If you’re looking for Ply Gem windows reviews you’ve come to the right place. You may have seen that there are many window brands associated with Ply Gem. The branding can get a little confusing so we’ll start by explaining how all of these different window brands are connected.
First, as we get into the Ply Gem windows reviews you should know that Ply Gem is owned by Cornerstone Building Brands which is a holding company that owns many brands in the building products industry.
Several of the window brands owned by Conerstone are pretty popular. You’ll see some brands like Simonton, American Craftsman and Great Lakes are advertised as being “by Ply Gem”. Then there are other brands like Silver Line and Atrium that aren’t associated with Ply Gem in their branding. These brands are owned by the same company but not connected by their marketing.
Here you can see the differences in the logos. Ply Gem decided to co-brand the Simonton windows with Ply Gem. Interestingly they left the Ply Gem name off of the Atrium brand. I would guess that they left the Ply Gem name off of the lower end brands to avoid the association with cheaper products. It doesn’t seem like a coincidence that Atrium and Silver Line are the cheapest brands and they’re the only brands that aren’t co-branded with Ply Gem.
Why does Ply Gem make so many window brands?
Ply Gem distributes their windows in many channels and they tend to use different brand names for products sold in different ways. For example, Great Lakes windows are typically sold through old fashioned higher priced window dealers, American Craftsman windows are sold in retail stores like Home Depot.
They don’t want the low end brands like American Craftsman, which is known for selling some of the cheapest windows out there, to hurt the reputation of the higher end and much more expensive lines like Great Lakes or Simonton windows.
That strategy makes sense. The average window customer doesn’t really know anything about windows. Ply Gem knows people will complain about American Craftsman or Atrium windows since they’re not the best quality. By separating the brands the bad feedback on those cheap models doesn’t impact their nicer brands. They’re all made by Ply Gem, but the people complaining about American Craftsman might not know it.
Ply Gem Windows Reviews
In addition to all of the brands mentioned above, Ply Gem also makes windows under the Ply Gem brand and those are the models we’ll be reviewing on this page. You can also find reviews of the other Ply Gem brands on their own pages on this site (linked above).
New Construction windows:
- MIRA Series
- 200 Series
- 300 Series
- 400 Series
- Classic Series
- Ply Gem Select
Replacement windows from Ply Gem:
- Premium Series
- Pro Series
- 2000 Series
Is the Ply Gem window warranty any good?
When you look at the Ply Gem window warranty you’ll see that they have a lot of fine print. This is not a bid thing, win fact it’s better than the fluffy nonsense warranties that you see from tiny little manufacturers.
In looking at the replacement window warranty you will see some limitations that you don’t see from other manufacturers. For example, if their windows are installed more than 5000′ above sea level the lifetime warranty becomes 10 years on the vinyl frames. When installed above 7000′ there’s no warranty at all. That’s a little strange, but isn’t relevant if you don’t live up in the mountains.
Could it mean there’s something about the vinyl they use that makes it less durable? I suppose that’s possible, there must be some reason they have that unusual limitation.
There are some more interesting limitations and we’ll be writing a whole post on the Ply Gem window warranty soon.
What if I have more questions about Ply Gem windows?
We can help! Find our Ply Gem windows FAQ page here. If you don’t see the answer to your question post a comment and we’ll answer your question for everyone to see.
Looking for any additional information on Ply Gem windows that you’re not finding here? Post a comment and let us know. We’ll be glad to help out!
What’s the bottom line?
Readers of this site will know that I very frequently recommend working with larger manufacturers. Ply Gem is most defininltey a larger manufacturer so they have that going for them.
They make a wide range of windows from cheap models that are not very nice at all to some much nicer products designed for the remodeling market.
Ply Gem windows can be a decent choice, but some of the windows aren’t the greatest. If you find a good option installed by a good company you might be in great shape.
What should you do if you think I’m wrong about something?
