Provia Window Complaints – What’s going on?

If you’re reading Provia window complaints online you may be wondering what’s going on. It’s always hard to navigate online reviews, especially in the window business. Are there issues with the windows, is it just a bad installer or bad warranty service or just an unsatisfiable customer? We’ll find out.

What causes Provia window complaints?

The Provia window complaints you’ll see online will fall into a couple of pretty common categories for window complaints and that’s a good thing.

The first is a customer blaming the manufacturer for an installation issue. This happens all the time to all manufacturers. In fact we wrote about it in our post about Alside window complaints and you’ll find it happens to Provia too.

I found an example of a customer blaming Provia for air infiltration on a window. That can be caused by manufacturing, but it’s almost always caused by the installation of the window.

Sometimes people buy windows from small installers who don’t have the resources to reorder a window if the measurements are wrong. The installer may force a window into an opening even if the size is off and that can lead to air infiltration or a draft in the window. It’s not the manufacturers fault, but the customer doesn’t know that. The manufacturer gets blamed for something they have no control over.

At the end of the day the customer is complaining about Provia windows but her problem is really with the installer. The only thing that will fix it is a new window that is the right size.

The second common cause of Provia window complaints is the customer not understanding what they ordered.

Unfortunately this happens more than anyone would like.

I was just reading a complaint from a customer who ordered a Provia door with a pet door. The customer said they assumed they would get an “extreme weather” pet door even though that is not listed anywhere.

That’s not anything Provia even offers so why would the customer assume that? Who knows. They ordered a pet door, they got a pet door. Then they said it wasn’t as nice as their old pet door. Provia didn’t do anything wrong, but that doesn’t stop someone from complaining.

What’s the moral of the story? Be sure to ask questions and do as much as you can to make sure you understand what you’re ordering before you order it. If you have specific expectations about your pet door, or any feature, put them in writing.

If something shows up that is different from what you expected I’d suggest starting by looking for a solution with the dealer rather than blaming them as they want you to be happy too. Nobody wants an upset customer.

What’s the bottom line?

At the end of the day you can find complaints about any product online. This is especially true with custom made products that are professionally installed.

There are a lot of variables involved and it’s best to work with the installer and the manufacturer to find a solution to any concern rather than blaming people and getting upset. We know that’s sometimes easier said than done.

If you’re shopping for new window I always suggest finding a great installation company before you fall in love with a replacement window model. We see people work with problematic companies all the time. They do it to get a window model that they want. The trade off isn’t worthwhile.

The best place to start is with our list of the best window companies around. You can find that right here. You can also find detailed window reviews here and information on window ratings here. Have fun out there!

Home Depot Window Complaints – What’s wrong with Home Depot?

The process of buying new windows can seem complicated. Sometimes people think it would just be easier to order windows from a store they know, like Home Depot. If you’re thinking about going this route you should understand what causes Home Depot window complaints so you can avoid ending up an unhappy customer.

Home Depot is obviously a huge company. They’re in almost every town all over the country. They carry all sorts of home products so you might think they’d be a great place to order windows. In my humble opinion you’d be wrong.

You see they’re a retailer, just like a Wal-Mart or Costco or another big store. That’s a completely different business than being a window installer. In fact, Home Depot isn’t really a window installer at all. If you order windows from them they’ll hire someone else to install your windows. Will that person be a good person to work with? I don’t know and you don’t know either.

Are Home Depot window installations bad?

Not necessarily, but it’s a risk. I’d suggest it’s a risk that’s not really worth taking. While it’s true that there’s a Home Depot in almost every town, there’s also likely a great window company in every town too.

Why hire a box store to do a job they don’t really specialize in instead of a company that focuses on windows every day? I’d suggest that it doesn’t really make any sense to do that. There are plenty of great window companies that are full of people who work on windows every single day.

