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Window World Alternatives

Posted by Juryiel (My Page) on
Tue, May 15, 12 at 3:25

Hey guys,

First of all I want to say that I've read some of the WW bad reviews and appreciate them.

However, I want to upgrade some really old windows on a really old house (like 100 years old house). These are old wood single pane etc etc windows.

The house itself is a small house and has 8 windows. I'm pretty sure that regardless of how bad the WW/Alside design might be and how terrible the installers might be, new windows will still be a huge upgrade. I'll only be here for a few more years and then either sell or rent the property. So from that perspective, a fairly cheap window (still a huge upgrade from what currently exists in terms of temperature control) is not too bad of a deal.

My question though is, are there other companies you guys recommend (St. Louis, MO) with comparable pricing but for a noticeably better product who might be worth checking out? Since the property itself is pretty cheap it's not worth putting in anything expensive, but if there are close price matches for something that performs significantly better I'd like to check it out. Thanks!

My second question is, is WW bad enough to where their windows would NOT be a fairly hefty upgrade over what is currently installed (wood, single pane)? I can't imagine that it wouldn't be worth the money to upgrade, but I figured I'd ask.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Window World Alternatives

The windows will certainly be an upgrade over your current units.

That being said, many window companies have an option that fits into that lower bracket and may be a better choice at the end of the day.

Focus on good companies in your area and see what they have to offer.


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RE: Window World Alternatives

Windows that perform significantly better, cost significantly more.


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RE: Window World Alternatives

Also remember a poor window with a terrible installation will be worse if you end up with water leakage and the subsequent = damage that causes.


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RE: Window World Alternatives

By the time you add up all of the options on a WW window, it comes out near $400. You CAN find a product that will perform better in that range. I'd contact a couple local companies for a quote.


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RE: Window World Alternatives

There's no way I'm adding enough options to these to make them $400. Again, remember, this is not for something that I will get to enjoy for 15+ years to where it would make sense to do that. Their current window is $185, $65 to replace the exterior trim that's on there that was damaged in a hail storm, and $25 for lead, so a total of $275 for each, though I imagine I'd have to pay the $25+$65 on top for any window I choose.

Unfortunately I know nothing about window companies or what they sell to check reviews on. I've searched but tons of companies come up, most of which don't have price listings, and most reviews I find for most of them are negative since generally unhappy customers go to the trouble of reviewing this stuff. Hence why I was wondering if there were any known companies for good bang for the buck at around that price range.

Just to reiterate though, I am not expecting or wanting to get top-of-the-line windows. I just want to get the best possible windows for around that ballpark price range.


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RE: Window World Alternatives

Then by all means go by WW windows. Your asking for opinions and arguing against every persons information. WW is bottom rung window quality and most likely equal installation.


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RE: Window World Alternatives

Im with millworkman. You want junk, buy junk. Just move in 5 years or less.


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RE: Window World Alternatives

I'm not arguing against your opinions. In my initial post I specifically mentioned that I know that WW is not great quality, and specified that I was looking for known companies with comparable pricing but a better product. This is not the information you provided. I have not so far seen the name of any distributor (like WW) or window maker (Alside for WW right?) with comparable pricing but better quality. You just told me that WW is not good, which I already know and am not arguing against. IF the answer to my question is "There is no company with a comparably priced window" then ok. However, if there is another company with a comparably priced but better window or installation reputation, I'd like to know what it is. I haven't been able to find it if it exists.

I ALREADY understand that WW is not going to be great quality. There is no need for you to convince me of that and I'm not arguing with that opinion. The property simply is not worth enough money to put anything much more expensive on it. The current windows are old, drafty, and leaky, so they need to go, but the new windows don't need to be top of the line. It's a tiny house in a neighborhood of tiny 1-2 bedroom houses. It is a cheap property and it doesn't make sense to have premium super expensive windows in it when everything else in it and the neighborhood is on the lower end. The only thing I argued with was the $400 window, because I already got a quote from them for $275 a window, as I told them I don't want any of the options.


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RE: Window World Alternatives

I don't know of any company that will sell you a better quality window for a lower price than Window World. There's the answer you are looking for.


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To echo Eco you will not find a quality company selling a quality product close to the price WW is selling their junk for, install price you may find someone willing to drop their draws for work willing to put them in for close the WW install number for a quality install but I would still be careful about that because they will need to trim $ somewhere.


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RE: Window World Alternatives

Does that window at $189 include Low-e/argon?


