need advice

For all those Replacement Window questions
Post Reply
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2012 11:01 am

need advice

#1 Post by tmdteach » Thu Jul 05, 2012 5:12 pm

A few of you answered a previous post of mine re: soft lite elements vs. pro and I'm grateful for your time. I need some feedback and apologize for the length of what's below.

I was going with the SL Pro then had a quote from a highly rated company who sells Sunrise Vanguard - over $660 per window so about $900 more than the install for the Elements and over 6k more than the Pro. Not an option for us. Said window is much better than Elements. Also said the highly touted super spacer is the worst culprit for argon leakage based on research by the glass company, not them. Said Sunrise uses equipment for putting the argon between the glass that costs millions of dollars and results in 100% fill. The injection method used by "everyone else" only results in 80%. I didn't like how he put down other companies and windows. We have ruled this company out but not Sunrise itself. Enter installer below.

Small local installer said he can install the "premiere" sunrise window with Ultra U+ 12 glass to get me the SHGC I'm looking for (front of house 12 windows with full afternoon Atlanta sun). He hasn't come out to measure but I gave him the a cross section of our window sizes. He said he doesn't call the window Vanguard and had not heard of Restorations. He said it is not Essentials (said that is Sunrise's budget window). Swears it is the same frame as Vanguard, but he just calls it Sunrise's window. He doesn't have a brochure for it. He directed me to sunrise's web site for specs, but did send me a pdf of the warranty, max edge spacer and glass package all of which I could have gotten online anyway. The warranty is slightly different than the one on Vanguard and Restorations web sites. He quoted me $475/window (again, without measuring anything). He is definitely the one pursuing us - not pushy, but definitely wants this deal. He said he replaced siding in our neighborhood on a lot of homes and would love to get back into it for windows (about 100 large homes 25-27 yo). He has a couple dozen 5 star reviews on Kudzu. Said his install guy has been with him for 22 years. Also said they install from the inside not the outside. Said outside install requires something on the frame of the window to be broken and that an outside install does not give you as good of a seal (something like that anyway).

Feedback on the super spacer, argon fill method, in vs. outside installation, the fact that the installer doesn't call the window Vanguard, anything else (besides telling me to take a breather)? I genuinely appreciate your expertise and time. This is a huge purchase for my husband and I. We are teachers and have been saving for 7 years knowing this needed to happen when we bought the house.

Posts: 1024
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2005 11:27 am
Location: Houston, TX

Re: need advice

#2 Post by randy » Thu Jul 05, 2012 6:23 pm

The first thing I would say is relax. There's no rush. Any price given to you today will still be good in two weeks. Don't let yourself be rushed into a decision.

The guy selling Sunrise Vanguard is so full of it, that I'd recommend throwing his card in the trash. First, the Elements is a better window than the Vanguard, and I sell both. Second, Super Spacer is an excellent product - every bit as good as XL Edge, IMO.

Sunrise does have a base window that is just called Sunrise. It does not come with internal reinforcement, and for me, that's a deal killer. Outside install vs. inside install is really not a big deal. Either way, as long as he's using minimal expanding foam to ensure and airtight and watertight seal, is good. Check out a couple of his jobs. Talk to the homeowners and take a close look at the fit and finish of his work.

Posts: 1703
Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 5:52 pm
Location: SE PA & NJ; CT

Re: need advice

#3 Post by TheWindowNerd » Thu Jul 05, 2012 7:21 pm

Dead on.
Great advice from Randy.

User avatar
Posts: 2429
Joined: Tue Feb 16, 2010 6:14 pm
Location: Milwaukee, Madison areas

Re: need advice

#4 Post by HomeSealed » Thu Jul 05, 2012 9:44 pm

+2 on Randy's advice. The lack of reinforcement is not a deal killer for me across the board, but on the Sunrise lines I definitely prefer it due to the slim sash profiles.

User avatar
Windows on Washington
Posts: 4444
Joined: Wed Apr 04, 2007 11:21 pm
Location: DC Metropolitan Area-Maryland/Virginia/DC

Re: need advice

#5 Post by Windows on Washington » Fri Jul 06, 2012 10:26 am

randy wrote:The first thing I would say is relax. There's no rush. Any price given to you today will still be good in two weeks. Don't let yourself be rushed into a decision.
Get out of here... :shock:

If you called him back he would still take your money.... :shock:

By the way, I am in no way picking on the original poster but merely pointing out the ludicrousness of these sales tactics that are fairly commonplace for this industry.

+1 to all of Randy's other feedback. He nailed it on the head.

User avatar
Delaware Mike
Posts: 864
Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2006 1:32 pm
Location: Delaware, New Jersey, Philadephia Area

Re: need advice

#6 Post by Delaware Mike » Fri Jul 06, 2012 6:49 pm

I'm pretty sure when Sunrise has a "hot spot" area in which there is enough business to go around for several Sunrise dealer they tweak the base model (regular Sunrise) with some upgrades and give it it's own name and brochures. The several series from Sunrise that I've seen fall just short of the Vanguard but above the base models as far as upgrades and options.

These different programs might be based upon the size and volume of the dealer, and also first come first serve. I think Randy's advice is spot on about the Elements, and we do a good deal of Vanguards. Once in a while when I encounter a very tight budget coupled with smaller openings, I'll put folks into the regular Sunrise double hung series. I do prefer the reinforcement in most cases. The Soft-Lite Elements and LS have some of the strongest and best designed sashes and master frames out there. I was installing them today I've never seen a bowing problem with these two series in over 6-years of installing them.

Posts: 4
Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2012 11:01 am

Re: need advice

#7 Post by tmdteach » Fri Jul 06, 2012 8:58 pm

Many thanks for your responses. We have sizes that I suspect would be of the width that need meeting rail reinforcement (my measurements to the windowsill)

6 @ 36 x 73
1 @ 36 x 37
6 @ 32 x 73
6 @ 32 x 53
7 @ 28 x 73
6 @ 28 x 53
plus 4 more including a picture

The installer has still not been able to confirm whether his frame has the reinforcement or not. He has a smaller business and does not do the marketing that a lot of the other companies do. He said his overhead is smaller so he can give a better price on the window. When I asked about the expanding foam and optiview screen he replied:

"We use factory installed foam wrap around the window frame since these windows all install inside your existing frame expanding foam really isn’t needed on most installs    The optiview screen looks more fragile so I have never used it but adds $13 per window"

If his frame is reinforced, the Ultra Plus 12 glass and we upgrade to the optiview screen, his price will be very close to the Soft-Lite Pro. I cannot seem to get someone to quote me the SL Imperial LS. The warranty on the painted exterior for the Pro is 10 years, but the Sunrise will be lifetime since it is coextruded. So, which would you install, the Pro or the Sunrise?

The cost for either window will be around 18k. Like I said, we have been saving every month for 7 years. Man is it hard to part ways with that much money. The old, cloudy windows look just a little clearer lately :?

Post Reply