I need to replace 14 windows in my house in the Boulder/Denver Colorado area. I have a mix of single hung and sliding windows. Several of them are large (72"X72") units with an arched window over a slider.
I know that I want vinyl windows, probably triple pane, with argon fill. I am not looking for the best window out there, but the best "bang for the buck" and a company that will stand by their product for the next 10-20 years.
How big of a deal is it that I buy windows that are made at my same altitude without breather tubes or capillary tubes? Is this still an issue with windows made at lower altitudes and then shipped to Colorado (5300 ft), or have the manufacturers solved this problem already? Do I need to worry about this if the window comes with a lifetime warranty anyway?
Windows made at lower altitudes will still be shipped with capillary breather tubes. That is the only way to do it at this point to my knowledge. I don't think it is a big deal to have a window that is made near the 5,000 ft level and I would much rather have a well made window that was produced at seal level than a sub par unit at 5,000 feet.
Right now I am going with the assumption that it is better to buy a window made in Colorado so that the glass units will be totally sealed. Given that I know of four companies that make windows in Colorado:
Of those companies, which should I choose? All four companies seem to get mixed reviews based on my searches.
Are you sure that Champion even makes their own window? Amerimax and Milgard seem to be well regarded but I cannot say for certain as I have not used their products from the West Coast.
Did I miss any companies with Colorado manufacturing plants?
One of the sales people I talked to swears that Alside makes windows in Denver, but that does not seem to be true according to the Alside website.
Irregardless, I would not put them in the running with the exception of one of their windows.
I am a little wary of Accent since they just went through a Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2011. A lifetime warranty is useless if the company behind it goes out of business.
I already have a couple of Milgard windows in my house. I like the window, but I hate their "smart touch" lock. I have a tall Milgard horizontal slider window, and there is just a single lock in the center which is not sufficient to get the window to seal properly. The window has enough play so that it can rock back and forth causing leaks at the top (or bottom) of the window if you aren't careful about how you close it. This could be an installation issue, but I would much rather have two normal cam-locks on a tall sliding window like this.
I am not a fan of the "smart touch" locks either and would always prefer a good cam lock. It is entirely possible that the added slop in the window is an installation or framing issue.
If I open up my search to windows manufactured outside of Colorado, what are your recommendations?
There were several threads on here about a guy that used a Sunrise window as was very happy with the results.
Thanks for your help.