CWS Windows Reviews

Replacement Windows Reviews

CWS Windows Reviews And Prices

Custom Window Systems is a vinyl and aluminum window and door manufacturer that specializes in both non impact and impact windows. Headquartered in Ocala, Florida, the company has been in business since 1986 and serves most of Florida through their exclusive dealer network -- i.e. local retail window companies. Scroll down to read all of our CWS reviews.

Overall Rating: Custom Window Systems gets a 4.3 out of 5 stars based on 41 consumer reviews below.

CWS Impact Windows Cost: $$$
(3 Out Of 5)
(Amongst All Impact Windows)

CWS Windows And Doors

Custom Window Systems, often referred to as CWS, manufactures a number of window and door series, including the Aria, 600, 8100, 8200, StormStrong, and Windpact window series.

The company is generally regarded as a solid manufacturer of impact windows (and non impact) that is roughly on par with PGT Windows. I would give CWS a 7.0 out of 10 as an overall brand rating.

CWS Windows Reviews

CWS Windows Warranty

Breaking down warranty information for Custom Window Systems is a tricky one. The company sells vinyl windows, vinyl sliding doors, aluminum windows, aluminum doors, and then each of these can be either impact or non impact rated. The warranty terms will vary between each of these selections. You will honestly have much better luck by googling cws windpact window warranty (for example) and reading the specific warranty for that product.

Dane - Site Editor - Page Last Updated: April 22, 2024

Related Topic: CWS Windows Prices

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Aria Series

600 Series

8100 Series

Patio Door Reviews

StormStrong Series

WindPact Series

CWS Aria Series

-- Estimated CWS Aria Price: $550 to $700 installed --
(assumes medium window and normal installation) *

CWS Windows vs PGT Windows

Hi! I’ve found your site very helpful. Thank you! I did notice you don’t recommend the CWS Aria series, but do like both the CWS 8100 series and the PGT 5400. Any thoughts on the CWS 6100 or recommend any non-impact vinyl from either company? Trying to work within a tight budget. Thank you in advance for your help! Have a great day!

Deborah - Homeowner - from 2019

[Site Editor's Answer]

Deborah, I should do a better job of introducing that window. I actually think it's the CWS Aria a pretty decent vinyl window. Not a world beater, but a solid mid range vinyl window. I would probably compare it to the PGT5400, which I also like. I actually like these single hungs and think they offer some decent performance for the price.

Assuming the company doing the install is professional and offers quality services, you should be well served with either one of these products. Simonton is another company that offers good products at an affordable price. If you wanted a third option, I'd look for a local rep from them. In terms of quality windows on a budget, I think you are on the right track!

Dane - Site Editor - from 2019

[Site Editor's Answer]

Hi Tim! Thanks for getting back to me so quickly. So even though the CWS Aria is their entry-level window, you thinks it's a decent product? I know you had mentioned avoiding the entry-level lines of companies, so I just want to be sure. :) Thank you again!

Deborah - Homeowner - from 2019

[Site Editor's Answer]

Deborah, the CWS Aria seems to be a decent product for an entry level window. I'm impressive with the DP50 rating for sure. I don't actually have much in terms of performance data -- U-value, air infiltration, SHGC, VT, or CR. I would love to know these numbers, but the company seems to make a solid product and honestly the ARIA is more or less their vinyl window, instead of their entry level window.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2019

CWS vs Soft-Lite Durashield

Hi Tim, I live in Sarasota FL and am looking to replace all 12 windows in my house. I've spent a lot of time doing research and calling the various companies to get quotes. One company claims that the CWS Aria series windows are not good and don't compare to Soft-Lite Durashield. Is this true? Is the CWS Aria series windows really of bad quality? This company also claims PGT windows have various issues. I am not sure if I should trust this claim. Any advice would be highly appreciated!

Jo - Homeowner - from 2018

[Website Editor Reply]

Jo, the CWS Aria window is an okay vinyl window. It's the company's entry level vinyl window and not the model I would go with from CWS. I would prefer you go with the Windpact series from CWS.

In terms of how they compare to Soft-Lite, I would definitely give the nod to Soft-Lite over CWS. My understanding is that the Durashield is Soft-Lite's entry level impact window. Their Armor or Barcelona series are going to be preferable the Durashield.

PGT has a good reputation, perhaps a bit above CWS. But basically they are both considered good impact window manufacturers in Florida.

Each company makes a number of series. If you don't need impact windows, go with a mid range or premium vinyl series. Impact will cost considerably more, but obviously they are much more durable.

CWS, PGT, and Soft-Lite all have good reputations. Just stay away from their entry level options.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2018

[Jo's Reply]

Thank you Tim! We do not need to get impact windows. So what series would you recommend from CWS and PGT that I look into?

There are very few window companies I talked to in my area who would even quote Soft-Lite. I really wish your website could provide some insight into who and which companies we should talk to. I have spent a lot of time calling around and haven’t been able to get quotes for Soft-Lite. It has been a very time consuming and frustrating process.

