Kolbe Kolbe windows

pebbles396December 10, 2005

All -

I have read several posts about big name window mfgrs but I'm wondering if anyone has exp Kolbe&Kolbe. They have inswing french windows (not a mistype I mean windows) that are european style and I feel like I'd love them.

Any info is much appreciated.

-pebs.

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lemonade

We just had Kolbe & Kolbe installed in a whole house remodel--LOTS of windows. All Casement (a few fixed), wood inside and aluminum clad outside. They look gorgeous inside and out, but since we haven't moved into the house yet, I haven't 'experienced' them. 2 of the windows arrived broken, and they were replaced. They were also very expen$ive.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2005 at 3:00AM
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ribstone

We were (misled?) into ordering Kolbe wood windows that do not include screens. The screens that we "special ordered" to go with them are are attacked to the outside sill by little bumps that catch a drilled hole. The windows are okay but the screens are USELESS.

Anyone else have this problem? What did you do to install good screens on a window that does not have them.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2005 at 7:21AM
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pebbles396

Hmmm, all I know is that my quote for them was outrageously expensive. We're considering the heritage line b/c the ones taht they quoted us were about 2x the price of andersen's 400 series.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2005 at 4:18PM
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ribstone

We had the same problem but all of their wood wndows come with these useless screens. But they are not the only ones with useless screens. it is becoming an industry standard. They don't expect people to want to raise and lower their screens!

I have found this which I think will solve the proble for us.

http://www.phantomscreen.com/index.cfm

    Bookmark   December 20, 2005 at 10:51PM
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lemonade

Our Kolbe & Kolbe windows are aluminum clad outside, wood inside. They are all casements, and came with screens that easily attach to the INSIDE of the window. We just moved in and I don't even know where the screens are yet (still a lot of work being done and the GC stashed them somewhere) but I plan to put the screens up in the summer and take them down in the winter.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2005 at 10:53PM
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pearlchow

I am in the process of researching windows for our remodel. My first step was speaking with a window installer who came highly recommended by many families in our 1500 members Moms Club. He liked Eagle, Hurd, Milgard (vinyl) and Kolbe for their overall quality.
I then did some research on each brand's pricing and found that in my area, the Kolbe wood windows with K-Kron II factory applied paint finish was the cheapest, not including of course the Milgard vinyl. Eagle and Hurd both had alum clad wood which of course runs a little more expensive.
At this point, I'm leaning towards the Kolbe wood windows.

    Bookmark   December 23, 2005 at 2:35PM
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pebbles396

Hi - ok sterling line is what we're getting. The problem with the price was actually some exterior trim work required due to the stucco and that's all been handled.

We found the sterligns to be really nice and I'm quite happy with where the price came out. MUCH cheaper than the Andersen 400s.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2005 at 1:22PM
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lobsterbird

We have an 1870 home that had no original windows intact. We replaced crappy replacements with Kolbe & Kolbe. They have an aluminum clad wood exterior, and a wood interior. Three are casement style windows with interior screens, and the remainder are double hung with exterior screens (attach with tabs). We love both. We take the screens out and store in the attic during the winter. The windows tilt and are very easy to clean - no more standing on a ladder to wash the second floor windows. Also, our house gets a lot of road noise and dust, and these new windows have helped minimize both. Finally, our house is small in scale, and the Kolbe & Kolbe windows have a somewhat more delicate look that is appropriate to a historic home. And they made double hung windows for small windows that other brands could only offer in casement style. We also have replaced a sliding door set with French doors, as well as having a custom kitchen door made (smaller than standard size).

Tina

    Bookmark   January 2, 2006 at 1:07PM
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sueneck

WE moved into a new home high on a hill off of a lake.
We have lots of windows. The windows not only look great but keep out wind since that is something this house can be exposed to.
They are expensive but have been worth every penny to date.
They are virtually maintance free outside inside we hade them stained.They are picture perfect

    Bookmark   February 5, 2006 at 7:43PM
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serpentarium

I'd be very careful about ordering any windows from Kolbe & Kolbe. Ours are falling apart, disintegrating and bubbling everywhere, after just three years on a ten year warranty, and the company refused to honor their warranty. An experienced contractor on our site said he'd seen better performance and more durability in a completely unfinished, bare-wood window.

Something about their so-called "high performance exterior prefinish system" traps moisture underneath it, and the result is total disintegration of the wood beneath and ugly bubbling on the surface. The windows have no joint protection and the wood is of so inferior a quality that the slightest moisture contact cause rapid decay beneath the finish.

After wrangling with them for months and getting no satisfaction, I finally decided to put up a website saying what I think of their product. http://www.kolbewindowssucks.com about says it all. Scans of my reciepts, invoice, warranty, their letter of refusal to honor the warranty, and photographic proof of how their windows are falling apart are all there for everyone to see.

