Popped Plastic And Jiggled Glass: What To Do When Your Windows Are Askew

Every so often, a residential window pops apart at its seams. It leaves your glass cockeyed and the frame in a really awkward and unmovable position. This is actually an emergency situation, since the glass and frame leave your home exposed to animals, insects, and bad weather. If you cannot get someone to come out for residential window repair services right away, here are a few things you can do to remedy this situation temporarily.


Cardboard, the thick stuff, is the tried and true method for any temporary glass repair. People use it on their cars, and you can use it on your home's windows too. Cut the cardboard so that it is a snug fit between the main frame sections of the window. Make sure it covers the entire pane that is damaged. Then use either packing tape or duct tape to seal the cardboard to the window. As long as there are no violent rain storms, wind storms, or snow, the cardboard should hold until the repair technician can arrive. Bugs and animals generally will not bother it much either.


Similar to the cardboard solution, you can use a piece of masonite. Masonite is a thin sheet of manufactured wood board and it is often coated with a thin layer of resin to keep it from absorbing water. This is especially useful if you know there are going to be some nasty storms coming or you need to cover the damaged window for a week or more. Most home improvement stores will not only sell the masonite boards, but will cut it to your specifications too, so be sure to measure the damaged sash/pane of glass before you head to the store.

Rubber Mallet and Gentle Taps

This approach is not for the faint of heart. You have to have a fairly steady hand and a good eye, and be very gentle about what you are doing so you do not break the glass. First, wiggle the sash down as much as you are able, taking care to support the glass from underneath so it does not fall or crack. When the damaged sash will not wiggle much farther down, take a rubber mallet and gently tap on top of the sash. This should help it come down, little by little, until the separated seams of the sash touch or close back together. You should take turns tapping one side of the sash with tapping the other, in a side-to-side movement, so that both sides of the sash are all the way down. Do not open this window again until after repairs are complete, and if you need to, use a little duct tape to seal off any remaining openings in the skewed glass and sash.