Following inspection and analysis, a plan for the rehabilitation
can be formulated. The actions necessary to return windows to
an efficient and effective working condition will fall into
one or more of the following categories: routine maintenance,
repair, and weatherization. The routine maintenance and weatherization
measures described here are generally within the range of doityourselfers.
Other repairs, both moderate and major, require a professional
contractor. Major repairs normally require the removal of the
window units to a workshop, but even in the case of moderate
repairs, the number of windows involved might warrant the removal
of all the deteriorated units to a workshop in order to realize
a more economical repair price. Replacement of windows should
be considered only as a last resort.
Since moisture is the primary cause of corrosion in steel windows,
it is essential that excess moisture be eliminated and that
the building be made as weathertight as possible before any
other work is undertaken. Moisture can accumulate from cracks
in the masonry, from spalling mortar, from leaking gutters,
from air conditioning condensation runoff, and from poorly ventilated
Finally, before beginning any work, it is important to be aware
of health and safety risks involved. Steel windows have historically
been coated with lead paint. The removal of such paint by abrasive
methods will produce toxic dust. Therefore, safety goggles,
a toxic dust respirator, and protective clothing should be worn.
Similar protective measures should be taken when acid compounds
are used. Local codes may govern the methods of removing lead
paints and proper disposal of toxic residue.