Storefront Caulking Question

Just had a call from a client (I picked up yesterday) that owns the whole plaza, where his pawn shop is at. Some of the shops in the plaza have been empty for a couple of years and he wants to get them clean up, as soon as the current renovation is complete. He has put a lot of money in to the renovation and the plaza is looking great, except for all the windows in the plaza are nasty.
The plaza owner called and asked for a quote on the clean-up, I was already in the process of writing a quote to send to him when he called…he was pretty impressed by this.
In the conversation, just now, he stated he wanted to get me to ‘take care of the caulking,’ I didn’t see anything wrong with the caulking yesterday, I told him I would come by tomorrow and we could walk the plaza and talk about his expectations.

Question: If the caulking does need to be replaced, what type of caulking would it be? Where might I find it?

Question: Does anyone know where I can read up on how to do this specifically for commercial windows?

I have done a lot of construction and home remodel caulking in the past, so the job doesn’t intimidate me, just need some advice if doing commercial window caulking is different.

I was straight-up with the client and told him, “I have never done this specifically but I can do some research, if he liked.” He was up for it and I figured I could offer to do one window or storefront at a reduced hourly rate and see how it goes. The reduced hourly rate due to learning curve, if it turns out okay, maybe this is a business add-on for our company.

Any suggests and/or advice?


Why take on something your not ecucarex in?

If he gets a leak guess who he will be after to recapture damages for Easter damage.

Caulking does take a skill to apply in a manor that the appearance is not all hacked up. Tooling to get the final result takes practice.

If this was second floor work you could get by with the toolinh not looking the greatest.

I presume you are talking about sealing around the window frames where they meet the concrete reveal of the window?Use Tec7 silicone,caulk won’t seal a window frame or protect it from the elements.
Run a big enough bead but not too big across the gap between the window and the frame,run your finger across in one movement without stopping until you get to the hand,wipe excess off your finger with a towel or damp cloth and repeat the same process on the next one and so on!

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Thanks for the info Dotsy.

I will get a better of understanding when I see the client tomorrow…he couldn’t explain, because it was the General Contractor telling him the caulking had to be redone.

Is there a particular brand of caulking you would suggest?

Got it, helps if I read slower, sorry I was headed to a Doctor’s appointment,
Thank you,

Post a picture when you know exactly what he wants done.My taking on it at the moment is what i posted above.

Thanks for your help Dotsy. I will do as you ask.
Thank you,

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Do you have a glazier buddy? May want to split the work or sub him. I hate on caulk all day long on modern store fronts. They sell the gasket by the roll and some hack wants to use silicone caulk… grrr


My guess is he just wants it wiped down. If he wants it replaced, I’d refer him to a window company.

If they’re covered in paint or junk you can use goo gone to clean them. Probably charge $3-4 per window extra.

I agree this could a good opportunity to network with a glazier.
But, I think Dotsy deduced what caulking they were talking about in the phone conversation.
I will have a better idea of what they are talking about tomorrow. In the end, my fallback position is to contacf a local glass replacement company.

Silicone is common practice by all glazers around the framework of the window.Baffles me as to why anyone would use caulk?Caulk will just crack once there is any kind of vibration or movement in the window and is 100% not weatherproof.

I’m not talking old house French panes to seal them, I’m talking gobs and gobs of bubbly lumpy silicone in what is supposed to be a bead, where there used to be a rubber seal on 10 to 20 year old strip mall storefronts. I know silicone and caulk are different but they can both be applied with a caulk gun so… :confused:

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your are correct about the location of the caulking they were wanting replaced.

I decided fairly quickly not to bid on this part of the job because whoever did the job last did a cock-up job of caulking.:grin:

Some places it was hard and brittle other places it was soft like putty. The removal and prep work would have been a nightmare. They told me the General Contractor turned this part of the job down. I suggested a local storefront installing company.

Thanks for everyone’s help and willingness to provide input.

Dotsy, thanks for the offer to help us on this.

The client is more than willing to let us submit a proposal to remove the paint over-spray on the frames and clean the windows. Working on the proposal now.

3 storefronts (each at: 7 panes and 1 door, In & Out) x 2 to 2.5 hours avg per storefront = $600

It looks to be a regular 30 day clean after this because they are trying to get these places rented out.

Thanks again everyone,

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