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Old 01-16-2012, 05:17 PM   #1
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


My husband & I recently bought a home and are looking to install new doors (front & sliding) & windows. Neither one of us are physically able to install. We need good quality with reliable install. Any suggestions?

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Old 01-16-2012, 07:03 PM   #2
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


Neither.

Find a reputable local contractor. Ask for referrals at a local lumber yard for a real pro.

Those stores just hire subs who can't find their own work.

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Old 01-16-2012, 07:07 PM   #3
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


I agee 100%.
Time and time agin I've had to quote againt both of them. My prices where 1/2 as much as they had quoted.
And no I did not see there quote first and try and beat it.
A replacement window can be installed in 20 Min. max by a pro. A standard window (3 X 4" is only about $130.00 for materials) there going to charge you about 4 or 5 hundred dollars each.
Ask around, friends, people at church, local real building supply.
A replacement window is very DIY able and only needs very basic simple tools and could save you a bunch of money by doing it yourself.

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Old 01-16-2012, 08:14 PM   #4
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


Quote:
Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
I agee 100%.
Time and time agin I've had to quote againt both of them. My prices where 1/2 as much as they had quoted.
And no I did not see there quote first and try and beat it.
A replacement window can be installed in 20 Min. max by a pro. A standard window (3 X 4" is only about $130.00 for materials) there going to charge you about 4 or 5 hundred dollars each.
Ask around, friends, people at church, local real building supply.
A replacement window is very DIY able and only needs very basic simple tools and could save you a bunch of money by doing it yourself.
Joe,

I might be useful to qualify this statement. You are obviously not referring to what is more universally accepted as what folks want out of a window replacement. Most people want the exterior of the home capped/clad so as to eliminate/lessen the homeowners painting and maintenance duties.

That being said, 20 minutes does not even approach what is require in terms of time to properly remove, install, foam, and wrap a standard replacement window.

What Joe is referring to is removing the interior stop and setting the window from inside the home.

This is also assuming there is not rot, repairs, or that you don't snap the interior stops getting them off.

You might find a replacement window for $130-140 but that is not a window I would put in my home by any stretch. Having replaced hundreds of the big box store specials (Pella ThermaStars, Silverlines, etc) they are not permanent solutions for a window replacement.

The window industry is not different than any other industry. You get, within reason, what you pay for. You would not expect to pick up a Kia Rio and have it drive/perform like a Lexus.

That being said, I am not suggesting that you need to pay $900 to get a good vinyl window. I just think that $130 and 20 minutes of your time is probably not a fair representation of the real world either.
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Old 01-16-2012, 08:34 PM   #5
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


I agree 1000 % with WoW. Unfortunately, the window industry is hurt irreparably by the EXTREMES. The guys charging over $1000 per unit are highway robbers in most cases, and the guys charging less than $300-$400 for even "entry level" quality are selling a total garbage product installed using suspect practices at best. I do a good volume of window sales, and I have no problem disclosing that a good product alone will cost me in the range of $200+. That is before installation, overhead, and profit.
IMHO, $400-$900 depending on option content, installation circumstances, etc is within the acceptable range. Higher or lower and you're being had, whether it is in paying too much, or being fooled into thinking that you're getting a high quality product install at $130 and 20 minutes..... FYI, ( and I'm sure those posters here who have had professionally installed windows will attest), an hr + per window for a basic install/cap job is about the norm.
And fwiw, the box stores and "discount" installers pay their installers a fraction of what reputable dealers pay. Draw your own conclusions on that.... And then of course you have the "pickup truck" variety that will do them for $250 a piece( installed with materials). Instead of Wednesday at 9am, they show up Sunday at 3 pm, still half in the bag with their rusty ford and an old Milwaukee's Best box containing their job supplies. Their first words when you answer the door? " Ughhh, can I use your bathroom?"
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Old 01-16-2012, 10:46 PM   #6
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


I agree. Check out the local guys first. usually they will be around the same, or more, but with a better product overall.

I went with Lowes Pella Thermastar windows in my last house, that met the tax credit guidelines, but were the bottom end of their line. The Installer we had was excellent, and rated one of the best in the area. However, the window quality wasn't to the standard I would have expected. The sliders have visible air gaps, and the was a little water intrusion in mine as well. The windows also seem to have a draft if they are not locked.

I've had those windows for almost two years now and while they are much better than the single pane ones that I had, if I had it to do again, I would have spent the entra $500 and gone with the same company that my parents did the year before. It was a local company and their quality is much better. I had all 20 windows replaced in my house for reference
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Old 01-16-2012, 11:03 PM   #7
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


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I agree. Check out the local guys first. usually they will be around the same, or more, but with a better product overall.

I went with Lowes Pella Thermastar windows in my last house, that met the tax credit guidelines, but were the bottom end of their line. The Installer we had was excellent, and rated one of the best in the area. However, the window quality wasn't to the standard I would have expected. The sliders have visible air gaps, and the was a little water intrusion in mine as well. The windows also seem to have a draft if they are not locked.