Jo - Homeowner - from 2018

[Website Editor Reply]

Jo, I would look at CWS's Windpact Plus series and the PGT EnergyVue series. I believe these are the best vinyl window series they carry, but definitely double check with the sales people on this. If you get the "premium" vinyl window from either of these companies, you will be getting a very good window...certainly one that I would have in my own home.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2018

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CWS Reviews :: 600 Series

-- Estimated CWS 600 Costs: $650 to $800 installed --
(assumes medium sized window and normal installation) *

Custom Window Systems vs PGT

I live in the Orlando area I have narrowed my search to the final three. I believe that I’ve negotiated the best possible price and wanted your opinion. The Simonton has the best warranty but I’m more concerned about the quality of the product and appearance and not the warranty (since all three have a good warranty). Thanks in advance for your assistance.

$11,500.00 Simonton 9800
$11,268.00 CWS 610/615
$10,175.00 PGT 5400 EnergyVue

I have the following size windows: 2 each 36 x 49 ½ picture window, 1 each 82 x 105 Picture Window, 1 each 72 x 24 x 12 Eyebrow & Legs Picture, 1 each 36 x 24 picture, 1 each 96 x 19 picture, 1 each 36 x 61 hung, 3 each 30 x 36 picture, 3 each 52 x 70 hung window, 1 each 36 x 24 hung

Meredith - Homeowner - from 2018

[Website Editor Reply]

Meredith, I like all three bids and windows you have and good work on getting the bids as low as you can get. I would say the PGT is the winner for me given the product and the price. Assuming you are comfortable with the company doing the work, I think you have found a good option. My second choice is the Simonton 9800 series. Have you had a chance to browse our CWS windows reviews or pricing pages on the website? These might be great sources to compare price quotes.

Dane - Website Editor - from 2018

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CWS Storm Strong Reviews And Prices

-- Estimated CWS StormStrong Costs: $9,00 to $1,200 installed --
(assumes medium sized window and normal installation)

CWS Storm Strong 6100

Hi Dane, I wanted your opinion on the following estimate I received for 8 CWS Storm Strong 6100 series vinyl impact windows single hung. Do you feel these windows are a good quality product and is the price estimate fair? BTW, your CWS windows reviews have been great for research.

2 - 52 x 75

1 - 25 x 62

2 - 36 x 62

1 - 52 x 62

1 - 52 x 26

1 - 105 × 71 (picture window with 2 sliding horizontal sides)

The estimate I received was $19,500. That is for labor, materials, permits and tax. I trust the contractor doing the installation. My biggest concern is getting a good product at a fair price.

Jerry - Homeowner - from 2022

[Website Editor Reply]

Jerry, the CWS Storm Strong 6100 is a good window, but the price seems high to me. I would get a couple more bids from local companies to see how they compare with your current bid. My top picks for storm windows and doors (which go from best to good) include the Soft-Lite Barcelona Impact Series, Soft-Lite Armor Impact Series, Sunrise Coastal Series, PGT WinGuard Series, Stanek UltraExtreme Series, CWS Windpact Series, Wincore 8000 series, the Simonton Stormbreaker Series, and the Viwinco OceanView Series.

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Dane - Website Editor - from 2022

StormStrong vs WindPact

Hi Dane, I am trying to find out what the difference is between the CWS StormStrong series and the CWS WindPact Plus series. I understand that WindPact Plus is intended for the High Velocity Hurricane Zone and StrongStorm is for all other areas.

I live outside the HVHZ in the Orlando Area but Hurricane Charley in 2004 was a Cat3 that caused major damage. I am also of the mindset to pay for quality. What is the price difference between the two series? Is the WindPact Plus overkill for the Orlando area? Many thanks.

Fred - Homeowner - from 2021

[Site Editor's Answer]

Fred, I don't have a lock on the differences between these two series. This would be an answer that the CWS rep who gives you a bid should have. They work with these series every day and they will have the exact specs and number variations for each of their two products.

I will say that both of these series are well regarded and either one should serve you well when coupled with professional installation from a quality and well reviewed install company.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2021

CWS Stormstrong 6100 Bid

Tim, we received an estimate for CWS 6100 Series windows for $6340.

Windows are :
3 size H62 x W 52
2 size H37.5 x 51.5
1 size H37.5 x W 35.5
1 size H37.5 x W 35.5 Frosted

Can you advise if pricing is reasonable. Thanks.

Sue - Homeowner - from 2019

[Site Editor's Answer]

Sue, the price is definitely in the realm of reasonable for an impact window. I'd get a couple more bids to compare it to -- an impact window from PGT, Sunrise, Soft-Lite and Simonton if you can. I'd see how these compare and then go from there...

Tim - Site Editor - from 2019

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CWS Windows Reviews :: 8000 Series

The CWS 8100 is a single hung vinyl impact window, which seems to offer good quality and value. It does however use a pocket sill, which funnels water through the frame and out weep holes. I don't like this feature, but CWS does tend to make a quality window, despite the design flaw.

