Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

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WindowNoob94
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#16 Post by WindowNoob94 »

The information you added helps a ton, there's loads of information out there, but cannot seem to find window design pressure ever being mentioned.

There's no doubt about an authority is being pressured by the big guys.

Eh, it's not likely the foam would improperly cure and cause a stink, but it does happen, it's one of the top 5 problems with spray foams, the chemical reaction between the ingredients doesn't properly cure, and causes an awful smell, I considered maybe I am 1 in however many that it actually does happen to.
All good. I suspect you will see the difference. Maybe not as much on day one, but give it a couple years. With that said, going back to my original commentary, you have a tough spot here based on the value of this home and the cost of windows. I don't think that there is a pro contributor here that would tell you that opting not to replace your windows at all is a terrible choice because of that (assuming that they are at least serviceable condition). What I'd hope to assist with though, and with literally no motivation other than to help, is to give you information to make a well-informed choice.... which I suspect is why you are here.
I actually considered not replacing them at all. They're 100 year old wood windows and they look like they've never been unmaintained, not falling apart, but just a sand down, paint and new caulking and they'd be good as new for another few decades. It's a shame the exterior storm windows are a pain to deal with, otherwise, I would opt to not replace at all.

Again, thanks! I'll look into everything you mentioned before considering to buy more windows!

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toddinmn
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#17 Post by toddinmn »

I would consider replacing the storm windows. A high quality storm can really tighten up the opening in regards to air infiltration and sound control Give the exterior a freshened up look. They are typically very easy to install as well.

WindowNoob94
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#18 Post by WindowNoob94 »

toddinmn wrote: Thu Mar 11, 2021 2:04 am I would consider replacing the storm windows. A high quality storm can really tighten up the opening in regards to air infiltration and sound control Give the exterior a freshened up look. They are typically very easy to install as well.
That's a good idea, maybe I'll at least preserve some originality to the house, because I honestly don't want to replace the stain glass. I didn't know storm windows opened up from the inside, the ones are built with are large panes of glass, surrounded by wood, and you have to unhook each side to take the storm window off.

Here's a pic if interested: https://imgur.com/MjSeRTw

There's only a handful of original stained glass windows in the house.

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TheWindowNerd
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#19 Post by TheWindowNerd »

I am probably the senior pro here. I started in the industry hanging 50 triple track storm windows a day typically on new single glazed wood primes. Back then in Philly you had at least a dozen companies making storm windows. There might be one left, but I do not think so. We used to compare performance and other tangibles then about SWs.
It would drive me crazy to put a storm window on a building I owned. I do still pass homes in Newtown PA that have the storm windows that I installed on them 30 years ago, green and red ones on old historical tri painted colonials.
Part of what I am trying to say is the lack of choice in color and quality for SWs would make me very unhappy. Couple that with the fact I used to do a SW supplied and installed for $50-$55. Today that would be $200 +.
If you like the continued maintance of putty glazed windows then SW will also help protect the sash and glazing.
Add to that finding an experienced installer. Makes a difference even with SW. In particular weep holes are critical to not causing rot issues to the sill nose.
Good luck,
theWindowNerd

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toddinmn
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#20 Post by toddinmn »

A good storm will probably set you back $125—$200.
The Larson Premium series is very nice and Readily available . This unit is available with flush mounting options , Low-E glass and 4 Colors. Pro-Via sells storms as well and I use this window mostly when I need more color options.

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HomeSealed
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#21 Post by HomeSealed »

I'd agree with Todd. In your case, a little TLC on the current windows and new storms is going to be money better spent than choosing a lower end replacement window. Since you are already working with someone that carries Provia, they do make one of the nicer storm window units.

