Which window. Alan e series to purchase?

A home owner from San Diego says:
Hello. My kitchen windows are hard to lift and lower. The balances are not broken. A neighbor had the same issue and replaced his balances, and the windows now work much more easily. I hope that replacing the balances will improve their performance.

I cannot determine which series of balance to purchase as there are numerous series which have a 31" 3040 balance. Thank you for your help.
Thumbnail of the uploaded file named 654DDEA7-34FF-444A-8E2D-5A22F7C1EBD8.jpeg
Thumbnail of the uploaded file named 2051A0F9-C1FA-438A-8853-4CD49F39F612.jpeg
Thumbnail of the uploaded file named A6DF99CE-3376-450C-A0A2-BF53E1E19E4E.jpeg
Thumbnail of the uploaded file named A8F81227-9821-4124-8152-22056DD34038.jpeg
Profile picture of Tom
Tom from SWISCO responded:

Thanks for your photos. Based on what I see here, you have either our S351-30 or S390-30   S351-31 or S390-31 , depending on the depth of the bottom shoe. That's the only difference between them. I recommend measuring your shoe and referring to our dimensions to confirm the best match.

Comparison of the S351 and S390 balance shoes.
Comparison of the S351 and S390 balance shoes.
A home owner from San Diego says:
Tom. Good morning. The shoe measure 1 1/8" so it appears that the correct balance is the S390 .

1. The s390 appears to measure 30". My current balances measure 31". Is this an issue?

2. There are options that can be selected when ordering. Are any of those options required for my balances?

Thank you.
A home owner from San Diego says:
Tom. Hello. This is a second question. I previously sent a message regarding the length of the balances as well as the size of the shoes.

Our windows are hard to lift and close. The current balances are not broken. Will replacing the balances help the window to more easily move up and down? I have cleaned the window channels but that hasn't helped. Thank you b
Profile picture of Tom
Tom from SWISCO responded:

I'm sorry for the confusion; in my initial response, I suggested the 30" long balances, but that was a typo on my part. I meant to suggest the 31", which conforms with the given stamp. Sorry about that!  In your case, S390-31 sounds like the best choice.

The options are required, yes. Those indicate the strength of the spring, which is possibly the most important detail when it comes to picking a replacement balance. If the spring isn't calibrated properly then your balance will not be able to do its job. 

In your case, you will probably want to keep using the old stamp of 3040. Two balances with this option can carry sashes weighing 23 through 28 pounds.

Lastly, regarding your window being hard to operate, that does sound like the result of bad balances. When these parts get old, the springs lose their tension or sometimes even corrode. As a result, they can no longer properly regulate the operation of the sash and it becomes much harder to open and close. New balances will usually fix the issue.

A home owner from San Diego says:
Tom. Good morning and thank you for the clarification. I have one more question regarding two additional windows.

We have a total of four windows which face south so they receive sunlight almost the entire day (we live in San Diego.) I presume that the long-term sun exposure has affected the four windows/balances as all other windows in the house are relatively easy to open and close. Two of the four windows are larger and two are smaller. All four windows use the same 31" 3040 balance which I presume are original to the house which was built in 2003. I do not think the balances were ever changed by the previous owner.

The larger window sash weighs 32 lbs. You indicated that the 3040 is rated for windows weighing between up to 28 lbs. The larger windows are more difficult to open and close than the two smaller windows. They are harder to push up than to pull down but still not easy to pull down.

Given that the two larger windows have a sash that weighs 32 lbs., should we move up to the next size balance or should we stay with the original 3040?

We have been I. The house for five years and the windows have been difficult to open and close the entire time we have been here so I do not know if the large windows ever moved more easily.

Thanks very much for your help.

Ignacio
Profile picture of Tom
Tom from SWISCO responded:

Yes, if the larger window is 32 pounds then I absolutely recommend bumping the stamp up to the 3050. Sometimes the original window installers miscalculate this sort of thing. It's unfortunate but it does happen. The sash weight doesn't lie, though, so I always defer to that.

In my experience sun exposure isn't that much of an issue for balances, since they're almost always covered by the track and sash. Sun damage is a very real risk for the top sash guides though, which are the plastic retainers at the top corner of the sash that keep the balance in place. More often than not the direct sunlight will cause those guides to go brittle, which leads the balance to breaking through them and shooting to the top of the track. That's the only instance I can think of where balances are negatively affected by sun exposure, though.

A home owner from San Diego says:
Tom. Thank you. I've ordered four 3040's and four 3050's. Looking forward to I stalling them. The current balances are nearly 20 years old so I'm guessing that new ones can't hurt and should certainly perform better than the existing ones. Thank you for your help.
How to Identify Replacement Channel Balances
How to Identify Replacement Channel Balances
VIDEO
WATCH >
How to Replace a Non-Tilt Channel Balance
How to Replace a Non-Tilt Channel Balance
VIDEO
WATCH >
How to Repair a Jammed Window
How to Repair a Jammed Window
VIDEO
WATCH >
How to replace a channel balance
How to replace a channel balance
GUIDE
READ >
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)
Current wait time is 4-7 business days
We promise that one of our experts will personally get back to you as soon as they are able. Thank you very much for your patience and understanding. If your inquiry is time-sensitive, please feel free to reach us at (888) 991-1929 or at help@swisco.com.