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Window Warranties


Window Warranties

Posted 21 Jul '19 05:42 PM

Hi, we're replacing our house lot of absolutely awful 1980s aluminum windows. I have had three quotes through for euro and US made UPVC and they're all out of our price range. So thermally broken aluminium it is. (Please don't hassle me with this, I've been researching this stuff for years. But a budget is a budget).

My question is on warranties. 5 years is what I'm seeing which is an awfully short period of time for a manufacturer to have faith in the performance of their own product.

Does anyone know of an aluminum window supplier with a really good warranty and guarantee period? Like 15 years +?

We're in Wellington if that helps.

Cheers all.

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 21 Jul '19 08:41 PM

Budget is a budget for everyone. The budget under which the supplier works reflects the product quality, it's performance and warranties.
You either need to adjust "your budget" to reality or accept a "budget" product with a "budget" warranty period.
If you ask your lawyer to work for 50 bucks an hour because this is "your budget" you can't expect anything beyond a budget job.

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 17 Aug '19 02:57 PM

Fully agree that a budget is a budget. While you may find the thermally isolated aluminium windows are the affordable option, they still fall way short of comparable uPVC window performance.

Interestingly back in 2010, i've found uPVC windows to be cheaper than the thermaly isolated aluminiums so it was a no brainer to go uPVC.

I've also looked at the Plygem windows 2 years ago that worked out to be cheaper than the European uPVC windows marketed in NZ. They also featured 'nail fin' extrusion design for far better wind ingress around the window framing, and in-built insect screens (ie the extra cost may be worthy for these features because no one else in NZ offers a similar product).

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 19 Aug '19 08:51 PM

Hey SBQ - Just wanted to let you know that there actually is another company in NZ that offers a product similar to PlyGem windows. Ameri company imports Sierra Pacific Windows from the States which also have nail fins and integrated insect screens. Our uPVC, H3, All Wood, and Aluminium Clad windows are all double glazed, have argon gas filing, and low-E glass coating.

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 20 Aug '19 04:18 PM

@Ameribuild:

Has the Sierra Pacific line done approved testing in NZ? I recall the Plygem did do thorough testing requirements via BRANZ so local city councils will have no issues on using their windows in NZ. The greatest problem NZ has in building is the red tape / regulatory requirements forced on the industry because of a bad experience of untested overseas products AND methods were tried in NZ some 20+ years ago and because of the slack regulatory building code back then, it allowed the development of NZ's leaky house syndrome. Keep in mind not 1 single factor was at fault but the mix of overseas materials, overseas methods, lack of local understanding of these products, lack of how they would integrate under NZ building ; is what led to the leaky house mess we have today. So the issue is the "building SYSTEMS that differed". For eg. NZ houses are still passively ventillated vs N. American homes for many decades have gone on to HVAC active ventillation. NZ houses are built with passive solar in mind while in N. America, houses are built very close together with little or no consideration to solar orientation. NZ acceptable building code requires walls to breath while in N. America, particularly in places like Canada, the use of a 'vapour BARRIER' is required and indoor air quality and moisture is managed via the HVAC system. Vapour barriers are not allowed under NZBC for this reason and the cost of energy in NZ does not permit houses to have such HVAC systems in residential use (well it's ultra costly). So regulatory councils today realise that there are differences in these building systems and without any formal NZ testing, or someone you could pay a lot of $ to vouch a producer statement to exclude the product, local regulatory building councils will not accept.

As much as I prefer the N. American vinyl windows, i'm burdened by the high restrictive regulatory requirement in NZ and as you know, if no house gets a 'Code of Compliance' certfiicate, then the house is basically worthless and un-insurable.

On a window note. Our home was built in 2009 with the Homerit uPVC window extrusions. The SGU glazings were installed after the window frames were fitted in the house. The SGU were high spec double pane, Low-e, with plastic spacer edges, (no argon because they leak) by Viridian Glass. I'm disappointed that nearly 1/3rd of these SGU have started to haze on the inside in early morning which indicates to me the SGUs have lost their seal. Perhaps the earthquakes where we live in Chch is the major cause, but i'm not seeing such response of lost seals in conventional glass used in aluminium framed windows.

Oh and another thing, N. American vinyl windows typically have PVC around the window reveals instead of timber reveals that is used for NZ windows. Also there needs to be attention to detail of the window offset from the wall framing as this will affect the reveal width, particularly homes that want architraves around the windows. So more often i've found imported windows seem to omit the reveals to allow for such variations but IMO, the end result is an inferior product. If you're going nail find extrusions, you best be sure the architect knows how the window will sit inline with the wall insulation and how the reveals will adapt to the interior design.

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 24 Aug '19 04:51 PM

Already quoted for 60k from Ameribuild - that's _without_ a builder who knows how to install the things, so another 5-10k on top. Sorry, when I said budget - I meant "that's how much money we have". Using the lawyer analogy - we wouldn't use a lawyer in that case, I'd represent myself!

I had a look at Plygem too, but they were only in the South Island. I forget why I discounted them. I'll give 'em another shot. Thanks.

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 24 Aug '19 05:07 PM

Hi phptek - We're a new business, and I don't recall giving anyone in the Wellington region a quote for $60,000 for uPVC windows. Was your Ameribuild quote for uPVC, or for one of our other product lines? We've just had an order for 20 uPVC sliding windows and three ranch sliders and it only came to $32,000 inclusive of GST and shipping.

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 24 Aug '19 05:14 PM

Wow, my bad - I was totally thinking of EuroWindows and their German import, which was ~60k uninstalled. Just re-checked your quote and it was 26! (Sorry) checking my email, my concern was with locating a builder who knows what they're doing.

Do you have a showroom or warehouse we could visit? We really just want to talk to people and see the product! Thanks!