Post a comment below and let us know. It’s always our goal to post accurate info along with our opinions and I’m interested in your opinion as well.
How can you find a great window company?
When shopping for windows I do always suggest finding a great installation company before you fall in love with any particular window model. There are plenty of great window options out there but not as many local companies that are great to work with.
To know which companies to avoid you can find common window sales tactics here. That’s become one of the most popular sections on the site.
Remember, for more great window company info you can find our suggestions for the best local companies in 2022 right here. There’s no need to work with a company that gives you the run-around or makes the process difficult. There are plenty of fish in the sea as they say. The best way to get started is to check out our list of great window companies here.
21 thoughts on “Ply Gem Windows Reviews”
is the builder contractor series 460 a decent quality window for the price?
Are you looking for a new construction window? I’d say that’s not going to be the best for a remodeling project, but new construction windows are a little different.
This is for a remodel
Sorry I should have read your response more carefully. This is for remodel. It’s recommended as a decent window for the price. If you think to the contrary, I’d love to know why you don’t recommend
What’s your zip code? There are different options available in different areas. I’ll be happy to help if I can.
PlyGem installed the windows in my home as a new construction in 2013. I have some problems with several of them but I am overwhelmed trying to find how to get them to fix them. Can you help?
Well, you’re probably not going to get any help with a new construction project from 9 years ago. Ply Gem would have manufactured them, but they didn’t install. I’d say first step would be to get a copy of the warranty that would have applied to your order from back in 2013. Assuming you don’t have that I’d call Ply Gem and try to get it. You can also check out their website as some companies keep copies of older warranties.
New construction projects tend to come with short warranties so any issues you’re having now may not be covered.
What are the problems you’re seeing with the Ply Gem windows?
We purchased our windows through Best Buy Windows and Doors in 2005 with a lifetime warranty (on the glass, not installation). One was replaced in 2011 due to a burglary. We have a large picture window that is filmy (assuming condensation) and the window that was replaced also looks terrible. I was told by Best Buy that I needed to go through Ply Gem for replacement. Filed a claim three months ago, have followed up with four emails and three phone calls. I have not gotten ANY response, even to say that we’re sorry this is taking so long. Nothing. I don’t know that I’ve ever been more frustrated and unimpressed with horrible customer service. No one cares. If I see some resolution I will be happy to update my review.
Hi Donna, have you talked with Best Buy Windows again? They may know someone at Ply Gem who can help, or at least get you some sort of update. I don’t deal with Ply Gem windows, but I would think they’d have a process for warranty claims where someone would be able to tell you the status. Let us know if you make any progress.
Thanks for your reply! Yes I have, twice. The first time was to find out what to do; they said to contact Ply Gem directly because the warranty is on the window (not the installation; of course they changed it to include installation a few months later!!). Sadly they “wished us luck” which was disconcerting to say the least. I called Best Buy again last week to see if they could help, and apparently they’re not on the best terms and said it wouldn’t help because of prior experience. I’m guessing it’s also because the warranty process needs to go directly to the manufacturer. I don’t think Best Buy uses Ply Gem any longer.
I’m seeing plenty of reviews that are almost identical to mine, so this doesn’t seem to be just my issue. They have responded to a few saying they’re overwhelmed with warranty claims. Okay…so fix it. At least respond to these poor customers who feel unseen and unheard and give them an update. At this point I am dubious that it’s going to be fixed at all. We spent over $20K, and I’m guessing if we fix this ourselves it will be a few thousand more.
Thanks again for your response. I’ll let you know if I get any resolution. I wrote the review because I don’t want anyone else to have to go through this.
That’s unfortunate. Ply Gem is a pretty big company so I would expect the warranty will be honored. It just might take a while. Their parent company is Cornerstone Building Brands which you can find online. I don’t know if you’d find anyone helpful there, but it might be worth a call or an email. If I were calling I’d be asking if they have a warranty contact who can provide a status update, and when I should call back if I haven’t heard anything.
