Full Frame Window Replacement Process

There is more than one way to replace the windows in your house. One method, shown here, is what we call 'full frame' window replacement.

Drafty windows, windows that don’t open easily, windows that have lost the insulating seal between the panes of glass… all are reasons that it may be time to think about replacing your windows.

One option for a window replacement is what we call ‘full frame window replacement:’ this means removing the entire window, including all the trim, going back to the ‘rough opening’ in the framing of the house.  Here is the process:

YouTube video

(installed in this project:  Pella’s Architect Series windows)

Three major benefits of doing a window replacement this way are:

1) getting down to the rough framing of the window opening allows for the framing itself to be inspected for any damage or other problems

2) all the insulation, caulking, and flashing that seals the window into the opening will be replaced as well, providing a totally fresh start with the new window

3) you will not lose any ‘glass area’ that is a result of using a replacement window product (we have a video showing this replacement window process)


1) ‘full frame’ replacement is more costly as a project because of the time and materials involved

2) it is more disruptive in the short term to the home, as more of the existing window structure must be removed before installing the new ones.

Deciding which option might be best for your project will likely involve assessing the condition of your current windows (and surrounding trim/framing) as well as considering your budget and design goals.

We are committed to finding the best solution that meets the needs of YOUR unique project without pushing you into one method or the other. Give us a call if you’d like to learn more!