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 24 Aug '19 05:24 PM

Thanks for double checking - that sounds more like it! I understand your concern, but any qualified builder should be able to manage an installation with the instructions provided and the amount of resources available online. Windows from North America are actually easier to install once you've done one or two.

We have a display at the Home Ideas Centre in Petone, Lower Hutt showing each of our product lines.

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 18 Sep '19 02:44 PM

If you do go with thermally broken alu, make sure the thermal break isn't hanging out in the cold, as is often the case. It's a waste of money unless the window is properly recessed.

See this PDF: https://ecodesignadvisor.org.nz/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/JV-2017.pdf

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 18 Sep '19 07:12 PM

@JR1 is correct. Note that Altus windows has a design for better window installation for 140mm walls. See under Suites->Pacific Thermal for installation drawings in DWG (and the same under the AllSeasons suite).

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 19 Sep '19 09:19 AM

re JR1 post about keeping the windows in line with the wall insulation (i've met with Ms Villiard on couple of occasions). The problem is the building systems (walls) are different in NZ than abroad (EU/NA). Issue being the look of the windows recessed way back compared to the external cladding may not be suitable in appearance. In NZ being brick veneer cladding with vented air space (to allow rain screen) as the most common exterior cladding, it brings the exterior wall out or, the windows would appear over-recessed inwards. This is different in N. America where rain screens are not common and the most common product used for exterior cladding is vinyl PVC siding, which is applied direct fixed with no air gap space. If you look at new houses, you'll see the PVC windows sit very close in line with the vinyl cladding vs in NZ, you have the thickness of the brick veneer + air gap. Even with Hardiboard / weatherboards, the improvement is not much. By all means, my preference is the N. American PVC windows with 'nail fin' as they offer a complete seal around the window opening ; very different to the NZ. way of fitting windows using wooden packers or spacers around the frame + WANZ support bars, and relying on the PEF rod seal (which doesn't always seal well) to separate the air / moisture from the inside and outside... horrible.


RE: Window Warranties

Posted 26 Sep '19 09:25 PM

The point about a thermal break being outside of the cladding line is a good point. When you look at standard cladding's over cavities, when built as per Acceptable Solution E2/AS1 (the most standard method of building in NZ), any thermal broken windows are external and surely not doing much. The Julie Villard solution to recess the windows makes sense for thermal efficiency, but also increases the risk of leaking, or the risk of damage to the framing if the flashings are not robust.

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 26 Sep '19 09:25 PM

The point about a thermal break being outside of the cladding line is a good point. When you look at standard cladding's over cavities, when built as per Acceptable Solution E2/AS1 (the most standard method of building in NZ), any thermal broken windows are external and surely not doing much. The Julie Villard solution to recess the windows makes sense for thermal efficiency, but also increases the risk of leaking, or the risk of damage to the framing if the flashings are not robust.

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 26 Sep '19 11:22 PM

The problem here is not the recess, the problem is outdated and risky design standards, outdated building methods and the "unique NZ conditions" nonsense. They don't seem to have such problems elsewhere where recess is standard, untreated construction timber standard, thermally efficient window installation standard and less than half the amount of flashings are used for window installation.
'

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 27 Sep '19 09:52 AM

Dys:

Fully agree the NZ building standard is old and outdated by OECD standards. The Unique NZ Conditions" is only a marketing ploy by NZ suppliers to protect their products from overseas products and unproven if NZ's climate is that unique, though i've read in BRANZ reports that the unique thing about NZ climate is the quick changes in weather within the day from cold to hot to cold which is a good recipe for condensation. Too the point being that for NZ compliance, materials / methods should be tested in NZ as per what BRANZ claims. Remember, it wasn't too long ago when NZ building industry went deregulated allowing all sorts of overseas methods, designs, materials, and use of non-treated timber framing. The end result is Leaky House Syndrome so you can't blame the NZ building industry for being so obsolete as in the past, they tried.

You forgot to make a clear distinction. Recess windows or not, or use of treated timber or not, the key difference why places in EU and N. America build houses with no treated timber framing with recessed windows with proper flashings, is the fact that we're talking an entirely different building system. Their homes rely on HVAC active mechanical ventilation. NZ homes DO NOT and quite frankly, the 2 methods aren't interchangeable. Modern N. American homes have timber framing to ensure moisture and condensation does NOT form in the wall cavity; in addition to indoor active heating and ventilation that addresses indoor moisture control; in addition to the use of vapour barriers (the plastic polythene lining that goes under the drywall / Gib to ensure air tightness. That alone is non-existent in NZ building and hence, the requirement for treated timber framing as it's common on the south side of the house for more condensation to form and thus, the requirement for 'rain screen' or in NZ 'vented cavity' design. With treated timber, if excess moisture is present in the walls, it SHOULD evaporate during the day. With untreated timber, this moisture would simply permeate into the wood framing which causes wood rot.

The real question is, can NZ afford to lift the building standard to like other OECD nations that use carbon intensive heating & ventilation (for full house central heating)??? Are there the resources for timber framing in NZ to use say 50% more timber ie. full house roof and ext. wall air barrier (aka plywood or OSB ?? You know houses in NZ only use the plywood sheets in the corners of the house for 'bracing' and no by means for air barrier which is the standard in N. American homes. Can NZ build walls without 'dwangs' or 'noggins / fire stops' and instead, keep the studs closer? The answer is simply NO because not only we lack the timber resource supply, the cost to build in NZ is already horrendously expensive.

RE: Window Warranties

Posted 03 Oct '19 09:01 PM

APL supply UPVC designed by Kommerling in Germany using the Tropical mix designed for the NZ UV.
With regards to Julie Villard, she has aluminum windows in her new place.
I would happily use thermally broken alu with Low E and Argon on North facing windows.
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