Dane - Site Editor

-- Estimated CWS 8100 Costs: $800 to $1,050 installed --
(assumes medium sized window and normal installation)

CWS Impact Windows Reviews

Hi Dane, I am looking to replace 3 sliders in my home in west central FL. Two are 8’ and one is 6’ and impact resistant. I have 2 quotes so far and they are pretty similar. $17,000 for all white and $18,500 for white/bronze. This is for a CWS 8800 series door. I had my windows replaced with CWS 4-5 yrs ago and figured I would go with their doors as well and the company is local to me here in FL. Any advice or feedback on the quotes I have so far? I will probably get 2 more.

Thank you.

Eric - Homeowner - from 2023

[Site Editor's Answer]

Eric, CWS is generally speaking quite a solid company. I do like the idea of sticking with the same brand if it makes sense financially. Sounds like you have two good quotes, but you won't know how they stack up until you collect a couple more.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2023

8100 Series Complaint

Good morning -

We had 21 CWS 8100 Series windows installed in 2018. So far we have had to replace 10 sashes/panes due to failure and now one of the replacements has failed. I originally thought the contractors workers damaged these windows on install because I couldn't believe that many windows would fail (my mom has these same windows and hasn't had one failure) but now that the replacements that were installed by the window dealer are failing I'm starting to think these windows are junk. Yes, they have a lifetime warranty but we have to pay labor every time one is replaced. And, we don't want to continue replacing window after window for who knows how long. Any thoughts or suggestions are greatly appreciated.

Stephanie - Homeowner - from 2022

[Website Editor Reply]

Stephanie, that is disturbing. I have not heard of many issues with CWS windows. I know that supply chain issues have screwed up all sorts of industry's quality, but that doesn't explain or help your situation.

Advise: Be the squaky wheel...but a nice squeaky wheel. What else can you do, really? It sounds like they are responding so that's good, but yes you have to pay for the labor and that seems unfair given the timeline of the install. I wish I had some sort of remedy, but I really don't. You could threaten to report them to the BBB if they don't cover the labor cost of the windows you purchased 3 years ago, but I would not pin my hopes on this approach.

If I think of anything else, I will be sure to follow up with an email.

Dane - Website Editor - from 2022

CWS 8100 Impact Windows

I just got done with a 5-hour spiel from a sales rep for FHIA (Florida Home Improvement Associates, Inc.) who made a big to-do about their being the home improvement contractor of choice for Sam's Club and BJ's. Basically he offered the CWS 8100-SH (I guess that means single hung) for 11 windows (the seven regular-sized I mentioned earlier and the smaller kitchen window and 3 bathroom windows at the no-discount price of $18,539, good for a year. Had my wife and I decided to pull the trigger tonight, he would have gone as low as $11,597 - this after the $500 coupon had we made the appointment through their Sam's Club kiosk, plus a discount for the free upgrade to Solar Max glass (with silver particles embedded in the glass), the military discount, and the rebate which he had to have his boss approve.

His lowest price before the rebate was at $13 thousand something and then when I told him we would have to call him back, that's when he came up with the rebate (hard sell tactics to the max). Sorry, but I really have to do my due diligence and check with the BBB for reviews and see if the CWS 8100 is worth the price he was quoting us. HD came back with a revised quote of $8436.95 after I told them I would only do the same 11 windows FHIA quoted me for. So I guess that's what fhia windows cost. And yes, you were right, CWS would need like a 4 to 6 month lead time for the windows. I haven't found an independent Simonton dealer for my zip code yet but I will check on PGT and CWS as well.

Is the CWS 8100 much better than the Simonton 6100 that HD would be putting in? Are single hungs (which FHIA said are the only kind they deal with) much better than double hung? What do fhia windows cost?

Thanks again for all the help,

Frank - Homeowner - from 2021

[Site Editor's Answer]

Frank, while I know that the CWS 8100 vinyl impact window is good, I'm not sure how much better it is than the 6100 Coastal series. To be honest, I didn't even know they offered a Coastal version of the 6000 series. The $11,597 for 11 windows is what I would expect for the CWS 8100 series, but it sounds like they really raked you over the coals to even get to that price. 5 hours, I have better things to do with my time...

If HD could prove to me that their install crew would do a great job with my project, I would seriously consider that option. $8400 for 11 impact windows is a fair price IMO.

The 4 to 6 months from CWS is also a real problem.

Single hungs used to be the red headed stepchild of windows...however that has changed. Some SHs are now really well made and can achieve performance data that far exceeds double hungs (because you have less moving parts and less places for air to enter etc.) I would let the specific window series data drive my decision. Air infiltration rate, U-value, design pressure would be the three data points I would look at...