I've had those windows for almost two years now and while they are much better than the single pane ones that I had, if I had it to do again, I would have spent the entra $500 and gone with the same company that my parents did the year before. It was a local company and their quality is much better. I had all 20 windows replaced in my house for reference
Thanks for posting this. As a contractor, my comments can sometimes appear to be self-serving despite the fact that I don't try to mention specific products.

The fact that you made this decision and can reflect back on it as a "mistake" of sorts is a credit to your character. Hopefully other folks will read this and not make the similar decision.
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Old 01-16-2012, 11:20 PM   #8
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


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Originally Posted by wandie2me View Post
My husband & I recently bought a home and are looking to install new doors (front & sliding) & windows. Neither one of us are physically able to install. We need good quality with reliable install. Any suggestions?
I agree with most of that, read the OP post.
Some of it is written in code "front& sliding" must mean wrap" I lost my decoder ring, glad you caught that one. And your 110% right it cost more to do that, my mistake.
I buy Simonton UV double hung 1/2 screen, argon windows energy star rated windows from Eastern Alumum Supply in Hampton VA all the time. Never had one complaint from a customer about air leaks or foged glass in 10 years.
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Old 01-16-2012, 11:38 PM   #9
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


Simonton, especially the 5500/9800, is light years ahead of the ThermaStar.
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Old 01-16-2012, 11:52 PM   #10
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


Quote:
Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
I agree with most of that, read the OP post.
Some of it is written in code "front& sliding" must mean wrap" I lost my decoder ring, glad you caught that one. And your 110% right it cost more to do that, my mistake.
I buy Simonton UV double hung 1/2 screen, argon windows energy star rated windows from Eastern Alumum Supply in Hampton VA all the time. Never had one complaint from a customer about air leaks or foged glass in 10 years.
Simonton 5500 would be my minimum reccommendation. If you are able to get that product for $130 in materials (even without capping) that is pretty impressive.
I'd add, however, that an interior stop removal/ "caulk and walk" is about the worst install that you can find, and would fall under my comments above describing those that give replacement windows a bad name.
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Old 01-17-2012, 10:34 AM   #11
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


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Simonton 5500 would be my minimum reccommendation. If you are able to get that product for $130 in materials (even without capping) that is pretty impressive.
I'd add, however, that an interior stop removal/ "caulk and walk" is about the worst install that you can find, and would fall under my comments above describing those that give replacement windows a bad name.
That is what I see most of the time when coming to do a real replacement. We try not to use a window that doesn't have a nailing fin. Can't tell you how many times I've seen a replacement window held in by caulking and leaking like crazy on the exterior. Usually these last ~10 years. Then it's new windows, new siding, new sheathing, and new insulation.

When I hear about companies doing replacements and capping the brick mould, I just cringe.
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Old 01-17-2012, 11:15 AM   #12
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


While I agree that a finned/new construction window is certainly preferable, see how many customers you get when you tell them that we need to replace the siding to do the project

A very tangible portion of most customer's motivation to do the replacement is to get to a more maintenance free condition.

Capping brick moulding is not an issue if done properly. It is very easy to bend up back/damn legs in the coil stock and overlap joints for primary moisture control. At that point, sealant are secondary for moisture management. I would also point out that brick moulding is never water tight from the outset nor is the brick. As long as the connection to the rough opening or old window buck is tight, you are fine.

I actually prefer inserts when in brick as compared to doing a full tear out and ripping out the finned window that has previously worked. Can very well flash or install a finned window in brick.
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Old 01-17-2012, 12:23 PM   #13
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


The key is really how the installation is done. There are plenty of terrible replacement installs out there that are done incorrectly, but at the same time, I can't even remember the last time that I replaced new construction (finned) windows where they were properly flashed and NOT leaking. Without fail, every install has the top fin over the wrb, caulk or tape (when used) has failed and the framing is full of water stains and/or soft wood. Both Inserts and tear outs can be done effectively when done correctly... I will concede however that a full replacement is ideal on most occasions. The trouble (as WoW alluded to) is is the the risk vs reward benefit generally pushes most clients to inserts.
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Old 01-17-2012, 12:28 PM   #14
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Lowes or Home Depot for window & door installation?


One quick one for ya! When I purchased doors (interior) at Lowes thay still have the brass hinges and noone is using the brass doorknobs anymore, usually brushed nickel now. Hone has the ibnterior doors with brushed nickel. Lowes doesn't.
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Old 01-17-2012, 12:31 PM   #15
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If it's vinyl, you won't necessarily have to replace any siding. It's a remove and reassemble with those jobs.

Most of our window jobs are sold after the new siding is sold to them. We include new trim and jambs in our bids also.

Ya, it takes longer and is a much bigger job, but then we don't need 4-5 jobs a week either.

Our jobs usually consist of a new roof first, then windows/siding/soffit/fascia, and gutters.

There are literally thousands of houses in our region that are getting to the point of needing all of those services very soon. Hopefully we get to them before the "slap in replacement window" guys get to them. Most builder grade stuff only lasts 15 years at best.

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