Vista Window Company Closes Their Doors

Unfortunately another smaller window manufacturer has closed their doors for good.  It looks like Vista Window Company is gone.  Their voicemail says they closed due to unforeseen circumstances and their google listing says they’re closed for good.  We always hate to see a company struggle.  Unfortunately, I think it’s going to continue to get more difficult for smaller window companies to compete.

vista windows bankruptcy
Vista Window Company closed their doors on January 14th 2019.

What happens with the Vista Windows Warranty?

We’ve reached out to Vista Window Company and asked about the status of any pending orders and if there is any process for warranty claims as I’m sure our readers will be asking.

Right now, I would guess that there is no warranty and owners of these windows may be out of luck.  If we hear back with any info I’ll update this page right away.

What about pending orders for Vista Windows?

If you have an order pending for Vista windows I’d reach out to your contractor or dealer right away to make sure they can offer you something else.  Most reputable contractors will have credit terms established with manufacturers so they likely haven’t actually paid for your windows.  That means the contractor still has any deposit you’ve given them and you can (hopefully) order something else.  If they tell you the deposit is spent you might want to check with an attorney as you’ll probably have a hard time getting that money back.

If you hear any info that is different than what we’re written here please let us know asap.  You can post a comment or contact us privately.  I’m sure many folks will have questions about the status of Vista Window Company so any info you have to share will be helpful.

What if I was about to order Vista Windows?

Consider yourself lucky!  It’s time to order something else.  I’d look towards larger manufacturers.  You never know what the future may hold for any company, but there are plenty of large and we’ll established companies out there.  There’s no need to take a gamble on a smaller player.

If/when we receive any new information on Vista Windows we’ll post it on this page so feel free to bookmark this page and check back for updates anytime.

If you’re still shopping for new windows a good first step is to check our list of great local companies.  You can also find our detailed window reviews here.  Have fun!

Kensington HPP Windows Reviews

Update:  The friendly folks at Kensington HPP have reached out to us with some new info about their company and it’s relationship to another company formerly known as Kensington Windows.  This post is an update to an earlier post I wrote about Kensington.  Everything you’ll read in this post is accurate as far as I know based on my conversations with the folks at Kensington HPP.

So, with that said, if a google search for Kensington Windows lead you to this page you’ll fall into one of two camps.

If you have Kensington Windows in your house and you’re looking for warranty or service information:

You’ll want to pay close attention to when the windows were manufactured.  There was another company, legally unrelated to the current company, that went out of business in 2008.  They don’t exist anymore and if you have warranty issue you’re likely out of luck.

If your windows were manufactured after that you’re likely in luck and you can contact Kensington HPP or the contractor that installed them for service issues.

If you’re shopping for new windows and a contractor recommended windows from Kensington HPP then you’re in better shape.  Here’s the scoop on that company.  

After the old Kensington Windows company went out of business in 2008 and the assets of that company and another window manufacturer called Republic Windows in Chicago were purchased by Serious Materials out of California in 2009.  They were trying to get into the window business on the cheap during the financial crisis.

I remember reading an article about their maneuvers with the financing and the unions back then thinking they sounded like a smart group of people.  Unfortunately that plan didn’t work out so well and Serious left the window business in 2013.

A group of the former executives from the old Kensington Windows got together and reopened a new company called Kensington HPP that now offers windows in most of the eastern half of the country.  If you’re wondering Kensington HPP stands for High Performance Products.

They took over operations from Serious in 2013 so they’re been around in their current form for 4 years or so as of this writing.  That certainly doesn’t make them the lowest tenured company around, but we all started out somewhere.  My company is about to turn 10 years old and when we had only been in business for 4 years we still offered great service.

The models offered by Kensington HPP are:

  • Quantum 2
  • Huntington
  • Williamsport
  • Kingston
  • Euro Tilt and Turn

At this point I don’t have enough info about their products to offer great reviews, but if they send the info I’ll be happy to publish more content.

They are also the only vinyl window manufacturer in the country that uses heat mirror technology.  This is a 3 pane sealed unit with the center pane being a plastic material instead of glass.  I’ve heard of some rather high prices for Heat Mirror products.  To decide if it’s right for you be sure to get past the sales jargon and compare the efficiency ratings vs the cost.  You should be able to tell rather easily if the increase in efficiency is worth the increase in cost.

If I hear about any new info from the folks at Kensington HPP I’ll be happy to post it and if you have any experience with their company or their products feel free to post a comment for everyone to see.

BF Rich Windows Out of Business!

You heard it here first, BF Rich windows will cease operations immediately. They informed their customers and employees earlier this week that they will be closing their doors for good. We received this tip several days ago and waited to verify the information before publishing. It is certainly unfortunate news.

BF Rich Replacement Windows Reviews

As a business owner myself it’s not easy to talk about any company going out of business.  Their employees, suppliers and customers will surely be negatively impacted. The biggest challenge here will be for their customers with pending orders and their past customers whose warranties will likely be useless.

Folks bought these windows with the expectation of a lifetime warranty and they will likely not receive that benefit. Even worse, there may be folks with pending orders that can’t be filled.

We haven’t heard any news about how pending orders or future warranty claims will be handled. We’ll update this post with additional info if and when we receive it.

BF Rich was founded in 1957 and currently employs approximately 130 people in their window manufacturing facility in Delaware. They have a very long history in the industry. I know one of our installers in the area was a huge fan of their products and was frequently trying to get us to carry them in our retail stores.

Remember when folks ask us for recommendations of replacement windows we often talk about the risks associated with working with a small manufacturing company. Just in the last several years we’ve seen Gorell, Republic, Schuco, Kensington, Serious and BF Rich windows close their doors for good.

These companies often have great brochures and convincing salespeople. Unfortunately, they can’t help you when an issue like this arises.

Smaller window manufactures are faced with relatively high fixed costs in a very competitive business. When they’re faced with a slowdown in sales, the need to retool a plant or the expiration of certain credit facilities they can quickly find themselves in a bad situation with very few options.

I saw a comment from the VP of Sales at BF Rich windows saying that their troubles stemmed from the great recession of 2007. This likely means that they were unable to secure the financing they needed to maintain their business. In my experience most retail replacement window companies have fully recovered from the slowdown of that period.  That would mean their wholesale sales should have recovered, but there is probably more to the story.

Window manufacturers may still be feeling the effects do to the way their fixed costs, equipment and manufacturing facilities are financed. Many manufactures have also updated their product lines in recent years which is undoubtedly an expensive process. This means new designs, new tooling and much more. A company with limited financing options may not be able to make that investment in the business. That would cause them to have less competitive products, which would cause difficulty in attracting new customers and achieving much needed price increases.

It’s a shame to hear of a window manufacturer going out of business, but it’s likely to continue to happen. The industry is very fragmented and is undergoing a period of consolidation.

We’ll continue to report the industry news as we receive it and I’ll do my best to recommend products that are offered by companies that are likely to stand the test of time.

We thank the tipster who sent in this information and if you have any more info on this situation or anything else going on in the window industry please feel free to reach out to us at [email protected]