How to Paint Triple Track Storm Windows

  • 2 hours
  • Beginner
  • 50
What You'll Need
Plastic bucket
Dishwashing soap
Water
Rags or paper towels
Glass cleaner
Brake cleaner
Steel wool or wire brush
Painter’s tape
Metal primer
Trim paint brushes
Paint
Utility knife

Triple track storm windows are designed for permanent installation over double-hung windows to provide protection from drafts and add to the energy efficiency of your home. These storm windows are comprised of 2 window panes and 1 screen, each resting in their own track for independent movement. They can be installed on the interior or exterior of your windows.

Aluminum is the primary material used to make triple track storm window frames as they will form a tight seal, are durable, and are easily maintained. Aluminum can also allow you to customize the look of your windows or cover up existing flaws with a little paint.

Painting Aluminum Storm Windows

Painting your triple track storm windows is a simple task requiring only a little preparation and few supplies. You will need to work in a well-ventilated workspace due to any fumes from the brake cleaner, and the paint. Make sure to use a large work table covered by an old blanket or cloth to rest the window while working.

The following are the steps to enhance the look of your aluminum triple track storm windows with a little paint.

Step 1 – Clean the Storm Window Frames

In the plastic bucket, combine dishwashing soap with a little water. If the surface of the frame appears to be chalky, use steel wool or a wire brush to clean the surface. Any grease left on the surface can bleed through the paint over time. To clean any grease or stains, apply a spray of brake cleaner, which is not harmful to aluminum and does not leave residues.

Next, use a sponge or rag and soapy water to clean the storm window frame. Rinse with water and dry with a dry rag or paper towel.

Step 2 – Tape the Glass and Screen

Using your painter’s tape, carefully apply tape to prevent any paint splatters on the window glass or screen.

Step 3 – Apply Metal Primer

The aluminum's smooth surface has to be abraded to allow the paint to hold on to. With most materials, this is done with sandpaper, but with aluminum you should use an etching primer and leave it dry for 4-6 hours before painting. Apply following the manufacturer’s directions and allow the frames to dry completely.

Step 4 – Paint the Frame

Choose an exterior grade acrylic or latex paint formulated for use on metal. Using a trim paintbrush, paint the aluminum frame with multiple thin coats. Allow the frame to dry completely between coats.

Step 5 – Remove Tape

Carefully remove the painter’s tape from the triple track storm window by slowly pulling it away at an angle from the painted area. Scrape off any paint that splattered or seeped onto the window glass from under the tape with the utility knife.

Make touch-ups as necessary if the tape pulls off any paint from the storm window frame.