Replacement Window Reviews

replacement bay and bow window reviews

While we’re getting started around here we’ll be posting in depth window reviews on a wide range of replacement windows.  We’ll be covering a range of manufacturers and we’ll focus on concrete quantitative information rather than more qualitative fluff you’ll find on most sites.

We’ll also provide feedback on marketing and sales strategies used by some of these companies where we think it will be useful information.

best replacement windows of 2015

It will probably take a little time to get to all of the window reviews, but here are the products we’ll be focusing on first in no particular order:

replacement bay and bow window reviews
This is a beautiful bow window with fantastic window ratings

Many of these manufacturers offer several models so we’ll try to get to as many of them as we can.  We hope you’ll find this info to be useful and please do let us know if there are any other models you’d like to see reviewed.

If you think we missed anything or didn’t give a particular product a fair shake just post a comment, be sure to mention the specific window reviews you’re concerned with and we’ll respond asap.

As you’re sorting through all of this it’s also important to remember that selecting great windows is only half the battle.  Finding a reputable installation company is just as important to the overall success of the project.  For some inside info on that front see our post on Angie’s List From a Contractor’s Perspective.

If you’re looking for a window company right now, the best advice we have is to join Angie’s List.  For just a couple bucks you can get a 1-month membership and it’ll be worth much more than a caramel macchiato in the long run.  You can find the best pricing for Angie’s List on the internet right here

If you’re already a member of Angie’s List or if you’re just not going to join (despite my ringing endorsement), you can find our suggestions for the best companies in your area right here.

Update: We now have more recommend LOCAL window companies than ever before.   Click here to see who we recommend in your town.  It's 100% free.  You'll thank me.  There is no better resource; you're going to love it.  See for yourself right here.  

433 thoughts on “Replacement Window Reviews”

  1. Good website! I truly love how it is simple on my eyes and the data are well written. I am wondering how I might be notified when a new post has been made. I’ve subscribed to your RSS which must do the trick! Have a great day!

    1. Have you heard of Don Young Windows? They are a manufacturer of thermally broken aluminum and vinyl replacement windows in Dallas. They primarily serve the Texas market.

      1. I bought a home in mobile, al. It has Don young windows .60 u factor, bad condensation. Heavy, cheap locks, i would not recommend thrm. Clear glass and no low e. Windows purchased 2007. Homeowner shared receipt and paid for mid grade window price range for these.

        1. All windows leak if installed wrong. Modern, hight-tech replacement windows are NOT a DIY product. Anderson, like ANY other similar mid-grade commodity window will leak if your not a practiced professional at installation.

          1. I don’t know if the install is the major cause for a window seal failure, but it’s definitely true that there’s no reason to think Andersen windows would have a lower seal failure rate than other models. I would think if they had that data they’d be showing it to everyone who would listen.

      1. I would highly recommend not going with home depot or lowes. I found their prices were high for the low quality of the windows. You want a company that has a quality product so you don’t have to buy windows for a long time. I found that this company had great staff which was knowledgeable and the windows seem very well made. I’ve had them for about a year and they are very durable.

          1. Recently purchased and had seven Joyce windows installed. They looked great for the first month but now I’m starting to notice the vinyl is changing colors. I was able to wipe off some of the black discoloration but not completely. The double hung pane windows were really affordable with all the bells and whistles (tinted glass, noise reduction etc., I’ve contacted my installer and am really hoping this issue can be resolved. My installer is and was great so I blame this on the manufacturer. I hope this helps someone prior to purchasing from this brand.

  2. Would love to read a review on the Eco Smart windows manufactured by Great Lakes Windows. My wife and I are trying to make a decision between this brand and Soft lite’s Element’s.

    1. We think both companies make fine products, but as with all manufacturers it’s important to make sure you’re clear on exactly what the local dealer is proposing. There are MANY options and you DO NOT need to be an expert to compare them. Just look at the ratings. I’d suggest comparing the NFRC ratings for U-Facotr, SHGC, VT and Air Infiltration. We offer explanations of what these window ratings mean here.

