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Which Window Glazing Putty is Right For You?

Aug 16 2021

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Closeup of window glazing putty on a putty knife

Whether you are reglazing an old window or replacing cracked window glazing putty, you need a new window glazing putty that you can count on. However, the moment you make a trip to the hardware store, you may be faced with a wide range of choices, each with their own pros and cons. 

To help you choose the best window glazing putty for your window repair project, we, at Ontario Window Reviews, have compiled a list of the most commonly used kinds of window glazing putty available to consumers. We will also cover a few basics along the way. 

Let’s begin!

Closeup of hand removing old window glazing putty

What Is Window Glazing Putty? 

When windows are installed, most renovators or professional window installers will take every precaution to seal any gaps. They put window foam that expands around the window frame and may also apply weatherstripping to seal any air leaks around moving parts of the window. 

Finally, there’s window glazing putty, which is used to seal the gap between the window glass and the part of the window frame that the glass adheres to. This is a chemical compound with a soft consistency when you take it out of its can which allows for easy application between the glass and the wooden/metal window frame. 

What Type of Windows Need Window Glazing Putty? 

Window glazing putties are commonly used for windows with a wooden and/or metal frame and a single pane (or layer) of glass

Modern windows made of PVC typically don’t use window glazing putty anymore because they have silicone seal strips to seal the window’s glass. Additionally, window glazing putty cannot be used to reseal insulated glass units on windows with more than one pane (or layer). 

How Do I Use Window Glazing Putty? 

Using window glazing putty to seal single-pane metal or wooden windows is a straightforward process. Here are the steps:

  1. If your wooden frame has holes or cracks, apply a layer of universal undercoat first so that the wood does not seep moisture from the new putty.
  2. Upon opening the window glazing putty, make sure that the seal is not broken; otherwise, take it back to the hardware store. 
  3. If you find a hard crusty layer on top, take that layer away and discard it. You need to be working with soft putty.
  4. Knead the putty thoroughly.
  5. Then, you can either roll the putty into a thin cylindrical shape or apply it directly to the gap between the glass and the frame.
  6. Then, use a putty knife at an angle to smooth out the putty against the frame. 
  7. You need to wait for the putty to dry (or “cure” or “skin over”) before painting over it. 

Which Putty Is Best?  

From the above steps, we can deduce that the first thing you need to look for in window glazing putty is that it has the right consistency for ease of application. 

Other attributes to look for include:

  • Intact and sealed packaging
  • A fitting drying time for your project (window glazing putty first needs to dry before it can be painted)
  • Compatibility with your window frame material 
  • Good customer reviews

Close-up of an opened half-pint of window glazing putty

1. Sarco Multiglaze Type M 

Window Frame Material Compatibility: Wooden Windows

Curing Time: 4 – 7 Days

Sarco’s window glazing compounds are preferred by many professional window restorers due to their easy-to-use consistency. Sarco Type M, in particular, is commended for being easy to work with and packs into the gap so easily that it’s “like butter.” So if your project is compatible with Type M’s above specifications, then it’s definitely worth a shot. 

2. Sarco Dual-Glaze Putty 

Window Frame Material Compatibility: Wooden or Metal Windows

Curing Time: 14 – 21 Days

The beauty of Sarco Dual-Glaze Putty is that it can be used with both wooden and metal windows. The experience of working with Sarco Dual Glaze is almost identical to working with the Type M glazing compound. However, its consistency is a bit oilier. Even though this glazing compound has the longest curing time on this list, it also stays flexible for a longer period of time, which could be well worth the wait. 

3. Allback Linseed Oil Putty 

Window Frame Material Compatibility: Wooden Windows

Curing Time: Immediately IF you use linseed oil paint

Allback Linseed Oil Putty is considered by many as one of the most traditional formulations in the market. The main advantage of using this window glazing putty is that with the right paint, (linseed oil paint), you can paint over the putty almost immediately.

4. DAP 33 

Window Frame Material Compatibility: Wooden or Metal Windows

Curing Time: 7 – 14 Days

DAP 33 is the go-to for many homeowners due to its availability in many hardware stores. It is one of the chalkier putties on this list which may come as a surprise if you’re used to working with more oily glazing putties.

5. Glazol 

Window Frame Material Compatibility: Wooden or Metal Windows

Curing Time: 24 Hours

Similar to DAP 33, Glazol is of a relatively chalkier consistency. Its claim to fame is that it is superior to putty and that it creates not only a tight seal, but also a cushion against vibration – which is great for window glass.

One negligible downside, however, is that the compound is stiffer to work with and needs more pressure to be applied. The upside being that you can paint the putty in 24 hours; so it might be worth that added push!

6. Red Devil 

Window Frame Material Compatibility: Wooden or Metal Windows 

Curing Time: 24 Hours

This is another option if you’re looking for a window glazing putty with a 24-hour curing time. Red Devil is suitable for both wooden and metal windows and can take any kind of paint once cured. 

7. Aqua Glaze 

Window Frame Material Compatibility: Wooden or Metal Windows 

Curing Time: 1 Hour 

Unlike most of the oil-based putties on this list, Aqua Glaze is acrylic-based. Of all the putties on this list, it has the fastest curing time, perfect for projects with tighter time frames. One downside to using this putty, however, is that it needs to be mixed properly or you will be working with a stickier consistency.

Should You Repair or Replace Your Window?

If you’re reading up on window glazing putty, it’s likely that your home still has single-pane windows. Single pane wooden/metal windows typically need constant maintenance. They also offer less energy-saving properties and less noise reduction capabilities compared to their multi-pane counterparts. 

If you ever want to switch over to double-pane (or even triple-pane) windows, check out this list of trusted window companies that offer the best replacement windows

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