WindowNoob94
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#22 Post by WindowNoob94 »

#19 Post by TheWindowNerd » Thu Mar 11, 2021 5:20 am

I am probably the senior pro here. I started in the industry hanging 50 triple track storm windows a day typically on new single glazed wood primes. Back then in Philly you had at least a dozen companies making storm windows. There might be one left, but I do not think so. We used to compare performance and other tangibles then about SWs.
It would drive me crazy to put a storm window on a building I owned. I do still pass homes in Newtown PA that have the storm windows that I installed on them 30 years ago, green and red ones on old historical tri painted colonials.
Part of what I am trying to say is the lack of choice in color and quality for SWs would make me very unhappy. Couple that with the fact I used to do a SW supplied and installed for $50-$55. Today that would be $200 +.
If you like the continued maintance of putty glazed windows then SW will also help protect the sash and glazing.
Add to that finding an experienced installer. Makes a difference even with SW. In particular weep holes are critical to not causing rot issues to the sill nose.
Good luck,
theWindowNerd
I keep telling people that I talk to all the time, if only I was born 5 years earlier, prices would have been definitely better for me. I just checked with ProVia regarding your comment, their SW do have weep holes.
#20 Post by toddinmn » Thu Mar 11, 2021 12:51 pm

A good storm will probably set you back $125—$200.
The Larson Premium series is very nice and Readily available . This unit is available with flush mounting options , Low-E glass and 4 Colors. Pro-Via sells storms as well and I use this window mostly when I need more color options.
If there was a Larson installer around, I'd check up on that, but there isn't. :/
#21 Post by HomeSealed » Thu Mar 11, 2021 2:06 pm

I'd agree with Todd. In your case, a little TLC on the current windows and new storms is going to be money better spent than choosing a lower end replacement window. Since you are already working with someone that carries Provia, they do make one of the nicer storm window units.
Provia is the only company around here that has storm windows, I'm hoping that they're paintable so they match the house/exterior trim color. If not, I could just use exterior primer and then use exterior paint over it. Regarding concerns for voiding warranty, it's nuts that windows offer such a long warranty for how much they cost. Windows probably only cost 300-500 bucks for Mid-tier, yet offer 25 years. Any other product you buy, that costs as low as that would only give a 5 to 10 year warranty (Standard washing machine.) I guess when there's an industry full of competitors, they have to offer it to stay competetive.

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toddinmn
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#23 Post by toddinmn »

I would highly recommend not painting new storm windows. Larson is probably the most readily available storm window . The big box stores sell them and most Lumber yards, and building product distributors.

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HomeSealed
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#24 Post by HomeSealed »

Provia has many colors to choose from, again I agree with Todd that painting wouldn't be ideal. If you were replacing the windows, were you getting a factory painted exterior or just white? If you already have some white replacement windows installed, adding white storms on the other units would be consistent

WindowNoob94
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#25 Post by WindowNoob94 »

I would highly recommend not painting new storm windows. Larson is probably the most readily available storm window . The big box stores sell them and most Lumber yards, and building product distributors.
I'll look into that, thanks!
Provia has many colors to choose from, again I agree with Todd that painting wouldn't be ideal. If you were replacing the windows, were you getting a factory painted exterior or just white? If you already have some white replacement windows installed, adding white storms on the other units would be consistent
All of the currently replaced windows are white, but the exterior trim is original wood that's red, the trim pops out, so I was figuring, that I could just get the SW factory painted red.

WindowNoob94
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#26 Post by WindowNoob94 »

One more thing, I probably already know the answer to this, CHOOSE OKNA, haha. I'm still reluctant at this point.


After this post, I'm done comparing and contrasting, it's literally consuming all of my time up, because I'm becoming a bit obsessive. I was suppose to be off work for 5 days to unwind and here I am stressing about windows, lol.

Another thing that popped in my head, the environment of where I live hasn't been considered nor the placement of the windows, of course I didn't mention it.

Our average windspeed is 15 MPH, the record is 60 MPH, which is very rare, according to National Weather Service. My windows will be recessed into my brick by 4", it just stormed and none of my window sills are even wet. When it comes to performance, I'm sure blinds and curtains would help out with that.