Dane - Site Editor - from 2021

CWS vs vs Simonton

Hi, We are looking to replace large sliers (8 ‘ and 9’) and windows in our beach front condo in St Augustine FL. There is less than $2000 difference in total cost from two contractors, one using CWS and one using Simonton. So its the CWS series 8100, 8200 and 8800 vs Simonton storm breaker Plus The Simonton is offering a lifetime warranty(which is only as good as long as he is in business?)

Can you give me some basic insight into these two window manufacturers? I am snowblind reading reviews on line. Thanks so much.

Laurie - Homeowner - from 2018

[Website Editor Reply]

Laurie, Both CWS and Simonton have relatively strong reputations in the industry. CWS is a MUCH smaller operation -- Simonton is the largest manufacturer in the business. I'd probably give the nod to CWS in terms of their impact windows, but I'd give the nod to Simonton in terms of overall reputation and strength as a company.

Both companies make lots of window series. The CWS 8000 series is a good impact window. Likewise the Simonton Storm Breaker Plus is a solid impact window/door as well. So I think you have to good options, so kudos to you for that! Assuming the installation quality is equal, I'd go with the less expensive option. If there is a significant difference in the reputation and track record of the company doing the work then this would add a wrinkle to the equation.

Dane - Website Editor - from 2018

Custom Window Systems vs PGT

Hi, we recently got bids for CWS and PGT for three sets of Hurricane Non-Impact window series. The quotes are for six 73 x 52 windows (in three pairs across the front of our home). The CWS windows quoted are for 8100 Windpact Plus vinyl single hungs. The PGT windows are 5500 vinyl single hung.

The estimate from Zager (CWS bid) is approx. $8800. While the one from Weather Tite for PGT is $12,800. Weather Tite Windows Reviews

This is also for the replacement of one cast windowsill inside and out. We are being told the PGT window is a better window, that the vinyl will not discolor and that the slider and locking mechanism are better quality. Seems like a big difference in money. What are your thoughts? PS We live about 2 miles from the Gulf of Mexico in Seminole, FL. Thanks.

Fraser - Homeowner - from 2018

[Website Editor Reply]

Fraser, I would say that PGT has a bit better name and reputation than CWS, but not by much. I would say the two windows you have bids for are very close in quality. So I'd do the CWS if I were you and save yourself some money.

Dane - Website Editor - from 2018

CWS Windows Reviews

Hi Dane, my husband and I are contemplating adding a Florida room to our home. The contractor was here today to give us a quote, and told me he would use are the CWS 8200 series. Since this room is going to be 90 percent glass, I really want to make sure we have at least a mid-grade window.

I know that CWS has a good rating when it comes to their impact windows. I'm wondering, what is your opinion regarding the 8200 series. Is this a quality brand, or is it a low-grade category window?

Marie - Homeowner - from 2016

[Site Editor's Response]

Marie, the 8200 is quite a nice impact window, assuming you like how the window looks. My own opinion is that it's nice looking, nothing crazy, but nice lines and a clean design. I like that the window comes in a number of interior colors that you can choose from and the performance data is quite solid. The window has a design pressures of 60, which is excellent. CWS has a very good reputation in the industry. All in all, if you like and trust the people doing your installation, I think you are choosing a quality impact window for your Florida home!

Dane - Site Editor - from 2016

CWS Impact Windows

Hello, we met with an installer and they offered us the CWS 8200 series. We were told it is rated for 150 mph winds.

Do these windows have a good build quality? Would these be considered entry-level or a top brand?


Andy - Homeowner - from 2021

[Site Editor's Answer]

Andy, the CWS 8200 series impact window is quite good. Comparable to other quality impact windows out there such as the PGT WinGuard, Soft-Lite Armor Impact series, and the Simonton StormBreaker Plus. These would all be considered high quality impact window options.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2021

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CWS Doors Reviews

-- Estimated CWS Patio Door Price: $1,600 to $2,750 installed --
(assumes medium patio door and normal installation)

CWS Doors

Hi Dane, I purchased a condo with a CWS dark brown vinyl storm door which has 2 vertical glass sections, with the bottom section moveable to accommodate a screen. The size is 24 3/4 W &29 3/8 H.

Unfortunately there was no screen left behind. Do you have a suggestion where I could get one? Perhaps Lowes' or Home Depot? Would appreciate your steering me in the right direction. Thank you.

Marge - Homeowner - from 2020

[Website Editor Reply]

Marge, I think you're on the right track. I'd start with a local home improvement store, call them up and ask if they make custom sized screens. Lots of them do, although I'm not sure about the bigger home improvement places like Lowes or HD.

You should be able to find a smaller company like Ace Hardware etc. that will offer this service at an affordable rate.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2020

Custom Window Systems Patio Doors

Hi, I’m replacing a sliding glass door in a house in Destin Florida. As a complete novice, I have no idea whether this price is too high.

$6400 for 3 panels 143 x 80. Any advice is greatly appreciated!

Susan - Homeowner - from 2018

[Website Editor Reply]

Susan, I'm not sure if that too high, but it does appear to be quite expensive at first glance. I would recommend a few more bids to see how these compare. One big issue with patio doors is whether the door has to be custom made for the order. It sounds like the opening is probably not standard so this is probably the reason (one of them certainly) for the high cost.

