Timber Windows Will Last A Long Time With Suitable Care


Regular painting is an essential part of making your windows last. We advise that you give them a visual check on an annual basis. Any flaking paint or cracks should be rubbed down, sealed and repainted. If you see any issues with exterior paintwork we advise you to take care of this immediately before water penetrates through to the bare timber. If you have double glazing, units will fail if the exterior paint seal around the putty is not maintained.

We recommend oil-based paint for your window exteriors as this provides good adhesion to putty and gives you a long-lasting barrier against weather ingress. Water-based paint is suitable for the interior of your windows and surrounding panel-work.


Bedrooms, bathrooms and kitchens have higher levels of ambient moisture than other rooms. Ensure these rooms are ventilated regularly by opening the windows to allow air circulation. If this damp air can’t escape, it will condense on your window glass and soak into the timbers, causing mould and decay.

Sash Cords/Ropes

Through time, sash cords may eventually wear out and snap due to friction on the pulley wheels and contact from easy clean “clutches”.

The life span of sash cords is shorter for heavier and double glazed windows than lighter single glazed windows. The more frequently the window is opened, the more wear and tear. There is little to be done to prevent eventual breakages other than careful operation and applying oil to the pulley wheels to ensure they don’t stick. A stuck pulley wheel causes cords to slide over the wheel and causes additional friction.

Sand Mastic

Sand mastic pointing is a mixture of sand and linseed oil and adjoins surrounding stonework with the exterior window frame. It is non-setting, as it should move with the timber shrinking and expansion. Through time it will gradually dry out and harden as the oil evaporates. You can buy linseed oil from most hardware stores and, coating the sand mastic every so often can prevent it’s drying out. We recommend never painting over your sand mastic as it will not seal properly and can trap moisture and rot your timber frames.


Modern ironmongery is usually lacquered and will need minimal maintenance other than an occasional wipe with a cloth. Pulley wheels are the only moving mechanical item on sash and case windows, so a drop of oil every year or so will be sufficient.