If your home has wood floors or wood paneling, you probably spend a fair amount of time cleaning and treating these areas. Why should you expect your wood window frames to be any different? When it comes to installing wood pieces in your home, you have to be ready to do the work if you want your floors, furniture, or Renewal by Andersen replacement windows to look their best. The thing about wood windows is that, more than most other areas in the home where you’re likely to find treated wood, there’s a high potential for dust-gathering and grime buildup. The key to keeping your wood windows fresh and sparkling isn’t hard to remember: Cleaning, cleaning, and more cleaning! Since your wood windows have more contact with the outdoors, they’re at risk for warping and damage and should be treated with a bit more care. If you’re trying to keep your windows looking great, here are a few tips for maintenance.
It might not seem like it, but dust is your wooden window’s worst enemy. Since wood tends to invite stray dust and dirt particles to make a home on its surface, you’ll have your work cut out for you if you forget to dust for a week or even a few days at a time. The more dust accumulates on your windows and windowsills, the harder you’ll have to work to scrub it off. It’s not like a ceramic or marble countertop where you can simply wipe the dust off with one swipe. Cleaning your windows requires a special type of cleaner that cuts through the greasy dirt and dust mixture without harming or scarring your wood. Since your wood is treated, you want to be gentle when cleaning it and stay away from harsh chemical cleaners or anything that isn’t made to treat stained wood. Once your wood starts getting too dirty to effectively clean, other, more expensive problems such as rot and decay will start creeping in. Make sure to dust at least once a week and you should be able to avoid further problems.
Don’t Forget to Vacuum
Dusting is never enough, especially when it comes to your wood window frames. Since dust is notoriously hard to get rid of, you’ll end up with a ton of airborne dust after cleaning your windows. Once it settles, going over the area with a vacuum will create an allergy-free zone. You won’t just be getting rid of dust and dirt particles when you vacuum: You’ll also be picking up other pesky airborne elements that travel into your home via the open window, such as pollen and bacteria. You don’t want these pests settling on your floors or your rug for too long. Once they make themselves at home, it could create an in-home environment that’s much less pleasant and much more dangerous to live in. Doing a thorough vacuuming job once a week, twice for heavier traffic areas, is a good way to keep on top of it.
Use Weatherproofing to Protect Your Frames
Your wood frames are constantly exposed to the elements. Because of this, they’re going to need a bit of extra care on the outside. This means using the appropriate weatherstripping and weatherproofing to keep cold winds, rain, and snow from breaking down your window before its time. You can use special tools for this, or use foam or saran wrap to seal your windows from the inside. Keeping your windows tightly shut and sealed during the winter will help maintain a warmer home environment while keeping your windows protected. If you’re noticing any leaks, take care of them with wood putty or caulking in order to keep everything sealed and dry. The minute your window starts getting exposed to too much moisture, the frame will start to weaken and potentially rot. Avoid this by weatherproofing your windows in the fall long before the first snow hits.
Stain and Sand for a Better Look
Your wood windows are naturally porous. To look their best and function at their highest level, they’ll need to be treated with a wood stain, either oil- or water-based. Most windows will already come with a stain, but as your window ages, you may need to apply another coat. If your window has lost its shine, is showing signs of damage, or simply needs a bit of a makeover, apply a light or dark-colored stain to give it a new lease on life. If you’re seeing some damage, use a sanding tool to lightly erase the wrecked area. Using a wood stain is a simple, highly effective way to make older windows look brand new.