Call up a bunch of companies and tell them the opening size and see if they can give you a ballpark quote -- they will probably want to come out to give you a formal bid, which is great. I would say local companies that carry PGT, Sunrise, Okna, Soft-Lite, Zen, Polaris, Vytec, and Simonton would all be good brands to pursue.

Collect your bids and then see if you can negotiate down the price.

Dane - Website Editor - from 2018

Connect with CWS Windows Dealers

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CWS Windpact Plus Series

The Windpact Plus is one of CWS's impact window series and considered quite a good hurricane window option.

Dane - Site Editor

CWS Windpact Plus Windows

Dane, I got 21 windows and received several bids but the installer I am most comfortable with recommended these two manufacturers above all others for single hung impact windows. The installer says the Soft-Lite window is a bit more energy efficient but probably almost negligible.. The CWS window has a less bulky frame and view area.

One other downside to the Soft-Lite product is they are 22 weeks out for delivery. Opinions?

CWS Window Cost: $31k (not sure if Stormstrong or WindPact)

Soft-Lite Barcelona Cost: $30k


Trey - Homeowner - from 2023

[Site Editor's Answer]

Hi Trey. So I tend to think much more highly of Soft-Lite as a brand but Windpact Plus Windows are very good. Price wise and quality wise I would say the Soft-Lite Barcelona impact window is the winner. Buuuuuut, 22 weeks to delivery is pretty brutal, especially given the time of year and storm sure to hit in the next four to five months. So it's a toss up for me -- probably the CWS option works from a delivery standpoint.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2023

Custom Window Systems vs Simonton

Hi Dane, I live in Clearwater Florida and would appreciate your advice on my 2 final choices/quotes. I am replacing 8 windows

Six 52x 37.5
One 62 x 36 and
One 38 x 26.
Stormbreaker plus quote: $9100
CWS quote: $9400
Installer is the same person.

I was told by the Installer that Stormbreaker plus windows has a perimeter trim which covers more of the glass. He says that CWS does not have this perimeter trim thus showing more glass. Is this true? Thank you.

Amy - Homeowner - from 2022

[Website Editor Reply]

Amy, I would say this is a coin flip for me, with a subtle push for the CWS Windpact option. I believe he is correct as far as the perimeter trim on the Stormbreaker. The glass area difference will be slight, but that can make a difference in how much light comes through.

Dane - Website Editor - from 2022

CWS Windguard Plus 8000

Hi Dane I'm looking at CWS.CC Windgaurd plus 8000 series. From FHIA

Would you give me your opinion on them ? I'm working on a budget.

Thank You.

John - Homeowner - from 2021

[Site Editor's Answer]

John, the WindPact Plus Series 8100 from Custom Window Systems is a very good impact window from everything I know. Well made and constructed. I would definitely consider this this options for my home (if I required impact windows or doors)

Dane - Site Editor - from 2021

CWS Windpact Plus

I have similar cost estimates from two companies. One is using the ESW Elite and the other CWS Windpact Plus (assuming this is also the glass they use in aluminum windows and doors, they have not clarified).

I am trying to determine which is the better protection. The CWS is an Argon filled window, but the ESW Elite is not.

Any info would help.


Bob - Homeowner - from 2020

[Website Editor Reply]

Bob, I have never really heard of ESW, so I can't comment on them. The CWS Windpact Plus is a strong impact window and one that I would thoroughly consider for my own home (if I needed an impact window and door). I googled "ews impact windows reviews" and very little came up.

I would always go with a more known brand when in doubt because there is more data available to make your decision.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2020

CWS Impact Window Reviews

Hello Dane/Tim, I have a 2800 sq ft under a/c home. One story with 19 single hungs, two upper moon shaped skylights (one over double front door entry and the other over the 3 panel sliding glass doors in livingroom) and two sliding glass doors (a double sliding glass door and oversized 3 panel sliding glass door) & a custom size cabana door with glass insert. Cabana Door is oversized on length but narrower than standard widths.

All the windows with exception of one small bath window are considered oversized. I was quoted by a FHIA representative a total of $63K with lifetime warranty on labor, vinyl windows and doors, accidental glass breakage, impact resistant hurricane glass breakage. Is the price reasonable? This is through CWS. I was told that PGT did not have the lifetime warranties that CWS was offering is this true? Your prompt response will be helpful because I only have 3 days to break the contract. I signed late yesterday evening.

Violi - Homeowner - from 2020

[Website Editor Reply]

Violi, you should definitely break the contract to give yourself some time to find out what the fair market price is for your project. With all of those custom doors, you might see a huge range in prices between the different dealers. It sounds like a realtively complex project, so my advise is to go slow and collect as much information and bids as possible.

PGT windows and doors carry a limited lifetime warranty...should be very similar to CWS. I would absoutely get a bid from PGT on their WinGuard window.

