fixing Andersen windows


anyone have any experience fixing Andersen double hung windows with nonfunctional counterbalance hardware? After perusing their web site and finding out how to remove the plastic sash liners I think I see how this is supposed to work, but just wondered if there were any gotchas. I'm assuming I will find either broken springs or rotted cords, but the windows themselves are still in good shape so I am not motivated to replace them.
thanks,
nate
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We had to replace a damaged sill on a vinyl clad Andersen window. We ordered all the parts from Andersen and they were very helpful on the phone. But taking it apart and putting it back together is not much fun and hard to get right. We don't have tilt out windows. If you have those your mileage may vary.

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No, best I can figure I have 200 series "narroline" windows from looking at their web site.
thanks,
nate
Art wrote:

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N8N wrote:

Nate:
The narroline windows have screws that hold each of the window sash liners (I seem to recall, actually, that it was the left side only). Remove all the screws. Put some plastic lubricant (I use Armor All) on the entire sash cover, so it can slide easily against the two window frames. Slide both frames up, and gently pull the sash cover at the bottom, away from the jamb. Pull it down, sliding it between the jamb and the two frames. The plastic cover can fold/crease, be careful. I found it useful to put a single layer of fabric on top of the sill to protect it and so that I can slide the sash cover+the fabric against the sill.
Remove the plastic cover for the top of the window, remove the strings from the two frames (watch it, they can snap), replace the spring assembly ( asingle screw), reinsert the strings with a pair of pliers so they don't snap back. Replace top plastic cover.
Place the plastic "slides" (two pieces of plastic that are 0.5" by 0.5" and are provided in the replacement spring box) in the two frames' slots (they guide the sash cover) .
Put both frames up, and gently slide the sash covers back up, taking great care to not crease/fold them (that's the most difficult part of the job).
Re-install screws.
The first time you do it, it takes 15-20 minutes. After that, 5-10 at the most.
Good luck.
Pierre
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snipped-for-privacy@bw.edu wrote:

yup, that looks right...

I'm ASSuming that I'm doing this simply so I can get access to the side of the sash where the string attaches?

Thanks! I was just coming back to this thread to ask for some guidance, as I was not able to find a local parts dealer (the two Andersen dealers listed on their web site within easy driving distance won't sell me parts; the first was Home Despot and the second was a local window specialty shop that stated "we only service windows that we've installed." So much for buying them locally.) So I didn't get a chance to speak to anyone actually knowledgeable about this procedure but... looks like you've got it covered. I'll be saving your post for future reference when the parts arrive.
nate
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Andersen parts come with instructions. Making sure you order the right part is not easy. Verify by calling them. And ask if it is covered by warranty. Often it is.

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I had to call them, that was the only way I could order the parts (their online form did not seem to work for me, I got an error when I went to submit it.) IF the replacement parts come with instructions I should be good to go then. My windows aren't under warranty; the ones in the house are date coded '87 and the ones in the garage '79.
nate
Art wrote:

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Nate Nagel wrote:

Following up to my own post I know...
parts arrived today, happy happy joy joy... already fix0red one double hung window (busted latch, no big whoop) and one casement (busted actuator) while waiting for the girlie to get back from the grocery store. I'm stuck on the counterbalance however... instructions that came with the new assembly were pretty much exactly what Pierre posted above (thanks!) I got the left side jamb liner out OK (with a little grunting and lots of careful work with a razor blade to loosen it from the old paint) but I'm stuck on the plastic head liner piece; the pic shows it being pulled straight down after removing the screws however mine is stuck fast at the inside of the window. Is there a small hook in the plastic such that I need to pull it towards the inside of the house to release it? If so that's bad news because it means that the trim has to come off... I tried another window where it appeared that the trim had been installed slightly farther away from the window and I couldn't get that one out either.
thanks for all the help so far...
nate
PS - unrelated rant. I freakin' HATE shopping more every day. I am starting to love buying stuff online. I swear the general public is a bunch of freakin' thieves; every time I go to Home Despot I find that I need to open the box of whatever I'm looking to purchase to make sure someone hasn't got there before me and ripped off half the bits. I got burned at Sears the other day, tried to buy an attachment set for my shop vac and when I got home someone had stolen everything but the hose, and the box had been taped up!!!! and put back on the shelf. Of course they didn't actually have one with all the attachments and tried to hit me with a restocking fee, if you can believe that. So much for supporting my local economy... and I'm supposedly living in one of the "desirable" neighborhoods! I'd hate to see what it's like in the bad part of town.
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Nate Nagel wrote:

fixed it... you guys and the instructions were right. What I didn't count on was whoever installed the trim (and I just discovered that the wall in my bathroom is about 3/4" thicker than elsewhere in the house - wonder why?) CAULKED behind the wood spacer between the window and the molding before they nailed it on. So not only was I dealing with 2-3 layers of paint, the header strip was gooed on by caulking as well. Took me a while with a razor blade to get it free enough to pull down, but now that I see how these were installed it'll go way quicker next time.
on to the next project...
nate
(who can now leave the bathroom window open while taking a shower, which is probably a Good Thing.)
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N8N wrote:

Nate:
The narroline windows have screws that hold each of the window sash liners (I seem to recall, actually, that it was the left side only). Remove all the screws. Put some plastic lubricant (I use Armor All) on the entire sash cover, so it can slide easily against the two window frames. Slide both frames up, and gently pull the sash cover at the bottom, away from the jamb. Pull it down, sliding it between the jamb and the two frames. The plastic cover can fold/crease, be careful. I found it useful to put a single layer of fabric on top of the sill to protect it and so that I can slide the sash cover+the fabric against the sill.
Remove the plastic cover for the top of the window, remove the strings from the two frames (watch it, they can snap), replace the spring assembly ( asingle screw), reinsert the strings with a pair of pliers so they don't snap back. Replace top plastic cover.
Place the plastic "slides" (two pieces of plastic that are 0.5" by 0.5" and are provided in the replacement spring box) in the two frames' slots (they guide the sash cover) .
Put both frames up, and gently slide the sash covers back up, taking great care to not crease/fold them (that's the most difficult part of the job).
Re-install screws.
The first time you do it, it takes 15-20 minutes. After that, 5-10 at the most.
Good luck.
Pierre
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