Complete Guide to Open a Stuck Window

I locked my window all through winter due to the cold until a sunny day when I needed ventilation, and my window stuck.

We don’t appreciate it when we effortlessly open our homes/offices windows until they don’t open. Fortunately, with some handy tools, you can open the stuck window yourself.

This guide will show you why your window is stuck and how you can fix a stuck window with some handy tools yourself,

Proceed on

Why is your window not Opening?

Your window is not opening due to some reasons. They include Air humidity, Wear and Tear of the window stop or sash, and Paint.

Whether the building is old or newly built, one of these three reasons is the common culprit of a stuck window.

During paint renovation or overhaul aesthetic change, paint can sip into the spaces between the window and its frame. If the paint dries, it might restrict the window from opening. Also, wood can absorb air moisture. Hence if the surrounding air around a wooden window has a high amount of moisture, the wood absorbs and swells, restricting the efficient movement of the window.

In addition, if your window is old, it is prone to get stuck due to the development of rough edges, splinters, and weak points.

However the case may be, you can easily resolve these problems with some handy tools by following the guide below.

How to Open a Stuck Window

Before you decide whether a window a particular window is stuck, it is best to examine the window carefully to make such decisions. Ensure you check for the following to be sure the window is stuck

  • Check if the window is to be open. Some windows in some homes and offices are only there to ensure natural lighting in the space. If there are no hinges, no sliding interface, or multiple panes, then the window is likely not meant to be open
  • Ensure the window is not screwed or nailed to its frame. Windows of this kind are primarily for security/ emergency and conservation reasons
  • Ensure all the locks associated with the window are unlocked
  • Confirm the direction you ought to open the window. Most windows open sideways by sliding or pushing upward, outward, and downward

After confirming all the factors above and the window remains stuck, you can proceed to determine the culprit to the stuck.

The steps to unlock a stuck window depend on its cause. Below are the handy tools you need to unstick the widow:

  • Putty knife
  • Razor knife
  • Sandpaper
  • Hammer
  • Dehumidifier
  • Crowbar
  • Screwdriver

Now let’s proceed to stuck window repair strategies depending on the cause.

1.     Poor Painting

During painting, the paint may sip into the narrow space between the window and its frame. When the paint dries, it may cause the window to stick when opening. Therefore removing the dry paint seal is necessary to ensure free opening of the window.

Follow the step below to remove the dry paint:

·        Loosen and break the dry paint sealBreaking the stuck window paint seal by a small firm razor knife

With a small firm razor knife and a putty knife, you can break the paint seal. Insert the razor knife in the space between the frame and the window. Then run the knife to the window’s sides to loosen all paint seals.

In addition, insert the putty knife into the space and wriggle it to all the edges of the window to further break the paint seals. The putty knife is stronger and wider to break the paint seals.

Ensure you repeat these steps to the window exterior.

·        Push the window gently with your hand

Push the window gently by placing your palm on it. Give the even a light, firm, and even push. The push will loosen the reaming paint seal and open the window.

For effectiveness, push the window on the four edges before the total push. Also, you can lift the window sash upward with one hand and push the window with the other palm.

If this doesn’t work, you need more force. Follow the next step to exert the force.

·        Use a crowbar

 crowbar into the space between the window and its frame

Insert the crowbar into the space between the window and its frame. Then reposition it to the middle of the window so it can lift it effectively. Apply force from the other end of the crowbar to raise the window, then push the window gently.

If the space is too small for the crowbar, tap the other end of the crowbar with a hammer to forcefully access the space.

Note: Using the crowbar to lift the window may damage the window. Use it gently; it should be your last resolve if the method above is insufficient to unstick the window.

1.     High Air Moisture

If you didn’t paint your home or window recently, then your stuck window is not due to any paint seal. However, other factors such as a high moisture concentration in the air may cause your window to stick.

If your window is a wooden type, this may be the culprit behind the stuck. Wood can absorb moisture and thereby causing an increase in the size of the wooden sash or frame. When the wood swell, the window become difficult to open.

If air moisture is the culprit, follow any of the methods below to open the window

·        Use of lubricantSpraying lubricant on stuck windows

If your window is a wooden type, rub the window sash/frame with the end of candle wax. The slippery candle wax acts as a lubricant and allows the window to slide over it easily when you open it.

·        Use of Dehumidifier


Dehumidifiers are air conditioning devices used to reduce the amount of air moisture in a space. If the wooden window is in a damp space, the dehumidifier helps to reduce the amount of moisture in the air, thereby decreasing the wood intake.

If less moisture is present in the room, the swollen wooden window sash/frame dries quickly, and you can open the window easily.

·        Use of hair dryer

hair dryer

The hairdryer acts as a substitute for the dehumidifier. Plug the hair dryer and blow it air across the edges of the window. The air dries the wood and eases its opening.

Alternatively, if your window is made of metal and the window stick without a paint seal, use spray lubricants along the edges of the window. The lubricants rub the edges of the window and allow easy opening.

In addition, if the metal window has hinges, spray the hinges with lubricants to ease opening.

Tip: Rub your window hinges with lubricant frequently to avoid stuck and undesirable sound while opening the window.

3.     Aged Window

Aged Window

If your home or office window is old, especially the old double-hung window style, you may have to remove the window sash and sand its edges. Due to age, wear, and tear, the window sash may develop rough edges, splinter, and weak points that can cause the window to stick.

In addition, you may have to remove the window sash if the window frames get wrapped due to moisture.

Removing the window sash may seem technical, but follow the steps below to perform this simple DIY task.

·        Window stop removal

The window stop is a thin piece around the sash and holds the sash in place. It determines the size of the window.

First, examine the style it was attached to the sash/frame to remove the stop. Then, remove the fasteners used to attach it to the window sash with a screwdriver. After removing the window stops at both side of the sash, and proceed to remove the sash

·        Remove any paint seal or other forms of seal

With a putty knife, scrape all the paint present on the stops. The paint seal on the window stops, and the frame may cause the window to get stuck.

After removing the stop, separate the upper and the lower window sash. Remove the lower stash first by leaning the sash toward yourself and removing the ropes connecting them. Remove the upper sash with the same method.

·        Smoothen the edges of the sashes

Smooth edges by sandpaper

After removing the sashes, smoothen the edges by removing the paint seal with the putty knife and sanding wood swells, splinters, and rough edges with sandpaper.

Ensure you sand the sash edges smoothly and evenly to prevent creating an unequal surface that may cause the window to stick.

In addition, sand the track within the window frame to remove any form of wrapping paint seal or water damage along its sides.

·        Reinstall the window

To install the window, follow the step you followed to remove the window, stop and sash to replace the window. After installing the windows, open them to see how well the window opens.


Generally, a stuck window is mainly caused by bad painting styles, a high concentration of air moisture, or wear and tear due to age. However, this guide has provided basic DIY methods you need to open up your stuck window.

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