Abcleads.com BBB Business Review  NAHB member
Call us at
1-800-219-5332


All times are UTC - 5 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 19 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Sun Sep 19, 2010 8:50 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2010 8:24 am
Posts: 4
Offline
I'm in the process of purchasing windows and I feel like each company has good products, but with each estimate, the salesperson provides information about their windows that another sales person has not. Besides the U-Factor, SHGC, Visible Transmittance, R factor and AAMA certification, are there other factors I should consider when comparing windows. For example, Home Depot At Home Services provide me with a page of variables including Transfer Rate, Sound Transference Class.

Also, I had one person come out and tell me about a new Slocum (sp?) window with a U-Factor of .23 and SHGC of .19 or .18 (he didn't bring the sample, because there's only one in the office because it's so new). He's coming back tomorrow with the sample and brochure. Is anyone familiar with this new window?

One last question...I'm trying to guage installation costs vs. window cost. All of my quotes are for materials and installation, so I'm not seeing the breakdown. Is it an accurate assumption that 80% of the quote is installation costs?


Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Sun Sep 19, 2010 10:38 am 
first off, no contractor/company is ever going to "breakdown price", thats actually personal/intrusive and kind of like the salesman asking you how much you get paid at your job. also,does General Motots tell customers how much eash component costs and then breakdown their labor? no..
A reputable company gives a price that includes both product and labor. this way they can stand behin both. some "pick up truck" local contractor type may give a breakdown but his ability to procure a premium product will be minimal at best and you will likely be paying for his beer money. not exactly a quality install. so will you save money? yes,today you will but in 3 years i can assure you that it will wind up being quite expensive.
back to your question. U-Factor is a great start. make sure its a "whole window" U-Factor and not "center of glass" u-factor. thats how many unscrupulous salesman claim they have eergy efficient windows. you need to see whole window u-factor. I am not aware of slocumb having a product with a u-factor of .24 inless its triple pane. a .24 u-factor in triple pane is nothing to brag about. a triple pane with argon should be at least a .21. a few companies have a .20 or .19 with argon and .15 with Krypton. a double pane with a .27 or less is considered very good. keep in mind its not just the U-factor though.
the SHGC is a bit different. too low such as .20 on a double pane will be a bit tinty and also not allow you to get some solar heat geain in the winter months. on the east cost for example a SHGC of .29-.25 is optimal. unless you live in New Mexico or Arizona SGHC of .20 on a double pane is too low in my opinion. alot of lower quality windows(not all) use a glass package that has a u-factor of .30 and a SHGC of .20. this was an easy way for them to tout their windows tax credit eligability rather than have a more well designed window.
Another thing to look for is a low air leakage/air infiltration rate. should be a .06 or lower. don't be fooled by companies who claim their is "better than average" or just claim it "passes air leakage tests". look for the actual number.
also look at a DP rating of 50 or better. some companies that use LOWER GRADE VINYL will load up a window with aluminum/metal reinforcement to achieve a higher DP rating and compensate for the fact that they are using a low grade vinyl. these lower grade windows will eventually bow and warp which ultimately leads to air infiltration among other things. simply ststed,quality comes witha price. don't get sucked in by fancy brochure's and marketing.
higher grade vinyl soe not require reinforcement for most sizes and if it is used,a higher quality company will most likely use a composite reinforcement. metal is cheaper and also CONDUCTIVE.
finally look at the quality of the install and the company doing the install.


Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Sun Sep 19, 2010 10:42 am 
for u-factor i meant to say a .28 or better. again ,my opinion.


Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Sun Sep 19, 2010 12:08 pm 

Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2007 11:51 pm
Posts: 1579
Location: Northern,Virginia
Offline
You will not see any difference in energy efficiency between a window that has a U-factor of .28 and one that is .30 on your heating and cooling bills Just remember that the tax credits only require .30 U-factor and a .30 SHGC. Choosing the proper combination will have more effect on your energy bills than any supposed slight differences in U-factors. Additionally there is no "real world evidence that a window rated at .15 air infiltration is any less energy efficient than one rated at .06. This is generally a way for companies that have .06 ratings to try and differentiate themselves from those slightly higher. It's the same kind of tactic that those who sell foam filled frames and sashes try to use. Purely marketing. There is also no evidence that a window with metal reinforcements sufferers from any lack of efficiency that will translate into any energy savings outside of the laboratory. Again, more marketing hype, generally to justify a higher price.

For an unbiased look at the "Real Differences" go to this page.

http://www.efficientwindows.org/selection.cfm

As I have stated in the past, there is a lot of good information to be gleaned on sites like this but, you should check out any information given to verify it is correct and not just sales hype.


Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Sun Sep 19, 2010 1:25 pm 
i strongly disagree. you could also assume that someone that says a .15 is just as good as a .06 is only saying that because their window has a higher air leakage rate.
why does AAMA even test structural and air leakage?
why do companies invest money in engineering ensuring that their windows are less prone to air leakage? i think air leakage is very important.


Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Sun Sep 19, 2010 2:37 pm 

Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2007 11:51 pm
Posts: 1579
Location: Northern,Virginia
Offline
Why does Lawrence Berkely Laboratories and DOE consider it much less important than U-factors?

http://www.govforums.org/e%26w/documents/pbase1.pdf

As discussed already in another thread, nobody is saying AI isn't a factor that shouldn't be considered. We are just in disagreement over how important it is and where it falls on the overall decision tree. IMO an AI at .06 compared to AI at .15 is just as important as a U-factor of .28 compared to one at .30. and even less than the difference between foam filled frames and non-foam filled.

