Here we find the BEST replacement windows in Austin, TX. We look at quality, warranty, prices, efficiency and more to find the best option available. With over 20 years of industry experience our industry experts can help make shopping for new windows easier than ever before.
#4 Simonton 5500 Reflections
The Simonton Reflections 5500 series comes in at number 4 on our list because it’s a decent option from a large manufacturer, but it falls short in a few key areas.
- Thicker frames block more light
- Coil balances
- Higher air infiltration rates
There are significant drawbacks to this model that prevent it from rating higher on our list. For example the thicker frames will block more light. That means you get less daylight from the same sized opening in your house when compared with other models.
These windows also use coil style or “constant force” balance mechanisms which don’t always operate as well as the upgraded type used by other window models on our list.
Finally, the air infiltration rates for these windows are higher than what you’ll find from some of the other options on our list. This means the windows will let in more air when closed and locked. Obviously that’s not ideal.
- Solid warranty
- Widely available
- Can qualify for tax credits
There are still plenty of reasons that this model lands on our list at all. For example the warranty on these Simonton windows is pretty solid and backed by a very large manufacturer.
This brand is also very widely available so you can find them offered by many companies. That means if you don’t like one installation company you can find another. That’s not the case with every product line. However, this can be a double edged sword. Sometimes companies offering these windows might not be window experts.
Unfortunately this can also mean that the companies installing these windows might not be window experts.
Finally, they do now offer efficiency packages that can qualify for the federal tax credits. Not every window can do that.
Find our full Simonton 5500 window review here.
#3 Alside Mezzo
The Alside Mezzo window is a popular option that can provide decent results for customers in Austin, TX. There are a few reasons that it doesn’t rank higher on our list.
- Cheaper constant force balances
- Offered by inexperienced companies
Mezzo means medium in Italian and it seems that Alside was trying to produce a medium grade window when they designed this product. It does have some things in common with the number one option in this list but there are a few factors keeping it at number 3 on our list.
For example, they used the cheaper hardware and components in the Mezzo model. To us that’s an example of the fact that they didn’t want this product to compete with other higher end window options.
Also, Alside windows are generally available to anyone who calls themselves a contractor which means they’re often not installed by window experts.
For example, long ago we did some warranty inspections for Alside and you wouldn’t believe the silly things we’d see in the field. It’s just a fact that these windows are often installed by independent installers or contractors. Think “Bob’s Windows, Siding, Roofing and Driveway Sealing”. Companies like this often don’t really know what they’re doing and it can be a real problem.
Find our full Alside Mezzo window review here.
#2 Renewal by Andersen
Readers of the site might be surprised that Renewal by Andersen would rank so high on our list of the best replacement windows in Austin. The truth is these are perfectly nice windows. They look great and they perform well. However, in our opinion, the downsides are real and should not be ignored.
- Higher prices
- Pushy sales tactics
- Limited warranty
The windows from Renewal by Andersen do look very nice and the Andersen name is familiar to many. The downsides to this product line, in our opinion, generally have more to do with the way they’re sold, and the prices that are charged.
Over the years we’ve heard from many readers who shared their experiences. With retail prices of $1,500 – $2,000 per window, or higher, it’s hard to see how these windows represent a very good value.
We also heard many stories about very high prices then extreme discounts if you buy today. This is basically never a good sign and it’s generally our advice to not reward companies who operate this way.
The warranty is decent and it is backed by a very large and stable company. That’s positive. There are some parts of the warranty that are shorter than you’ll see from other companies. That’s not necessarily bad, but it’s important to be aware of. For the price you pay for these windows you’d expect them to last basically forever but the warranty is not a lifetime warranty.
The products themselves are beautiful. The quality is solid and the installation is likely to be done well. If the look is the most important factor and the price doesn’t really matter this could be a decent choice. For most people we don’t think this is the best value around.
Find our full review of Renewal by Andersen windows here.
#1 Replacement window in Austin – Gentek Signature Elite
The Signature Elite window from Gentek tops our list of the best replacement windows in Austin, TX for a variety of reasons.
- Slim frames to maximize light
- Durable materials to stand up to the Austin weather
- Upgraded hardware and components for added durability
- Lifetime warranty from a large manufacturer
- Wide range of efficiency and tax credit options
- Wide range of interior and exterior color options
This is a product that we have substantial experience with and it is easy to recommend. The slim frames provide for more glass area in the same size opening when compared with many other options.