You see Home Depot will still send over a commissioned salesperson, they’ll still try to get you to place the order. They’re not making the windows, rather they’re buying them from one company, marking them up and selling them to you.

There’s really nothing special that you get from Home Depot and there are a few downsides. The subcontracted installations are one factor that can lead to Home Depot window complaints, but they’re not the only factor.

Are the windows Home Depot offers any good?

They’re not great. In most markets it seems that Home Depot offers windows from Simonton. You can find our reviews of Simonton windows here.

Simonton makes several product lines, just like most window manufacturers. They use a special model number for windows sold through Home Depot. Usually it’s Simonton 6500 but that can change.

The windows are fine, but they’ll have higher air infiltration rates than many other options. That means they’ll let in more light when closed and locked. They’ll also use thicker frames that block more light which is not ideal.

Why isn’t Home Depot great at windows?

I can only guess it’s because selling home services has never been a huge focus for them. They could very easily be a real force in this industry as they have enormous scale, but they’ve never really been able to take advantage of that scale.

I guess it’s good for me and most owners of window companies that Home Depot has not figured out the window business. Maybe one day they’ll buy my company and we’ll leverage their scale to take over the industry. Until then, I’d look elsewhere if you’re looking for new windows.

So, how should I decide who to work with?

The window business is challenging, that’s for sure. Every company says they’re the best and they all say that everyone else is horrible. It can feel difficult to navigate, but luckily it’s really not that hard.

I always suggest starting with a company with a good reputation and a solid track record. Then listed to what they have to suggest. Ask any questions about it, ask about options both more expensive and less expensive. When you feel like they’re offering a reasonable value that fits your needs you should buy it.

It is not a good idea to fall in love with a window brand before yo’ve found someone to install them. That said, you can find the best window reviews on the internet right here.

To try to help in that regard we’ve compiled a list of great companies all over the country. We may not know anyone in your neighborhood yet but it doesn’t’ hurt to ask. You can find our list of the best replacement window companies right here.

Pella Window Complaints – What is the problem?

If you’ve been considering ordering new Pella windows for your house you may have come across Pella window complaints online. You may be wondering if this is something to be concerned about. We’ll get to the bottom of it right here.

For starters, Pella primarily makes windows for new construction which means as a company they don’t always understand the remodeling customer. We wrote about this in a recent post about Jeld-Wen window complaints as they’re in the same boat.

New construction is just a different animal. Pella does make remodeling products like wood windows, fiberglass windows, vinyl winnows like the Pella 250 and the Pella 350, but they just don’t understand the customers.

There is a difference between Jeld-Wen and Pella in terms of how they’re able to satisfy customers and we’ll get into that as well.

You can also find our Pella window reviews here. They may help when you’re shopping for the best new windows.

I thought Pella was the best?

That’s part of the problem. Pella is one of the window manufacturers that spends the most on marketing. There are hundreds of window manufacturers in the country making both new construction and replacement windows. Unless you’re in the window business I bet you can only name 3 or 4 of them.

Why are there 3 or 4 window companies that you know and probably 200 that you don’t? Marketing. Does marketing make the windows better? No.

Pella and Andersen and Marvin windows spend a whole lot of money on marketing and advertising every year which is they they’re probably the only manufacturers you can think of.

Does this mean they’re better window manufacturers or that they make better windows? No. It had just about no relation to the quality of the products they produce, but nobody really thinks about that.

So, why are there Pella window complaints?

Mostly it’s a problem of expectations. People see an ad for Pella and it says “viewed to be the best”. I don’t know if you’d find anyone in this industry who would tell you that Pella windows are the very best windows. Whether we’re talking about wood windows or vinyl windows they’re perfectly fine, but unremarkable.

Unfortunately, the customers don’t know this. Someone might see an ad for Pella windows and give them a ring. A commissioned salesperson will come to your house and tell you that Pella is the absolute best. They’ll tell there’s nothing better out there. What they’re really telling you is they want you to buy so they can get their commission. Read about some funny and sad window sales tactics here.

