How to make a window sill
After renovation work or if you’ve moved into a new house, you might like to replace one or more of the window sills. The existing window sills may be damaged, you might not like how they look, or perhaps they don’t match your new interior decor. Most houses have standard window sills, so it’s not so difficult to fit new ones. There are a number of ways you can do this, such as window sills that simply fit over the old ones, but you can also cover the old window sills with tiles or natural stone.
If you fit new window sills, you can make them to match in all your rooms. If you have a bay window, take a good look at what you can do there because in practice, a bay window isn’t used much. You can use it to make an extra seat with cushions.
You can get window sills in all shapes and sizes. Do you want to fit the window sill exactly in front of the window, or would you prefer it to extend out further from the wall? Window sills are available in different materials, such as wood, stone or marble.
- Veneer strip
- Quick-drying filler
- Construction adhesive
- Silicon sealant
- If required for repairs: wallpaper or paint
- Fine sandpaper
Fit a new window sill on top of the old one
If you can’t or don’t want to remove the old window sill, you can always use a new window sill that simply fits on top of the old one. These often have a scratch-resistant surface, and are secured using construction adhesive.
Remove the old window sill
If you want to remove the old window sill, you first need to cut away the sealant edges with a utility knife. Once you’ve loosened the sealant edges, try to pull the window sill away. If it’s difficult to do this, try to lift the window sill off from underneath.
Remove sealant and adhesive residues
When you’ve taken the window sill off, you can remove the remaining sealant and adhesive with a filling knife. If the wall has been damages by removing the window sill, you can repair it with filler or plaster.
Before you fit the new window sill, you need to check that the underlying surface is flat and horizontal. Use a spirit level and make the surface perfectly flat and horizontal. That will ensure good adhesion of the new window sill.
Measure the width of the window frame
Measure the width of the window frame or wall, and measure how deep (A+B) you want to make the window sill. If you want the window sill to extend along the wall (C1+C2), measure the angle accurately with a try square. Then, it’s best to make a template out of sturdy cardboard. Use this to mark out the angles on the window sill. In practice, the straight line of the window sill doesn’t always exactly match that of the wall.
Mark out the window sill
Mark out the required shape and dimensions of the new window sill. Use a try square to mark out a right-angled line. Carefully position the cardboard template, and transfer the angle onto the window sill with a pencil.
Saw the window sill to size
Use a jigsaw with a fine-toothed blade. To prevent splintering of the top layer, put a strip of transparent tape over the sawing line that you’ve marked out. Then saw the window sill to size and apply tape neatly over the outside edges and the veneer surface strip. If the veneer strip has an adhesive layer, fix it in place with a clothes iron. When the adhesive is dry, trim the veneer strip neatly to size with a sharp knife. Then sand the edge smooth with fine sandpaper.
Fit the window sill
When the window sill fits perfectly between the walls, apply construction adhesive to the underlying surface. Use a sealant gun to apply equally sized and spaced spots of adhesive. Then, lay the window sill on the surface and press it firmly in place. Check that the window sill is horizontal using the spirit level. Wait for the adhesive to dry, and then fill any gaps and joints with white acrylic sealant.
Fit a finishing strip
You might find that the window is damaged on the underside of the window frame, or you might want to create a classic look. If so, you can fit a suitable finishing strip. Saw this to size and fix it in place with construction adhesive.