UPVC windows are popular for their durability and low maintenance, but like any part of a home, they can encounter issues over time. If you find yourself dealing with a UPVC window that won't open, won't close properly, or seems jammed, don't worry. This guide is here to help you troubleshoot and resolve these common problems step by step.

So and firstly,

1. Assess the Situation:
Before attempting any fixes, take a moment to assess the situation. Understanding the nature of the problem will help you address it more effectively.

a. Windows Won't Open:
Check the Locking Mechanism: Ensure the window is not simply locked or the window locks are broken. Verify that the window handles move freely and the lock is fully disengaged. If the upvc window handle turns but the window won't budge, proceed to the next steps.

Examine the Seals: Inspect the rubber seals around the window frame. Over time, these seals can become compressed or damaged, making it difficult to open the window. Gently lubricate the seals with silicone spray or a similar lubricant to ease movement.

Observe the Hinges: Check for any visible obstructions around the hinges. Sometimes, debris or dirt can accumulate, hindering the window's operation.

b. Window Won't Close Properly:
Inspect the Alignment: Ensure the window is correctly aligned within the frame. Misalignment can result in difficulty closing the window. Look for any visible gaps or misplacements and gently adjust the window to fit properly.

Examine the Locking Points: If the window closes but doesn't lock securely, inspect the locking points along the frame. These points might need adjustment or lubrication. Use a silicone-based spray to lubricate the lock mechanisms.

2. Troubleshooting Steps:

a. Window Won't Open:

Utilize a Silicone Lubricant: Apply a silicone-based lubricant to the hinges, tracks, and locking mechanisms. This can help loosen any stiffness and make it easier to open the window. You will need to squeeze this in through the window the best you can, if you can't open it at all, but it's not always possible.

Use Gentle Pressure: Apply gentle pressure while trying to open the window. Avoid excessive force, as this could cause further damage. Gradually increase pressure until you feel any resistance, then assess the situation.

Check for Warping: Inspect the window frame for signs of warping or distortion. This could be caused by a multi-point locking point being misaligned against it's keep or the window hinges coming out of their worn end caps. If the frame is warped, it may be necessary to consult a professional for repairs or replacement.

Mechanical gearbox: If you have tried everything and your upvc window handles are turning but the window is not opening then it is very likely to be the gearbox inside the upvc window. To test this take the espag window handles off the window via the two screws. One screw is under a cap and the other is visible when the espag handles are in an open position. If the spindle turns with the handle movement in your hand then it should be fine and the problem is likely to be the espag gearbox itself which is inside the window. This is very difficult to replace unless you are in the trade so best to consult with a reputable local double glazing repairs company. They will be able to open the window and fit new window locks for you at the same time. You can probably keep your espag handles or change to new ones if you wish.

b. Window Won't Close Properly:

Adjust the Window Hinges: Tighten or adjust the upvc window hinges to ensure the window is properly aligned. Use a screwdriver to tighten loose screws gently. Be cautious not to overtighten, as this could strip the screws. If you have recently fitted new upvc window hinges it's possible that you may have fitted the window hinges incorrectly. This could result in the arm of the hinges not closing into the end cap. This will leave a gap around the window corner. Make sure the correct window hinge is on the correct side of the window in accordance with the direction of the arrow which is usually on the hinges. If your window hinges are worn then it is also possible that the end caps can no longer pull in the hinge arm for a fully closed frame. In this case replace the upvc window hinges.

Examine the Handle and Lock: If the window closes but the handle doesn't engage the lock, inspect any window handles. There might be a loose screw or a misalignment. Tighten any loose screws and adjust the handle if necessary.

Clear Debris from Tracks: Check the tracks along the window frame for any debris or dirt. Use a soft brush or vacuum to remove any obstructions that might hinder the smooth closing of the window.

3. Seek Professional Assistance:
If your attempts to troubleshoot and fix the issue are unsuccessful, or if you're uncomfortable handling the repairs yourself, it's advisable to seek professional help. UPVC window specialists or local handymen can provide expert assistance in resolving more complex problems.

4. Preventive Maintenance:
To avoid future issues with your UPVC windows, consider implementing these preventive measures:

Regular Cleaning: Keep the window tracks, frames, and hinges clean from dirt and debris. Regular cleaning prevents the buildup of materials that can impede the window's operation.

Lubrication: Apply silicone-based lubricant to window hinges, window handles, and multi-point locking mechanisms annually. This helps maintain smooth operation and prevents stiffness.

Inspect Seals: Periodically check the rubber seals for signs of wear or damage. Replace any seals that show signs of deterioration.

Dealing with a UPVC window that won't open or close properly can be frustrating, but with a systematic approach, many issues can be resolved without professional help. By following the steps outlined in this guide and implementing preventive maintenance measures, you can ensure that your UPVC windows remain in good working condition for years to come.