Your window frames support the whole unit and serve as a visual transition between your walls and your outdoors. If the frame looks too light to you after installation, that’s nothing a good coat of stain can’t fix. Staining is a bit different from painting and requires a few more steps.
In today’s post, Renewal by Andersen® of Cincinnati, local window replacement company, shares everything you need to know about staining our window products.
Our Replacement Windows
Our windows are manufactured from Fibrex® material, a unique composite of wood fibers and thermoplastic polymers. Fibrex was created as a low-maintenance alternative to wood, and that there is no need to paint the frame or sash during the windows’ lifetime.
That said, if you want to paint the frames of your replacement windows for aesthetic reasons, you can certainly do so, as long as you avoid the other parts such as the weatherstrip, gaskets, and hardware. Our replacement units can be stained as well, thanks to the interior wood veneer finish applied on top of the Fibrex material.
Only the windows’ wood veneers are recommended for staining, not the Fibrex material itself. Although Fibrex’s appearance resembles that of stained wood, treating the composite with polyurethanes or other solvent-based wood stains will cause permanent damage. Doing so will also void the limited warranty that comes with the units.
Before Staining Your New Windows
In staining and finishing the wood veneers of our replacement windows, you need to make some preparations. As your local window contractor, we recommend obtaining the materials from a full-service paint and stain dealer rather than a large, multi-service retailer. The expertise of the dealer will help you select the proper materials and supplies for this project.
We also recommend staining and finishing your new wood veneer window interior as soon as possible, preferably within 30 days after installation. Doing so around this time frame prevents dust or moisture from discoloring the units.
Our replacement windows are manufactured with the utmost care and precision, which means the stain and finish that will be used for the project must high quality. We recommend using medium or heavy body stains. Unlike lighter ones that penetrate wood, these stains sit on top of material like paint, forming a uniform coat.
Also, following the manufacturer’s recommendation is imperative for ensuring the best results. To be sure, you may practice staining on a natural wood veneered sample piece. That way, you’ll get to know the step-by-step procedure and can determine how many coats you need to apply before you are satisfied. You may call one of our representatives if you need to obtain wood veneer samples.
Staining Procedures to Follow
As your local window replacement company, we recommend preparing all the materials and supplies needed for the project. For the liquid products, be sure to purchase them by the pint or quart, depending on the number of coats required for your chosen stain.
Materials include a high-quality oil- or water-based wood stain, a fast dry poly-acrylic finish and a wood conditioner. Also, take the time to gather other materials such as painter’s tape, fine grit sanding block, lint-free cloth, wooden stir sticks, and a nylon brush. Wear latex gloves to protect your hands.
As a leading window contractor in Cincinnati, we make it a point to keep each customer’s home clean during window installation. Our installers begin each project by making sure all interior valuables are protected. We suggest you do the same prior to staining. Lay down drop cloths to protect the floor from dripping liquids.
Use the wood conditioner to clean the interior wood veneer surface of any oils, residue or dust. This creates a cleaner, stronger bond between the stain and the veneer. Once done, lightly sand the surface using fine-grit sandpaper, doing so in the direction of the grain. Use a soft, dry cloth to remove all the dust particles.
Then, open the sashes of the replacement windows to allow proper air circulation. From there, apply the stain on the wood veneer in a long, continuous motion going with the grain. Try to apply as even an amount as you can, and closely follow the instructions on the back of the product.
Allow the applied stain to dry completely before closing the window, and then apply the fast-drying poly-acrylic finish in the gloss of your choice. Not only will it protect the stain but will also help extend its service life.
When staining natural wood window grilles, your window replacement company recommends removing them from the glass. Lift the edge of each leg at the edge of the sash away from the glass. Never attempt removing the grille by pulling on the intersections. Do not attempt to stain without removing it from the window—damage to the glass may occur.
Get the most out of your new windows with a coat of stain. This project can heighten the appeal of the windows and also help extend their life.
Renewal by Andersen of Cincinnati is your window contractor of choice for your home improvement needs. Call us at (513) 283-8981 or fill out our contact form to request a free in-home consultation. Our Ohio service areas include Cincinnati, OH, and the surrounding areas.