American Craftsman Windows Reviews
Read 6 American Craftsman windows reviews to discover how consumers and contractors view their window series compared to other manufacturers.
American Craftsman Windows Complaints
American Craftsman windows are total garbage, and I wouldn't trust anyone who says different. They use the cheapest materials that they can and engineer for minimum standards. The only reason to use this junk is for a rental property or if you're flipping a house. I heard that Consumer Reports said good things about them, but they don't know anything. I've never seen anything high quality reviewed by them, they just go to the hardware store and look at the bargain options there. The Simonton 6500 is a decent window. It's way better than the Craftsman, but Home Depot always has lousy installers so I would hire your own installer. For similar prices, you can get something that's better made and looks nicer like a Gorell or Sunrise.
American Craftsman Design Issues
American Craftsman is owned by Anderson windows. They're the lowest quality window that you can get. If you're looking for cheap, they might sound good, but they're not high quality, made for the homeowner who's looking for a deal and doesn't really care about the quality. A lousy design aimed at the bare minimum makes them leaky and drafty. The vinyl is cheap and it warps and cracks, which means it will leak air even worse after a few season changes. And even if you don't care about efficiency, it looks cheap and junky.
Recommendation On Hiring Installers
The American Craftsman isn't a good window. It has its place - if you need a temporary window or something for a rental property, it isn't bad. I would get an outside contractor, though, because the big box stores go with the lowest bidders for their installers and you'll end up regretting it. A good installer can't make the window sturdier or better looking, but they can at least minimize the leaks and drafts. The installers sent out by thosee store are usually paid by the window, so they rush through the work and ignore potential problems. You might get lucky and get a decent install, but who wants to gamble?
AC vs Atrium
I don't really like the Jeld-Wen or the American Craftsman 8500. They just aren't that high in quality. If you want a Home Depot AC window, you can try the 9500, it's a little better than the 8500. If Atrium is available they are pretty decent. The Atrium 3000 line is decent and has a Lifetime warranty plus a glass breakage warranty. Simonton is good, too, but they can be expensive.
American Craftsman & Consumer Reports
Consumer Reports gave American Craftsman the highest rating, so I looked at them when I needed new windows. The problem with CR is that they only pick cheap windows to test. Everything that they look at has to be something that anyone in the country can walk in to a store and buy. That already eliminates the really good windows. Just looking at the full size floor models at Home Depot, they were obviously junk. With the sashes locked, there was still way too much movement without even trying hard. I won't even go into how cheap they look.
Good Bargain Window
I've been dealing with American Craftsman for 15 years now. They are decent if you're looking for a bargain window. They have a good warranty and their customer service is even better. As long as you go with the 8500 series or above, they are a good low-price window. Their lower models aren't great, but they do fine for rental properties or a storage shed.
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