Church Pews and Stained Glass Repair Blog

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23 Oct 2014

Posted by James Egan


Many worshipers have been touched by the sight of stained glass church windows as a visual first impression when they enter the sanctuary.  The process of coloring glass was probably invented in ancient Egypt, but it was during the Middle Ages that they became an important feature of Gothic Style churches.  The wider windows of the Gothic architecture allowed for the rise in stained glass demand.  Artisans of the day would blow the glass into varying forms and sizes. Pieces were then cut into smaller fragments and sorted into a particular design.  As the artistry advanced, certain details were painted on the glass pieces so that gestures and clothing could be represented.

What was their purpose?

Certainly the beauty of stained glass windows within the church walls is mesmerizing, as light streams through and dances upon the colors of the glass. Perhaps you have admired them in your own house of worship, or have been lucky enough to visit some of the famous examples like the stained glass church windows in the Notre Dame de Paris, Sainte Chapelle cathedral

The beauty of the stained glass church window is not only to enhance the worshipers spiritual experience, but also to serve an educational purpose.  Especially in the original cases when there were no bibles or books available, the windows became an important teaching tool in depicting Christian bible scenes and lessons.  Therefore, the most intricate stained glass scenes are not just simple decoration, but in fact are an earthly piece of glass, elevated into something more divine.


Stained glass church windows are too precious an entity not to be properly maintained.  They are too important to the integrity of the church building and represent religious beliefs fashioned as art, in order to comfort worshippers during prayers.  Aesthetic beauty does matter in the worshiping experience.  

Upkeep and protect the windows as valued pieces of art and as the focus of prayer.  Consult with Egan's Church Furnishings & Restorations for all of your stained glass window renovations.  Egan's team of expert stained glass restoration specialists follow the highest standards for preservation.  Review the careful and skillful restoration process that they follow.  Browse through their gallery of completed restorations and you will be impressed. 

Committed to serving the northeastern states since 1965, contact the caring experts at Egan's Church Furnishing & Restorations and begin the conservation of your stained glass church windows today.

How to Protect Church Stained Glass Windows

01 May 2014

Posted by James Egan

How to Protect Church Stained Glass Windows

Protecting your stained glass windows is an important part of maintaining your church building. Your stained glass windows are a big investment, and keeping them protected from damage helps protect your investment as well as save you money over time.

Correcting Poorly Installed Stained Glass Protective Coverings

Many parishes have incorrectly installed protective covering that were quickly put up in the 70’s to help save heat. What no one realized back then was that “stained glass protective coverings must have a ventilation system (air flow)” to prevent moisture buildup between the layers of glass. This moisture will rot wood frames, rust steel frames and vents and cause damage to stone frames. In addition, the moisture will oxidize the lead in the stained glass window.

The National Preservation Society funded a study that found “ more damage has been done to stained glass windows from unvented protective coverings, than all the fires, storms and vandal damage, combined,”!

When considering any stained glass window frame painting project or stained glass repair project, serious consideration should be given to replacing the protective coverings with new materials (choice of: plexiglass, plate glass, laminated glass or lexan) with a properly installed venting system.

How to Protect Church Stained Glass Windows

One of the best ways to protect your stained glass windows is by installing a protective covering over your decorative church stained glass windows. This protects your stained glass windows from breakage from rocks, tree branches, storm debris, and vandalism. These protective coverings can also help to decrease damage to your stained glass windows due to UV rays, pollution, and exposure to acid rain. Installing stained glass protective coverings over the outside of your stained glass windows does not affect the window's natural light nor the look of the artwork displayed on your windows. The same level of natural light is still let into your church, without affecting the integrity of your windows. Stained glass Protective coverings are one of the best ways to protect your stained glass windows and is recommended for all stained glass, old and new.

Further, for coastal parishes, we have certified “hurricane code” stained glass protective coverings for wind loads of; 90 mph, 110 mph or even 150 mph. Since hurricane Katrina, many insurance companies are now requiring coastal parishes to upgrade their stained glass protective coverings to prevent storm damage in future “super storms”.

NEW! Stained glass protective coverings with an “Insulated Glass Unit”

Egan’s now have available a stained glass protective covering system with insulated glass (2 layers of glass-like an Anderson window). This new stained glass protective covering system can be easily retro-fit to most wood framed windows, whether stained glass or simple clear glass. Now any fixed stained glass window or other windows in your parish property can be upgraded to help save big dollars in heat and energy usage.

Egan’s Church Furnishings have the skilled craftspeople to assist your parish with almost any frame repair and protective covering replacement. Call (800 440 1202) or email us ( ) for more information or to set up an appointment for a free consultation and quote.

Stained Glass Window Protection for your Church

15 Mar 2013

Posted by Joseph Coupal

Our Lady of Lourdes Stained Glass WindowsProtect your valuable stained glass windows from storm damage by replacing the exterior covering. This will also your lower insurance costs.

Egan's Church Furnishings and Restorations offers stained glass window protective coverings that are certified 90mph wind load double thermal insulated standard frames up to 150mph custom wind load thermal insulated exterior frames.

Our Lady of Lourdes in Malvern, NY chose Egan’s to protect their valuable stained glass windows from storm damage. We replaced the rotted wood frame with new double thermal insulated exterior protective glass, releaded the historic stained glass window. The window was then delivered and installed by our expert craftsmen.

For more information, contact Egan's Church Furnishings and Restorations.

Poorly Installed Stained Glass Window Coverings Cause Problems

08 Nov 2012

Posted by Joseph Coupal

In churches, many problems occur with poorly installed protective coverings over stained glass windows.

