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William
Bay Window Help

Around 35 years ago my parents added an extension on the house. They included a Pella bay window. Over the last ten years or so my fathers health started failing and he did little maintenance on the house. I was doing a general inspection on the house recently and noticed where the bottom of the bay window is in need of major work. It appears that the wood which rests on the dog legs (I think that’s what they’re called) is all rotted out. In some areas it feels more like a sponge than a piece of wood.

How do I go about replacing this bottom piece of wood?

What type of wood should I use?

Is it one piece or 3 pieces?

I was told that when I weather proof the new piece of wood, that it takes several months to ‘age’ is that true. Then I guess I can paint it. I tried contacting Pella but they won’t help at all. Everything else about the window is in great shape. Any advice on how to proceed would be greatly appreciated. I’ve included a few pictures below so you could see what I what I’m talking about. Thanks!

Re: Bay Window Help

Unfortunately, it looks like the rot got into the frames, which makes that a pretty big job. You'd only need to let a piece of pressure treated wood 'age' before painting it. It might be possible to replace the bottom of the bay if you can save the frame of the window (not the sash, but the sill) - hard to tell from the photo how far in the rot goes - the bottom plate looks like it has old rot which has been painted over. Also depends upon whether the whole thing is a pre-fab unit, tends to make it harder.

William
Re: Bay Window Help
ChicagoCooperator wrote:

the bottom plate looks like it has old rot which has been painted over.

Correct.

I have since learned that Pella was sued in a class action lawsuit because of these bay windows. Seems they all rotted out. Pella won't help me and just blames the wood company, which I think is very unprofessional of them. I need more windows for my house and they won't be Pella, simply because of their "attitude". The attorney said the window could be one of three types; Proline, Designer, or Architect. Pella won't tell me which one it is, but a contractor installed it when the room was built if that helps. I have a window part number (2060-4860-2060-CC3R) but no way to look it up. Pella has renamed all their older windows to cover their tracks. I'm just looking for a way to get it fixed before it does damage to the whole side of the house :(

dj1
Re: Bay Window Help

From the photos, it looks like the roof is resting on the vertical frame, the vertical frame is resting on the base frame. But it's hard to see if the window is 1 piece or 3 pieces.

1. To remove the rotted bottom, slowly remove the rotted wood with a chisel, but don't rush. Try to see if you can remove it without the window sagging. If it does, install supporters (is the window on the first floor?) to keep it from sagging. Once supported, you can continue and can determine your next step, according to what you find.

2. For the bottom pane I would use a hardwood, like oak. Certain poplar and even treated fir could be used too, sure why not? But don't use pine, redwood, cedar or common.

I will support the bottom pane with something beefier than the two dog legs (is that what you call them?)

William
Re: Bay Window Help
dj1 wrote:

If it does, install supporters (is the window on the first floor?) to keep it from sagging. Once supported, you can continue and can determine your next step, according to what you find.

Yes it's on the first floor. What is the best way to support it? How should we attach the supports to the house? Just use nails?

Quote:

I will support the bottom pane with something beefier than the two dog legs (is that what you call them?)

That is what Pella called them.

What would be a beefier way to support it?

dj1
Re: Bay Window Help

For temporary supporters while you're doing the cleaning and replacing, use 4 bottle jacks (the kind you use to raise your car) and 4x4s long enough to be lifted by the jacks to support the window(s).

For beefier permanant support, I'd use pieces of 4x4 to go from under the center window to the house. Fasten with lug bolts to the house and the bottom window frame, like we use in decks and patio covers.

Mike
Re: Bay Window Help

If you do as another poster suggested and replace the sill with oak, use white oak and not red oak. Red oak will rot quickly while white will last a long time due to different grain structures.

Sombreuil_mongrel
Re: Bay Window Help

Some time around 1997 I restored one exactly like that mess. I bought new sill stock (it's a standard profile, believe it or not) and sealed it with Abatron epoxy.
Casey

ralphtaylor
Re: Bay Window Help

You can use Redwood or Cypress wood to replace it. These woods are pretty good in bearing any environmental change.

William
Re: Bay Window Help

THANKS Ralph for the help :)

Do I have to do anything special to those woods (like 'season' them) to make them weatherproof before I paint them? ...or just cut, install and paint them? I was told that other woods needed to be 'seasoned' for a couple of months before I could paint it, so just wondering if this was the same.

Which of the two is better in your opinion ?

ralphtaylor
Re: Bay Window Help

As I said before that both woods are good but if you are seeking for a weather proof wood then your should prefer Cypress wood as it is well adapted to local climate.

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