Based on this the customer buys the windows and then might be disappointed when the actual windows show up. Pella makes fine windows, but not at all nicer than anyone else. In fact, I’d say their vinyl windows are definitely less nice than many replacement window brands. That causes customers to have Pella window complaints.

So, how should I decide who to work with?

The window business is challenging, that’s for sure. Every company says they’re the best and they all say that everyone else is horrible. It can feel difficult to navigate, but luckily it’s really not that hard.

I always suggest starting with a company with a good reputation and a solid track record. Then listed to what they have to suggest. Ask any questions about it, ask about options both more expensive and less expensive. When you feel like they’re offering a reasonable value that fits your needs you should buy it.

It is not a good idea to fall in love with a window brand before yo’ve found someone to install them. That said, you can find the best window reviews on the internet right here.

To try to help in that regard we’ve compiled a list of great companies all over the country. We may not know anyone in your neighborhood yet but it doesn’t’ hurt to ask. You can find our list of the best replacement window companies right here.

Jeld-Wen Window Complaints – What’s the issue?

If you’re considering ordering Jeld-Wen windows you may have seen Jeld-Wen window complaints online. Is there a a problem with these windows that you should be aware of? Let’s find out.

The first thing you should keep in mind is that someone will complain about anything online. This is just a fact of life on the internet. Just because you read something from an unhappy customer or two doesn’t mean a product is horrible.

That said, in my experience Jeld-Wen windows are pretty close to horrible. You might also find our Jeld-Wen window reviews page to be interesting.

What is wrong with Jeld-Wen windows?

The first factor to consider is that Jeld-Wen windows are primarily produced for new construction. They do make remodeling focused products, but in my experience they’re a new construction company. They have a new construction mindset. This isn’t great for customers.

Companies that focus on the new construction market like Pella, Jeld-Wen, Andersen, Atrium, etc typically sell to builders rather than the end users. That means they care much more about keeping builders happy than the end users. What makes builders happy? Low prices and not much else.

Would you pay $5 more for a nicer product? Probably, but a builder wouldn’t.

That means a company that is primarily focused on the new construction market will not be as focused on quality as you might hope.

Builders know that when you’re buying a new house you’re focused on the kitchen and the deck and the beautiful family room and the finished basement. Windows are typically not a huge priority which means they can use cheaper windows and still sell just as many houses.

This causes builders to use cheaper and cheaper products. That causes manufacturers to make cheaper and cheaper products and it causes owners of newly build houses to be unhappy with their windows several years later.

Remember, Jeld-Wen does make remodeling products. The problem is they’re not much nicer than their new construction products.

Why are there Jeld-Wen window complaints online?

In my experience it’s because people are often unhappy with their Jeld-Wen windows. It’s just that simple. My company offered Jeld-Wen windows for several years for remodeling projects. It didn’t go very well. I personally had plenty of Jeld-Wen window complaints.

We primarily used their wood windows for historic window replacement projects. We did some fun higher profile projects like embassies in DC or cool historic buildings on the east coast. We even replaced windows for several celebrities. They were expensive wood windows, but the quality was not great. I can’t even imagine what their cheaper vinyl windows were like.

Ultimately we stopped offering them because we could almost never get a project completed without callbacks.

We never did deal with their vinyl windows but I got a good idea of what I could expect. One day I was talking to our Jeld-Wen rep about their vinyl windows and he told me not to sell them. He flat out told me that we wouldn’t be happy with them. I’m confident he was right.

To their credit we were always able to get every issue resolved with new parts or a service call, but it was a never ending hassle and we stopped selling them.

Are Jeld-Wen windows worse than other new construction windows?

Not really. All new construction windows are designed to be cheap regardless of what the brochure (or the salesperson) tells you. You can find Jeld-Wen window complaints and you can also find Atrium window complaints and Andersen window complaints and Pella window complaints too. You’ll never get the same quality that you get in a remodeling focused product.

