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DIY Window Grilles (How to add Window Grids)

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Learn how to add on window grids to your existing windows with this simple DIY tutorial for DIY window grilles! These step-by-step instructions will show you exactly how to install DIY window grids in just 4 easy steps!

This post was originally published on August 15, 2018 and has since been updated.

Interior of window with diy window grilles with text overlay for pinterest.

When we went to install the windows in our she-shed home office, we chose to buy them all on Craigslist to save money. Doing this, led us to have one window with grids and two without.

I love the look of windows with grids (aka window grilles), so of course I took it upon myself to figure out how to make diy window grilles and add the grid patter to the rest of them so they all match. ๐Ÿ˜‰

This isn’t the first time I’ve used this method either – I used the same steps as in this tutorial to add DIY window panes to the shower doors in my master bathroom shown below.



With this tutorial, I’m going to teach you how to make window grids and add them to your existing windows (or shower doors) to easily up the style in your home! Enjoy, my friends.

DIY Window Grid or Grilles FAQ

Before we get to the tutorial, let’s talk about window grilles/grids for a second.

What are window grids?

Window grids originated in the early 1600s when London had a shortage on glass. A glass factory was developed in Jamestown and, rather than risk breaking large, valuable pieces of glass in shipment, they instead shipped small squares with which the builders simply pieced together with trim to create larger windows. Nowadays, the grid pattern you see on windows is likely just for looks.

There are three different terms you might hear discussed when the topic of window grids come up:

  1. Window Grilles (not structurally needed, just for looks)
  2. Window Mullions (structurally hold window panes together)
  3. Window Muntins (vertical sections of a grille or mullion)

So, an easy explination for these terms is that the muntins are the vertical part of the mullions and grilles are today’s faux mullions put on windows just for looks!

Many window manufacturers install the grid pattern between the panes of glass on new windows, so if you know you want them when you’re installing new windows, be sure to purchase ones with the grilles already in them.

One of the big benefits of installing windows with manufactured grids is that you don’t have to try and clean around the trim since it’s all enclosed in the glass.

For windows that weren’t originally made with grids, the most common way to add grilles is by installing some sort of trim on the outside of the window like I’ve done here.

Not sure if you want grids on your windows? Check out this post for thoughts on what’s right for your home.


Can you add grids to existing windows?

Well, of course! That’s what I’m going to teach you in this tutorial! But, keep in mind, the grids or grilles we’re adding to your windows are purely aesthetic. They don’t serve any purpose other than giving your windows some extra style. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Well, let’s get to it, shall we?!


How To Install DIY Window Grilles

For a printable copy of the materials and instructions, scroll down.

Materials & Tools Needed:

Materials needed to install diy window grilles.


How to Install DIY Window Grilles or Grids:

First, you’ll want to note that because there isn’t enough room on the inner sides of vinyl window panes for the added grid trim to slide back and forth, we’re going to install the thicker trim on the outer sides of the panes and white electrical tape on the inner sides.


It’s critical that you clean your window really well before installing the trim so that the glue can strongly adhere. I used window cleaner and a paper towel.


Measure the width of the outer pane of your window and decide how many vertical pieces of trim you want to install. For mine, I wanted to mimic the window grilles on the door next to my window, so I only needed one vertical piece.

Start your process to install a window grid by measuring the width of your outer pane.

Next, measure the height of the window and cut a piece of vinyl trim to that dimension.

Measure the height of your window pane so you can cut the right length of trim to install a window grid.


Before you cut and install a window grid, measure and mark the trim to cut it to size.
Cut your trim then install a window grid.

Use a pencil to mark where your trim needs to be installed on both the top and bottom of both outer sides of the window.

Mark the upper location of your trim to install a window grid.
Use a pencil to note where the trim goes when you install a window trim.

Apply super glue to the back of your trim in a zig-zag pattern and then glue it onto the window and tape it in place with your painter’s tape.

Apply glue to your trim in a zig-zag pattern before you install a window grid.

Try not to get too much glue, as you don’t want it to seep out from under the trim once you press it to the window. If it does seep out, just use a paper towel to wipe it away while it’s still wet.

Vertical piece installed for the first step to install a window grid.



Next, decide how many horizontal trim pieces you want to install and follow the same process as above. Measure, mark, cut and glue onto the window.

**TIP: Tear off and set your blue tape pieces to the side of the window before you start gluing so you don’t have to let go of the trim once it’s on the glass.

When you install a window grid, be sure to prep your painter's tape before you start gluing.

After you’re finished with one side, do the same thing on the interior “outer” pane.

Here’s how mine looked after both sides of the window had the trim installed:

Install trim on both "outer" sides of the window when you install a window grid.


The last step is to tape over the back side of the trim with your white electrical tape. For the most part, this hides the backside of the trim and the super glue. My window panes are about 1.5″ apart, so when you stand at an angle sometimes you can see between them, but in general it looks great.

I simply cut a straight edge on the tape and then stretched and stuck it in line with the trim on the other side of the window.

Starting at the top, install a window grid on the inside using electrical tape.
When you install a window grid, use white electrical tape on the inner panes of each side.
Don't forget to tape the horizontal lines when you install a window grid.

Do the tape on both sides, and you’re done! You’re now an experienced DIY window grilles installer and have likely mastered the art of how to make window grids. ๐Ÿ˜‰


Here’s how ours turned out on the front of my she shed:

The grid on the door came that way, but the grid on the window is my DIY window grilles. Looks pretty good, don’t you think? Definitely more curb appeal!

Here are a few before/afters to give you a glimpse at how the grids affect the style of the windows from the inside:

Unfortunately, the only before pictures I have are from really early on in the construction portion of the she-shed. But you get the gist, right?

