Window fittings. Fitting errors.

Window fittings. Fitting errors.

24th October 2019 0 By krzys

It is not the hardware brand that determines the existence and durability of window performance. The level of property protection, safety of use or tightness depend not so much on the brand of window fittings as on the way they were used in the window construction. This is confirmed by experts representing recognized suppliers, whose statements about fitting errors and their effects were collected by the author – UPVC Windows

The most serious errors in fitting windows are created at the stage of their production. One of the most common is not observing the permissible dimensional tolerances. In second place can be put the use of inappropriate hardware components, which affects the tightness of windows and their subsequent operation. When fitting, use components of appropriate length, which apply even to middle closures. For economic reasons and the desire to misunderstand “saving”, some manufacturers use elements shorter than those required for a given structure, which unfortunately do not pass the test during the operation of the product by the user. There is also the use of cheaper substitutes for original parts that do not necessarily work perfectly with the whole structure.

As a result of fitting errors, there is a relatively rare situation when we have serious problems with opening or closing the window, comfort is much more often reduced. The user’s worries should be paid primarily by ventilation, especially during moderate winds and leaks, which cause rain water to enter the rooms. If any alarming signals are observed, it is recommended that all current and emergency adjustments and repairs be carried out by specialists, and irregularities in the operation of windows – reported to the manufacturer or distributor.

One of the basic errors in fitting PVC windows is the lack of proper matching in the arrangement of bolting bolts on the sash (rollers, discs) with peripheral catches on the frame. Most often it happens when gears, stay arms or blockades with limit dimensions are used for a given structure and is the result of two different production lines for fitting, separate for sashes and frames. After fitting the sash, the worker fitting the frame frames should check the arrangement of the catches and locking elements of the espagnolette with respect to each other. This will prevent later drafts.

Similar effects are also brought by the wrong attachment of the lower hinge. The wrong order of tightening the screws and too tight tightening of the middle screws, for example due to the wrong setting of the screwdriver, causes the hinge to bend into a so-called “boat” and as a result move the sash away from the frame. The defect is particularly visible if the fastening screw does not pass through the appropriate number of chambers in the profile or when the reinforcement is too short. The hinge area is a critical point of the window structure. Too little pressure of the sash against the frame can be the reason not only for air blows and uncontrolled infiltration, but also for leakage of rainwater even during light rain.

You should also pay attention to screwing the wing pressure without using the template, which may be the reason for the lack of repeatability of the pressure of the wing to the frame.

Screws and screwdriver bits are a separate issue. Using screws with a too convex lens or tightening them too little may be the reason for “scratching” the upper hinge and permanently damaging the stay cover. A similar effect is given by wrong screwdriver bits. They break the screw head and raise its height. Unscrewed screws drawing the cover often occur, especially when using self-drilling screws and giving up drilling holes under the hinge with a drill (3 mm). Especially when the screw is ribbed under the head and the chips from the drilled profile are not removed. The correct selection of screws in the fitting process is an extremely important issue, especially at the upper hinge, which is exposed to pulling out. A correctly selected screw should pass at least 3 full turns through the reinforcement.

Another problem is careless cutting of espagnolette bolts and arms. Too short or too long cause the screws connecting the fitting with the profile to be screwed in at an angle. It even happens that a badly cut fitting element is long enough to protrude above the corner plane. Too short cutting the stay arm and pushing or moving this element away from the upper corner of the sash from the handle causes the sash to move to or from the hinge, which in turn results in immediate need for adjustment. It happens that after such a procedure we are not able to repeat the adjustment while using the window. Similar effect, except that the bottom of the sash may have too little tightening, for example due to too short screws, the bottom hinge.

Quite often encountered error in mounting hardware elements are crookedly screwed screws. One of the main reasons, especially for “driers” with less experience, is that the trimmed element is not pressed too tightly against the cutter during cutting. As a result, the holes are knocked out axially, and the screws enter the element “at an angle” and in the absence of care are later finally tightened.
Cracked glass, a bent profile or a non-closing sash are obvious reasons for the users to seek professional help. However, they should not underestimate other perhaps slightly less discomforting symptoms that may indicate an impending serious fault.

The sash sliding down the frame, the gap at the top of the window between the sash and the frame, air ducts on the hinge side, broken seals, broken fittings, problems with turning the handle, when it does not reach the “vertical down” position, signs of wear may even appear with proper use of windows. Efficient and professional removal of early signs of aging of window components can prevent its replacement in its entirety. For your own safety, it is recommended to perform a review of the functioning of the fittings and the efficiency of the structure, after any break-in through the window. Roto recommends that you do not adjust the windows yourself, but order it from a professional, experienced service center. What can we expect from the website?

In the case of rubbing the sash against the frame, mainly the bolt pivot on the sash against the perimeter hook on the frame, start by checking the diagonals of the sash and the frame. If the diagonals are uneven, it is worth starting with re-glazing the sash. Secondly, check the so-called “fitting clearance”, i.e. the free space between the sash and frame in the closed state of the window. It should be about 12-13 mm, if it is different, you can try to further adjust the window by trying to set the sash in such a position that the “fitting clearance” on each side is identical. Adjustment on the stay in the upper part of the leaf should lead to parallel positioning of the leaf and the frame, and adjustment on the bottom hinge should set the leaf vertically or horizontally, depending on the needs.

