My partner lives in a condo with original windows from 1981. Replacing the windows has been on our list, but we haven't been able to save up for it.

Today, we opened one of the windows for the first time, because we needed to air out the bathroom after using some volatile chemicals. The window got stuck open. I couldn't close it, so my partner tried to muscle it closed. We heard a snap, and what looks like a metal band or strap, rusted on one end, fell out of the window on the right side. Now the window is stuck open 2/3 of the way. It will not budge. I've attached photos.

This is on the first floor of my condo, facing the street, so I feel uncomfortable just having it open like this. Is there anything I can do to fix this to get it closed? We can't really afford to replace the window right now, but if that's the only option, we'll have to make it work.

If your recommendation will require that the window be left open for a while (e.g. time consuming fix, professional repair, or full replacement), could you also recommend how I could seal up the opening while we wait?

Thank you very much in advance.

broken metal band right side of window full view of window stuck open

  • 2
    Plywood is a normal approach to a window that is in need of being covered.
    – Ecnerwal
    Commented Apr 28 at 19:34
  • @Ecnerwal good idea, how do you attach plywood to the metal window
    – Traveler
    Commented Apr 29 at 6:12
  • 1
    @Traveler Two pieces of plywood larger than the gap. Pre-drill screw holes in the inside piece, inside the gap. Put a couple of screws into the back of the outside one, so you can use them as handles to manoeuvre it outside. (Also tack a bit of rope to it, so if you drop it then it doesn't fall.) Then put screws through the inside piece into the outer piece.
    – Graham
    Commented Apr 29 at 7:45

1 Answer 1


That part's function is to push the window to one side of the frame, to prevent it getting wedged.

What you have is just a wedged window.

Try to loosen it by pushing up, but only on one side at a time.

When closing, push the window to left or right side simultaneously to prevent wedging.

  • 4
    Also if you're still struggling to get it to move after following this advice, apply WD-40 and try again. Generally speaking, you can't really go wrong with stuck things and WD-40.
    – ThaRobster
    Commented Apr 29 at 8:27
  • 4
    3-in-1 is a better choice than WD-40, as it is actually a lubricant.
    – fectin
    Commented Apr 29 at 20:22

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