soft-lite pro vs. elements advice

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soft-lite pro vs. elements advice

#1 Post by tmdteach » Mon Jul 02, 2012 11:28 am

Love this site. I've spent probably 30 hours on in it in the last week studying up! House is about 27 yo with original windows. I have three quotes I'd appreciate feedback on. Two more coming tomorrow (will discuss Preservation, MI and Precision Millworks), but I'm leaning towards SL based on customer service reviews. Also got a quote from Champion but I've ruled them out. We have 36 windows (35 DH and one picture).

12 front windows get full afternoon Atlanta sun and I was thinking a SHGC around 0.20 is best. Also sun room is wall to wall windows on 3 sides and that room gets rather chilly in the winter.

All windows white vinyl with factory painted/baked beige exterior, no grids.

Soft-Lite Elements with solar low E glass/Ar: $23,361 ($649/window)
Soft-Lite Pro with SolarBan 70XL glass/Ar: $18,000 ($500/window)
Vytex Fortis with triple silver Low E/Ar $22036 ($612/window)

It seems like the Elements is the best bang for the buck, but is it worth the extra $5300)? After asking that, I will also say we were really hoping to stay around $16,000.

Thanks so much for your time and expertise.

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Re: soft-lite pro vs. elements advice

#2 Post by randy » Mon Jul 02, 2012 5:22 pm

While the Elements is the best window, I'm not sure it's worth $149.00 more than the Pro. If the installation is comparable, I'd probably go with the Pro. You've received very good pricing on both Soft-lite products.

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Re: soft-lite pro vs. elements advice

#3 Post by HomeSealed » Mon Jul 02, 2012 5:25 pm

The Pro is a nice window, but the Elements is definitely superior, and by a larger margin than the performance ratings would indicate in my opinion. It is built on an entirely different assembly line with newer technology, etc, and is more than a bit more substantial. If you want a window that you can get installed now and not even worry about for another 30+ years, the Elements is the choice. That said, I do agree with randy that the price discrepancy is a little on the high side. It is within the range of reason, but it is hard to swallow that large of a difference. I'd recommend explaining the situation to your dealer, and see if he/she can work with you on the Elements price a little bit.

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Re: soft-lite pro vs. elements advice

#4 Post by Windows on Washington » Mon Jul 02, 2012 8:22 pm

Either of the two Soft-Lite options would be great.

If you figure the window is a one time per home ownership purchase, I would opt for the best unit you can get.

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Re: soft-lite pro vs. elements advice

#5 Post by masterext » Mon Jul 02, 2012 10:22 pm

agree.. Elements is just such a solid window, the upcharge is well worth it.

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Re: soft-lite pro vs. elements advice

#6 Post by TheWindowNerd » Tue Jul 03, 2012 4:44 am

To control the cost some you might consider the cost of the color options.
Beige/beige: the vinyl has the color all the way through it, least cost.
Beige ext/white int, ext foil laminate substantial up charge, life time warranty
Beige ext/white int, painted ext, most costly, 10 year warranty.

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Re: soft-lite pro vs. elements advice

#7 Post by kelemer brothers » Thu Jul 12, 2012 8:56 pm

I've installed soft-lite and I like all of their products, an alternative to elements would be the Imperial L.S.. AS far as quality: The elements and Imperial l.s are far better than the Pro. The design pressure and air infiltration values are far better. $500/window for the Pro is a little too high.

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Re: soft-lite pro vs. elements advice

#8 Post by toddinmn » Thu Jul 12, 2012 9:52 pm

I'd go with the Pro. The Pro has a U-factor of .28 the Elements is .27. Air infiltration numbers are .07 vs .01, though this seems like a big gap I doubt you'll see much in real world savings.DP is 50 vs 70, again I doubt you'd see much in savings here as well.Though the performance numbers are better I would not say they are far better.You would not live long enough to recoup the savings. If you feel the build quality or looks are worth a 150 than take the Elements.

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