The reason for this is simple. A remodeling customer is only buying windows. They’re specifically looking at the windows. They’re unhappy if something is wrong with the windows. That’s why a remodeling focused company has to produce higher quality products. A new construction focused company can get away with selling cheaper lower quality products so that’s what they do.

So, how should I decide who to work with?

The window business is challenging, that’s for sure. Every company says they’re the best and they all say that everyone else is horrible. It can feel difficult to navigate, but luckily it’s really not that hard.

I always suggest starting with a company with a good reputation and a solid track record. Then listed to what they have to suggest. Ask any questions about it, ask about options both more expensive and less expensive. When you feel like they’re offering a reasonable value that fits your needs you should buy it.

It is not a good idea to fall in love with a window brand before yo’ve found someone to install them. That said, you can find the best window reviews on the internet right here.

To try to help in that regard we’ve compiled a list of great companies all over the country. We may not know anyone in your neighborhood yet but it doesn’t’ hurt to ask. You can find our list of the best replacement window companies right here.

Preservation Window Complaints – Is something wrong?

Preservation windows were designed by very savvy marketing folks. They’re intended to be sold by some of the highest priced replacement window companies in the country. They’re produced by one of the largest replacement window manufacturers in the country too. So why might you find Preservation window complaints online? The answer is pretty simple, mostly.

The cause is similar to some of the other manufacturers we’ve discussed. A common thread in Preservation window complaints has to do with the pricing. The sales tactics used by some of the door to door type salespeople can leave a lot to be desired.

This product line was developed by Associated Materials with the specific intention of being sold through the highest priced dealers around. Typically they’ll only offer them through one dealer in each city. Limited distribution is usually not great for customers but it might have an upside or two. Now if you’re a window dealer and you’re trying to sell products for a premium price this could be a good thing. If you’re buying windows it might not be so great.

A window contractor selling high priced windows will have his work cut out for him. He’ll typically need to tell some fancy stories. He’ll also often be a little tricky with the pricing to get people to buy. This isn’t unique to the window industry or to Preservation windows. It’s just a fact.

When you give customers tricky pricing and sales claims you’re likely to make some people unhappy. That’ll lead to Preservation window complaints.

Are Preservation windows good enough to justify the price?

This one is a little tricky as each individual dealer or contractor will set the retail pricing. It’s always possible that someone could offer a fair deal but you’ll usually see higher prices than might be warranted.

In general Preservation windows do use some higher end components. They’ll have things like upgraded balance mechanisms and non-metallic spacers in the insulated glass units. You might hear about fiberglass reinforcement or a sloped sill. Unfortunately for them it’s perfectly possible to find the same type of higher end components in most cost effective windows. As an example, my company tends to offer a much better value for very similar products. So, I know it can be done.

You can find more information on Preservation windows including info on the price, warranty and cost on our Preservation window review post right here.

Are Preservation windows good quality windows?

Sure, they’re perfectly nice but really not that remarkable. For example, according to the manufacturers data a Preservation double hung window has an air infiltration rate of 0.10 which is around 2.5x higher than another popular model made by the same parent company that my company offers.

They’ll also use thicker frames that block a little more light than other models. For some people this is a big deal, others don’t care too much.

The brochures, iPad demos and all marketing information for Preservation really are top notch. They do a great job of presenting the products and trying to justify the prices. In my mind they’re often not the best value around. They’re not a product I would buy for my house but different people make different choices.

Are Preservation window dealers all bad?

Defininltey not. I’ve known several of them over the years. There are perfectly nice companies offering Preservation windows. There are also not so great companies using the limited distribution of this product line to charge a premium price. For example there’s one Preservation window dealer in the Pacific Northwest that I’d suggest staying away from based on his interaction with my company over the years but that’s a story for another day.

So, how should I decide who to work with?