Also find a Simonton dealer and get a bid on their Stormbreaker Plus.

Other storm windows and doors include the Sunrise Coastal series, Soft-Lite Barcelona Impact Series, Soft-Lite Armor Impact Series, and the Stanek UltraExtreme series.

Not all will have dealers in your zip code, but a google search for "Sunrise windows in [your city, state]" (as an example) should bring up local companies who carry the brand. Do this for each brand you are interested in searching. Call them up, get the bid, and compare. Feel free to shoot your bids over to me and I'm more than happy to provide you with my take on what you have.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2020

CWS Windpact In Florida

I live in the Tampa Bay area and I'm having my vinyl windows replaced. My question has to do with double pane windows and they have to be hurricane glass. Give me your ideas, thank you.

Ron - Homeowner - from 2020

[Website Editor Reply]

Hi Ron, my top picks for storm windows and doors include the Sunrise Coastal window series, Soft-Lite Barcelona Impact Series, Soft-Lite Armor Impact Series, PGT WinGuard series, Stanek UltraExtreme series, CWS Windpact series, and the Simonton Stormbreaker series.

Dane - Website Editor - from 2020

General CWS Reviews

CWS Window Compliant

I have CWS windows. One of them evidently has the seal broken. I was wondering what replacing it cost. They are about 12 years old. Thank you, Shar.

Shar - Homeowner - from 2020

[Website Editor Reply]

Shar, do I search for "CWS windows reviews in your city and state" and see if any local dealers come up. I'm assuming one will. Give them a call and see if they have an answer for you.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2020

CWS In Florida

Dane, Tim, Good afternoon. I have been following your website for sometime and have read over your reviews of various companies. I have looked over the companies and the models you have reviewed and recommended, but unfortunately for me all your recommendation are for those residing in the northeast. I reside in North Florida and most of your recommendation are not applicable to me.

I was hoping that you could take a moment responding to my email and review a company or two and their models/series that would be applicable to me. Thank you in advance and I appreciate your advice and assistance.

PJ - Homeowner - from 2019

[Site Editor's Answer]

PJ, in Florida I usually recommend PGT, CWS, Simonton and Ply Gem. The first three make both impact and non impact windows that should serve your purposes. I would stick to their mid range or premium series (ask each of the reps who comes to visit what those specific models would be.)

All four of the companies I mentioned make some of the best vinyl windows available. Along with quality installation, you will be well served.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2019

CWS Window Bid vs. AmCraft

Tim, I have a fairly complex set of windows and work that needs to be done for the install. I got a quote from CWS today on 18 windows for $22,640. Then with some slight trickery of the pen the quote was changed to $19,936, which is still too much for my budget. The CWS salesperson carries PGT and claims that PGT line is 8-10% more than the CWS line.

It's so hard to trust what's truth from fiction with this industry. AmCraft Windows came in around $16,500. The CWS windows were nice but averaged $1250.00 per window. I feel like they were trying to rip me off.

Again, thanks for your insight.

Meredith - Homeowner - from 2018

[Website Editor Reply]

Meredith, I agree that the CWS bid is too high—although honestly I don't know much about your project. AmCraft isn't what I would consider a very good brand and I would be wary about going with them. If the AmCraft bid is only $3.5K above CWS though, the CWS bid might not be out of line. If you need work to the sills and or frames, the per window cost can go way way up. That's not the fault of the window company, but a function of the condition of your home.

I would say you need two or three more bids to round out the estimates. Take a look at our recommended brands and do a simple google search to see what is available in your area. Once you have the bids collected, send them over and I'll throw in my two cents.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2018

CWS Windows vs PGT

Dane, I live in an association that requires replacement windows be the same color as the original single pane bronze aluminum. They can be vinyl, which I prefer, but must match the color of the rest of the association windows. Do you know of vinyl material that is a bronze or even tan color in bulk.

I have looked at PGT and Custom Window Systems, but it seems that all extruded vinyl for the frames is white in color, but can be painted on the exterior facing surface. I am concerned about the adhesion and life of the paint on the vinyl. Are there any window fabricators that make in bulk colored vinyl product? Your advice and help is appreciated. Thank you.

Michael - Homeowner - from 2018

[Website Editor Reply]

Michael, I would be wary about painting vinyl, it can void the warranty in some cases. Off hand, I don’t know which companies in Florida offer an exterior bronze vinyl window. (I’m assuming Florida because of your mention of CWS and PGT).

I took a look at the PGT website and found that they offer the PGT 5400 series and the double hung 5460 in a bronze finish. Can you go back to the local dealer and ask them to custom order it for you? It’s possible they don’t know (you’d be amazed what the “pros” don’t know about their own product sometimes).

>PGT single Hung Windows

Unfortunately, custom color finishes can add quite a bit to the price tag, but if that’s what your HOA requires, then you don’t have much choice.

