3 Reasons to Repair Your Historic Windows Instead of Replacing Them

23 October 2015
 Categories: , Articles


If you've recently purchased or inherited an old historic home, you may be wondering what to do with the windows. If they haven't been well taken care of, they may be damaged or drafty, and you may be tempted to simply replace them with newer, more modern windows for the sake of convenience. But before you do that, you should take a look at the arguments for keeping and repairing your historic windows instead.


Many types of replacement windows have eco-friendly qualities. However, there is no more sustainable option than leaving the current windows in place. When you repair those windows instead of replacing them, you use up fewer resources and you don't add the old windows to the local landfill.

Historic windows were built to last much longer than modern windows, so it's quite possible that with repairs and routine maintenance, your historic windows will give you years of service. Consider that aluminum windows only last about 15 to 20 years and vinyl windows can last up to about 40 years. If your house is 100 years old and the original windows have lasted that long, then they've already outperformed most modern windows. Why not keep them in place instead of throwing them away unnecessarily?

According to window restoration experts, almost any old window is repairable, and once restored, they may last as long as 50 to 100 years. That is not only sustainable, it's a great return on the investment that you'll make by repairing them.


You may think that modern windows have an advantage over historic windows in the area of maintenance. Historic windows do need regular maintenance. Meanwhile, many modern windows are sold as being maintenance free or low-maintenance. However, you need to consider why those windows are so low-maintenance.

Modern windows are not designed to be repaired or replaced one piece at a time. If your aluminum window frame is damaged, chances are that you'll have to replace the whole thing – you can't just repair the one damaged section. These windows are low-maintenance because there's just not much maintenance you can do with them beyond keeping them clean. Historic windows, by comparison, are generally designed to be repaired piece by piece. Repairing one damaged piece is certainly easier and less expensive than replacing the whole window.

The only downside to maintaining an old window is that it can be tough to find parts. If you're repairing your windows yourself, you may not be able to find the parts you need in your local home improvement store. However, there are many window repair companies that do have these parts, or can order them for you.

Resale Value

In many houses, adding new windows will raise your home's resale value. However, this is not necessarily true in historic homes. For many buyers, the more original material and features the home has, the more they're willing to pay. Historic windows give an old home authenticity. An old home, like any antique item, has more value if it's kept as close as possible to its original condition. Next to original flooring, original windows are one of the most important features that buyers of historic homes are looking for.

Old windows also add personality to the home that many buyers find charming. You're more likely to find oddly shaped windows or windows in unusual places in an old home. This makes the home unique and adds to its curb appeal.

If you don't know the first thing about restoring old windows, don't worry. You can contact a window company like Beyers Window & Door Inc in your area for help. Be sure to ask if they work with historic windows before making an appointment for an estimate.