If we deal with “falling out” of the tilt and turn window sash during opening, it means that the lock of incorrect position of the handle has not been fixed. The lock is an element of additional window equipment. If the manufacturer does not use a blockade as standard, it can also be installed in a window in use. Another cause of “falling out” may be a bent or damaged hiatus. In this case, it must be replaced. If neither of the two causes described occurs, to prevent “falling out” you can try to raise the sash by adjusting the bottom hinge.

Screws and screwdriver bits are a separate issue. Using screws with a too convex lens or tightening them too little may be the reason for “scratching” the upper hinge and permanently damaging the stay cover. A similar effect is given by wrong screwdriver bits. They break the screw head and raise its height. Unscrewed screws drawing the cover often occur, especially when using self-drilling screws and giving up drilling holes under the hinge with a drill (3 mm). Especially when the screw is ribbed under the head and the chips from the drilled profile are not removed. The correct selection of screws in the fitting process is an extremely important issue, especially at the upper hinge, which is exposed to pulling out. A correctly selected screw should pass at least 3 full turns through the reinforcement.

Another problem is careless cutting of espagnolette bolts and arms. Too short or too long cause the screws connecting the fitting with the profile to be screwed in at an angle. It even happens that a badly cut fitting element is long enough to protrude above the corner plane. Too short cutting the stay arm and pushing or moving this element away from the upper corner of the sash from the handle causes the sash to move to or from the hinge, which in turn results in immediate need for adjustment. It happens that after such a procedure we are not able to repeat the adjustment while using the window. Similar effect, except that the bottom of the sash may have too little tightening, for example due to too short screws, the bottom hinge.

Quite often encountered error in mounting hardware elements are crookedly screwed screws. One of the main reasons, especially for “driers” with less experience, is that the trimmed element is not pressed too tightly against the cutter during cutting. As a result, the holes are knocked out axially, and the screws enter the element “at an angle” and in the absence of care are later finally tightened.
Cracked glass, a bent profile or a non-closing sash are obvious reasons for the users to seek professional help. However, they should not underestimate other perhaps slightly less discomforting symptoms that may indicate an impending serious fault. The sash sliding down the frame, the gap at the top of the window between the sash and the frame, air ducts on the hinge side, broken seals, broken fittings, problems with turning the handle, when it does not reach the “vertical down” position, signs of wear may even appear with proper use of windows. Efficient and professional removal of early signs of aging of window components can prevent its replacement in its entirety. For your own safety, it is recommended to perform a review of the functioning of the fittings and the efficiency of the structure, after any break-in through the window. Roto recommends that you do not adjust the windows yourself, but order it from a professional, experienced service center. What can we expect from the website?

In the case of rubbing the sash against the frame, mainly the bolt pivot on the sash against the perimeter hook on the frame, start by checking the diagonals of the sash and the frame. If the diagonals are uneven, it is worth starting with re-glazing the sash. Secondly, check the so-called “fitting clearance”, i.e. the free space between the sash and frame in the closed state of the window. It should be about 12-13 mm, if it is different, you can try to further adjust the window by trying to set the sash in such a position that the “fitting clearance” on each side is identical. Adjustment on the stay in the upper part of the leaf should lead to parallel positioning of the leaf and the frame, and adjustment on the bottom hinge should set the leaf vertically or horizontally, depending on the needs.

If we deal with “falling out” of the tilt and turn window sash during opening, it means that the lock of incorrect position of the handle has not been fixed. The lock is an element of additional window equipment. If the manufacturer does not use a blockade as standard, it can also be installed in a window in use. Another cause of “falling out” may be a bent or damaged hiatus. In this case, it must be replaced. If neither of the two causes described occurs, to prevent “falling out” you can try to raise the sash by adjusting the bottom hinge.

One of the fairly commonly signaled hardware failures is the handle turning without the possibility of opening the sash. The reason is usually damaged by the lack of adjustment and maintenance of the espagnolette lock, and it is preceded by the “heavy fitting work” previously felt by the user and the forceful tightening of the handle to the closed position. If the lock is damaged, the espagnolette must be replaced. What to do to prevent damage to the espagnolette lock? Regularly maintain fittings to reduce drag during their operation. Ineffective rotation of the handle can also be the result of installing a handle with a too short shaft in the window. In this case, it should be replaced with a model with a control rod of suitable length.

Properly used window fittings can also eliminate leaks caused by loss of elasticity of seals. Before you decide to replace the seal, it is worth trying to increase the pressure of the sash against the frame by turning the espagnolette rollers, provided that this hardware function is available in the fitting that we have in the window purchased.

For a well-functioning window, the selection of fittings of the right quality and fitting method is essential. Before the window reaches the end user, it goes through a number of production and assembly processes, and errors can be made on each of them. It happens quite often that the real cause of a window defect is difficult to detect and it is quite hastily attributed to the functioning of the fittings, while taking the wrong countermeasures. The table below presents some symptoms of window malfunction and potential main causes of their occurrence. Some of the comments contained in the table should be taken into account at the design stage of the window structure.