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Thanks for the info, I guess I'll try to take a look at a couple of local installers to see if I can find anything comparable. It's just a bit frustrating because other companies don't seem to have base prices listed so it's hard to compare without investing a bunch of time in getting them to come to my house, and I'm pretty busy. But I'll give a couple of them a try to see what the market is like anyway. How does Home Depot / Lowes fare by the way? Are they any good?

As far as Low-e/argon, that's a $79 option for WW windows so it doesn't include that. It would put the window around $354 which pushes the window outside of the range I want to spend. I basically have 10 windows to replace and it probably isn't worht much than $3000 to do it, as I don't believe I'll be able to recoup more than that for selling / renting purposes. I don't think I can afford the Low-e stuff on this budget. I could replace only 9 of the windows (one is not as terrible as the rest, and is isolated in the bathroom so it wouldn't have to match) and then do Low-e on some of the windows and not others but I'm not sure if that would be better or worse than replacing them all and not doing Low-e.


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RE: Window World Alternatives

If you are not doing Low-e/argon, don't bother with the replacement at all.

If the wood windows are otherwise okay, i.e. not rotted, put a good storm window to the exterior and be done with it.


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+1. Why even bother replacing them?


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Because they're old, leaky and super drafty even with storm windows on there, and I don't want them to leak into my walls during bad storms, or let huge drafts of cold air through in winter. Low-e is something that keeps heat from going through but not something that deals with drafts or leaks. I assumed new windows would at least be far less drafty and leaky during bad storms than single pane wood windows + storm windows that are on there. Is this not true?

Also I imagine renters and buyers would respond better to windows that don't look like they're 100 years old. They're not rotted or anything but definitely appear very old.

Is it not worth replacing them for the reasons I'm stating above?


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...so $357, and then there will be nickel and dime charges when everything is said and done. You'll pay $400 for a subpar window.
$400 is about the threshold at which an ACCEPTABLE quality product will start. Premium will be more. Anything less and you are wasting your money. A poorly made window without Low-e and argon will not offer much of an upgrade (if any) in energy efficiency over your existing setup. It certainly will not in 5yrs from now when you've had bowed sashes, seal failures, increased air leakage, etc. In addition, you are probably MORE likely to deal with water infiltration issues with a cut-rate install than you are with your original wood/storm combo. Lastly, while most buyers are not window experts, it is pretty easy to tell the difference between a good window and one that is poor. Low-end windows without low-e and argon may be more of a detriment than anything, as a potential buyer will thing suspect that you have cut corners in other places as well. New windows without Low e and argon would be like buying a new car without air conditioning or power windows. Nobody will want it when its time to sell.
If you want to spruce them up on a budget, clean up the interiors (a little refinishing or painting if necessary), and then add a new storm window that DOES have Low -e, along with a new trim wrap on the exterior. You can probably do all that within your budget and it will outperform a low-end replacement with clear glass.


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RE: Window World Alternatives

I agree. I would suggest you spend some time on the Old House Forum on this website. Nothing you have said convinces me it's a good idea to replace the windows when it's likely to be more cost effective to spend some money elsewhere. It makes no sense to buy new windows just to reduce air infiltration.


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Ok, thanks for the info, I'll check out other options about refinishing the current windows and putting better storm windows on there and see how that compares in price.


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As a followup, just so I can compare, do you have any suggestions on a fairly low-end (but with Low-e/argon) window that you would recommend that, say, would install for $400 or less? Somethign price conscious but I guess that you would consider worth replacing the windows I described with, and the typical price range they are installed for, if you know? I would appreciate info of that nature and the info you guys already provided. Thanks!


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If you don't want grids, you should be able to get Softlite Barrington, Sunrise Essentials or Simonton Asure in that price range with LoE glass and argon gas. These are all pretty good windows for the money.


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+1 to the previous comments and a couple of other things:

-Newer storm windows are extremely airtight and can make a huge difference in the draftiness of the window assembly.

-You will save considerably more money by going with some well placed air sealing, insulation, and weatherization as compared to the window replacement.

-Replacing a single pane/storm combo with a double pane clear glass is about like the equivalent of getting out Honda Civic (in terms of efficiency) to get into a Toyota Corolla (i.e. they are about the same in thermal efficiency).

-Low-e/argon is a must in 99% of the replacement window scenarios and yours falls into that 99% bracket.

Feel free to shoot me some pictures of the home and I will give you the most directed and pertinent advice that I can.


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RE: Window World Alternatives

Get everything caulked up tight, put a storm window on, and a fresh coat of paint. Will be better than it was. Don't waste money on windows that will ultimately REMOVE value from the home after 5 years.


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