I also added this same type of DIY window grids to my back window and side door of this space.

Do you see there how the glass door now has that stylish grid pattern on it?

As promised, here are the printable instructions:

DIY Window Grilles/Grids

DIY Window Grilles/Grids

Add stylish grid patterns to your windows with this simple and affordable tutorial!

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Active Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Difficulty: Easy
Estimated Cost: $10



  1. Clean the windows really well on both the inside and outside.
  2. Measure the height of your window and cut the vertical vinyl trim pieces for your window. (Remember you're only doing vinyl on the non-sliding side of the window, so you'll only need enough trim pieces for one vertical in each spot.)
  3. Glue your vertical trim pieces on the "outside" sides of the window (the sides that don't slide against each other when the window is being opened) using super glue and painter's tape to hold them in place.
  4. Measure, cut and glue your horizontal pieces in around the vertical piece and tape them in place to dry.
  5. On the "inside" sides of the window (the sides that slide up against each other when the window is being opened) apply electrical tape along the window behind the recently installed trim pieces.


Before beginning, you'll want to determine how many grids you want on your window so you know how many vertical and horizontal pieces to cut.

Note that because there isnโ€™t enough room on the inner sides of vinyl window panes for the added grid trim to slide back and forth, you install the thicker trim on the outer sides of the panes and white electrical tape on the inner sides.

It still amazes me what a tiny bit of trim can do to the style of a window!

I LOVE the look of decorative window grilles, and it’s fun being able to take thrifted windows and doors and make them match another one that came with a grid pattern. ๐Ÿ™‚

I hope you have fun with this one and let me know if you have any questions!



26 thoughts on “DIY Window Grilles (How to add Window Grids)”

  1. Jenny – good question! Since our windows were double paned and had a gap between them you COULD see the glue, even after it dried, when you looked at the trim from an angle. Even putting the electrical tape over the back didn’t hide that completely. It’s not very noticeable, but is definitely seeable. I know this isn’t what you wanted to hear, but want to be transparent with you before you get started! Good luck!

  2. Hi! I love this idea! You just saved a project! When you glued your vinyl pieces, how evident is the glue from the inside? Did the glue “fade” or become clear? My builder is making an all-glass hallway and wants to use storm doors with retractable screens to save money and time on install. But I want the glass to match my 3 over 1 grille pattern that’s on the windows on the rest of the house. I want to make sure I won’t see gobs of glue since there will be so many windows/glass in this space. I hope I can match the glass using your great idea. Thank you!

  3. Wow you just saved me a ton of money!!! I’ve been searching for a way to paint my windows black but my grids are between the glass so this will allow me to go right over them and achieve the look I’ve been dreaming of without a hefty price tag! Thank you!

  4. I haven’t done these in black, but I’m sure you could do the same process just spray paint the trim piece black after cutting but before installing and then use black electrical tape!

  5. Hello! We are building and for some reason I thought I would top grids only on the front of the house and no grids on the back.
    We have black on black casement windows and I love them. However, Iโ€™m regretting not having top grids on all the windows. Have you ever done black top row grids or have any suggestions?

  6. That’s a really good question! I know for sure the tape will come off without any problems. I haven’t tried removing the super glued trim pieces, but I would imagine you could get the glue off with a razor blade.

  7. Hi! Love this idea…but was wondering if you are able to take them off or if they would damage the window if you needed to take them off?

  8. Hi Elizabeth! Are you worried the vinyl trim won’t hold up with paint on it? Because I also live in Oregon and mine without paint have held up wonderfully! If you do use wood, I’m sure the super glue I linked to in the post would work for that as well. ๐Ÿ™‚ Good luck!

  9. Thank you this is great.
    I have windows that have white grills in between the glass of the windows – for the exterior of my house I want to apply grills over those grills and paint them black – I assume vinyl trim wouldnโ€™t work ( I live in Portland OR) since the windows do get a lot of sun. So wood a think wood trim hold up with glue? Would glue did you use? Any suggestions for me please? Thank you!

  10. I’m not sure where else to get them – are there any smaller, local hardware stores in your area you could check?

  11. Love you idea for the window grids. I can’t find the vinyl trim anywhere. My Home depot or Lowe’s doesn’t have them. Any suggestions on where to buy them?

  12. Thank you for this post. I found it helpful. I will check back later for more great content. Keep up the good work and I’ll check back later to read more amazing material.

  13. You should be able to get it at Home Depot! I’ve linked it above in the “Materials” section. ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. Just in time! I love the look of the window grids! I have searched for premade custom and learned that they are so expensive! I’m a DIYER like you but never would have thought to come up with something so easy to do. Thank you so much for sharing.๐Ÿ˜˜

  15. The electrical tape is extremely durable – we haven’t seen any lift up or come off in over a year of use!

  16. I don’t see why the couldn’t! I did them on my glass standard door and they’ve held up great!

  17. Hi Amanda! Good question – we’ve had ours on for over a year and haven’t had any issues with the glue! We also have really wet winters and the trim has weathered well through all of that too. I’d just recommend doing it at night on a cooler day so it has 24 hours to dry with relatively low temperatures.

  18. Hi. I love what you did here. Iโ€™m seriously thinking about adding these to my windows. My only concern is the durability of the glue. I live in SC where the summer is 6 months out of the year and we experience a lot of days above 90 degrees. Have you had issues with the grills falling off from the heat?

  19. Wow Joy this looks amazing! I was searching for an easy DIY window grid idea and came across a company that sells DIY kits that just require a tape measure and scissors. It took me just a few minutes to get the grids up in my windows with this product. I highly recommend them, ๐Ÿ™‚

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