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Question DetailsAsked on 8/8/2016


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Sure - you can replace anything, if you put enough effort and/or $ into it.

If you mean window sill, how you do it depends on how the window is built and how deep the damage extends - you can (if just weathering) sometimes restore it with an epoxy restorer. Other times you can cut if back to close to the window and fit and epoxy glue a new sill extension on in its place. In some cases, with severe rot going into the frame under the windows, you need to remove the window from the house to replace framing pieces, though commonly if doing that it is cheaper to replace the window (unless quite large) than repair it. A number of related similar questions with answers can be found in the Home > Window and Doors link in Browse Porjects, at lower left.


If you means a sill plate - the bottom board in the walls which sits on the foundation, then yes you can replace it. Depending on how much load is on it, you may or may not need to goto significant lengths to put in a temporary support wall to support the house while removing it - in some cases just a 2x4 under the first floor ceiling joists supported by a few 2x4's or 4x4's and shimmed up to take the load will free up the studs enough to cut the nails through the plate into the bottom of the studs, then cut out the rotted plate material and replace it with new treated wood, bolt it down per code to the foundation, and toenail or Simpson plate the studs back to it.

Because of the risk of structural damage or drywall/plaster cracking or misaligning windows or doors, this should be done by someone experienced in framing and foundation/framing repairs - usually a General Contractor or Foundation Repair contractor (your Search the List categories). In most areas this would require a building permit, and in some a design for the temporary support by a Structural Engineer, though most contractors would go ahead and do it without that.

If you meant can you do it YOURSELF - depends on your level of expertise in framing. In many cases you can prop up the overhead floor with a temporary studwall shimmed or with the posts hammered in tight to take the load off the studs, then cut the bottom nails into the studs. If the saw binds while cutting the nails the studs is still carrying load - if the saw (usually sawzall) cuts the nails without binding then you are probably good as far as not being under load and can cut out the bad piece and put in the new piece - which you should obviously have ready to go so your temporary support is holding the wall up no longer than necessary.

On fastening the wall back down - if there are anchor bolts in that section you can cut them off to get the new piece in, or slot the plate for the boltto slip it in, then use a Simpson strap plate over the clotted edge to repair the piece of plate. Each piece of plate (both replacement and existing left at the two sides are supposed to have 2 anchor bolts embedded in the wall - so you may need to grout fill some concrete block if new bolt locations are over voided blocks, and many need to put in new drilled and grouted anchors for the short replacement as well as for the ends of the existing plate at each side. Of join the new piece to the old ones at each side with nail-on reinforcing Simpson plates on both sides.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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