broken window or glass door - what to do

If you have at least one kid in your house, there is a good chance that you have experienced at least one broken window in the past - if not, there is probably one in your future. Do you know what to do if a window or glass door is broken in your home? How you clean it up, who replaces it and how you handle the entire situation will all have an impact on the outcome. My site contains tips for dealing with a broken window or glass door in your home. Hopefully, you will be able to learn from my many experiences and avoid the mistakes that I have made.

5 Window Installation Challenges Most Tiny House Builders Overlook


The idea of building a portable house from scratch is tempting to many DIY-minded families, but it only takes a few mistakes to compromise the strength and life of the entire tiny house. Windows are particularly tricky for novices to install correctly, so watch out for these common mistakes that can be made during window installation.

Emergency Egress

You're dreaming of tiny casement windows for good ventilation or round designs for beauty, but don't forget about basic safety requirements. You need at least one window that opens enough that every member of the family can climb out in case of a collapse or fire. Forgetting to install an emergency egress window or skylight leaves you in violation of local building codes and putting your family at risk for serious injury or death. Since these windows are larger than the compact models most tiny home builders prefer, you will likely need to rearrange the framing of a pre-made plan around the bigger egress window.

Shaking and Quaking

Most residential windows are designed to simply sit in the frame and resist breaking from the contraction and expansion cycles caused by changing temperatures and humidity levels. Yet the mobile tiny house is subject to intense bouncing and rattling that can warp the frames and shatter the glass. Make sure your new windows can handle all that movement and vibration with features like

  • Fiberglass or aluminum frames, the most rigid materials for holding window glass in place
  • Foam pads around the edges of each window to absorb vibration before it reaches the glass
  • Test ratings showing that the windows can handle Zone 4 level seismic activity and winds up to 130 miles per hour.

Don't just pick up any old residential windows found at your local home improvement store. If you can't find windows rated for handling earthquakes and high winds on your own, contact a window installation company for more access to manufacturers that only sell to professionals.

Flying Debris

Aside from the shaking that rattles your windows, rolling down the road also puts your glass at risk due to flying bits of gravel and other road debris. If your tiny house has a cottage or cabin style, bolting wood shutters may fit your exterior style. Skip the shutters and stick with tempered windows with a layer of plastic film sandwiched between two layers of glass. These models shatter into small pieces or resist breaking at all to keep your family safer as you travel.

Complicated Flashing

Watching a few videos on wrapping window edges with moisture resistant barriers can't prepare you for all the various challenges of flashing windows when space is at a premium. Many tiny house lovers also choose complicated insulation methods, like continuous insulation that covers the studs, that make flashing the window even harder. Hand the work over to the professionals if you don't want window leaks to rot out your walls and lead to thousands of dollars in repairs.

Structural Bracing

Standard building codes only require a little bracing between studs, but tiny homes need more than the usual framing support to resist the swaying and bending forces of road travel. If you want to stick to minimal framing, keep your windows small enough to fit between standard stud spaces to limit the amount of extra framing you need around the window. Plan to add double or triple framing around the big egress window. Many designs for tiny houses let in lots of natural light by creating a wall of windows, but you'll need specialty steel or aluminum framing to support all that open space between studs.

For professional assistance, check out companies like Five Star Windows.


12 August 2015