First Time Replacement Window Advice

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Jmil1989
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Joined: Mon Apr 19, 2021 5:51 pm

First Time Replacement Window Advice

#1 Post by Jmil1989 »

Hi All -

I've been reading many of the posts on this forum as well as researching other websites in an effort to make an informed decision about replacing the windows in my home. Thought I would post myself to get input from all the pros on here.

About the home & project: Built in 1992 and located in Northeast Ohio - still has original wood casement windows throughout, many with broken seals, and some failed mechanisms. Plan is to replace with either a vinyl or fiberglass/composite window In an effort to save some costs, we're going to swap out a few of the double casements with sliders. Exteriors are bronze (currently quite faded given age) and plan to do the same color on the replacements. On interior, I'm not a fan of the white / tan color vinyls from many brands, so have been searching for a product that either offers a dark bronze (not cocoa) or a sandstone interior color...

13 Total Windows to be replaced:
Double Casement (70 x 60") with Half Round on top (70 x 35)
2 Lite Slider - 37 x 37"
Square Picture Window - 57 x 57, with 2 single casements on each side 27 x 57 each
Single Casement 27 x 57
Double Casement (53 x 49) with Half Round on top (53x27)
Awning 29x17
2 Lite Slider - 61 x 45
2 Lite Slider 53 x 45
Single Casement 21 x 33

I've secured quotes from a variety of local suppliers, and believe I have narrowed down to the following few, and looking for some input / help with my questions.

1. Provia Endure - $13,900 installed -- Standard glass package, rustic bronze exterior paint, interior sandstone, and full screens. If I go this route, I may try to see if they could meet/beat the Polaris quote...

2. Polaris UltraWeld - $13,300 installed - standard glass package, bronze exterior paint, interior tan -- I'm not a fan of their interior color or the aesthetics of the window, so would likely eliminate this one.

3. Andersen 100 Series -- Quoted windows only through local dealer at roughly $8,500, bronze interior & exterior. I have yet to obtain a formal estimate on the cost for label/install/materials - so any input/guidance on what could be expected here would be helpful to estimate the total cost on this one...

I've also had quotes for Okna ($15K), SoftLite via Zen ($18K), Sunrise ($16K) and have back-burnered these quotes given either their higher cost or the interior color options. Had originally quoted Marvin Infinity as I like their slimmer frames and ability to do the dark bronze inside, but they are far beyond my budget at $25K+

Questions:
1. As mentioned, I'm likely to narrow down to the ProVia Endure or the Andersen 100s --- Any pros/cons I should be aware of here? I like the slimmer frame / colors on the Andersens, but their warranty isn't as strong as Provia and I've heard mixed reviews on quality (faulty/flimsy lock on sliders; issue with water and the flat sill).

2. Some sales people have heavily advocated for a full tearout while others state there is no need to go that route given the age of the home. Quotes above are all based on insert installation - but would like to hear thoughts here. Depending on the price upcharge to go this route it could be a consideration I look further into...

3. The Provia's would be installed through Window Depot which guarantees their labor/install for the life of the home. Would a independent installer/contractor provide any sort of warranty on their work if i went the Andersen route?

Thanks in advance for taking the time to read my post and provide any thoughts or guidance.

Jordan

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HomeSealed
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Re: First Time Replacement Window Advice

#2 Post by HomeSealed »

1) Neither is considered a top performer. Neither are terrible either, but I'd choose the Polaris Ultraweld 7 days out of 7 over either of those choices, and frankly I'd bring the Okna back into the mix as well at a price that sounds about normal. The biggest no-no here though is sourcing the product and installation separately. Very high likelihood of finger-pointing which hurts nobody but you as the customer if/when service is needed. Most reputable installation companies won't install products purchased elsewhere for several valid reason.
Window Depot is a franchise so that can be hit or miss as well. I'd thoroughly vet that option, make sure this location has been around for 10+ years, etc.

2) What type of condition are the existing window frames? Any rot? Water leakage? Are you particularly sensitive to a small amount of glass loss? Any plans to replace siding or interior trim in the near future? ... Full frame is a valid option regardless, but any of those circumstances make a stronger case given the added cost which can be substantial.

3) Probably not. Maybe a year. Even then, as I explained above, he'll likely blame the product when something comes up, and the manufacturer will blame the install.... Typically the issue is the install, that's why choosing someone that will answer your calls a few years down the road is important.

Jmil1989
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Joined: Mon Apr 19, 2021 5:51 pm

Re: First Time Replacement Window Advice

#3 Post by Jmil1989 »

Thanks for the reply. I figured doing separate parties for window sourcing and installation could get messy, so I’m glad I confirmed here and can eliminate that option. The local Window Depot has very positive reviews and has been established for quite some time, so I feel pretty confident there. They also warrant their labor/install for life.

I hear rave reviews on the performance of Polaris, just not a fan of the look of the window itself or the interior color (tan). Same goes for the Okna as it’s an almond interior. Understand the performance metrics of the Provia product may fall behind these other two brands, but their interior sandstone option is a much better match for our home interior. Are you aware of any other reputable brands that offer either a sandstone or bronze interior color?

As for the current windows, they are in decent shape considering they’re original wood nearly 30 years old. No water leakage. Mainly some wood damage on the some interiors where it meets the glass and it appears condensation developed from broken seal. Plan is to keep the existing wood trim. As for siding it’s on the list to replace someday, but likely not in the next 5+ years. I realize there will be some level of glass loss with an insert replacement - especially for the single casements, but not sure I’m convinced it is worth double the install cost to do a full tear out?

