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How to Replace Your Old Hopper Windows

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September 17, 2010

Hopper windows are common in homes with basements. They are the small rectangular windows near the ground that open inward at the top of the window frame. Over time, hopper windows can become damaged or stuck due to excessive weatherization and water damage. Replacing them is usually much easier than replacing other windows because hopper windows usually are mounted into concrete or cement block foundations and aren't wrapped with window trim.

How to Remove Old Hopper Windows

What you'll need:

  • reciprocating saw with a metal blade
  • wrecking bar

First, remove the framed glass panel (sash). This makes it easier to cut out the existing window frame. Next, using your reciprocating saw, cut the top and bottom of the window frame almost flush to the concrete to which the window is mounted. Then, use your pry bar to bend up the old frame. Once you have some daylight between the frame and the concrete, you can finish the cut with your reciprocating saw.

Oftentimes old frames are slightly embedded in concrete, but it's usually no more than one-half or one-quarter inch. Your new window usually covers any blemishes in the concrete made during removal.

Installing New Hopper Windows

In some instances, you can re-install a new hopper window directly into the hole left by the old window. Measure carefully, and compare the overall opening of your new window. The window can be mounted using Tapcon concrete screws through the window frame.

In other instances, you might have to wrap the hole left by the old window with pressure treated wood to provide a mounting surface for the hopper window. The pressure treated wood also can be mounted with concrete screws. Run a bead of caulking around the window frame edges prior to installation to ensure a weather-tight seal.

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