      Once you’re clear on the difference in ratings, then I’d say look for any aesthetic differences that you like or don’t like. Once you’re clear on those, take a look at the cost difference and decide if the one you like best is worth the difference in cost. It may be less expensive or about the same price which makes your decision easy.

      Remember that the one with the absolute best ratings (probably the Elements in this case) might not be worth the price difference. For example, would I suggest paying $1000 more for a 0.02 difference in air infiltration? Absolutely not.

      We see folks get all stuck in the weeds on these decisions all the time. Don’t be that person. Just look at the easily quantifiable differences (the ratings) then look at the less quantifiable differences (the look) then look at the price. Remember, things that contribute to efficiency like foam filled frames or “special” glass options don’t matter one bit if they don’t affect the ratings. If you focus on quantifiable, non-quantifiable and price you’ll be all set. It can be easy if you let it be easy!

        1. Hi Brian, there are so many small installers out there that it’ll take us quite a while to cover them all. I tend to recommend working with larger manufacturers as they’re more likely to be around for the long haul. What did you like or not like about the options you saw?

          1. Looking to replace 20 windows and I am trying to determine the best double hung two pane window to go with. It is between the Mezzo ClimaTech Elite and the Vytex Fortis 5200 Series.

            Any insights would be helpful.

          2. I’d probably pick the Mezzo as I like working with larger manufacturers. The Climatech Elite might make sense based on your location, but it might be overkill. I see companies offering suggestions about efficiency like that which don’t make sense a lot of the time. Have you picked a winner yet?

      1. Ant advice on Ellison replacement windows?? We found a reputable installer but can’t find any reviews on these windows??

      2. I am interested in a review of Fiberframe Comfort Line fiberglass Casement windows out of Ohio.

        Very few reviews. They are also recommended by some of the replacement window firms you recommend.

        I would appreciate any information you could provide.

        1. Same technology as Marvin Integrity/Infinity/Essance windows. Fiberglass is COLD. Cold = mold. But Comfortline offers lots of options and is less maintenence thsn Clad wood. I would choose them over Marvin. (I have sold & serviced both).

          1. Cold = Mold? I love a rhyme. More likely the worse the condensation resistance rating the more likely you might be to get mold. Make it quantitive and it’s easy to compare options.

    2. Hi there! Did you end up purchasing Ecosmart windows? My husband and I are trying to decide if it’s worth the cost and finding reviews specific to this window is difficult!any feedback would be much appreciated!


    3. I. Live in Bradenton, Florida and looking for hurricane impact & energy efficient windows to replace old windows total of 10 windows.

      I have had two companies one said Simonton 300ul, hurricane impact resistant to, double pane insulated glass argon gas & low E. All windows energy star. He said I. Could have PGT same price.

      The other company said CWS-class A impact glass, solar max, DBL pane argon gas.
      I wasn’t given model name & not sure if CWS is a manufacturer since not in your list.

      Please can you help me I have no one else to ask so greatly appreciated.

    1. We don’t install Harvey windows, but I used to compete with them back when I worked for a window manufacturer. They’re generally regarded as a pretty solid product and they have a great reputation in New England.

        1. I wasn’t too impressed with them back when I worked in Boston, but they do sell a lot of windows.

  3. I am about to put my house on the market and need to replace a double window and 3 singles. They are all single hung double pane vinyl. Unfortunately my house was built during the 2002 boom and the windows are pretty substandard. While I don’t want to spend a great deal of money I would like to get a decent product but am a loss as to which line to choose. Can you help me?
    Thanks in advance!

    1. Well, you can read through the reviews to get an idea of the options, but you might not care all that much. We work with folks who are selling their house all the time and we find they’re typically most concerned with getting a good price and a hassle-free experience.

      I’d suggest signing up for Angie’s List (you can do a 1 month subscription for only a couple bucks). On the site you can see local companies and in the reviews you’ll see the prices that the customers paid. That should give you a real idea of what companies are charging and how they handle the projects.