The window business is challenging, that’s for sure. Every company says they’re the best and they all say that everyone else is horrible. It can feel difficult to navigate, but luckily it’s really not that hard.

I always suggest starting with a company with a good reputation and a solid track record. Then listed to what they have to suggest. Ask any questions about it, ask about options both more expensive and less expensive. When you feel like they’re offering a reasonable value that fits your needs you should buy it.

It is not a good idea to fall in love with a window brand before yo’ve found someone to install them. That said, you can find the best window reviews on the internet right here.

To try to help in that regard we’ve compiled a list of great companies all over the country. We may not know anyone in your neighborhood yet but it doesn’t’ hurt to ask. You can find our list of the best replacement window companies right here.

Sunrise Window Complaints – Is there a problem here?

If you’ve received a quote for Sunrise windows and done some googling you may find Sunrise window complaints. Is that a sign of a problem that you should be aware of?

First, I’d say it’s important to be aware that you can find complaints about anything on the internet. That may be one of the joys of living in the 21st century. Someone hates everything and they’re happy to tell you all about it. Sunrise window complaints aren’t any different.

They are known for their sales training which can cause problems.

Sunrise windows does have a reputation in the industry for offering very in-depth sales training. This could be training from the manufacturer for the dealers or for the dealers from outside consultants.

Either way, you can sometimes find Sunrise window salespeople making claims that are a little on the creative side. The folks selling Sunrise windows are often paid 100% commission (this is not unusual in the window business) so they’re very focused on getting an order. They may tell you all about Cardinal glass or upgraded balances or full frame installation or super special foam insulation.

If they get you to sign on the dotted line they likely make 10% or more of the contract price in commission. If they don’t they get nothing.

You can probably see how this would lead to someone doing anything they can to get an order. I’m not saying Sunrise windows teaches this directly. On average I do think their dealers are going to be on the aggressive side. That sales pressure can lead to Sunrise window complaints.

Is this unique to Sunrise windows?

No. You’ll find a similar situation with most in-home window salespeople. That’s why we write about common window sales tactics here in one of the most popular sections of the website.

While this isn’t unique to Sunrise windows you may find it happening in a larger percentage of the total customer interactions with Sunrise salespeople than many other manufacturers because of their focus on sales.

We’ve written about a similar phenomena with Renewal by Andersen complaints and while I’m throwing out links you can find our Sunrise window reviews here.

Does this mean you can’t get a good deal on Sunrise windows?

Absolutely not. I’m sure there are dealers out there offering perfectly fine deals on Sunrise windows every day. We know some of them and recommend them on our site. Their windows are perfectly fine, the challenge can be finding a good dealer.

I do think you’d find that the average selling price of Sunrise windows nationally might be higher than other brands and I don’t know that there’s anything special about them to justify that cost. I’m sure their salespeople will be happy to disagree, but that’s my opinion.

The average would be higher because some companies out there are really marking up their prices and using their fancy sales skills to try to justify the additional cost. Is a company doing that offering the best deal to you? Probably not.

So, how should I decide who to work with?

The window business is challenging, that’s for sure. Every company says they’re the best and they all say that everyone else is horrible. It can feel difficult to navigate, but luckily it’s really not that hard.

I always suggest starting with a company with a good reputation and a solid track record. Then listed to what they have to suggest. Ask any questions about it, ask about options both more expensive and less expensive. When you feel like they’re offering a reasonable value that fits your needs you should buy it.

To try to help in that regard we’ve compiled a list of great companies all over the country. We may not know anyone in your neighborhood yet but it doesn’t’ hurt to ask. You can find our list of the best replacement window companies right here.

Renewal by Andersen Complaints – What’s going on?

If you’ve been shopping for replacement windows you may have come across Renewal by Andersen. Their ads can be all over the place and everyone has heard of the Andersen windows brand. You may have also come across Renewal by Andersen complaints and that’s not too usual.

