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How to Replace Inverted Block and Tackle Balances

Inverted block and tackle balances are designed for tilt in windows. These balances have a T-Lock shoe attached to the bottom of the balance that allows your window to tilt inwards. Replacing the inverted block and tackle balances may seem like a challenge, but it is a very simple process that requires only a few tools. All you will need for this installation is a Phillip's head screw driver and a flat head screw driver. Continue reading to learn how to replace your inverted block and tackle balances.

1. Lift the Sash

The first step is a simple, but important one. Lift your sash two to three inches and tilt it inward. Lifting the sash first prevents excess forces from breaking the pivot bars in the bottom corners of the sash. This should always be done before tilting in your window, even for a simple cleaning.

Lift the window sash

2. Remove the Sash

Next, you will need to remove the sash from the balances. With the sash tilted in, you will need to pull upward on one corner of the sash. This will unseat the pivot bar from the T-Lock shoe. Now simply remove the sash and set it in a safe location.

Inverted Block and Tackle Balance in Jamb

With the sash removed, you can clearly see the balance assembly

3. Release the Balance

Next, you will need to release the tension on the balance. To do this, begin by unlocking the cam in the T-lock shoe. The cam opening will be facing upwards, you will need to take a flat head screw driver and turn the cam away from you about a quarter turn. This will unlock the shoe and allow the balance to slide in the jamb. You will then need to guide the balance up to the screw in attachment at the top of the jamb. Be careful when guiding the balance to the top. There is still tension on it and it can fly upwards if you do not guide it. This can cause damage to your window.

T-Lock shoe in Locked Position

The cam on the T-Lock shoe in the locked position

T-Lock Shoe Cam Unlocked

Use a screw driver to unlock the cam by turning it away from you.

4. Remove the Balance

Once the balance is at the top of the jamb and there is no longer any tension, you will remove the balance. To do this, simply unscrew the balance and tilt it outward. The T-lock shoe will prevent you from removing the balance. To get around this, simply give the balance and shoe a turn. This will allow the T-lock shoe to be removed.

Inverted Block and Tackle Balance Top

The balance is now at the top of the jamb with no tension. Guide the balance to the top to prevent damage to your window. 

Inverted Block and Tackle Balance Removal

Tilt the balance outward

Inverted Block and Tackle Balance Removal T-Lock Shoe

Turn the balance in the jamb to allow the T-lock shoe to be removed. 

5. Install new balances

Finally, all you have to do is reverse this process to install your new balances. One tip when installing the sash, you may have to have one balance slightly higher than the other. This will allow you to put the sash in one side and then drop it into the other.


That's it! Your new balances are installed and your window should be working just like new. 

If you need help with installation of your inverted block and tackle window balances, don't hesitate to contact uschat with us, or give us a call at 1-800-842-0974 and one of our representatives will assist you. 

Updated on 04 Oct 2023