Replacing original aluminum windows

I think I'm up to replacing the original aluminum windows in my 25 year-old-house (Texas) with energy efficient vinal replacement windows - the exterior around some windows is brick, some have siding around them. I'm wondering about the best way to get the old windows out - some of the folks I've talked with say (after getting the glass out) to just use a saws-all to cut through the nailing strips around the old windows behind the exterior surface and take out the window - some of the "Instalation Guides" I've seen talk about "collapsing the old window frame" (after getting the old glass out), but I don't understand howe I'm gonna collapse the old window frame if it's got nailing strips nailed into the woode frame all around the window. Any suggestions? Thank!
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Texas Yankee wrote:

When I had mine done the crew did pretty much what you describe, took out the glass and used a wonder-bar to fold the frame. There were a few I wanted to keep, and they did the other method you suggest with the sawzall. I've pulled a few windows and doors that way, just use a metal cutting blade and as you go around you can feel the nails and screws, with a new blade they really don't put up much of a fight.
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Thanks for the info - I don't understand something you said - "used a wonder-bar to fold the frame" - when you're collapsing the frame without cutting the nailing strips, what happens to the nailing strips - is there any damage to the surrounding frame, where the nailing strips are attached?
Thanks!

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Texas Yankee wrote:

Usually a window frame is made from 2 X 4s when the house is built, that would be the "nailing strips". Surprizingly little usually holds the windows in place, once the inside trim is removed. Little damage is done usually, but is you sazall them out you might be able to sell them for use in a workshop or something and recoup some of your cost. I didn't mention it before but the removal is an inside job, remove the trim and there should be about a 1/2" gap around the windows with a few shims used to square things up when they were installed.
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I'm not interested in salvaging the old windows - I'm still having a hard time understanding what happens to the nailing strips - the "fins" that are part of the aluminum window frame that get nailed to the wooden window framing before the siding or brick is placed as veneer - if I collapse the existing frames, do the nailing strips just teat our with little or no damage to the wood surrounding the window? Thanks!

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I honestly haven't much experience with that type window & forgot they existed until you pointed that out. My guess is that most of them will bust out the aluminum and leave the nails behind, but worst case scenario, you'll dislodge a brick or 2. You might want to re-post the question perhaps rephrased bit tomorrow, when the people are a bit livelier. Hopefully you'll find someone who knows some tricks or has at least pulled a few of those. Texas Yankee wrote:

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Texas Yankee wrote:

The answer is yes. Any damage will be covered up when the new window is in.
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Sawing thru the nails in the nailing strips is easy to do.
Once the nailing strips are cut all the way around the window, the window can be collapsed and the nailing strips will come along as the window is collapsed (basically, take one side and PULL or PUSH until the window bends - once the first part bends, the window is almost out)
Texas Yankee wrote:

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This question is for Eric and the group.
There were 1000's of homes built in the 70's where there is no trim. The AL window was attached to the studs and drywall was butted and finished. Brick was laid on the outside to completely cover the nailing flange. I am assuming that there is about .5-.75" of nailing flange over the studs. This is also a wild guess but I guess the brick covers about the same amount of the window frame. To get out you are going to have to cut out the drywall, at least the "inside the opening part".
Exactly where and what do you cut with the sawsall? You can't cut from in to out. Brick is out there. You can't cut through the nails because the frame is L shaped and blocks getting the saw between the OS of the stud and the window frame. I can see where you could have a "quality install" if you could get it all out. The brick would cover the raw edges on the outside and trim could be added to the inside.
Colbyt
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