Urethane Van Window Installation
** You will want to urethane about 1/2" to 1" away from the opening when possible. Skilled craftsmen like the one in the video may opt to put the urethane bead close to the trim to eliminate the risk of urethane popping out from the glass and being visible on the outside. The biggest key to a urethane installation is a uniform bead of silicone and keeping it hidden behind the glass.
How will I install this window?
The OEM Fit windows for Transit , ProMaster and Sprinter Vans utilize factory metal stamping; on the van's interior, you will notice an area where the inner metal ends. Here is a photo to clarify. You will cut right along with that edge all the way around. Your van may have multiple uprights. You will cut those out straight with your opening.
REPLACING AN EXISTING OEM WINDOW:
When replacing an existing factory window, you may want to contact us or provide photos inside and out. Not all replacements will be straightforward and can require extra commendation and custom adaptation to use an existing factory or add-on item(s). Van Windows Direct and the manufacturers we distribute take no responsibility for additional work or an installer's inability to complete the work required. Please ask all questions and provide all information before purchase, as the buyer is 100% responsible for the installation or failure to install.
If you are replacing a factory window that urethane bonded, you may want to take it to a professional for removal and replacement. If doing it on your own, the best tool is a wire cutter Equalizer Window Cut-Out Set. Once the window is cut out, you will need to cut the original urethane down as flat as possible and clean as much away as possible. We offer CRL Adhesive Cleaner. Other products that can help clean up the existing urethane will be (Acetone, Goo-Gone, and WD-40). After using any cleaning product, be sure to clean the wall with soap and water or rubbing alcohol. We also offer PWR22 Cleaner before applying new primer and urethane. (Skip below for window urethane bonding).
ADDING WINDOW TO A VAN WITHOUT WINDOWS:
If you have the following tools, cutting can be done on the inside with no template or mirroring of the interior stamping to the outside. (Body Saw, Air Saw, One-Handed Reciprocating Saw)
Drill a hole with a bit large enough to accommodate the blade of your cutting tool. Drill within the single sheet metal section that will be cut out, then work your blade down to the OEM stamp line. Follow the stamp line all the way around the section to produce your window cut hole. (Any interior supports in the window sections can be cut out as they are unnecessary).
**TIP - Cut sides and bottom first leaving the top cut for last, so the sheet metal does not start bending while cutting.
Once your hole has been cut, file any rough edges or high points to smooth the cut line. While most will trim and not see the raw edge, the smoother and straighter the cut, the better the trim will appear when it is time to place it. Once happy with the cutout and filed down smooth, you may want to prime the raw metal edge before installing edge molding. While this is not necessary, it's easy and offers additional peace of mind.
If you use edge molding, now will be the time to install it. Window Edge Molding is not necessary for the installation of the window. It will offer a better appearance on the van's interior by covering the raw cut edge. If your interior walls cover the cut edge, then there is no reason to trim something that will be hidden. When ordering trim, it is sold from a bulk roll by the foot, and there is a drop-down box for proper sizing for your van. Most vans will cover both inner and outer sheet metal edges with the trim. The trim on the outside will not affect the window installation as the urethane bead will be taller than the thickness of the trim.
**TIP- An adhesive foam material is often injected between the two sheet metals from the factory. If you are having a tough time getting the trim to cap both sheet metal edges cut the foam away from the cut edge till you can squeeze the metals together and cap with trim molding.
**TIP - Dry fitting the window before urethane bonding can help familiarize yourself with placement. Also, you can place securing tape/masking/painters’ tape in corners and side middle on to glass, then onto body cut tape, leaving on both window and van body as added line-up markers for easier placement.
URETHANE BONDING OF VAN WINDOW:
Using a urethane primer, apply it to the outside of the body. You want to apply close to the opening but allow a 1/2" gap when possible that way, when the urethane is applied and spreads less likely to have urethane seeping out from the glass edge on the outside of the van. Only one line of primer is needed and only on the Van wall. Multiple lines and/or Primer on the glass are unnecessary and ultimately just product waste. After you have painted your primer line around your cut hole, allow the primer to dry for about 10 minutes.
When using Automotive Urethane, a regular everyday caulking gun will not work. We recommend no less than a 12:1 Thrust Ratio (Commercial/Professional Grade) or above. We offer a 26:1 Ratio Gun in our Parts & Accessories Section.
If you order the urethane from us, the tip will have an embossed cutline showing a cut across the tip and a v-notch. This will be where you will want to cut the tip for your perfect-sized urethane bead. When applying the urethane to the van, the V will trail your application patch, so you end up with a pyramid-looking bead.
We recommend starting a few inches down from the top rear corner of the window. That way, you can avoid having a joint from one tube to the next on the top or front of the window. If it happens, it will not be a catastrophe just if it can be done where the top and front are one continuous bead that reduces the risk of a leak. With larger windows (Most side OEM fit window) will require a second tube of urethane when one bead end starts the next about a 1/2" into the already applied bead (smooth together with a plastic putty knife/wood stick, flat screwdriver, etc...) Spraying a liberal amount of glass cleaner onto the tool will help keep the urethane from sticking to the tool and clumping.
**TIP - Consistency is key to a great installation when applying urethane bead. Thicker and thinner spots can lead to leakage.
INSTALLING WINDOW TO URETHANE:
Having two people for window placement is always nice one holds the front bottom corner, the other the rear bottom corner. OEM fit windows will have about a 1/4" gap from the body line to the glass. Get the bottom edge lined up, holding the glass back away from the wall on top at a slight angle / once you have your gap lined up at the bottom and your front and rear edges are lined up where you want to tilt the window up and press into urethane you do not need to push too hard as the urethane has very strong adhesion and will grab on to window quickly. Keep a hand pressing on the window to keep the position. If all is good, open your hand and smack the glass down, following the patch of your urethane bead. The goal of modern vans with insert areas for windows will be to get the glass even with the outer body of Van the body above and below the window section, so it is a fluid transition from sheet metal to glass to sheet metal again.
Once the window is in the desired location, use Window securing tape to tape each corner with 3-4 strips to keep the glass in place. If you plan on driving a van within the first 24hrs, you can also tape the edge all around to keep the urethane beads clean from contaminants while traveling.
3-Hours of set time before driving (Keep all windows closed and A/C using recirculate during the first 24hrs)
3 Days minimum before washing vehicle (Some car wash soaps have alcohol that can deteriorate some of the urethane seals)