Domain renewals are cheap, just a few bucks a year, so this site will remain on the Net forever unless Kolbe decides to honor the "high performance" guarantee that cost us $14,000.

Here is a link that might be useful: Kolbe Windows - cautionary information for buyers

    Bookmark   June 7, 2006 at 1:15PM
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mmmmm127

Sounds as though they are saying you didn't maintain them ?

    Bookmark   June 7, 2006 at 1:31PM
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mightyanvil

serpentarium

That letter from Kolbe has certainly put me off. Separation of the sill from the sillnosing due to the "natural" movement of wood sounds like an obvious design flaw to me. Sorry for your loss.

I have always preferred wood windows with aluminum clad sash and factory applied trim from Marvin. Acrylic latex paint lasts a very long time on the trim and frames with no problems. I think I'll stick with Marvin. Thanks for the heads up.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2006 at 12:04PM
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mel71

Marvin makes inswing french casements also. They may not have them in their catalog and an unknowing seller may think you are talking about their tilt/turn window, but tell them to call Marvin, they do make an inswing casement. I saw them a local builders conference (PCBC). They were beautiful, as all Marvin windows are. I wanted to put the inswing casements in a house that I am building because we have window boxes under the front windows and I didn't want the outswing casements to ruin the flowers. However, after talking it over with a Marvin rep., they pointed out that I would not be able to put any furniture infront of the inswing casement. We planned to put desks infront of these bedroom windows but then we would not be able to have anything sitting on the desk without knocking it over with the inswing window. Also, you would not be able to use a valance on an inswing window.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2006 at 11:52PM
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mightyanvil

Marvin now makes a "PUSH PULL CASEMASTER" with no crank. It opens out manually with an old-fashioned exposed bracket stop at the bottom and double lever latches at the side. It has a wood framed interior screen that swings in. All Douglas Fir with Wood or Clad exterior. Min RO 25" x 13 7/8", Max RO 37" x 84 1/2" Area not to exceed 18.64 s.f.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2006 at 7:46AM
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mel71

Mighty anvil,

Do you mean that they are now making a casement that swings both in and out or is this just a push out handle that is now available on their casement window? I did a search for "push pull casemaster" on the Marvin website but nothing came up. Can you tell me more? Thanks

    Bookmark   October 26, 2006 at 11:03PM
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mike35

It's an outswing casement that does not use a crank out mechanism. It's a push bar that pushed the sash out. To close, you pull the bar in, then pivot the bar to the sill to get it out of the sway and secure the sash shut.
It was common years ago, and you still see it on oval, round, and octagon windows. It's a simple, but durable design.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2006 at 12:42AM
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osxaddict

He had some GreatLakes windows (Uniframe series) installed ~3 years ago and they've got EXCELLENT screens on them and the windows are flawless in my opinion. The screens are by far and above the most heavy duty screen I've ever found and can easily be removed for cleaning or slid out of the way if needed. Someone local had some Kolbe windows installed recently and while they look nice, I was curious about them as well since I'd never heard of them either.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 12:26AM
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arthur_arthurfink_com

We have the Kolbe-Kolbe French casements. DON'T BUY THEM!!!
The mechanism is fragile, and breaks easily. Kolbe-Kolbe support has been aweful. We've been waiting for years to get problems resolved.

DON'T EVEN CONSIDER BUYING KOLBE-KOLBE FRENCH CASEMENTS.

Feel free to contact me - arthur@arthurfink.com

    Bookmark   November 7, 2007 at 4:29AM
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sjh68

We've battled Kolbe for almost 10 years regarding a "film" that is coming from our windows and staining our siding. This film is only coming from our wood casement windows and the Kolbe vinyl windows on our garage do not have the same problem. Of course Koble could not explain that. They say it's only "dirt" and for 10 years we've scrubed our windows and siding below them twice a year and now have worn the finish off the siding, don't know what looks worse, the dirty film or the siding after it's been cleaned? Truly frustrating as our neighbors don't go through this and have asked what happened to our house, we explain we have these great Koble windows. Kolbe just puts us off time and time again and says just clean them. And we're not talking just washing the windows, we talking scrub brush and SCRUBBING to get the film off!
I would NEVER buy a Kolbe window again! Buyer BEWARE!!!!

    Bookmark   November 7, 2007 at 1:48PM
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chipster_2007

I also just looked at the great lakes window, uniframe, by the penguin company, ma. I agree, they look like and excellent window, structurally sound, fiberglass reinforced, the screens are great, etc, etc. I have thought about getting them but at over 1,000 a window, it is a HUGE investment. Would appreciate others thoughts.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2007 at 10:24PM
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vrodenski_hky_com

Buyer beware! Our Kolbe window are terrible!

    Bookmark   February 13, 2011 at 8:05PM
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