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Doors & Windows

Window sash locks

When replacing window sash locks must the holes be pre-drilled or can screws be directly inserted? I do not own a power drill or power screwdriver and prefer to not get involved with those due to inexperience and cost. I do own a good screwdriver. Also the replacement screws supplied are only about 3/4" long.  Wouldn't 1" or more be better? If so, under what name or description would I find workable screws (e.g., do I look under "wood screws", "sheet metal screws", or something else?)

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Posted 2013-09-04T16:32:27+0000  by torpe torpe

Hello torpe and welcome to the community!


There are a variety of sash locks on the market today, most look very similar. If you are replacing your window sash locks then the original holes are still there. Try shopping at different hardware or big box stores and buy one or two sash locks at each store. When you get home, match up each one to see if the holes line up, then you won't have to drill or modify the holes. The ones that fit you keep, and the others you return back to the store


Pre-drilling holes is a good thing if no hole is currently there, but you need to make sure you wrap masking tape towards the bottom of the drill bit. Using the space between the tip of the bit and the bottom edge of the tape, this will act as a depth gauge. 




In regards to finding screws for the sash locks, when you buy a new sash lock, the package almost always comes with new screws. 


You had mentioned wanting to use longer screws, I would advise against that and here's why: the window fits inside the sash and the glass goes in further into the wood than you can see, so you run the risk of the screw hitting the glass causing it to break. 


If you find that your current screw hole is a bit too big, you can take a piece of a toothpick and place it into the hole, then try tightening the screw. 

Posted 2013-09-05T14:28:11+0000  by Angelo_HD_CHI

Thanks Angelo for this helpful advice. I would never have thought about the toothpick bit. I think I will need to use that as the reason I have to replace the sash lock is due to a break-in attempt and I expect the holes were stripped and enlarged some.

Posted 2013-09-05T16:47:16+0000  by torpe

Thanks for the kind words!  If you had a break-in, you may also want to try First Watch Security Window Vent Lock, this will let the window open completely, or if you have the device engaged, it will allow you to vent the window a few inches but not open it completely. Stop in the Home Depot for a demonstration. 


Posted 2013-09-05T17:16:17+0000  by Angelo_HD_CHI
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