On Spring Like Days, Clean Windows

The weather’s been remarkably temperate this winter, in sharp contrast to last year’s severe snow storms. Today was a particularly mild day, where you could comfortably step outside in shirt sleeves if you felt like it.

So, I was inspired to clean some windows. Even though this is usually a ritual of early spring, the windows here haven’t been cleaned in a very, very long time. So it seemed like a good idea to take advantage of the weather and get started on what’s going to prove a lengthy process.

Windows in the Mansfield House are almost all 12-over-12, single-hung, sash windows, with aluminum exterior storms. Cleaning is easiest if you remove the sashes. So I pried the interior stops and head jamb to get both sashes free:

Prying Away A Lower Stop

Prying away a stop...

Removing The Upper Trim

...and then removing the head jamb

Interior and Exterior Sashes Waiting To Be Cleaned

Both sashes, waiting to be cleaned...

Sashless Window Frame

...and the sashless window frame. The fresh air coming in smelled pretty good!

I cleaned each sash by placing it on those hockey puck standoffs I’d created a few blog posts back, over a poly-backed canvas drop cloth. Here’s one sash just after it was cleaned:

Window Sash On Hockey Pucks

A window sash on high friction hockey pucks

I also cleaned the exterior storm window sashes in the same manner:

Exterior Storm Sash On Hockey Pucks

Cleaning an exterior storm sash. Obviously, I need more hockey pucks (a few for the center, in fact)

Once the storms and sashes are all back in, replacing the stops is easy, if you just try to align the brads with their previous holes:

Brad Pusher Pushing

A push is usually all it takes...

Hammer And Nail Set

...though sometimes a slight tap is required.

The result of a little bit of effort is a nice, clean window. Here, one can finally see Saint Joseph’s across the street and the image of the setting sun:

Window Re-Assembled

A nice, clean window

Tomorrow, we’ll continue with a few more…

Unusual Find Of The Day


This was found pasted inside an old book case. Note that it was pasted over some other inscription that was upside down (see lower left corner)

Unusual Photo Of The Day

Cut Nail Protruding From Floor

A square-cut flooring nail protruding between two floor planks and casting a long shadow...

About John Poole

My interests include historic homes, architectural preservation and restoration, improving the energy performance of old houses, and traditional timber frames.
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5 Responses to On Spring Like Days, Clean Windows

  1. I, too LOVE old, historic houses, especially those that need restoration. Did my sis ever tell you I won a MO State Preservation Award for a house a business partner and I saved from Endangered status? Do you live in Mansfield House? Will you one day?

    • John Poole says:

      Hi Kym,

      Yes, your sister told me that you have a history (no pun intended) of restoring old homes, and she indeed told me about your award, which is extremely commendable. The Mansfield House is in pretty good shape, but has a number of issues that need to be addressed rather quickly. Right now, I’m still busily working toward getting it basically habitable/comfortable!

      Thanks very much for visiting and for commenting…

      ~ John

  2. Jan Petroff says:

    Are you going to eventually live in Mansfield House? When do we get to see the kitchen??

    • John Poole says:

      Hi Jan!

      Yes. And there are misc. photos of different areas of the kitchen (including the fireplace) on a few of the recent Mansfield postings on this blog. BTW, I also have a vintage gas stove, but perhaps not “vintage” in a good way! :-)

      Thanks for the comment, and hope all is well!
      ~ John

  3. John Poole says:

    Hi Alexandra,

    No, I wouldn’t do that, as it would constitute a tripping hazard! However, you could gladly come over and help me properly set the nails back to the depth they belong at! :-)


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