      I’d say you could probably find nice options in the $300 per window range including installation and all other costs, but it will depend on what you pick. If you’re interested you can get discounts on Angie’s List here. I can guarantee you that you’ll save more on the project than the cost of the membership and you’ll have a better idea of what you’re getting yourself into.

    2. I’m looking to get 15 gentek signature elite 6000 series double hung Windows installed. what are your thoughts on theses or can you recommend something better around the same price. thanks in advance.

      1. Hi Mike, I like that model. It’s one we’re starting to carry through our company too. What’s your zip code? I might be able to help out with an option or two.

  4. This is a very helpful site, as wading through the replacement window maze can be disconcerting to say the least. I want a real wood or high grade vinyl laminate to match my interior trim. By any chance do you have an opinion on the following window manufacturers/product lines?
    Provia (Aeris WX-1000 vs. VT800)
    Polaris ( UltraWeld vs. Thermalweld)
    Vinylmax (Sherwood)

  5. This is a great website. We are replacing 14 double hung windows and 2 sliders. We have 3 comparison that are greatly differnt in price. Energy View Windows offering Alside Mezzo energy plus at $12,700, Lane House Construction offering Heritage Ultra 6000 series $9,971 and NuView offering Vinylmax Hallmark at $7,591. We believe they all are 2015 compliance. This industry really makes it hard to compare. any help is appreciated.

    1. We’re glad to hear you’re enjoying the site. Unfortunately I may not be much help with your specific question. It’s been a long time since I’ve been involved in the window business in St Louis. You might check for past complaints on the BBB. One of those companies has a decent number of complaints in the past 3 years. I think Heritage Ultra 6000 is a private label product. If they’ll tell you what the manufacturer and model number is you can get a better idea of what you’re looking at.

      Beyond that, VinylMax doesn’t have the greatest reputation in the world. You might be well served by getting a few more quotes. Maybe check Angie’s List for some recommendations on local companies. This can get you going in the right direction. I know it costs a couple bucks, but you’re talking about a $10k purchase. Spending $20 to have a better idea of what you’re getting yourself into will likely be money well spent.

      Be sure to let us know how it goes.

  6. Hi have you heard of Energex windows by affinity, a deceuninck product? They have an Advantage and Elite model. The sales rep said they come with a lifetime warranty on breakage and labor.

  7. Your website is a great resource.
    We are considering Zen Windows but I don’t see any reviews for them. Do you have any input on their windows/service?

      1. Wow. Fast reply 🙂
        I inquired and they sent me an email with an attachment which looks like a 17 page brochure but I can’t attach that here so these are the highlights:
        They offer 3 types of windows :
        Lotus (a triple pane) ratings:air-0.06 cfm @ 25 mph, R40 /48 mph-8″ rain per hour & DP40
        Nirvana (double pane) air-0.07 cfm @ 25 mph, R45 /51 mph-8″ rain per hour & DP40
        Karma (double pane) air-0.07 @25mph, R35/45 moh-8″ rain & DP 35
        All have a comprehensive transferrable warranty, Low E & argon gas.
        On Groupon they have a “deal” with each window $465 but it doesn’t say which type etc.
        Thanks for any input.

        1. Sounds like a private label brochure. Nothing at all remarkable about those ratings and the R number doesn’t make any sense. I would start by asking them who makes the windows and what the real model names are. Zen Windows is not a manufacturer. It would be a warning sign if they won’t tell you, but from what we’ve seen they tend to have a reputation for being pretty straightforward.

      2. I also received a quote from Zen Windows. Here is a link to the brochure:
        Have you received any more information on the windows they offer?

        1. The posting on Zen windows, thought Id let you know that the
          Zen window dealer in Denver is using Softlite windows for his quotes.

          1. That’s interesting. Last we heard they were using Thermal Industries windows, but that was a while back. Thanks for the feedback!

          2. Hi Brian,

            Jumping in on this now since I just saw the post. I’m the owner of Zen Windows in Central PA and Pittsburgh and yes, we do private label Soft-Lite windows at all of our locations.


  8. Have you had a chance to review any of the Vista windows? I have a quote for the Vista Panorama at about $285 each.