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RESTORATION GUIDE

Learn to Repair & Restore Your Historic Windows!

Step-by-Step Online Courses

Save $1000s!  Earn Equity!

For Historic Wood or Steel Windows

 

The courses below are designed to help even the most novice beginner learn to repair and restore historic wood or steel windows.

Through step-by-step videos, I share the knowledge I’ve gained in my restoration efforts, but from a beginner’s perspective – someone without any formal construction or carpentry training. This means you won’t be left behind with technical jargon. I keep things simple and easy to understand for even the newest beginner.  Plus, you can save thousands of dollars by taking these courses and restoring yourself.  Anyone can do this!

I offer a variety of courses, so please explore below, and join me in saving some windows!

Available Courses

MASTER COURSE
Wood Window Restoration

Full A-Z Guide. All Steps Covered.

Topics Include:

  • Introduction and Safety
  • Window Dismantling
  • Frame Restoration
  • Sash restoration
  • Glazing
  • Priming/Painting
  • Hardware Restoration
  • Reinstallation
  • Finalization

Learn More   Buy Now  SUBSCRIBER ACCESS HERE

$25 per month

 

MASTER COURSE
Steel Window Restoration

Comprehensive Guide. 

Topics Include:

  • Removing Rust & Old Paint
  • Reglazing
  • Priming/Painting
  • Finalization
  • Fixing/Replacing Cranks and Locks
  • Restoring Metal Screens

Learn More Buy Now SUBSCRIBER ACCESS HERE

$25 per month

 

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FREE COURSE
Easy Historic Window Repair & Sash Rope Replacement

Mini Guide. 15+ free videos.

Topics Include:

  • Basic Window Maintenance
  • Basic Functionality
  • Getting your windows to open again!
  • Replacing old sash ropes!

Enter Free Course

$0

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FREE COURSE
Hardware Restoration

For Pulleys, Locks, Handles, etc.
Mini Guide. 15+ free videos.

Topics Include:

  • Introduction
  • What is “Hardware”
  • Why Restore Your Hardware?
  • How to Clean it
  • Choosing a Finish
  • How to Paint and Clear Coat
  • Metal Aging
  • How to Harden Your Finish

Enter Free Course

$0

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FREE TOOLS LIST

Includes:

  • Tools List for your Restoration
  • Necessary Power Tools
  • Necessary Hand Tools
  • Optional tools
  • Window Components
  • Explanations
  • Illustrations
  • Links of where to buy
  • Paint Suggestions
  • PPE Ideas

& Downloadable Excel List!!

enter free Guide

$0

Illustration of a front door

BOOK
Restoration Basics for Your Historic Door

eBook, Paperback, and Hardcover. 130+ pages.

Includes:

  • Step-by-step instructions for restoring your historic door
  • Recommended Tools and Materials
  • Paints and Finishes to Consider
  • Removing the Door

Learn More BUY NOW
$15

Hello!

My name is Mitch.

I made this guide to help people restore and save their old windows.

Like you, I fell in love with my windows.  They're truly beautiful! But I didn’t have the budget to pay a professional to restore them. Out of necessity, I rolled up my sleeves and did my best. Over a long period of trial and error, I figured out how to restore them quickly and efficiently. With my techniques refined, it turned out that it was not only easy, but actually fun, providing me with a moment of zen each day I worked on them.

My goal with this course is to teach you how to do the same.

Now my videos are certainly homemade and "low budget."  (That's how I jokingly came up with the name of this website!)  But the the content is gold, and will teach you how to restore windows found on the majority of older homes and buildings.  By using my online courses, you can truly keep a low budget for your own window restoration, leaving you more money for other projects or for when you need to call in an expert.

Most importantly, I want to help you enjoy this journey,  On this is a journey you may swear a few times, but in the end I think you’ll find true satisfaction in working on you own windows.  Restoring windows is easy, and it can be a very zen and peaceful process.

Most of these videos and pictures are from my own house to show you what anyone can do. If I can do it, so can YOU!

Thank you!

Don’t Reinvent the Wheel

Benefit from my experience, including my trials and errors, to hit the ground running when restoring your windows.

(Photo of my house after restoration.)

Budget and Value Comparisons

Assuming your house has an average of 30 windows, the costs are approximately the following:

Professional Window Restoration:  $10k to $30k.  At approximately $1000 per wood window (a low-end assumption), it would cost $30,000 for professional restoration.  For steel windows, restoration costs are likely a bit lower.  There are often less steel windows per house, but each steel window is typically quite large.  Estimated costs for a single family home would range from $10,000 to $15,000.

Replacement Windows: $15k to $30k.  At approximately $500 to replace each wood window with a mid-range vinyl window, it would cost $15,000 for new windows, at the bare minimum.  To replace steel windows with windows of similar character (e.g. retaining ability to open and close, etc.) it averages $30,000 for a single family home.  Even though typically there are less steel windows per house, replacing a single steel window is often in the thousands as they are not standard sizes or shapes and can be quite large.

