How To Open A Broken uPVC Window Lock

//How To Open A Broken uPVC Window Lock

How To Open A Broken uPVC Window Lock

How To Open A Broken uPVC Window Lock - Window and Door Parts
One of the most common parts to break in a uPVC window is the window espag lock. This is the part that is operated by the handle. Usually the window lock will start to become more difficult to open and close before it breaks. When a window lock is broken it will leave you with two situations:

  1. The window is opened and your not able to lock it, or
  2. The window is closed and your not able to open it

And in this post we’ll discuss how to open a broken uPVC window lock for both of the above cases.

How To Open A Broken uPVC Window Lock

The first situation is easily dealt with, as it is just a case of replacing the broken window lock. You can see my video below on how to replace a broken window lock.

How To Open A Broken Window Espag Lock

The second situation is a bit more difficult. I’m going to share with you my method for opening a broken window espag lock. You can also check out my instructional video on how to open a broken window lock below.

The very first thing to do is remove the window handle from the window. Sometimes the spindle bar from the window handle can become detached. This will make seem like the window lock is broken, when in fact it is the window handle. Also sometimes the small push button lock in the window handle can be broken or locked.

How to open a broken window espag lock with removable seals - Window and Door Parts Ireland

How To Check Window Seals

The next thing you want to check is what type of seals are on your windows. There are two types of seals; removable seals or co-extruded seals. Removable seals sit into a groove around the window frame and can be removed. Co-extruded seals are made part of the window frame itself and cannot be removed.

Go to another of the same type of window in your house. Open any sash, and grab the seal around the frame with your thumb and finger, and gently pull back. If the seal comes away from the frame use the first method below. If the seal doesn’t come away from the frame use the method for co-extruded seal below.

For windows with removable seal

  • Remove the two screws holding the window handle and remove the window handle
  • In the space between the window frame and sash you will see the draught seal. Using a flat screwdriver try to grip the seal and carefully pull it up and out of it’s grove. There is no need to remove it the whole way around, just along the area of the window lock. If you cannot pull it out with the screwdriver, push it out of its groove and down instead.
  • With the seal out of the way look along the gap where the seal was. Use a torch if needed. You should see the frame keeps that the window lock locks against.
  • Use a small allen key and insert it in to a vice grips like the picture.
  • Place the head of the allen key into the gap between the frame and sash. Turn the vice grips a quarter turn towards the sash.
  • Move the vice grips along until you reach the frame keep.
  • Manoeuvre the vice grips until the head of the allen key is between the sash and the frame keep.
  • When you feel the locking point, pull in one quick motion against it. If the window lock did not release, try removing the allen key and re insert it an inch or two to the opposite side. This time push against the locking point instead of pulling. The locking points only move laterally (ie left to right or right to left) If the window lock still didn’t release it could be because it has seized up. Try the same method again, but this time give the vice grips a couple of taps of a hammer.

For windows with co-extruded seal (the seal is part of the window)

This is much the same process as above, except you will not be able to remove the seal from around the frame. This makes it much more difficult as you won’t be able to see the locking points.

  • Remove the two screws holding the window handle and remove the window handle
  • Using a wide paint scraper (don’t use a flat screwdriver as it will damage the frame) insert it between the frame seal and sash.
  • Apply pressure on the paint scraper to pry between the frame and the sash, until a small gap appears
  • Use a small allen key and insert it in to a vice grips like the picture.
  • Place the head of the allen key into the gap between the frame and sash. Turn the vice grips a quarter turn towards the sash.
  • Move the vice grips along until you hit the frame keep. Manoeuvre the vice grips until the head of the Allen key is between the sash and the frame keep.
  • When you feel the locking point pull in one quick motion against it. If the window lock did not release, try removing the allen key and re insert it an inch or two to the opposite side. This time push against the locking point instead of pulling. The locking points only move laterally (ie left to right or right to left) If the window lock still didn’t release it could be because it has seized up. Try the same method again, but this time give the vice grips a couple of taps of a hammer.

Once the sash has opened it is very straight forward to replace the broken espag lock. See our instructional video on how to replace a window espag lock here

Window Lock Replacement parts for Mila, Hautau, Maco

Common Window Lock Replacement Parts

Below are links to some of the most common window lock replacements – if you can’t repair your window lock then replacing them yourself is the next best thing and the window locks below should cover most types of windows. If you need a specific part for your windows get in touch to let me know and will see what we can do for you.

Mila Window Lock
Hautau Window Lock
Maco Offset Window Lock

Hope the above guide and videos will make it possible for you to open a broken uPVC lock and hopefully replace it but if you’ve any questions please comment below or feel free to contact me!

By |2017-01-25T16:46:36+00:00January 25th, 2017|Categories: Window Locks|11 Comments

About the Author:

My name is Paddy Cuddihy and I am the owner of windowanddoorparts.ie. I have over 10 year experience in the window and door trade. Specialising in window and door repairs and servicing, both commercial and domestic – Pvc, aluminium, timber, alu-clad. You name it, I’ve repaired it. I graduated from Waterford Institute of Technology with a Degree in Building Services Engineering and I am a PSA (Private Security Authority) licensed locksmith. If you have any questions relating to windows and doors, I'll be more than happy to answer them.

11 Comments

  1. Gavan O'Kelly April 25, 2017 at 3:28 pm - Reply

    Fair play to you Paddy the Allen key trick worked a treat. Thanks for sharing !

  2. Catherine June 11, 2018 at 11:19 am - Reply

    If the upvc window is stuck in the closed position and I can’t get underneath the handle to try and open it with the belt clip from the tape measure what are my options? I need to remove the handle but one of the screws is behind the handle stuck in the closed position. Any advice would be appreciated. 🙂

    • Patrick Cuddihy June 12, 2018 at 11:10 pm - Reply

      Hi Catherine,
      Sounds like the handle is locked or broken. Unfortunately the clip trick doesn’t work on all types of window handles. If you could send me a picture of the handle i might be able to help you better.
      Best Regards
      Paddy

  3. Tony June 12, 2018 at 7:43 pm - Reply

    How do u do this if the handle won’t move and therefore blocks access to the screws

  4. Richard Shade July 21, 2018 at 11:09 am - Reply

    Hi Paddy – the video is a great tip. One of the rollers on my windows has got stuck. I have been able to get the seal out (its a co-extruded seal) and can fit a 2.5mm allan key down. However, its not long enough to reach the roller, when the right l-shape is turned. Do you use an extra-long allan key? If so, where from 🙂

    cheers
    Richard

    • Patrick Cuddihy July 22, 2018 at 8:24 pm - Reply

      Hi Richard,
      No i use a regular size allen key. If it’s not reaching the roller try the allen key the next size up. Failing that you might have to try something else. Maybe a long nail bent in a L shape.
      Best regards
      Paddy

  5. Bernard July 22, 2018 at 8:56 am - Reply

    Thanks for the video Paddy
    Will it work for Mila Tongue windowns also?

    • Patrick Cuddihy July 22, 2018 at 8:18 pm - Reply

      Hi Bernard, Yes it should work the very same for the tongue locks.

      Best Regards
      Paddy

  6. Gaynor August 26, 2018 at 12:09 pm - Reply

    Hi Paddy ,
    We have an aluminium door onto a balcony, that only has one handle on the inside, and the handle seems to have broken with the door locked shut. There is no screw on the handle to take it off, is there a way that these handles can be removed ?
    Many thanks
    Gaynor

    • Patrick Cuddihy August 27, 2018 at 8:56 pm - Reply

      Hi Gaynor,
      Can you send me some picture of the door please? You can contact me through the contact page.
      Best Regards
      Paddy

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