I thought, DP35 sustains 118 MPH winds, nearly double of our highest wind speed on record. DP35 is category 1,2 and mostly 3 hurricane windspeeds and sustains windspeeds rated beyond commercial windows.

So even though the OKNA 500 series is extremely well built, how is it not considered overkill? Sure depending on the window size, the Okna 500 series is so well built, it could sustain category 4 windspeeds. I won't even see windspeeds of anything close to 118 MPH yet 171 mph.

My point is, my environment wouldn't phase either window according to the DP/Structural ratings.

I managed to decrease the Ecolite from $850 to $583.

If I can manage to negotiate the ProVia Aspect, to $650 to $670 at 0% financing for 5 years, with coiling included for 4 windows that do need it at no extra cost, (My OKNA dealer charges $200 per coil wrap), would this be a deal worth going with over OKNA for budget?

The Aspect is only lacking AI performance by 6%. Both are DP50, ProVia Aspect is .35% better at Water Resistance, OKNA is better by .03 at AI.

When I put the numbers together for the cost for the OKNA, ($723 per, plus 4 coil wraps at 200 each at .42% interest) it'll be around 950 per window after it's all paid for.

So:

Okna 500dx: 10 Windows- $9530

ProVia Aspect: 10 windows: $6,500, IF I pay if off before 5 years, lets assume I will, it's only been 3 months and my OKNAs are already a little more than 1/5th paid for.

These prices don't account for the amount of cash I will be putting down, but it'll be close to the same difference anyways.

Thoughts on this?

Ricknez
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#27 Post by Ricknez »

I think you are trying to look for reassurance that the cheapest option makes sense when it does not.

WindowNoob94
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#28 Post by WindowNoob94 »

Ricknez wrote: Fri Mar 12, 2021 8:59 am I think you are trying to look for reassurance that the cheapest option makes sense when it does not.
I disagree. I'm expecting someone with experience to say you don't need the structural support of a window that your environment doesn't require, BUT it is a good safety net. That would be a more fair and neutral thing to say.

I noticed not one Window contractor that came to my house for a visit mentioned Central PA environment and how their window will be great for my house. This was mentioned by a friend who's a design engineer for windows and doors. I never thought to ask him until yesterday, otherwise I could have avoided annoying everyone, which I hope I didn't. I learned a lot, but still not enough.

So, I believe it is fair to say:

1. If the structural ratings are well beyond what your environment conditions require, you'll be fine.
2. If the energy rating is off by a few when comparing brands, it's no big deal, because when the only energy impact is 4 months out of the year at $17.20 in savings per month, then 5 cents per month for the rest of the year, which would mean, a 6% more efficient window would require 50 years to pay the difference off between the two. Which is a terrible investment.

I definitely would go with OKNA if I was given the option to downgrade from the Deluxe, but it's not an option.

With all that being said, the cheapest option does makes sense. I just now want to see other thoughts, because as someone who has no experience, but can compare and contrast on information given, I may be missing something, so someone arguing against what I state helps out a lot.

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HomeSealed
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#29 Post by HomeSealed »

Unless you are in a coastal application and worried about hurricanes, your consideration of DP as a factor is less about windspeeds, and more about being an indicator of strength and quality. Which do you think will last longer and perform better over its lifespan, a window that is DP35 or one that is DP50? Which is likely a better design, using better materials and tighter tolerances? That is the relevance of DP. Furthermore, you can throw the sash reinforcement into that equation as well. Even at the same DP, which window do you think is superior, one that gets a DP50 with no reinforcement, or the one that needs that reinforcement? And don't get me wrong, reinforcement is not a bad thing, I'm just saying that if I'm trying to determine which window is superior, that is something to consider as well.

As far as all of the numbers, here's one to think about. Over 10 years, the difference between these two is $25 per month. A good window will have a service life of 30+ years, but realistically not many people live in their homes that long so use a shorter period.

