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Basement Window Rotted
Basement Window Rotted  
Hello Russell,
Please assist me to complete a small home repair project involving a rotted basement window. I have attached a picture of the present window. I'm handy with tools, but this would be my first window replacement. I am intending to replace the present swing-in two-pane wooden basement window with a vinyl slider window with screen, probably the American Craftsman brand. My question deals with the frame. As is obvious, the existing wooden frame is rotted out and disintegrating. It soaks up rainwater better than a sponge, and so does the window. I plan to remove the window off the frame, and then scrape out whatever portions of the frame I simply cannot pull off by hand. But as the picture shows, the left side of the window opening shows two side jambs whereas the right side only shows one. Should I be looking to eliminate one of the side left side jambs, or replace all of them? And, using the A & B arrows I added, which length should I size the new window to fit? Thank you for any assistance!

The photo you sent show ups as an empty white box, so I can't view it. The double jamb on the one side could have been put there to support something above it or it be there to fill in open space because the window was a little smaller than the opening. I don't see any reason to replace the old jams if they are still in good shape, solid not getting wet. The double jam may have been put there for extra support. For example,when the house was built, a seem where two wood plates come together ended up just about the window opening. If that is the case, don't remove it. I would use treated lumber to replace the rotten wood. The answer to if you should leave the two jams on one side and one jam on the other side is....only make the two sided jam a one sided jam if it does not support anything above it or the new window is wider than the old window. If not, leave it as is.

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Russell Spataro


Construction, home repair, tile, cabinets, flooring, framing, windows, siding, concrete, new construction, remodeling


14 years as a custom home builder

25 years as a carpenter

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