Andersen Replacement Windows ? "Fibrex" ?

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  #1  
Old 05-08-14, 05:33 AM
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Andersen Replacement Windows ? "Fibrex" ?

Hello,

Regarding the "Renewal By Andersen" replacement windows:

a. who are you actually dealing with ?

Are these individual franchises ?

Who stands behind their warranty: the franchisee (if it is one) or the basic Andersen people ?

b. They make a very big deal in their TV ads that the windows are made from some material they call "Fibrex".

What is this Fibrex actually ?

Some sort of composite made from old pressed together something or other ?

**c. If the Fibrex is so great, how come the windows from the basic Andersen folks don't seem to use it, and stick to basic wood ?

Worth considering ? Why ?

Any thoughts on these windows, and the folks that sell and install them, would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Bob
 
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  #2  
Old 05-08-14, 07:26 AM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
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I have 2 custom, oversize "Renewal by Andersen" sliding doors and plan to get a new entry door with side light and get 4 large sliding windows from Renewal because of the installation and products (not cheap stuff). They are generally heavier, rigid and make you feel like you a locked in a sealed refrigerator because of the product and installation.

In my case, I dealt with Renewal. I think my case be different since I am probably closer to the Andersen headquarters/plant than the local Renewal office and it may be corporate owned or a "guinea pig" that could be watched. From my understanding, the windows are installed by independent individual contractors and not by the common window, door siding installation firms that hire people that come and go to install windows. The man that installed mine had worked for installing company that did work for the big boxes that left at the same time as his boss left to work for a trash removal company. This man does work exclusively for Renewal, does only doors and does about 800 sliding door installation per year and has a contract with Renewal. The installer was required to be a "certified installer" and forked you his $800 for a 2-day class to get certified by the AAM (American Association of Manufactures - sp?), just as I did when I wanted some education since I do some moisture intrusion/mold work as an engineer. It was fun to watch the installer that did not know I also had a background in installation and later problems, but he was flawless.

After I gave the go-ahead there was man to come in for detailed accurate measurements, another guy to take about 20 photos to give the the installer and advanced idea what he would be facing. The installer arrived about 8:30 AM (after calling 15 minutes earlier). He had a truck that pulled an enclosed trailer that had 5-10 extension cords, compressor with hoses, generator, a saw and the heater/refrigerator for the caulk, wood (unpainted maple) for the interior trim, tarps and a vacuum cleaner. He was gone by 11:00 after he had vacuumed inside and outside, loaded up the old windows for disposal and had already made an appointment for the inspector to come about noon. Since Andersen pulled the permit, they had to make sure that there were enough smoke and CO detectors in the house (all at no extra costs), as is required in many suburbs around here. The city inspection took about 10 minutes, most of it was spent checking out the smoke detectors. The installation was great and that is why I going further ahead on replacements after 4 to 6 years of living with the sliders.

The core material inside the exterior looked to be a resin/wood combination that is very stable, rigid and heavy. Not like the pieced parts of wood glued together that can warp a bit more. I assume the windows have the same material in the windows as the doors. I assume the core material is better for the Renewal window manufacturing process, while the garden variety windows use pieced wood for the dog-eat-dog market and big box stores.

My case may be unique because of the location, but it seems there is a corporate policy to do it right because.

Dick
 
  #3  
Old 05-08-14, 09:46 AM
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In VA, Renewal was a franchise, they had their own territory and only worked in that area. I spoke with some customers of them as well as the Andersen Rep for my store, and they all related basically the same experience as Dick experienced.

Back then (about 8 yrs ago), it was a full 20/2/10 year warranty including glass breakage (though the last may have just been for my local company). I never heard a single complaint which was very uncommon.

As to the Fibrex...Fibrex Material

Now, as with anything, you can find differing opinions. "Oh, it's just cheap vinyl with wood added", "solid FG is better", "you can spend less and get more" etc. I seem to remember that at one time, Fibrex was also used in their Woodwright line...but I can't find anything on that now.

Yes, they can come on sort of like softener salesmen, offering one time deals, and calling the "manager" for discounts (I've heard), but that depends on the salesman. People I spoke to
personally didn't experience that. The installation and service was top notch.

One thing that many liked was Andersen themselves. They've been in business for over 100 yrs and when products change, they rarely leave older products hanging in the wind. I was able to get parts for 30 y/o sliding doors when I worked at HD. Try that with a company thats only been around for 15-20 yrs....you probably can't even get latches.

Btw...the patio and entry doors are standard Andersen 400 and 200 series products, don't let anyone tell you different. I would recommend doing a price comparison between Renewal and a Big Box or building supplier on those items. You would need to find a good installer of course, but that would give you a bargaining chip with Renewal. If they are asking $4000 for a $2000 door, is their install really worth the extra $2k?
 
  #4  
Old 05-08-14, 10:01 AM
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Again I'm near the factory like Dick but people I know who've used it say that while it was expensive, it was really nice that it was one step of buying the windows and having them installed over buying windows and then having to find an installer.
 
  #5  
Old 11-13-15, 04:45 AM
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This company likes to scam it's customers into buying over priced windows. They had a minivan full of kids walking around, at night, knocking on doors convincing people they need to replace their windows. I was concerned with one window but the young man convinced me to let them look at all of my windows. Then I had to talk to a customer service rep on the phone and a supervisor just to get the appointment. Just setting up the appointment alone was annoying. They won't give me a price or ball park figure over the phone because the cost of these windows is ridiculous. The cost to replace 6 windows in my home was close to $30k. I guess this is why they refused to come out unless me and my wife agreed to sit thru a 90 minute high pressure sales pitch. It was a complete waste of our time, my wife is very busy and they insisted. After that they harassed us for two months straight trying to reschedule another appointment. We finally broke down and let them come back out. This time they offered us the exact same windows for 50% cheaper. Why didn't they just offer that to me the first time? Even 15k was way too much! Some friends of ours also had them come by and they experienced the same thing. Its obvious they're more interested in over charging their customer's then helping their them. The sales rep. told me that the price he was giving me was the lowest price possible then two days letter someone's calling me to offer the same windows for 50% off. Everyone should just act like their not interested and then wait for them to offer it to you for half the price. Considering how much they harassed us, they will call you. I refuse to do business with companies that play games like this. I had to go through way too much just to get a quote for some windows.
 
  #6  
Old 11-13-15, 05:18 AM
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Chris,

Too bad you had a bad experience with Renewal. As the other posters stated I also had all my windows replaced by Renewal and am very happy. Renewal is in fact a franchise, but the windows are in fact backed and guaranteed by Andersen.

We also had the "kids" come door to door. Just refuse them. Simple. If you're are interested then call Renewal and make an appointment and set aside an evening and let them give you the spiel. We happened to get a sales rep who was our age and understood our means ans sense of value. He did not try to over sell. And he also said there are cheaper windows available that may be as good, but they do not come with an Andersen warranty. You need to learn to look past the hype and try to see the value in a replacement window. And BTW, any window replacement will be expensive. If you get a bargain you will get what you pay for.

Robert, if you want a better explanation of Fibrex see my post (the second longer post) to Faith at:

http://www.doityourself.com/forum/do...nsulation.html
 

Last edited by Norm201; 11-13-15 at 06:07 AM.
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