There are a few reasons any larger window company will have occasional complaints. We’re written about Alside window complaints and Simonton window complaints before. Some of the factors discussed there definitely apply to Andersen too.

You will find that Renewal by Andersen complaints are often a little different for a couple reasons.

First, they’re very expensive and very tricky with the pricing

When you read feedback from folks who have received a quote for Renewal by Andersen windows a very common thread will be that they used very tricky pricing strategies. They often will use an iPad that will show you a price.

The first price will be very high. If you buy it they’ll gladly take your money. If you don’t they flip the iPad around, work some magic, then flip it back with a lower price.

Don’t buy that and the iPad will keep flipping around and the price will keep going down. It’s like magic.

Of course it’s not 1970 so basically no products are sold like this anymore except for home improvement products. It’s weird and it makes people unhappy.

Don’t believe me? Check out comments on the Renewal by Andersen review page we wrote a while back. The comments there, especially the comments from Renewal by Andersen salespeople and people who have received quotes, are my absolute favorite part of the site.

Does tricky pricing mean the windows are bad?

Not necessarily, but it might be a warning sign. I should say I think the Renewal by Andersen windows are perfectly nice products. There’s nothing inherently wrong with them and they look beautiful.

Notice, the issue that most commonly causes Renewal by Andersen complaints is not the products or the installation. It’s the sales process. If this sales process makes people unhappy you would have to wonder why they do it. That’s the question.

Why would a company use a sales process that makes customers unhappy?

Of course they don’t tell me why they do things so all I can do is make an educated guess. I think it’s because they know many people wouldn’t buy the windows if they were clear about the prices.

It seems to me that the only reason a company would use a sales process like that is because they know that without it people wouldn’t buy. Then you’d think, why wouldn’t people buy if the pricing was more clear? The only answer I can think of is that they’re not a very good deal. People are smart. People don’t buy bad deals. Unless they’re really talked into it.

So, the fact that they seem to use this sales strategy all over the country tells me that they know they don’t offer a very good value. They need to show you some crazy price like $100k for new windows so you can flip out, then they can lower the price to $70k and then the super special price of $50k seems a lot more reasonable.

If they had started at $50k you would have thought that was ridiculous and then they’d have nowhere to go, they’d loose the sale and their commission salesperson would be going hungry that night.

Should you buy Renewal by Andersen windows?

That’s totally up to you of course. I tend to think they’re pretty overpriced for what you get but different people value all sorts of things differently. I think they’d only make sense in a very fancy house.

Even then I tend to think I’d pick real wood windows over imitation wood windows for a very fancy house. So, they take a certain level of house fanciness. Fancy enough to justify windows that might cost $2,000 each, but not too fancy for imitation wood.

Obviously lots of people buy them and if lots of people weren’t happy they’d probably change their strategy so there’s no reason to think there’s any issue with the products themselves. The sales process seems to be the biggest problem most people have. If you can stomach that you’ll probably get perfectly fine windows.

So, how should I decide who to work with?

The window business is challenging, that’s for sure. Every company says they’re the best and they all say that everyone else is horrible. It can feel difficult to navigate, but luckily it’s really not that hard.

I always suggest starting with a company with a good reputation and a solid track record. Then listed to what they have to suggest. Ask any questions about it, ask about options both more expensive and less expensive. When you feel like they’re offering a reasonable value that fits your needs you should buy it.

To try to help in that regard we’ve compiled a list of great companies all over the country. We may not know anyone in your neighborhood yet but it doesn’t’ hurt to ask. You can find our list of the best replacement window companies right here.

Simonton Window Complaints – Do they have more unhappy customers?

I talk to a lot of people about windows. Probably too many, but that’s a story for another day. Today is a story about a reader who asked me about Simonton window complaints.

The reader was from Florida where my company doesn’t currently offer windows so I wasn’t trying to sell anything. I was just trying to be helpful. She had read some Simonton window complaints online and was concerned that she would be unhappy if she ordered Simonton windows.

