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correct way to trim a window

Posted by elizawhyza (My Page) on
Fri, Nov 23, 12 at 15:51

Our contractor trimmed a couple of windows as shown in the attached picture. My husband and I looked at them and to our eye, we should not be seeing the "frame" that we believe is part of the window mechanics. Would love to see what others think.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: correct way to trim a window

I can see that part (I think) in all my windows.
Is it the part that the sliding portion of your window slides into?


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RE: correct way to trim a window

Yes, it is the part that the sash goes into. I guess it is just a new way of trimming, but in older windows, the stool is flush with that piece, not below it.


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RE: correct way to trim a window

Is that a replacement window or original to the house?

NONE of my replacement windows go to the windowsill.


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RE: correct way to trim a window

They are new windows, but not just replacement sash. They are part of a complete remodel, all windows replaced, rooms reconfigured, etc. We had a few windows replaced a couple of years ago and the were flush, so I think it has to do with the way they were ordered.


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RE: correct way to trim a window

They are new windows, but not just replacement sash. They are part of a complete remodel, all windows replaced, rooms reconfigured, etc. We had a few windows replaced a couple of years ago and the were flush, so I think it has to do with the way they were ordered.


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RE: correct way to trim a window

That is the way all mine have been installed--replacement and new construction--in the last 7 years.


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RE: correct way to trim a window

A window "sill" is the bottom part of the window's frame and is only seen from the outside. The horizontal shelf-like trim added to the inside is called a "stool".

A traditional window stool has a notch in it that engages the back edge of the sill and rests against the window sash providing better resistance to wind driven rain.

Many modern "nail-fin" windows already have an upturn at the back edge of the sill. These windows often have a groove into which the tongue of a stool trim fits.

If you want a more traditional looking stool it is possible to use a stool without a tongue and raise it higher. This works better on some windows than others.

The lesson to learn is to never approve a window selection without seeing it in a showroom or looking at the cross-section detail of the sill/stool assembly.

This is a traditional window:
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

This is an Andersen window:
Image and video hosting by TinyPic


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RE: correct way to trim a window

Here's a pic from the Journal of Light Construction.


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RE: correct way to trim a window

The stool installation depends largely on the design of the back edge of the window sill although it is often possible to make a special profile stool trim to fit many of the windows that have an integral raised waterstop at the back of the sill. However, it is usually necessary to tell the carpenter that you are willing to pay for that extra work.

I have linked to a video of the installation of a traditional window stool.

Here is a link that might be useful: window trim video


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