The upgraded block and tackle balances are tested to last 2.5 times longer than the mechanisms used by many other companies. This is a part that you can’t easily see and most people don’t really know what it does anyway. By using the upgraded hardware Gentek is telling you that they’re producing a product that is designed to last.
The warranty is another way you tell they expect this product to hold up well for a very long time. The windows come with a lifetime warranty that is good for as long as you own the house and it’s transferable when you sell the house. If you live in the house for 50 years that will turn into a very long warranty.
Importantly, the warranty is backed by a billion dollar nationwide manufacturing company that will presumably be around for the long haul. That’s not necessarily the case with many smaller manufacturers.
A wide range of available efficiency packages means you can can pick the option that makes sense for you. Whether you want to qualify for the federal window tax credits or you’re looking for a more basic option they’ll have a solution for you.
Finally, these windows are made with upgraded frames that can easily stand up to the heat and sun we have here in Austin.
Find our full review of the Gentek Signature Elite windows here.
The easiest way to buy replacement windows in Austin, TX
You can find these windows offered by Window Universe in Austin, TX. Quotes are available by email with no pushy salesperson. Pricing is itemized and a range of options are available. If you’re looking for replacement windows in Austin that’s the route I’d suggest.
At the very least you can get a quote by email to understand how the pricing works.
If you found this page, but you’re not in Austin you can find our list of recommended window companies all over the country here.
Vinyl windows vs fiberglass vs aluminum vs composite in Austin, TX
Is the weather too hot in Austin, TX for vinyl windows? Are composite windows better or are fiberglass windows the best? This is a question people ask all the time and we’re here to help you get to the bottom of it.
Here we’ll look at the advantages and disadvantages of different styles so you can make the best choice.
Fiberglass Windows Austin TX
If you’ve had a fiberglass window salesman in your house they’ve probably told you all sorts of things about these windows and about their competitors. Unfortunately some of what you’ve heard might not be exactly true.
Advantages of fiberglass
- Look very nice
Notice the list of advantages is pretty short. Fiberglass windows look great, very much like wood windows, but that’s where the advantages end.
- Not as efficient
- Shorter warranties
The list of disadvantages is a bit longer. Fiberglass windows tend to be a fair bit more expensive that some other options. They’ll often, but not always, have higher (worse) air infiltration rates meaning they’re not as efficient. They’ll also sometimes have shorter warranties than other types.
Are fiberglass windows stronger?
Maybe, but this claim is a trick. If we took all of the windows out of your house it wouldn’t fall down. The windows aren’t holding up the house so they only need to be so strong. Once they’re strong enough a stronger window doesn’t add any value.
That’s why we don’t all drive around in bulletproof cars. Sure, they’re stronger than a regular car, but the added strength doesn’t provide any extra value so we don’t spend the money on that strength. Does that make sense?
Composite windows Austin, TX
Composite windows are very similar to fiberglass in terms of the advantages and disadvantages. They can look great, but they’re more expensive, often less efficient and the warranties are sometimes shorter.
If the look is the only thing that matters and the cost and efficiency are irrelevant to you then maybe composite windows are a good choice for your project. For everyone else they don’t make a ton of sense.
Vinyl windows in Austin, TX
Vinyl windows are the most popular type for a variety of reasons. When you compare the options vinyl will make the most sense for most people and that’s why vinyl windows make up a huge percentage of the total market.
Advantages of vinyl windows
- More energy efficient
- Better warranties
- Best prices
- Best durability
A higher end vinyl window will tend to be more efficient that other materials with better air infiltration rates too. These windows will also very commonly come with lifetime transferable warranties meaning the windows are covered for as long as you own the house and then the next owner is covered too.
The pricing for vinyl windows is often about half of the price of other materials which is a nice bonus.
Are vinyl windows strong enough to stand up to the sun in Austin?
Yes. Higher end vinyl windows have been used in this climate for many years with thousands being installed every year. They perform great. If a competing salesperson has told you anything else that person has tried to mislead you.
These are the reasons vinyl windows make up the vast majority of the market. People routinely evaluate the options and come to the same conclusion. Vinyl windows make the most sense for most projects.
How can I find a great replacement window company in Austin, TX?
That part is easy. Check out Window Universe in Austin for online quotes, no hassle pricing and professional installation. You can also find our list of recommended window companies all over the country here.