As an aside, I did recently write another post about Alside window complains where we talked about how the end user of the window typically don’t know a lot about windows and will often assign the blame for an issue in the wrong place. I won’t repeat that topic, but you can find that post here.

There are several factors to consider when opinions from folks online, whether they’re “experts” or customers. One is that you can find someone in the world who is unhappy with anything. They could be giving out free Rolls Royce’s and someone would write “one star, too comfortable”. There is someone out there who really will complain about anything. Have you seen the complaints that people write about national parks? They’re hilarious.

The important factor to keep in mind is scale.

You see Simonton is a pretty big window manufacturer. They make millions of windows and probably have millions of customers. Some percentage of customers will be less than pleased with any product. That’s not unusual and it’s not very important.

Think about it this way. If Company A has 1,000,000 customers and has 100 window complaints online they have an unhappiness rate of 0.01%. You could read 100 negative reviews and think it’s bad, but I think we’d all call an unhappiness rate of 0.01% pretty good.

If Company B has 200,000 customers and has 40 window complaints they would have less than half as many window complaints online. You might be a casual googler and think that you find much less negativity about Company B so they must be better. You see less than half as many unhappy people so it would be easy to assume that Company B is better.

You don’t realize that they’re 1/5 the size.

In fact, company B has an unhappiness rate of 0.02%. That means they have twice as many unhappy customers as a percentage of the total. That is much worse, but it looks better when you’re googling. It’s tricky to navigate.

If you were to hire Company B you’d be twice as likely to be unhappy about something at the end of your project, but you’d have no way of knowing that at the beginning.

The moral of the story is that it can be very easy for a small manufacturer to look great online. That doesn’t mean they’re actually great.

Should I work with a larger company or a smaller company?

When thinking about window manufacturers I always suggest working with larger and more well established companies. I don’t recommend Simonton windows too frequently but they are an example of a large brand that has been around for a long time and likely will be around for many years to come. Even if you read some Simonton window complaints it doesn’t’ mean they’re making a bad product. It just means they’re large.

It’s very easy for small manufacturers to pop on the scene, sign up a handful of dealers, get them to write great feedback online and the window manufacturer looks great. Then they hit a financial challenge for one reason or another, they don’t have any resources and they close their doors.

Unfortunately this happens all the time and it leaves people who thought they were buying windows from a very well respected manufacturer completely out of luck with no warranty or access to replacement parts. When you see people complaining that a lifetime warranty isn’t really lifetime this is usually the cause. If the company goes belly up you have no warranty.

So, how should I decide who to work with?

The window business is challenging, that’s for sure. Every company says they’re the best and they all say that everyone else is horrible. It can feel difficult to navigate, but luckily it’s really not that hard.

I always suggest starting with a company with a good reputation and a solid track record. Then listed to what they have to suggest. Ask any questions about it, ask about options both more expensive and less expensive. When you feel like they’re offering a reasonable value that fits your needs you should buy it.

To try to help in that regard we’ve compiled a list of great companies all over the country. We may not know anyone in your neighborhood yet but it doesn’t’ hurt to ask. You can find our list of the best replacement window companies right here.

Alside Window Complaints – What causes unhappy customers?

Recently I was talking with a reader from the site who was considering Alside windows. They asked me why they were finding Alside window complaints online and that is a question I’ve heard before. That makes it perfect for a new post on the site!

There are a couple of important factors to consider when reading about windows online. We’ll get into one of them right here.

People writing window reviews usually don’t know what they’re talking about

This definitely applies to the “experts” as well as the customers. Many years ago I worked in window manufacturing for Alside and after that I did window warranty inspections for a little bit. Basically when there was enough of a problem that nobody could figure out they’d send me out to go to the house, meet with the homeowner and check out the windows.

