Vinyl Windows and Fiberglass Door Questions

happsJune 19, 2011

I am considering replacing 38 year old single pane aluminum windows in the living room area of an apartment next to the beach that are drafty, old looking and have rusty sills. The frames the windows would go into are 82"x58" and 106"x58." The windows are east facing and get a lot of sun in the morning, but I don't need low-e glass or pre-tinted windows because I would prefer to have a professional window tinter come and use the tint material and brand of my choice. However, I was told that if you tint the windows, you will void the warranty on the windows. Is this true? The sales person at the home improvement store told me that you can't get dual pane windows without low E properties. Is this true? I don't use hear or a/c on the coast and don't need the energy saving, insulating properties that people in extreme climates need. I've read that vinyl windows are best for a high salt coastal environment since they can stand up to the elements. If anyone has gone through replacing old aluminum windows, I'd appreciate knowing what brand of vinyl window is the best value in Southern California.

I also have a wood door that I learned the hard way doesn't stand up to water, and absorbs it, leading to mildew. I've read a lot of positive comments and reviews about fiberglass doors, but just like windows there seems to be a lot of manufacturers and product catalogs are confusing. I went to a chain home improvement store and got a quote of $4,000 for an apartment sized fiberglass door that's half fiberglass and half glass. No way am I spending that kind of money. The wood door itself that I purchased 8 years ago that has half glass and half wood was $1100.

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texasredhead

Double pane windows are made with low e properties with argon gas inside. The manufacturers offer tinted glass for sunny locals. Sorry, that's just how it is.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2011 at 10:08AM
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millworkman

You can order glass without Low E and or Argon. If your dealer will not let you find another dealer!

    Bookmark   June 20, 2011 at 10:36AM
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windowsonwashington

You will need to check with your specific glass manufacturer about the warranty implications of adding tint to a window.

Most of the tint manufacturers (3M for example) will provide you with supplemental warranty coverage.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2011 at 7:16AM
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happs

I sometimes see new or gently used brand name Fiberglass doors and windows for sale on Craigslist. Are there any negatives to buying using this approach?

    Bookmark   June 22, 2011 at 7:35PM
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millworkman

I don't know if the company will warranty the product purchased second hand

    Bookmark   June 22, 2011 at 8:18PM
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windowsonwashington

Are you custom making the openings? How are they going to fit?

    Bookmark   June 22, 2011 at 9:03PM
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happs

I don't know honestly. I unfamiliar with window terms. I'm thinking that the frame on the bottom of the window where the window slides on (I plan to get sliding windows) might be unique to each house, can that be altered to fit each window? What can go wrong or not work if I buy secondhand?

    Bookmark   June 22, 2011 at 10:58PM
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windowsonwashington

You are not going to want to change the size of the replacement window. It is going to be impossible for you to do and do properly.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2011 at 10:23AM
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happs

I got a quote for $1800 for both windows for dual pane vinyl windows (local brand-forgot which one) with no low e glass and no argon gas filling in a brown color the HOA requires. I was told that single pane would be almost the same cost because of their rarity. I noticed that with double pane windows you have less visibility vs single pane because of the frames.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2011 at 6:48PM
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happs

I've obtained quotes from six different vinyl window replacement companies for identical product and they are all within $200 of each other. Kind of disappointed as I thought there would be more variation in pricing. Is it common in the window replacement industry for companies to have such similar pricing? Not sure whether it's worth it to spend $2000 to replace two large living room windows. On a positive note, through talking to six different companies, I have changed my opinion on Low E glass.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2011 at 2:57AM
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windowsonwashington

Pricing tends to be consistent.

Good choice to go with Low-e

    Bookmark   August 13, 2011 at 1:18PM
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happs

Do you think the price is high because there are only two windows involved? If I replaced the windows in my entire apartment, would there be a big discount? $2000 seems like a lot of money to spend on two windows.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2011 at 3:35AM
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skydawggy

It's possible, although those are very large windows. Why not get an estimate for all of them and see what it comes in at?

    Bookmark   August 17, 2011 at 7:49AM
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windowsonwashington

+1

Most folks like to do all the renovations at once and localize the construction activities to a couple of days.

If you can swing it, you might be better served doing the whole project.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2011 at 9:54AM
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