How to Install an Aluminum Sliding Window

Lead Image
What You'll Need
Aluminum sliding window
Galvanized nails or screws
Wood shims
Trim pieces
Finish nails

Installing an aluminum sliding window is a project most DIY homeowners can do with relative ease. While aluminum sliding windows are not used as much as the double pain replacement vinyl windows are, they can still be used in screen houses, garages, attics and other buildings. The installation is very straightforward and requires only a few hand and power tools.

Step 1 - Prepare Window Opening

Before setting the window into position, you must make sure that the window opening is prepared to receive the window. The window frame should be straight and to the right dimensions of the aluminum sliding window you are installing. A little bit of variance is fine as you can use shims to level the window.

Step 2 - Set Window into Opening

Once the window opening is ready for the sliding window you can then set the window into position. Place a bead of caulking around the entire perimeter of the window opening. Lift the window into position. Hold it in place with a few nails that are driven in halfway to keep the window upright so you can work on getting it leveled and secure. Make sure that the window is in the center of the opening.

Step 3 - Level Window

Man installing a window

Place a small level on the window sill in the vertical position. Look at the amount that the window is off level and make any necessary adjustments by using wooden shims. These shims should be placed on the outside of the building where the window is being installed. Drive the shims in with the thicker side facing out. You can place shims on the top or bottom of the window if they are needed. Locate the shims in the corners, however, for a better control over the level. Once the vertical is in level, you can work on the horizontal axis.

Step 4 - Secure Window into Position

After taking the time to get the window leveled perfectly, you can then secure the window into position. Drive galvanized nails into the sides of the aluminum frame where there are already holes for them. Make sure that after each nail you again check the window for being in level. Remove the toe-nailed brace nails once the window is secure.

Step 5 - Stuff Insulation

Once the window is secure take small bits of insulation and stuff them into the cracks around the window frame. You may also use a little bit of the foam insulation, but you must be careful. This foam insulation expands when it is released from the can. If you use too much it will move the window or bend the frame.

Step 6 - Install Trim Pieces

With the window installed you can install small quarter round or other trim pieces around the window for a more finished look. Cut the pieces to fit around the perimeter and secure with small finish nails. Once they are secured use small dabs of wood putty to hide the nails and sand it flush with the wood. Paint the trim to the desired color and enjoy your new aluminum sliding window.