Window Bids (spending more for metal clad as to all vinyl)

spencer_electricianJanuary 2, 2010

I have a 1950's house with single pane windows (storms were removed for painting) Now getting bids to replace with double hung as to replacing the storms. I've quickly learned that my taste in colors changes everything from being an economical job. "Window World" a national company came out with a $4500 bid for replacing 11 36" wide widows and converting a living room display to a 3-lite slider. They then said another $1200 would be added to do the exterior in brown and another $600 to do the interior in almond instead of white. So basically $6500.

Now I have a referred guy in that seems to be not much more than an individual. He came in with a vinyl bid of $8,000. Also another bid of $10,000 to use a product that offers wood on the inside with vinyl outside. We then discussed going with Pella for $1000 per window which would be for 14 windows because the living room would get 3 windows instead of a 3-lite slider.

Then he states that the Pella with metal clad exterior will only give me problems as to a vinyl product. Says Pella puts 10 years of warranty on the clad and that it will typically deteriorate and come apart. Basically recommending that I stay cheap and use a vinyl product. His warranty is also less at 2 years labor which the national company is lifetime. Says that the national company just gets in trouble every 2 years and shuts it down, changes the name, and cancels everyone's warranties.

I'm kind of lost now but hate to throw in extra bids when he has been spending a lot of time dealing with locating products that fit my color taste. I never knew how much trouble it could be to simply want cream "almond" instead of white and to do a brown to match the dark trim of the exterior.

Any comments on Pella/ metal clad windows? I would potentially spend twice as much to have the great appearance but not if vinyl is that much better. Thanks!

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Our friends just remodeled with Pella, and someone else recommended them, but after reading the posting on gardenweb called "Major Disappointment with Pella" I'm leaning against them. With regard to aluminum clad windows I am trying to decide between Marvin and Eagle. Anyone have any input between these brands? I haven't priced them yet.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2010 at 3:03PM
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Forget about Window World.They only carry Alside Windows and their best window is only considered average, their lower ends are pure junk. The advice given to you about Pella, I would have to agree with. Pella used to be a great company but not anymore. There is a very long thread on this site about Pella windows and purchasers experience with them that you should read.

What brand and line of vinyl window is your guy recommending? What options like glass is included? Do they qualify for the tax credit?

With the price range you are comfortable in, I would take a look at Marvin Integrity windows. They are fiberglass and you can paint them whatever color you like, inside and outside.

Softlite is another company to look at if you want a two tone vinyl window.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2010 at 3:13PM
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My truck is at the shop today with the brochures so don't have the brands handy. We have been carefully checking the low e and qualifications. I'm checking out the softlite company now. I'm not sure if they offer that color match deal on the interior color or not. It seems most all vinyl manufactures offer white or beige on the inside. My interior trim is almond color (same exact match as a standard almond electrical wall plate) and I'm suprised they are not making windows in that color. Most all new houses now seem to use almond on trim rather than stark white. That seems to be why most custom decorated houses utilize a printable window. The beige color just looks really tan/ dark.

Is a fiberglass window comparable to vinyl or better? Climate here is up to 110 degrees F in the summer and down to 0 degrees F in the winter.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2010 at 3:53PM
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Vinylmax- surewood is one we looked at a lot. It offers a wood adaption for the interior. It's problem is the exterior only offers white or clay (nowhere near brown). I spoke with the guy about softlite and he tells me it is a lower quality window. His only comment on fiberglass windows was that he thought they're too new/ not familiar with the product.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2010 at 4:43PM
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If your guy is telling you Softlite is lower in quality, he is either unknowledgeable about windows or is trying to push you to buy his brand os windows, Either way he just lost a lot of credibility IMO. The Softlite Imperial LS is one of the top windows on anyone who is knowledgeable's list. We don't even carry them but I will tell you they are great widows and I would put them in my own house without any hesitation. Softlite even offer a foil laminate in 6 different exterior colors and gives a lifetime warranty on it as opposed to other manufacturers who only offer a painted exterior with a 7 year warranty.

I'd definitely question any advice given to you by this window salesman.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2010 at 5:48PM
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Simonton vinyl window has won more awards and rated higher than all the rest put together. A decent price of about $650 per but if you want to spend a lot of money get a metal clad window at 2x or 3x the cost. The only reason to ever buy a clad window is for the appearance because they are not more efficient nor will they last as long in harsh weather. Fiberglass is just coming on the scene and boy are they expensive. All depends on what you are trying to accomplish.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2011 at 11:27PM
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Windows on Washington Ltd

The Simonton window is a solid product but lets not confuse it with being the same class as the Soft-Lite and Sunrise windows.

JD Power awards have nothing to do with overall performance.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2011 at 11:06AM
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