I was the representative from the manufacturer who was there to figure out the problem. The customer was mad, the window wasn’t working right and I was there to save the day. It didn’t always go well. Here’s a great example.

The customer was in Virginia and she had a picture window that was leaking. The contractor who had installed it was telling her that he couldn’t figure it out and it must be a defective window.

The homeowner loved the contractor. He was a nice guy, he showed up on time and lived in the neighborhood. In the customer’s eyes it was defininltey not the contractors fault. She was sure it was a defective window and I was the jerk from the manufacturer. She definitely had Alside window complaints.

When I pulled up at the house I could see the problem from the driveway. The picture window was installed sideways and the weep holes were on the side rather than the bottom.

Alside window complaints, warranty and leaks
If you have a window with a blocked (or misplaced) weep hole you’d see water on the bottom of the sill, just like this.

Now, if you’re not a window guru, the weep holes go on the bottom of a window to let any water that gets inside the frame drain to the outside. If you see weep holes on the side of a window, the window is sideways in the opening. It’s not able to drain water and it would be very likely to leak.

So, at this point I haven’t even gotten out of my car and I can see why the window is leaking. The homeowner, who had yelled at me earlier in the day when I called to confirm the appointment, was standing in the doorway with a very unhappy look on her face.

Problem solved right? Not quite.

At this point I know what’s wrong with the window but I can’t necessarily tell the customer. The problem now was that the contractor who had installed the window, and who the customer loved, was a long time wholesale account for us.

He had bought windows from us for years and he bought lots of them. I didn’t want to throw him under the bus in front of this customer. Besides that she already loved him and hated me, as a representative of the manufacturer. Trying to blame him likely wouldn’t have worked anyway.

Instead, I looked over the window inside and out, took some measurements and told her I’d send a service rep out to take care of it.

I told the service technician to go install new weep holes in the bottom and I never heard back from the customer.

Why was the window sideways?

The window was sideways because contractors don’t always see the big picture. I talked with the contractor about it afterwards. He told me the opening was over the max height for that style of window but not over the max width. Since it was just a picture window that didn’t open he figured he could order it with the dimensions reversed and it would still fit right into the opening.

That’s why the weep holes were on the side, the contractor had ordered the window sideways on purpose. He installed it sideways and then acted like he didn’t know why it was leaking.

There was never anything wrong with the window, the manufacturing had not caused any problem at all. The contractor made a dumb decision but the homeowner didn’t understand what was going on.

I’m sure if you tracked down that lady today she’d still tell you how horrible Alside windows are. That was 15 years ago. The problem she experienced had absolutely nothing to do with the window and she had no idea. Basically she had Alside window complaints when she should have had contractor complaints.

What’s the lesson here?

I think the moral of this story is that sometimes people don’t have a great experience with windows. That’s true. They also are typically very bad at understanding what the problem actually is. People aren’t window experts. They know they have a problem and they know they’re mad about their problem They just don’t necessarily know what is causing their problem.

There are all sorts of questionable window installers out there. Some who seem questionable and some who seem great. Alside windows are very widely distributed. They sell over a million windows per year through all sorts of contractors.

If you see Alside window complaints I do think it’s important to keep in mind that the customer may be complaining about Alside windows but more often than not the problem is the installer.

This is why my company uses a different process than most for installing windows but that’s a story for another day.

Is it always the window installer’s fault?

Nope. It’s certainly possible for a product to have a manufacturing defect. If that were to happen the contractor who you purchased the window from would be the best person to help get the issue resolved. They can get any new parts ordered up and installed. In my experience that’s pretty easy with Alside or any other manufacturer.

Why do I hear about a lot of window warranty complaints?

Good question. We’ll have a new post on that topic coming soon. For now, the short answer is that people don’t understand warrants, salesman misrepresent warranties and a bad installation is often not covered by a warranty.

Stay tuned.

For now you can find information on the best local window companies in your area right here. That’s the best place to start when you’re thinking about new windows for your house.