Why are these windows so cheap?

lkziemkeOctober 23, 2009

We're building a home. We've gotten bids from two lumberyards which includes a quote for windows. Both deal Andersen windows. We just got the second bid back this evening from our GC, so I haven't been in touch with the lumber yard to clarify, but I am confused and curious.

One bid for Andersen windows was for 22k, the other for 21k, so very close in price. However, the second lumber yard included a quote for Andersen composite windows as an alternative option. Seven thousand. That's it. Seven thousand for the whole house.

Now, when they say "Andersen composite," I can only assume they mean Renewal. I thought the Renewal by Andersen line was only replacement windows. Is this not true? I also thought Renewals were expensive (as well as low quality). These obviously are not pricey. Can anyone shed some light?

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There is no reason to think the quote was for Andersen Renewal but if the dealer did not include the model names and numbers of the proposed windows I would move on to another dealer.

Andersen's composite window for new construction is the 100 Series. It is made from "Fibrex" which is Andersen's wood fiber and PVC composite that they also use for sash cladding and muntins on their top-of-the-line WoodWright 400 clad wood windows (and probably for the Renewal series but that is a separate division of Andersen like Eagle, etc. and I have never been able to get any information about how they are made). The 100 Series is constructed of all Fibrex rather than a Fibrex cladding on wood.

Fibrex is durable but it is not very stiff. Trex porch decking is the same material and it has to be over an inch thick to support what a 3/4" wood board would. I assume that is why they fix the upper sash of their "single-hung 100 series windows. They appear to be made just like all-vinyl windows with the upper sash glass narrower than the lower one, the upper sash pushed out flush with the frame and a frame depth shorter than a typical wall thickness requiring the addition extension jamb trim inside. IMHO it is a truly ugly window.

It is best to order Andersen windows from a dealer who has qualified for Andersen's Circle of Excellence category. Last week I got a quote from a C of O dealer that was 18% less than the builder got from Home Depot (what was he thinking?). And that came with more professional assistance and a shorter delivery time.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2009 at 8:18AM
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Thank you so much for your response, that was very helpful to us!

    Bookmark   October 24, 2009 at 1:06PM
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macy, your incorrect. Andersen Fibrex windows and Trex decking are not made of the same product. Trex is a plastic composite base product and Fibrex is a PULTRUDED FIBERGLASS product.Not even close to the same thing!!!!

    Bookmark   October 26, 2009 at 12:18PM
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Windows on Washington Ltd

Sorry Afsa...that is not correct. The Fibrex material is a wood flour and PVC resin composite.

Pultruded fiberglass is something like the Ultrex material used in Marvin Infinity windows.

One of these materials is much better than the other...and it isn't Fibrex.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2009 at 8:16PM
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i tried to answer after my response when i realized i was wrong but the system would not allow me to answer my other post directly, i was misinformed. I realized after doing some googling that i was wrong

    Bookmark   October 27, 2009 at 10:07AM
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Windows on Washington Ltd

No worries. I just want to make sure the correct information is out there the next time someone does some searching around.

It is real hard to get accurate information despite the vastness of the Internet.

Wasn't trying to bust your chops.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2009 at 10:30AM
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The reason they are cheaper is Andersen is a manufacturer. They make many different products just like car manufacturers.

It's like asking why is a malibu cheaper then a corvette.... they are both cars?

    Bookmark   October 29, 2009 at 4:24PM
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