On the financing, I wouldn't expect the Provia guy to honor a cash or even credit card price for 0% 60 month financing. Most financing companies charge 15-20% of the total contract price as a dealer fee for a plan like that.

I see that you discounted Ricknez's comment, but I have to say that there is likely some truth there, we see people come through here ALL THE TIME with similar sentiments. They care enough about making a good purchase that they are here researching and obsessing, yet they see that attractive price and they want some affirmation that it will be a good choice, but it rarely is. As you stated in your first comment, I think you already know the answer. If you are going to do this, do it once and do it right. Otherwise if you can't justify the investment vs home value aspect, do the storm windows.

WindowNoob94
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Re: Deciding window brands and pricing, vinyl Central PA

#30 Post by WindowNoob94 »

HomeSealed wrote: Fri Mar 12, 2021 2:03 pm Unless you are in a coastal application and worried about hurricanes, your consideration of DP as a factor is less about windspeeds, and more about being an indicator of strength and quality. Which do you think will last longer and perform better over its lifespan, a window that is DP35 or one that is DP50? Which is likely a better design, using better materials and tighter tolerances? That is the relevance of DP. Furthermore, you can throw the sash reinforcement into that equation as well. Even at the same DP, which window do you think is superior, one that gets a DP50 with no reinforcement, or the one that needs that reinforcement? And don't get me wrong, reinforcement is not a bad thing, I'm just saying that if I'm trying to determine which window is superior, that is something to consider as well.

As far as all of the numbers, here's one to think about. Over 10 years, the difference between these two is $25 per month. A good window will have a service life of 30+ years, but realistically not many people live in their homes that long so use a shorter period.

On the financing, I wouldn't expect the Provia guy to honor a cash or even credit card price for 0% 60 month financing. Most financing companies charge 15-20% of the total contract price as a dealer fee for a plan like that.

I see that you discounted Ricknez's comment, but I have to say that there is likely some truth there, we see people come through here ALL THE TIME with similar sentiments. They care enough about making a good purchase that they are here researching and obsessing, yet they see that attractive price and they want some affirmation that it will be a good choice, but it rarely is. As you stated in your first comment, I think you already know the answer. If you are going to do this, do it once and do it right. Otherwise if you can't justify the investment vs home value aspect, do the storm windows.
I was already offered the 0% financing for 5 years, so it wouldn't be unrealistic for them to do the same for the Aspect upgrade.

I'm sure the Ecolite is probably truly a $180 window, since the average cost of an install per window is $100 per opening, plus 20 in materials per, then the 20% plan fee, cost of labor, 40/hr with 2 staff at 15 per hour (Average wage for this in my area), in which they can offer that financing, plus throw coil wrap in for nothing extra. If the numbers are even close, that's a huge profit margin from 583 each, but they also have more staff than most of the other companies.

There is some truth regarding people becoming emotionally attached, but when you put the stats, side by side, with both only stating made with uPVC, no mention of densities, thicknesses etc. There's no possible way to know.

Okna has been sued and lost in a lawsuit about a false claim for their product in their reading material regarding materials, which may be why they changed their numbers in the brochure recently. There are companies that have a fund to settles things like this, if the profit outweighs the loss. ProVia had a lawsuit over their Warranty, which is just as bad, don't offer something if you won't honor it.

That's a red flag for both companies. Can I truly trust Okna if they say it's made out of materials X? Can I trust ProVia when they offer a 25 year warranty?

As I mentioned before I will go with Storm windows, and keep tabs on my OKNA and ProVia windows and then decide. Just look out for my post when I come back b****ing about the ProVia, then have a nice laugh.

I appreciate you taking the time to get back to me, I know you own a business, which requires loads of time and energy as it is.
Last edited by WindowNoob94 on Wed Mar 17, 2021 12:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

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