When the sales hype gets to the point that consumers are warned against buying windows with U-factors above .28 and AI more than .06, then it's time to back off and interject a little reality into the advice being given, for a line has been crossed.


Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Sun Sep 19, 2010 9:34 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Feb 16, 2010 6:14 pm
Posts: 1847
Location: Milwaukee, Madison areas
Offline
Holy deja-vu batman! :lol: ... Seriously Canuck, let me guess, your windows have----ooh, let me think....... a .06 Ai??? :mrgreen: ....... Larjenjojo, I mostly with what canuck said. Most companies sell their windows "installed" and typically don't break down labor and materials. If you push hard enough, you might be able to get some type of breakdown, but as canuck stated, it is really irrelevant. Any legit company will have substantiantial overhead costs (rent, utilities, insurance, licensing, marketing, payroll, IT, HR, etc, etc, etc,) and different companies build their costs into the price in different ways. This makes it very difficult to compare apples to apples in that regard, unless you are dealing with Joe the window guy who has no overhead... On the topic of AI, it is certainly debatable. I think most pros would agree that a window that rates in the teens (.19,.17,.15 or lower) is good, the debate comes in as to whether any real gains at all can be seen below that. IMHO, I agree with ECO and say no, but others may disagree. What I've stated before and I'll state again, setting an arbitrary number of .06 is utterly absurd, and is cause to question motive in light of recent discussions on the subject.


Last edited by HomeSealed on Sun Sep 19, 2010 9:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Sun Sep 19, 2010 9:38 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Feb 16, 2010 6:14 pm
Posts: 1847
Location: Milwaukee, Madison areas
Offline
... btw, Eco that is an excellent link. 8)


Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Mon Sep 20, 2010 7:10 am 
sorry to disappoint you HomeSealed but my air leakages numbers are much lower than a .06.
if i was a homeowner shopping for windows i would want the lowest air leakage number possible along with a low U-Factor and high DP rating. thats just me,unless you subscribe to silverlines philosophy when it comes to quality.


Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Mon Sep 20, 2010 7:11 am 
homesealed, this is just a friendly debate,we all have our own opinions and i rspect yours.


Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Mon Sep 20, 2010 8:55 am 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Feb 16, 2010 6:14 pm
Posts: 1847
Location: Milwaukee, Madison areas
Offline
Canuck, ditto. I think that you are a highly knowledgeable person and I respect your opinion about the importance of AI even though I disagree. The thing I just cant get over is your assigning an arbitrary number of .06. It just doesn't make sense. You are certainly entitled to your opinion, but myself (and likely others) are certainly going to express disagreement when you say that... I don't think anyone else on the forum (I cant speak for them of course) would support this notion (that a quality window must be below .06) other than maybe Todd. Further, your assertion rules out several products with excellent quality and performance... We can agree to disagree on the importance of "ultra-low" AI numbers, but not on that number of .06. There is no basis for it whatsoever.


Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Mon Sep 20, 2010 9:17 am 

Joined: Sat Jul 03, 2010 1:25 pm
Posts: 44
Location: Medford, OR
Offline
Since we carry many brands of windows, and very often are asked to provide quotes on more than one brand, we always separate the window price from the labor price. It's just the way we do it because it makes it easier to compare window brand pricing. Labor is based on installation method, number of stories and qty of windows.......not window choice.

BTW, I enjoy reading all of your opinions and explanations for your opinions. Sometimes the info confirms my beliefs and on a couple of occasions corrected some of my long held understandings.....I am not too old to learn something new. Thanks guys.

To any consumer reading this: Sometimes you will get info from a dealer/installer that may not be true. It does not mean that he is lying to you. It could be that he is misinformed. That is the beauty of this site. You get to find out for yourself what is true and what is important. Not everything really makes a difference.


Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Mon Sep 20, 2010 11:20 pm 

Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2010 8:24 am
Posts: 4
Offline
[quote="larjenjojo"]Also, I had one person come out and tell me about a new Slocum (sp?) window with a U-Factor of .23 and SHGC of .19 or .18 (he didn't bring the sample, because there's only one in the office because it's so new). He's coming back tomorrow with the sample and brochure. Is anyone familiar with this new window?

So the gentleman came back out this evening with the demo window...still no brochure because its so new. I'm going online to see if I can verify the specs. The window is the Slocomb Windjammer 823 Blast...it has a UV guard of 99%. Is anyone familiar with it?


Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Mon Sep 20, 2010 11:36 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Feb 16, 2010 6:14 pm
Posts: 1847
Location: Milwaukee, Madison areas
Offline
Where are you located?.. That shgc would be very detrimental if you live in a colder climate, however would be good in a hot, sunny area of the country.
... Im don't personally have any experience with that product, however here is a link to a discussion that I'd recommend you read from top to bottom.... This installer seems to be pulling your leg a little bit as to how "new" the product is, although he could just be referring to that fact that it is new to his company. http://www.replacement-windows.com/wind ... f=1&t=3244


Top
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Comparing Apples with Apples
PostPosted: Tue Sep 21, 2010 9:55 am 
are they using heat mirror to get a .24? or is it triple pane?


Top
 
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 19 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group