Repairing wood window sills

All across the country, many homes that were built before the 1960's have wood sash windows. These windows have sloped wood sills outside to drain water away from the window. In addition, there is wood trim on the sides and across the top of each window. By replacing the wood sashes with a vinyl pocket window, the energy efficiency of the window increases tremendously, drastically reducing heating costs during the cold winter months. Another benefit of the vinyl windows is the fact that they are virtually maintenance free. No more painting or having to recondition them like you do with wood.

But, what about the wood that surrounds your windows on the outside? You have that wood sill on the bottom, and the brick molding around the edge of the opening. You still have to maintain that periodically or, in some cases, replace it due to deterioration. One of the solutions to the problem is to wrap the wood with aluminum. Certainly, aluminum is a more durable material than wood. But, aluminum has to be painted, so you are still dealing with a paint issue. Also, a homeowner cannot install the aluminum without a special bending tool and the knowledge of how to use it properly. So, you have to hire a professional. But now there is a product that is maintenance free, and can be installed by the homeowner using basic tools. Not only that, but the end result looks better than the aluminum process.

By covering your wood with vinyl, you eliminate the need to ever paint or replace your wood again. Even if you have some rot in the wood, you can repair the damaged wood with filler, then install the vinyl cover, and your window sill will look like new. You need to remove any paint that is peeling before attaching the trim. You cut the sill wrap extrusion with a chopsaw or hacksaw, and you cut it 1 1/2" longer than the sill itself because you have to attach caps on the ends. The sill piece has to be notched to fit around the brick molding on each end. You accomplish that with a jigsaw or hacksaw. You have to use an extreme weather adhesive, like Dynaflex 230 from DAP. If you use an adhesive that can't withstand sub freezing weather, the vinyl can come loose from the wood. The trim that covers the brick molding and surrounding wood is an L-Shaped piece, and comes in several sizes to fit most applications. It can be ripped down using a table saw, jigsaw, or simple plastic cutting tool. So, no matter what size wood you have around your windows, the L-Angle trim will fit. You can watch a you tube video of the window sill wrap process and you can watch the surrounding wood being covered