Window Replacement - South of Atlanta

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Sirty
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Joined: Wed Jan 06, 2021 2:15 pm

Window Replacement - South of Atlanta

#1 Post by Sirty »

I've been perusing this forum and reading everything I can on the web. Based off most comments here, I've surmised that Sunrise, Okna and Soft-lite are great options; however, the problem for me is the distributors of these windows are all on the north side of Atlanta and don't service my area. I've called a lot of installers in my immediate area and they all use sub-par windows like low end Atrium, Simonton, Alside, etc.

I was able to locate a company called Zen Windows who appear to sell a re-branded Soft-Lite, but the reviews on here are mixed for Zen. I also came across an Atlanta based company called Windowcrafters. They make their own windows (fusion welded seams, Cardinal glass, Duralite spacers) and it sounds like a quality window, but I'm not sure. Hoping someone could look at their site and see how it sounds. http://windowcraftersinc.com/windows/

To give you a better idea, here's my project:
I'm replacing 17 windows in 11 openings in my single story home. A few of the sills have rotted and will need to be replaced, one window I'm replacing with a sliding window and I'm increasing the opening in another, so additional framing will be needed. I've received quotes from both Zen and Windowcrafters.

Zen
All Nirvana double-hung windows. Per quote, this includes:
Foam Filled Frames
Solar LowE / Argon Gas
MagnaSeal Spacer
Fusion Welded Corners
Total: $10,809.00

Windowcrafters
All 900 or 990 Series double-hung windows. Per quote, this includes
No foam fill on frames
Cardinal 366 LoE Glass
Duralite spacer
Fusion Welded Seams
Total: $9,758.24

Based in this information, which would you go with? I'm leaning towards Windowcrafters as I think the line item quote is more transparent and they've been very forthcoming with all questions I asked, but am unsure of some of their installation procedures. For example, the "New white PVC square stop will be installed on the inside to seal to existing window jam." they mentioned in the Installation Services section. I've had windows installed before and don't see why this would need to be used. They also said some of my existing brick molding will be cut to make way for the new windows, but they could cap it all instead.

I've included the quotes in case there's something the experts on here pick up on that I don't know to.

Let me know if additional information is needed. Thanks in advance!

EDIT: Well I tried to upload the quotes as attachments, but I'm not seeing them.

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HomeSealed
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Joined: Mon Feb 15, 2010 3:46 pm
Location: Milwaukee & Madison area

Re: Window Replacement - South of Atlanta

#2 Post by HomeSealed »

Saying that the reviews here for Zen are "mixed" is a rather rosy interpretation.

On WC, I have to admit that I don't know anything about this company, but if their website is any indication, that's not a good sign. Bunch of broken links and images, etc. From what I could gather, the 900 series is a 2 7/8" jamb depth which is a big red flag (made for low cost new construction) as nearly all windows today are 3 1/4". There is also a link to why "Vynil" (spelling) is a preferred material. Despite references to years of experience, the BBB file shows that it was just opened in 2020. No "about us" page referencing their company history on the website that I could find... Again, I don't know this company, but I can't say that I really see anything at all that would indicate that its a strong choice so far. Did they give you performance ratings perhaps? U value, air infiltration, design pressure?

I'd say trying to find another quote or two on a quality product would be your best, next step. Have you looked into Polaris or Sunrise? ... I might consider Simonton from a reputable, established installation company over your current options if not.

Sirty
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Jan 06, 2021 2:15 pm

Re: Window Replacement - South of Atlanta

#3 Post by Sirty »

Just one of the experts I was hoping to hear from, thank you for your response!

If you think WC's website is bad now, you should've seen it last fall when I first started looking around. Looked like it was built in 1993. Nevertheless, their website is in the process of a makeover from what I've been told. Also, through this re-branding process they've changed their name as well. They used to be known as The Window Factory per the sign on their building or The Window Factory of the South, Inc. per BBB. https://www.bbb.org/us/ga/tucker/profil ... 3-11002410.

I thought I had asked about performance ratings from WC, but am unable to find it in any of my notes or emails. I'll go back and ask about them. The jamb depth for the 990 series is 3 5/8". All of the double-hungs would be 990, but they're quoting 900 series for the half rounds, 3-lite slider and windows in the bathrooms that require tempered glass.

Sirty
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Jan 06, 2021 2:15 pm

Re: Window Replacement - South of Atlanta

#4 Post by Sirty »

Forgot to answer your question about Sunrise and Polaris. Late yesterday evening, I was able to find a small business who deals Sunrise. He normally comes down my way, but can't currently because he's short handed due to COVID and being down an installer. He provided me some names of a couple other Sunrise dealers he knows, so I'm going to call them and see. I have not looked into Polaris at all. I found their website and will call to see if they have dealers in my area. Thanks again!

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Windows on Washington
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Re: Window Replacement - South of Atlanta

#5 Post by Windows on Washington »

Keep us updated on the search.

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HomeSealed
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Re: Window Replacement - South of Atlanta

#6 Post by HomeSealed »

Sounds like the leads on Sunrise and Polaris are probably worth following.

The 3 5/8" jamb depth mentioned doesn't make much sense. The "pocket" in original wood windows that a new replacment window would fit into is 3 1/4" +/-, a 3 5/8" window wouldn't fit that. That's also much smaller than a normal 2x4 wall assembly which would be 4 9/16" +/-, so I'm thinking that info is not correct. Usually "rebranding" such as this is due to financial failure or some other negative reason, so I'd be cautious about that. Certainly nothing that couldn't be solved by doing a little digging.

As WoW said, keep us updated.

Sirty
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Joined: Wed Jan 06, 2021 2:15 pm

Re: Window Replacement - South of Atlanta

#7 Post by Sirty »

Thanks to you both! I received a quote from the small business I mentioned before and he offers two Sunrise window options...a premium line simply called Sunrise and an economical option call Essentials. He quoted me on the premium Sunrise option at $9,600. I'll ask if he has a brochure or some literature on the "premium" option.

I have another company I found who deals in Sunrise, Verde and Windsor coming a week from Monday, so I'll see what they have to offer as well.

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HomeSealed
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Re: Window Replacement - South of Atlanta

#8 Post by HomeSealed »

I would not consider the Essentials, but the base "Sunrise" is good, and is the basis for the higher end Verde, Vanguard, and Restorations. They each just have different levels of upgrades. I believe that sash reinforcement is optional but not standard in that model, I'd opt for that if its available.

I'd recommend looking deeper into the company installing if you like this option. Good sign that they offer a quality product, but your reference to "small" combined with actually coming in less than two bargain options says dig deeper.

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