How to Remove an Old Window

Thinking about replacing those old wood frame windows? Learn how to remove an old window like a boss with these easy to follow directions and of course a lovely video to go along with them.

Preparing to Remove the Window

Make sure before hand you have everything you need to replace the window before you get started. There’s nothing worse than needing to run to the hardware store because you forget screws or caulk.

To make the removal as easy as possible get the following supplies situated before you start the window removal process. There are other ways around it if you don’t have them all so don’t worry.

Removal Supplies

  • Pry Bar or Chisels
  • Sawzall or Hand Saw
  • Hammer
  • Plastic or a Trash Bag to Lay on the Floor (Save the hassle of all the mess!)

Now that you have your tools ready, you’re ready to get started!

How to Remove That Old Window

Step 1: Remove Any Outside Trim

To do so use your pry bar or chisels as a wedge to separate the trim from the house. Break out the hammer, give it a few taps to get it in there and begin to slowly pry it upwards and out. Please note that you should work your way up or down the trim so you don’t break or split it in half.

Step 2: Remove the Inside Molding and Trim

Similar to the step above, you’ll want to use the methods to remove any interior trim that will be blocking your access to the frame of the window.

Step 3: Detaching the Window from the Rough Opening

This is the part where your Sawzall can come in really handy. Use it to cut down the outside of the window frame between the studs, it’ll cut those nails right in half like it’s a hot knife through butter.

However if you don’t have one you can use a specialty handsaw that is made to cut metal. Another method that is a bit more of a hassle but works if your lacking on tools is removing the nails themselves to old fashioned way.

Considering you can see the frame with the molding removed, use a flashlight or simply feel around and find where the nails are located, then move unto to ripping those suckers out with your trust hammer. It may cause some damage to the wood but hey you’re removing it anyway!

Final Step: Remove the Sashes and Frame

With the molding and window stops (if you had them too) removed you can now slide down and pop out the sashes. Getting those out of the way now will make the rest a piece of cake.

With the sashes removed you can simply push the frame straight out if it’s not stuck in there but if you run into trouble simply cut the window sill in half and just pull the sides in towards you, you’ll find you can now easily remove the entire remaining window unit. Now it’s time to install the new window!

Watch this great video by Ask the Builder to see how it’s done in live action!