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toddinmn
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Re: First Time Replacement Window Advice

#4 Post by toddinmn »

The tan colored vinyl can clash with many interior colors, so I feel ya there. Maybe reevaluate the white or find another Marvin dealer?

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HomeSealed
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Re: First Time Replacement Window Advice

#5 Post by HomeSealed »

I'd really put some more weight on quality and performance more than the color. I understand that the color is important for sure, but keep in mind that other than white and some stain colors, interior window colors have the shelf life of a carton of milk. Sandstone and clays, etc are starting to get rather long in the tooth as people use gray, black, and white on everything. Personally I'd go with white unless there is a woodgrain that matches your stained woodwork (if you have stained woodwork), I would not use another color myself. Not only is white timeless, it saves you a few bucks as well.

TheBaker8
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Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2021 7:43 am

Re: First Time Replacement Window Advice

#6 Post by TheBaker8 »

Jmil1989,
You listed your 13 windows to be replaced and I see you have several different style (casement, slider, picture, awning). Are you replacing them all like for like style wise for each opening or are you going to all one type of window? I also hear you loud and clear on the color choices. I would think some window manufacturer would make a darker base vinyl color. The sandstone by ProVia is the darkest I have found for interior color.

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HomeSealed
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Re: First Time Replacement Window Advice

#7 Post by HomeSealed »

TheBaker8 wrote: Fri Apr 23, 2021 2:22 pm Jmil1989,
You listed your 13 windows to be replaced and I see you have several different style (casement, slider, picture, awning). Are you replacing them all like for like style wise for each opening or are you going to all one type of window? I also hear you loud and clear on the color choices. I would think some window manufacturer would make a darker base vinyl color. The sandstone by ProVia is the darkest I have found for interior color.
Several manufacturers used to make darker windows, a few still make cocoa or a similar "milk chocolate" looking color. Bronze was once a thing, but they built up heat and twisted like a pretzel. These days the only dark interior color that has much demand is black.

TheBaker8
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Re: First Time Replacement Window Advice

#8 Post by TheBaker8 »

Homesealed,
That is some interesting insight regarding bronze colored windows that built up heat and twisted because of it. Do you recall if the bronze color was the base color of the vinyl? Have you seen any issues with darker colored (coated/painted) exteriors causing the same heat up and twisting issues? That would ruin a good project quickly! Is it possible to paint vinyl windows or is it near impossible to get normal residential paint to bond adequately to the vinyl?

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Windows on Washington
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Re: First Time Replacement Window Advice

#9 Post by Windows on Washington »

Can you paint vinyl...yes. It requires a very clean substrate and a very specific paint formulation.

That said...I wouldn't paint it in the capacity that a homeowner can paint it at home. The windows are painted with a specialty paint and despite my concerns early on, we have painted windows that are 15 years old and look as good as the day they went in.

The paints for vinyl windows have a thermal rejection component to them so they DO NOT get nearly as hot as similarly painted color. We have seen this on darker windows as the cladding right next to the window will be "Hot as Hades" and the vinyl window is only warm to the touch.

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HomeSealed
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Re: First Time Replacement Window Advice

#10 Post by HomeSealed »

TheBaker8 wrote: Fri Apr 23, 2021 6:08 pm Homesealed,
That is some interesting insight regarding bronze colored windows that built up heat and twisted because of it. Do you recall if the bronze color was the base color of the vinyl? Have you seen any issues with darker colored (coated/painted) exteriors causing the same heat up and twisting issues? That would ruin a good project quickly! Is it possible to paint vinyl windows or is it near impossible to get normal residential paint to bond adequately to the vinyl?
+1 to WoW's comments.

Yes, the problems occurred with dark extrusions (color pigment in the vinyl).

No, there are none of these concerns that exist on dark painted exteriors these days, at least not from quality manufacturers.

Lastly, as WoW stated yes, vinyl can be painted, but its HIGHLY advisable to have that done by the factory. Paint type, prep, and a surface not yet exposed to the elements all play a role in ensuring the durability and life span of that paint.

Jmil1989
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Joined: Mon Apr 19, 2021 5:51 pm

Re: First Time Replacement Window Advice

#11 Post by Jmil1989 »

The Baker8, I currently have mostly all casement except for the picture window and awning in bath which is being replaced like for like. We are planning to swap out a few of the double casements for sliders in upper bedrooms.

I’m still leaning toward the Provia product which gives me the ability to do sandstone interior with painted bronze exterior.

I’ve done a bit more research locally and haven’t found any other brands that offer a similar color option in my price range. There are likely better windows (Polaris /Okna) out there, but I’m simply not willing to pay $15k to install a window that I find unattractive in color in my house.
Likewise, I don’t think it’s worth spending $30k on Marvin windows just so I can have a bronze interior.

SuburbanJarl
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Joined: Wed Apr 07, 2021 12:55 pm

Re: First Time Replacement Window Advice

#12 Post by SuburbanJarl »

Have you looked at Okna's wood look vinyl? Maybe that doesn't fit the aesthetics of your home but I think that's what we are going with to match our wood trim. We also thought the Sunrise wood look options were good, Okna just had a better match.

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