At the very end of December 2013 I had a bay window installed by Comfort Windows. This is a very pic-heavy, non-food ultra-boring homeowner post of my experience with them. 4 months in to 2014 and I still consider their work acceptable if you are looking for a company to install a new bay window in your house. TLDR: I had an overall positive experience and am satisfied with the results thus far.
This was my original window. When we first were looking at the house, the seat was completely covered with carpeting, the front of the window was covered by thick shrubbery up against it. The inspector said the bowing/give at the top of the window was fine. Once we got in the house and removed the carpet covering, we saw that the damage was because of water damage at the base of the window and the carpeting had been retaining that moisture and contributing to the damage. I don’t hold this against the inspector, as he was as thorough as he could be during the inspection, and if he had flagged it as an issue it would have added yet another time-consuming issue to the closing process and I’d have likely lost out on my locked-in interest rate and pay a higher rate over the life of the loan.
Any way, the window was a problem. I had three window companies out for a quote. One had a showroom that was REALLY far. Another sent a rep I didn’t jive with (but had good follow-up customer service). Comfort Windows was the last company that came. They landed solidly in the middle of the two companies for window price. What sold me on them were a few things: initial impression of the salesmen, proximity, and a lifetime warranty on the window that is transferable to the next owner. The window was $3,130. It was measured to fit, and the middle window is the largest size available without changing price. Any way, I just put this out there since I feel like there is not a lot of information out there in this area on window pricing.
In terms of scheduling, Comfort Windows was a bit of a disappointment. I paid my deposit ($1k) the day I walked in their showroom in September and selected a window (I was waffling between bay or bow). They contacted me after about a week or so to come back to my house to remeasure and assess the window with one of the installation staff (they said they don’t normally do this, but for some reason they just wanted to be extra sure with my window). After that it was radio silence for a while while they made my window. Another thing I liked about Comfort Windows was that they are fairly vertically integrated – they have their own production facility, and everyone that works for them is an employee – no independent contractors or third parties involved. Any way, they said my window specs would go to the factory and gave me a time-frame for installation at the end of October/beginning of November. In November, I started contacting my rep and found out that production was delayed, and my installation would be delayed. Then I had to call up and find out that my window wasn’t even in production. Long story short, I had to get a bit assertive mid-December and my window was installed just before Christmas. I was mainly in contact with my rep, but there are two scenarios that come to mind: The production facility was running behind and no one updated me, or my rep dropped the ball and didn’t put my order in when he said he did (since he told me it was in production, and then not in production). But either way, once I gave them a deadline they worked to fill my order in that time. My own mistake was not requesting an installation date in writing, newbie home owner here. Next time I’ll know better.
Okay, boring homeowner first world problem stuff out of the way, on to more pictures. The installation employees arrived on time and were done early. They were very personable and pretty much ignored me while I stood around watching them and taking pictures. They had the original bay out in under an hour. I would say I was impressed with it, but watching them remove it made me realize how little there was to it. I’m not sure if it’s just how things were done when it was initially put in, but their assessment was that it was out too far and completely unsupported, which is why it started to sag in the first place.
The baseboard heating pipe against this wall froze during the first Arctic Freeze of Winter 2013, and I got to see that it was because it was mainly a wood board and some insulation keeping the outside out. I am happy to report that I have not had any more problems with freezing pipes since the new window was installed.
Ignore the Christmas detritus in the background.
The view from inside looking out.
Reinforcing the seat for the new window.
The Comfort Windows team easing the new window into place.
Bay windows nowadays are attached to a support beam in the house with an anchor to prevent sagging. I must have asked and double checked about this a dozen times just to be absolutely certain I wouldn’t have similar issues in the future.
Wrapping the new window and former hole in metal took the longest. They were very detail oriented for this process. It took 2 hours, easily. I was glad I didn’t attempt this myself. Seemed really tedious.
This seemed like something they needed to do in order to fill in the gaps left by the old bay window. My sales rep said it would be flush with the rest of soffit when he initially came out, but it seems like the installation crew did an assessment and determined this was the best fit.
Here was some water on the house that the previous window let in. Glad this was caught before it got any worse.
More of the tedious wrapping process.
Inside. The bottom is weird because that’s where the old window seat came down to (and thus started the never-ending wallpaper removal project).
New window! This definitely lets in some nice wind and cross breeze now that spring is making its way here. The cat is also really digging the seat and peering out on the neighborhood. I did not receive any compensation for this post (I wish), but posted it merely for more open discourse on the topic and to increase transparency in the market.