How to Fix a Window That Won’t Close All the Way

It’s super frustrating when you are fighting to get a window closed, but it won’t budge. Maybe you are worried about bugs flying in, about any rain that will soon come down, or about allergies.

Dealing with a window that won’t close all the way is tough, but you don’t have to worry for much longer. 

We will go over the possible causes for a window not closing all the way and how to fix them.

You should be able to feel safe from the outside elements in your home and having working windows is a very important part of that. 

Why Does Having a Window That Can Close Matter?

Windows protect us from the outdoor elements while still allowing us to look outside and get natural lighting.

This view of the outside can quickly turn nightmarish if the window won’t close. Even if you have a screen on your window, other issues can go down if your window won’t close.

 rain can come into your house if the window can’t close

First, rain can come into your house if the window can’t close. A screen isn’t going to stop raindrops from crashing in and getting all over your stuff. This is even worse if you live in an area that gets a lot of heavy storms. 

Also, having windows that don’t work can be expensive. When you have heating and cooling in your house, warm or cool air is going to be pumped right outside your house.

It will be harder to heat or cool your house since that air is escaping through the window. Not only does this make temperature regulation hard but will also make your bill skyrocket. 

Finally, allergies and debris can get into your house through the window. If you or someone in your house suffers from outdoor allergies, you don’t want those allergens to be blown into your house and your lungs. 

There are other reasons why having a properly working window is so important, but this is just a small list. 

How to Fix a Window That Won’t Close All the Way

The first step to fixing a window that won’t close is to figure out the problem.

There are a few possibilities as to what is preventing your window from closing all the way, so let’s discuss each.

The Tracks Are Blocked

Windows work by sliding on tracks. Whether they open vertically or outwards, the piece of glass moves along tracks to open and close.

If a window hasn’t been opened or closed in a while, dirt and other debris can get into the tracks and cause them to get stuck. When you try to then close your window, the glass won’t be able to move past the debris.

Luckily, this is a really simple fix. First, figure out where the tracks are. If your window slides up and down, the tracks will be on either side of the window frame.

If your window pushes out, the tracks will be across the bottom and top of the frame (however pretty much only the bottom track gets stuck.) 

Take a look to see if any large objects are in the tracks. Large objects include rocks, acorns, or any other large material. Remove them either with your hands or with some long objects that can maneuver into the tracks. Then, take your hose and wash down the windows.

NOTE: Before washing your window, remove anything inside the window that can get damaged by water. Since your window still is stuck, you won’t be able to close it before blasting water. 

Tracks Are Blocked
Cleaning the window track

Washing down your window’s tracks should remove the rest of the small debris that is causing your window to get stuck. 

Move your window up and down or front and back a few times until the rest of the debris is broken up and out of the tracks. 

The Tracks Are Stiff

If you check the tracks and they look perfectly clean, they might be stiff. The mechanic that moves the window along the tracks is stiff.

The Tracks Are Stiff
Source: The Intentional Mom

Any sort of object that has a hinge or moves can get stiff over time. That’s how we have creaky doors and sticky doorknobs. 

If this is the problem, all you have to do is lubricate your window. You can do this with oil or a special window lubricant.

Apply the lubricant along the tracks of your window, making sure you get into all the cracks and crevices that you can. 

Give the lubricant a few minutes to set and then open and close your window. This action will put the lubricant onto the movement mechanic and lube that up as well.

You might have to repeat these steps a few times until your window is opening and closes fully and smoothly. 

Before adding lubricant for the first time, it is recommended to clean the tracks of your window to make sure that you don’t trap any dirt or dust in the tracks.

Failing to do this can end up getting your tracks stuck and then you have a whole other problem to solve. 

The Window is Unaligned

Over time, houses settle and the structure moves. This can cause windows to shift in their tracks and for doors to slip from their alignment. When your window isn’t properly aligned, it won’t be able to open or shut properly. 

You can usually tell if the window is unaligned from the angle of how the window opens. If it looks like the window isn’t moving the way it should, slowly move the window along its tracks.

From there, you should see that the window isn’t sitting in the tracks properly and is sticking or getting completely stuck.

When a window becomes unaligned, we recommend that you call up a professional repairman to readjust the window. This kind of job is hard to do on your own as you can easily mess up the alignment even more. 

In some cases, you might have to get a new window or a new track system for your window. This is something that will be figured out when you have a repairman look at your window. 

3 Tips and Reminders for Fixing Your Window that Won’t Close All the Way

Keep Your Tracks Clean

Keeping your tracks clean is both a solution and preventative action to make sure that your window will always be able to close all the way.

So many times, windows won’t close all the way because there is debris in the tracks preventing the window from moving. 

Cleaning the tracks will allow the window to move again and regular cleaning will make sure that the tracks don’t get stuck again. Cleaning your tracks can be as simple as power washing the debris out of the tracks and picking out larger objects. 

Clean your window tracks regularly and after any major storms. Harsh rain and wind can send small objects flying and they can get into the tracks of your window. Regularly cleaning will keep you aware of what is happening with your window. 

Courtesy of Dean’s Window Cleaning

In a Pinch, you Can Lube Your Window with Candle Wax or Vaseline

Not everyone has window lube or even motor oil laying around their house. However, if you need to lube up your window, you are not limited to those two options.

Candle wax (as long as it is made from a natural wax and not a synthetic wax,) can be used to lube up your window to stop it from being stuck.

Vaseline is great for many things, and it can be used to unstick your window as well. You can also use coconut oil, shea butter, or really, any other kind of lube.

Don’t stress out about having to go out and buy specific lube when there are still so many other options that you can use. 

Just always make sure that before you apply lube to your window tracks that you must clean them first. Trapping dirt underneath lube is a sure way to get your window stuck. 

If Nothing is Working, Call a Professional

There might come a point where you have tried several methods to get your window to close all the way and nothing is working.

At this point, the problem might be something you can’t easily see or fix. Calling a professional will prevent you from accidentally causing more damage to your window. 

A professional will better be able to diagnose the problem with your window and fix it. That way, you can make sure that your window is fixed quickly before the next rain or windstorm. 

Final Thoughts 

Dealing with a window that won’t close is annoying, but there are several easy solutions to fix your window and get it back on track… literally. 

If you enjoyed reading these solutions and tips, let us know in the comments. If you have any other tips and solutions that you want to share for those struggling with their windows, feel free to share those in the comments as well.

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