If this doesn’t work, I would start googling local window dealers in your area and simply asking them what brands they carry and if the brands can be ordered in a bronze exterior finish. Make sure to ask how that affects the cost to make sure you know what you’re looking at from the get go.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2018

Custom Window Systems vs EAS

Hello Tim, I’ve been on your website and really appreciate the education that it provides. I just had a window replacement guy out at the house to give a quote. He was really pushing EAS windows. I noticed that many people had asked about those windows in 2016 and was wondering if you have any better feel for the product?

So far, I like the CWS product but can’t get any intel on EAS window. If you have any updated information I’d be grateful for any input you might have. Thanks for your time and efforts.

Kind Regards,

Nat - Homeowner - from 2017

[Site Editor's Answer]

Nat, I don't know anything more about EAS windows than what I knew in 2016. My one line response is that they seem to be a decent window, but I don't hear much about them. I would be inclined to endorse CWS windows over EAS for the simple reason that I know CWS makes a very solid and reliable product. Of course, if there was a big price difference between the two, I think you'd certainly have to take that into consideration.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2017

CWS Windows Complaint

We are in the process of having hurricane impact windows and doors installed in our home in Southern FL. Project is ongoing as I write. The company has used CWS for our family room. The doors are of a very sturdy, nice-looking quality. However, they are tremendously difficult to open and close, requiring two hands to pull on the handle. The installers concur that they are difficult to open and close.

The company who is doing the project has tried several "possible solutions", none of which has worked. They have not yet tried installing different wheels but have mentioned that. Is it possible that a slider should be so difficult to open just due to its weight? That is the story we are being give. Concern is that youngsters and people older than ourselves would have tremendous difficulty using these doors.

Joanne - Homeowner - from 2017

[Site Editor's Answer]

Joanne, a slider shouldn't be difficult to open or close, or at least I've never heard sounds like something internally was put together wrong. I agree that you should continue to work with CWS to find a solution that works. I'm not quite sure what remedies are out there though :(

Dane - Site Editor - from 2017

CWS Windows vs PGT

Hi. I need 5 impact windows (preferable white vinyl framed) installed for my home which was built in 1981. The rest of the windows were replaced when I bought the home in 2014 by the GC who did my remodel, as they were leaking and it could not wait.

The dimensions of the ones I need are;
)3) 23 x 70 casement type
(1) 52 x 38 single hung
(1) 26 x 38 single hung

I am looking at quotes for PGT and CWS. I read through your CWS windows reviews, but couldn't quite gauge whether you recommend one over the other?

Pamela - Homeowner - from 2017

[Site Editor's Answer]

Hi, in terms of impact windows, PGT and CWS both offer a nice selection and array. I would put them both in the quite good category and I think they both offer a nice long term value for your money. I think PGT has a bit better brand recognition, but I wouldn't say their windows are any better.

I would definitely get a bid from both -- different reps/companies may have access to different models, get different pricing etc. This also gives you a great way to work the prices on both down by playing them off against one another. (I would love to go with your company, but you are more expensive than the CWS -- if you could match them, I would sign with you, etc.)

Get a few bids, work the prices down, and then pick the window you want with the best options and cost.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2017

Custom Window Systems vs Jeld Wen

Hi Tim. We are in the midst of looking at different brands of sliding vinyl windows to replace the old windows. Recently, the brown vinyl stripper started to warp. By the way, we live in PA . I read a lot about PGT and CWS brands on your website.

One of the contractor suggested Jeld Wen brand windows. I read on the website that Jeld Wen windows are not the best vinyl windows. Can you suggest a mid range price vinyl windows?

Tracy - Homeowner - from 2016

[Site Editor's Answer]

Tracy, PGT and CWS are mainly available on the coast, particularly in Florida. Jeld Wen makes good doors and a decent wood clad window, but I'm not a big fan of their vinyl windows. Since you are in Pennsylvania, I would suggest looking at Okna, Sunrise, Zen, Soft-Lite and perhaps Polaris.

Certainly some of these will be available and sold through local companies. All of these vinyl window brands should offer a series in your price range. I would particularly recommend the Okna 400, which is a great entry level vinyl window, better than most manufacturer's mid range offering.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2016

CWS Windows vs Simonton VantagePointe

We got two quotes on 14 windows. I included the measurements and location of the windows on the yellow sheet attached above. I have also attached the warranty info on the Simonton Windows from home depot which is a double hung and priced out at $8500 for 14 windows - the ones from FHA are single hung CWS and are priced out at just over $12,000. I am leaning towards the CWS option but I wanted to find out if $12,000 is reasonable. Thanks for your help and I hope you have a great night!!!!

Jeromy - Homeowner - from 2016

[Site Editor's Response]

Jeromy, that's a big price difference. I like the single hungs from CWS and they are going to be a much better than the Home Depot Simonton (I'm assuming it's either the Daylight Max or the VantagePointe series). The Simonton is actually not a bad window, it's a decent middle of the road vinyl window, although I'm always very wary about the installation you might be getting from the subs through HD.

