Casement windows, which are traditionally made from wood, and more often made of PVC in past recent years, are those that are operated with a crank mechanism. This mechanism is designed to open the window to a maximum angle or close it while maintaining it locked it in any particular position you choose. The mechanism is intended to be a security feature.
Nonetheless, there are several problems that can develop with your casement windows, including refusing to open or being difficult to close, which need to be repaired as soon as you can. If you have a problem with your casement windows and want to repair them quickly and easily, you will need a few home improvement tools and a couple of spare hours to do the repairs.
Step 1 - Take off the Arm
Your first step is to remove the arm of your casement windows. These are the metal pieces that are extended and withdrawn by using the crank handle. You may need to remove a piece of wood from the end of the arm, which is known as a stop. This is intended to withdraw the arm when possible. Wind your crank until the arm is fully extended, and then unscrew the connection to the window. Push out the arm and pull it away from the mechanism. If your arm is encased in a track, you might want to clean it using a little bit of liquid soap. Wipe it over the surface with a cloth or rag.
Step 2 - Clean the Arm
Once the arm has been removed from the crank mechanism, you can then start to clean it. You may want to use a particular cleaner, such as mineral spirits, in order to lift off any dirt. You could also use liquid dish soap, wiping it over the surface with a cloth and then brushing vigorously with the wire brush. While you have the arm in your hand, apply some suitable lubricant to the ends.
Step 3 - Clean the Gears
Once this part is clean, you can turn your attention to the crank mechanism itself. Some mechanisms need to be scrubbed thoroughly in order to remove built-up debris, which can clog the gears. You should also examine the crank for signs that it has broken parts. Once you have cleaned off the mechanism, you can then restore the arm to its rightful place.