“Poorly installed protective coverings have caused more damage to stained glass windows and frames,

than all the fires, vandalism and storm damage, combined”

This was the findings of the National Preservation Society after conducting a thorough study of stained glass
protective coverings. This study determined that when protective glass or lexan is used to protect stained glass
, a ventilation system (air flow between layers of glass) must be installed to prevent serious damage such as: 
  • Wood rot in the frames from moisture buildup
  • Oxidation of the lead in the windows
  • Rusting of the steel in the ventilators and Bulges in stained glass from over
  • Expansion of the glass

Further, the study determined that aluminum or vinyl coverings over damage wood frames, especially on the window sills, will accelerate wood rot, not correct it. The proper corrective measure is to remove the sealed protective glass and add a ventilation system before reinstallation or new protective coverings are added over the stained glass windows.

Our stained glass studio has designed and patented a unique perimeter frame with built in ventilation to provide the proper air circulation to dry out the air space and prevent further damage. This solution is available with your choice of plate glass, laminated glass or lexan.

Our stained glass window protection can meet any hurricane code: 90 mph winds, 110 mph winds or 150 mph.

At Egan's Church Furnishings and Restoration, our team can remove the old stained glass window coverings, repair and paint the frames and install our patented system.   Contact us for a free inspection or you can email us at

Stained Glass Windows - Repair and Restoration, Boston

27 Jul 2012

Posted by Joseph Coupal

The beauty of many churches begins with the stained glass windows. Unfortunately, many of those windows are in need of repair.

Years ago, a lexan protective layer was laid over the stained glass in order to protect the windows. Now, in many cases that lexan is warped, yellowed and hard to see through and often moisture gathers between the lexan and the stained glass causing the frames to rot. In other cases, the weight of the stained glass windows has created cracks in the frames and in the lead, also causing rotting of the stained glass window frames.

This same moisture also causes the lead in the windows to rust or oxidize. The deteriorating stained glass window frames and lead can cause the windows to break and fall apart.
Antique Stained Glass windows in churches are a standard part of the design and the décor, but many need to be repaired.

Egan Church Furnishings and Restorations specializes in historic restorations and stained glass window repair. Through our stained glass restoration process, we can repair the lead in the window, and repair or replace the wood frames where necessary. We can also supply a passive solar frame, which is excellent for cutting down on energy bills.

Contact Egan Church Furnishings and Restorations for more information on repair and restoration of church stained glass windows.

Historic Stained Glass Window Repairs

27 Jan 2012

Posted by Joseph Coupal

Older churches and places of worship have beautiful and often priceless stained glass windows. Those windows are most often in wood frames and can weigh hundreds of pounds. Over time, those stained glass window frames rot and are often in need of repair. Often the windows need re-leading. In the past, lexan was placed over the windows for protection, and now you want those beautiful stained glass windows uncovered.

What is the process for restoring and repairing these old and often historic stained glass windows at Egan’s Church Furnishings and Restorations?

DOCUMENTATION: After bringing your stained glass windows to our site, we create photographic documentation of the entire window. This ensures that we have a record of exactly how your window was created.

TRACING: Before our team disassembles your stained glass window, a  tracing pattern is created which will be used during the reassembly process to be certain all glass pieces are returned to the original position.

DISASSEMBLY: Then your stained glass window is disassembled and the pieces of glass are cleaned. (All lead is disposed of at an EPA licensed lead recycling center).

REPLACING MISSING GLASS: Our team will carefully match any missing or damaged glass.

TOUCH UP, DAMAGED PAINTED GLASS: Our artists will touch up any damaged or unstable painted glass by using a “cold paint “technique. This follows the correct preservation standards to repair painted stained glass.

NEW LEAD INSTALLATION AND ASSEMBLY: Our crafts people will reassemble your stained glass window following the tracing pattern created at the beginning.
RE-CEMENTING THE STAINED GLASS: After the stained glass window is reassembled, our crafts people will then re-cement the stained glass. High quality cementing work is critical to the life of your restored window. Proper cementing will add the strength to you window to withstand decades of weathering.

RE-INSTALLATION: Our team will reinstall your stained glass windows into their original place in the church.

At the same time, we will be glad to perform exterior frame painting and protective covering replacement. For newly designed stained glass windows or to have your existing stained glass windows restored, contact Egan’s Church Furnishings and Restorations.

Many Stained Glass Church Windows Need Historic Restoration

09 Dec 2011

Posted by Joseph Coupal

Stained Glass windows in churches and places of worship are a beautiful part of the design and the décor. However, over time, they can deteriorate and the window frames begin to rot.

Years ago, a lexan protective layer was installed over the outside of the window for protective purposes. However, over the course of time that lexan yellows and traps moisture in between it and the stained glass window.

This moisture causes the lead in the windows to rust or oxidize. Additionally the moisture causes the wooden frames to rot. These windows are extremely heavy and the deteriorating wood and lead can cause the windows to break and fall apart.
As the stained glass windows deteriorate they allow for quite a bit of energy loss. Egan's Church Furnishings and Restorations does historic restorations on stained glass windows. Through our stained glass restoration process, we can repair the lead in the window, and repair or replace the wood where necessary. If the frame needs to be replaced, we can replace the frame with mahogany or aluminum, which creates a passive solar frame, which is excellent for cutting down on energy bills.

Contact Egan's Church Furnishings and Restorations for more  information on historic restoration of stained glass windows and stained glass window repair.

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