Using this Master Course to Restore Yourself: $1.5k.

Approximately $1,550, broken down as follows:

  • $250 for this class,
  • About $1000 for tools (if you’re starting with none),
  • About $300 for paint, glaze, etc.

I would also budget an extra $1000 for repairing extremely damaged or rotted windows. This website does not teach complex carpentry repairs, such as fixing a rotted windowsill. It’s simply best to use a window restoration professional to help you repair these types of issues. (Note: I have restoration professionals listed on the extra resources page.)  But - hopefully, you will save so much money restoring the bulk of the windows yourself that you will have enough in your budget to pay a professional for the few outlying issues.  And often, this may not even be an issue.

With my own window restoration, my windows were in horrible shape. But I only needed help repairing windowsills because they were all chopped off in the 1970s by the metal siding installers. When I pulled off all the siding, I realized what they had done. It cost me about $700 to fix at the time. 

*Note: Metal casement windows often will need new cranks and locks, adding about $200-300 maximum to the budget.

See How Dave Saved Nearly $30,000 by Restoring His Windows Himself.

Before and After Comparisons Using this Course

My windows were in terrible condition when I started. Using the techniques I teach here, I restored them to their original, beautiful condition. These two videos show you the before and after.

Before

This video is from many years ago before I had done any restoration work. It is the only video I have saved from that pre-restoration period. The video demonstrates the terrible condition my windows were in before I started.

After

This second video shows the same window several years after its complete restoration.  It shows how beautiful a window can look after restoration, even when you’re starting from one that looks like it has no hope.

CUSTOMER REVIEWS

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“I have a 1920s craftsman in San Antonio and all of the windows (although not completely destroyed or rotted) need to be restored and reglazed and have the mechanics redone. The cost of having a professional do this was not something I could afford, and I definitely, definitely did not want to replace the beautiful wood windows with some new vinyl replacements. I really want to be able to do the window restoration myself working a little at a time. I started to try to research in the usual places online and on YouTube, and the amount of information on window restoration was so overwhelming and very scattered. It would've taken me weeks or months to try to get everything together. I stumbled across Mitchell's course and emailed him with a couple of questions. He replied instantly to every email and not only answered my questions about the course, but also provided me with several historic home resources here in San Antonio.
...
Even though I'm waiting for some better weather to start working on my windows, I already registered for his course and started reviewing all of the materials so that I am ready to go.  His course is so thorough and well organized, and is definitely written for the novice, but motivated renovator.  He literally takes you through the restoration process step by step but the course allows you flexibility so that you can modify based on the needs of your window.  His course includes both videos and written description based on your preference!    With his guide, I am not nervous at all about doing this window restoration on my own. In fact, I'm really excited about accomplishing this all by myself.  Thank you for providing a resource to help DIY Historic homeowners save these beautiful historic wood windows!" -- Kat

Kat San Antonio, TX

Why Restore Your Windows?

Because They’re Awesome!

Your original historic windows are special.  You can save money by keeping them, and in saving them you can make your historic property truly shine.

From Forbes Magazine:

"If you own a house built before 1960 that has its original windows, be grateful. Nothing will
ever look as good. And, contrary to what you may have heard from the building and remodeling
industries, new windows will not function better. They will not save you buckets of money in energy costs.
They may not even last until you have finished paying for them." ... I couldn't have said it better.

Make your house shine, raise your resale value, and enhance your building’s historical charm.

These windows are often built out of old growth wood and were built to last. Old growth wood is often stronger and more rot resistant, and that is why they’ve lasted this long so far.

Preserve Handmade Character & Charm

These windows also often have hand rolled wavy glass in them. Once fully cleaned, this wavy glass can add a special magic to any house, because it reflects light around and simply brings a special element that can’t be found with modern glass.

Timeless Beauty

The hardware on these older windows can be made to look beautiful. Especially on more ornate hardware. They can be truly amazing.

The windows can be sealed fairly tight.

My home is in south Texas, where it gets very hot; even with many days above 100, my house still remains cool without overly running my AC. Additionally, if you live in a very cold climate, you can add storm windows to seal out drafts.

More Air Flow with Less A/C Usage

Once you restore a double hung window, it can open from both the bottom AND the top. These windows were designed for greater air flow in mild weather (and even quite warm weather) as they were designed before AC.  So, once they are restored, they can actually be quite environmentally friendly and can cut your AC bills down by increasing natural air flow in the spring and fall months.

Easy and Fun process

This is a fun journey making your house truly feel yours.

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100% Money-Back Guarantee

If you think this course isn’t going to work for you, then just contact me within 30 days of purchase and I give you a full refund.

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