SWISCO - The Replacement Hardware Authority

Do I need to use the exact length for balances?

A home owner from Maryland says:
I bought a old house (27 years old) all the windows have issue with slash - either missing balances or having broken balance. I found this website and read a lot of helpful information. However, I can't find a answer for my problem. I thought all of my widows have been used the same size of balances, but they haven't. One window I found the stamp is 2730Z, another one has 2630 stamp on it. So I would say the 2730Z will need a 28" balance and the 2630 will need a 27" balance. Can I use a 28" balance (or 27" one) for all of my windows? Also, how can we identify the balance's length, if a window is missing balances somehow?
Any advise would be appreciated.

Thank you very much
Profile picture of Tom
Tom from SWISCO responded:
Thanks for contacting us. We recommend sticking with exactly what you have installed now. While the windows may seem the same, the original installers may have had a good reason for using the hardware they used.

As for the windows missing their balances, that's a little tricky. Usually, you can calculate the length you need by measuring the visible glass for the sash it will support, then add an inch to that. For example, if your visible glass height is 23", you would consider a 24" long balance.

That said, this rule is not universal and there are exceptions. Without having the original hardware on hand there's no way to be 100% sure. Check the other windows in your house and see if that theory holds up with them. If so, you may be safe to make that assumption. You will also need to weigh your sash to determine the proper stamp option.
Reply to Thread
Use this form to ask a follow-up question or to share your experience regarding this subject.
(your email address will be kept private and is only used to inform you when a response has been made)