My Old House Online

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I just installed new windows in my house and was told there are places that will buy the old ones. They are the kind that are wavy when you look through them, and I was told they are called "depression glass". Can anyone tell me about how much they would go for and where to look for buyers. They are still in the sash.

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Here in North Central PA, they go into a dumpster outside the house. I have bought sashes with old glass before, but that price is essentially the value of collection and storage (and realistically the value of having to hear me bitch about why anyone would replace them in the first place). The bigger the sash, the greater chance you have of someone being willing to buy them, because that will increase the chance that they can be cut down to a size that someone wants.
Here in New England/upstate NY they would be placed carefully at the side of the road with a "free' sign and would disappear - usually to be reused in garages or chicken coops.

OR: they would go, again for free, to the local recycling, salvage place - or a 'swap shop' if there's a dump. And there the old glass would be seen as a treasure to be reused in an old house.

Especially over the last few years when we have had damaging hail storms, old house owners have been searching for old glass to replace the panes lost to hail stones.

I am sorry that you replaced your windows and did not find this site in time to learn about the value, both in money and history, of what you removed.
Thank you for planning to recycle them.
>>"depression glass"

Depression glass usually means the decorative nick nacks and table ware that are kept on shelves in the parlor.

>>was told there are places that will buy the old ones.

Who told you this? Ask the person who told you, they may have had some place in mind. If these are arched or bowed sashes, or stained glass, or something else special then you might find an architectural salvage company that would buy, but only at wholesale values, which always seems rather low. If they are ordinary square sashes you might find a window restoration outfit that will take them off your hands, but might pay little or nothing.

Their highest value is right there at your place, but the conundrum is that now you don't need them so you cannot realize that value. Do the next owner of your place a favor and store them in the attic or the loft of the barn. In the future their true value will be recognized when the new windows are wearing out, the original windows can be restored, and will all fit exactly right.

(perhaps hard to believe, but I've seen it happen more than once)

John
www.HistoricHomeWorks.com
When you do restore the wood windows or any old wood structures, and you want your new paint or varnish to stick well and last longer, strip that old lead paint right down to the bare wood. Low heat infrared paint removers or steam, as you know, are safe clean ways to do this.

Catherine
www.eco-strip.com
Store them away for future use. When your vinyl degrades and the windows are cloudy between the panes, you'll be wishing you'd taken the time to restore them. Read one of Jane's books on the value of old windows versus replacement. It should be required reading for anyone who moves into an old home with original windows.
I think you meant John? - not me, I haven't published any books, just lots of blogs and newspaper writing.
I"m sorry, I meant, Jane Powell's book, "Bungelow Details; Exterior" In the chapter "grand openings" she does a wonderful breakdown of the "obfuscations and downright lies told by the replacement window industry. It's a work of art in itself how she puts it together. Pick it up and read it...it's awesome.
A guy told me he had a 'life-time' guarantee on his new vinyl windows.

I asked, was the life time his? the manufacturer's? the lumber company's?, his house? maybe the windows' life?

I asked how he would fix a break in the vinyl, a leak between his panes, or replace of a piece of weather stripping. He didn't want to talk to me.
I definitely agree with John...store them for the future, either for yourself or the next owners. I often look at old homes with replaced windows that are on the market and shiver thinking of how much it will cost to have custom, true divided light, wood with reproduction wavy glass windows made. My husband and I restored ours for very little money. As for the glass, it is actually called cylinder glass, because it was made by a craftsman blowing molten glass into a cylinder, which was then swung in a pit, often with the help of an assistant, to stretch it before it was cut open to lay flat, forming the pane. Colonial era panes were made by spinning the glass into rondels, the centers making what is sometimes refered to as "bullseye" glass. After cylinder glass came "float" glass, where the glass was floated on a bed of tin. Old windows don't sell for much, but we always pick up any we see on the side of the road,... we even scored enough to replace our friends' replacement 6 over 6's on Saturday (which are fogging)...same size as the originals were!
Way to go Julie! It's nice to see we're not the only ones who pick up old sashes whereever we can find them. I have about 16 in my garage of all sizes. Got lucky enough to find on the same size as our front picture window. That one is being treated like gold.
Same to you!
Run an add on craig's list. FREE stuff, check out restoration websites like this one and surely someone will come by. It would be tragic to throw them away. Or, as suggested put them in the attic where some future owner will think they've found treasures.

And, don't worry, lots of people want a "new" old house. I watched a TV show where a couple hacked out all their perfectly good laith and plaster...replaced it with horrid, doomed to mold sheetrock, and also tore out the old windows and put in "better" different sized ones. It was like seeing Whale Wars on a killing episode.

It's incredibly wonderful of you to venture here, and offer them. We should be more appreciative, kudos to you and thanks. Hey folks, maybe this guy will have more wonderful things for this group, play nice.

Beware of insulating, it can get wet so look into it first.

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