Sometimes glass units, especially if they have tempered glass or any unusual options, can take a while lately. It’s possible the order is moving along and you just haven’t reached anyone who can confirm that. Hard to say, but I would expect it will get sorted out sooner or later.
I am going through the same problem. My window is fogging up in between the panes. I have talked to 7 people at Lowe’s. They all passed me off to someone else. They gave me phone numbers for Reliabilt. I called them and talked to someone who I gave the warranty number. She then gave me a number to call because my window had a labor and window warranty. I called that number. A lady answered. I started to tell her about my window fogging between panes. She hung up on me. I called again no one answered. I waited and called again. She answered this time. I started my story once again, she hung up on me again. I am contacting the better business bureau and filing a complaint. Next I will contact Consumer Protection. This is terrible how they treat their customers.
What is the best Ply Gem window for new construction?
Stay away from this company.
Hi Catherine, have you been able to reach the warranty folks at Ply Gem? They’re a pretty big company so I would assume they have a process to deal with seal failures. If it’s a double hung window that opens up and down it’s pretty easy to swap out the sash yourself. Maybe that would be easier than trying to deal with the labor for the warranty.
If you don’t make progress there I’d go into a Lowes store and talk to someone in the window department. Maybe they’ll have a warranty number. If they do I’d call right there in the store so you can ask them for any more info if you need it. Let us know how it goes, I’m sure you’re not the only one looking for that info.
Our home builder has switched window suppliers from Andersen to Ply-Gem & the Mira window line. The builder has told us it’s because the backorder time with Andersen is 2 years & they think the Ply-Gem Mira is comparable to what we first chose from Andersen, which was their Silverline Casement 100 Series. We are concerned about whether we’ll be getting a less than quality window with Ply-Gem as we had never heard of them. What is your opinion?
That’s probably not the reason they switched. Andersen used to make a lot of vinyl windows through several brands, but they sold those brands. One of those brands was Silverline so that used to be a product made by Andersen but now it’s made by Ply-Gem. Ply-Gem is a pretty large vinyl window manufacturer.
Anyway, Andersen doesn’t offer vinyl windows anymore, but Silverline used to be owned by Andersen and they are now owned by Ply Gem. I don’t think there’s much to worry about in terms of differences. As far as I’m aware they didn’t make changes to the products. Andersen just sold that brand to Ply Gem.
Ply Gem Windows are junk. Terrible design, terrible sash and guides. If you disengage the top of the window (which you have to do to remove the screen) the springs disengage and shoot to the top of the sash and break the corners out. Do not buy any style window from Ply Gem they are the worst windows I have ever installed.
1. Cost – You get what you pay for!
2. Standard sizes can be purchased at most building supply stores.
1. Made very cheap
2. Design of track for window and its hardware need to be redone. A loaded spring shooting to the top 3. of a sash track is unacceptable to injure and damage the window.
4. Lack of support from dealers and the manufacture
5. Exterior lip to seal is to small, very little room for stack tolerance issues during framing, if you framer is out by 1/8″ you will find yourself with a gap at the flange.
6. Pre Drilled holes are not drilled through or have so many burrs you have to spend 20 minutes a window cleaning them up before you mount the window.
7. Just not a quality window that will last 30 years.
Bottom line word of mouth is everything and in my opinion, do not buy these windows period.
Thanks for taking the time to write. Ply Gem certainly does make some very cheap windows that aren’t very nice. To be fair they also make some nicer product lines that should hold up much better.
I have a oblong shaped window, that the seals in the corners, are sticking out inside the panes. Can the fix this or does or can the window be replaced?
Hi Donna, it sounds like the insulated glass unit would need to be replaced at the least. Do you know what company sold and installed the windows? If so that would be the place to start. If not, you may be able to contact Ply Gem to see if they can help. Otherwise the only option would be to replace the windows. The contractor who sold and installed the windows will defininltey be the easiest place to start if you know who they are and if they still exist.