It may seem like just words to most people, but no two window replacement projects are the same.
The condition of your windows generally dictates what kind of a replacement is required. But that’s just half of the story.
Most often the homeowner’s budget is a big dictating factor in the kind of product and installation they end up with. And there is nothing wrong with that. Not everybody needs, or indeed wants top of the line product and full-frame replacement.
Whether it be a rental property, a smaller room or even the decent condition of existing windows, sometimes an insert or a retrofit replacement is what a customer wants.
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Today we’ll look at two Calgary window companies that specialize in that kind of replacement, and see whether they’re worth considering for a consultation appointment.
Meridian Windows and Doors services Alberta and Ontario markets. The company is family owned and operated.
The company carries all standard styles and types of replacement windows. They specialize in insert installations, with an aluminum cladding finish. It is important to note that in this type of installation the brickmould is not replaced for a new, vinyl one. Generally, quality windows for insert installations come with a nail flange on the sides to take up the space. Beware of companies that simply fill the gap between the retrofit window and existing brickmoulds with foam, as the foam on its own is not weatherproof.
Energy Star Rated
Meridian has clear information about their warranty policy. The vinyl window components and workmanship are covered for up to twenty-five years. The insulating glass units are covered against seal breaks for fifteen years.
As with most Calgary window companies, the online complaints and negative reviews about Meridian generally have to do with the lack of service or fulfillment of warranty. As with other companies, unsatisfied clients complained that their calls haven’t been returned, or that the company didn’t take any initiative to resolve issues. There are also complaints about Meridian consistently cold-calling the same people and offering their windows through telemarketing.
Another thing worth mentioning is the pristine state of the company’s Homestars page. Like clockwork, all the reviews posted in the last half a year are 10/10 or 8/10. Great reviews are excellent for attracting potential clients, but we know from our own experience that customers are generally only interested in posting the negative stuff on their own will. Recognizing the importance of online reviews, many window companies in Western Canada offer incentives for positive Homestars reviews.
Weather Pro services Calgary, Edmonton, and Winnipeg.
The company carries all standard window styles in vinyl. They also carry tilt-and-turn windows which are sometimes difficult to find from other companies. The company also carries a variety of doors from all standard materials. Similarly to Meridian, they specialize in insert windows with aluminum capping on the outside.
Homestars Best in Calgary 2014
There is no breakdown on the company website regarding their warranty though the homepage does mention that Weather Pro provides a “transferable lifetime, non-prorated warranty certificate.”
In keeping true with the trend, the complaints customers had about this company are generally regarding not following up with the clients’ service or warranty concerns.
Both of these companies specialize in insert windows with aluminum cladding. This type of installation is not as thorough or complete as a full-frame replacement, but if done properly, can still work very well.
The big thing about windows that don’t come with a new brickmould is what goes in its place. If the window doesn’t come with a nail flange and is instead foamed in place, it is much less energy-efficient and more prone to moisture damage. That is why this kind of installation is often referred to as “economy” or “budget.”
Esthetically, the aluminum capping also doesn’t rival the look of vinyl brickmould. Because capping is bent and cut by hand, it often ends up looking at least a little different on all windows, taking away from the general curb appeal of the home.
Both of these companies also purchase their product from a dealer rather than manufacture it themselves. This is usually not an issue if the dealer’s product is of high quality. There are horror stories out there however of companies installing a lesser quality product than the customer paid for. Because some companies work with multiple dealers, you may not know exactly what kind of windows you’re getting until the day of the installation.
Before you make an investment on replacement windows or any renovation project for that matter, research the companies and their suppliers to make sure you not only get proper service, but the highest quality product.
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