windows meet all your needs.
Learn everything you need to know about getting replacement windows:
Find out how much new windows should cost
See the whole process in our INFOGRAPHIC
Find out how our warranty protects your windows after they’re installed