I would say this, either go with the Simonton and find an experienced installer yourself or see if you can get that CWS bid down to $10K. Use the HD bid as leverage, say something like, I have a bid on Simonton (leave out that it's from HD) that is $8500 and I know you can't match it, but I need you to work with me on the price because I really want to go with you. I feel like that would be worth the price difference. You may also want to get one more bid to see where it falls in that price spectrum (and you could use it as additional leverage with the CWS company.)

Tim - Site Editor - from 2016

Jeromy's Response

Hello Dane, thanks for the response. FHA actually reached out and they now have a double hung CWS and they are able to install them for $10,750. How does that sound? Have a great weekend!!

[Site Editor's Response]

Jeromy, that price is much more in line with what I was thinking. I would go back and tell them if they can do it for $10,250, you will sign today and see what they say. If they refuse, I think you still have a fair price.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2016

CWS Windows vs Storm Tight

I have been researching hurricane impact windows and have become thoroughly confused. We spoke to someone at Storm Tight and though we were going to go with them, but we are now having second thoughts. What are the best hurricane rated impact windows we can buy?

Lisa - Homeowner - from 2016

[Site Editor's Response]

Lisa, I don't know much about Storm Tight, I did a bit of checking and they seem ok, I noticed a few people had some negative reviews that centered on slick sales presentations and poor customer service, but that doesn't mean much. In terms of the windows they sell, I couldn't say because it looks like they probably resell windows instead of manufacture them themselves (which isn't necessarily a bad thing).

I'm assuming you are in Florida based on Storm Tight's location. If it were me, I would search for local companies that carry PGT windows, Custom Window Systems (CWS), and perhaps someone who carries the Simonton StormBreaker Plus or the Simonton Impressions 9800 (you will need to get a couple upgrades to get the 9800 hurricane rated).

I would suggest getting a couple more bids and seeing how it compares to the Storm Tight quote.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2016

PGT vs CWS Windows

Hello Tim, I have to replace 17 standard windows in my house for Hurricane Impact windows. Home Depot quote me $20,000 for Vinyl PGTs with a lifetime warranty. Any other better options out there using the Ygreene program? Thank you.

Pablo - Homeowner - from 2016

[Site Editor's Response]

Pablo, I'd never heard of the Ygrene Works project, it looks intriguing at first glance, I'll have to do more research. It appears that it's simply a financing program so that wouldn't help with the overall cost (although certainly it would help alleviate that initial cost payment).

Home Depot windows cost seems high, $1175 each, I think you can do better than that, although I don't have any project specifics to back that up. Here's what I would do, call up PGT and see who their local rep is in your area and have them give you a bid. Do the same with CWS, Custom Window Systems, and see what their bid comes in at. The other affordable hurricane window that is available throughout Florida is the StormBreaker Plus from Simonton, if you google "StormBreaker Plus Jacksonville Florida", or whatever city you live in, you should be able to quickly and easily find a contractor who carries this brand.

Get these 3 bids and see how they compare. Typically, HD has great prices, but I would go somewhere else for the installation, the big box stores don't have a very good reputation for the subcontractors they use (not always the case, but I wouldn't take the chance with my home.)

Tim - Site Editor - from 2016

CWS Impact Windows Reviews

Do you have any suggestions on which brands to look at for our cold Michigan winters? Also we have a home in sw florida and are considering building a home there and would like a product for that area as well but must be hurricane rated. Have a great day and thanks again.

Lorelei - Homeowner - from 2015

[Site Editor's Response]

Lorelei, here are 4 manufacturers that should have dealers or local window companies in Michigan that carry their windows. Okna, Sunrise, Soft-Lite and Wallside. I would try to get a bid from as many of these companies as possible to maximize your chances of a high quality window at a reasonable price. Typically, the mid range series is going to offer the best long term value.

In terms of hurricane rated windows in Florida, I would suggest looking at Custom Window Systems, PGT and Simonton. All of them are definitely available throughout Florida and offer nice quality vinyl options at a mid range price.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2015

CWS Hurricane Windows

We live in the southwest section of Florida and recently received a bid for hurricane windows on our home - 10 windows in all. The company that bid it out had two options, either the WinGuard from PGT or the Wind Pact Plus from Custom Window Systems. The CWS window costs, which were for single hungs, were $7,500 total, the PGT windows price was $800 more. I had definitely heard good things about PGT, but I've never heard of CWS and was curious what their deal is and whether the prices seem in line. Btw, I had a quote from Gorell 5400 hurricane windows that was more than double this!

Braden - Homeowners - from 2012

[Contractor's Response]

The CWS and PGT bids you got don't seem out of line in terms of price, the Gorell price bid is ridiculous - do not go with that ridiculous bid regardless of what they say. In terms of CWS, they are very high quality. I've personally installed hundreds of them (thousands? not sure...). I've had very few issues with them and when they did the company worked with me to make sure that everything was worked out to the customers satisfaction. I have no qualms recommending them.

Holland - Contractor - from 2012

Options In Florida

Vinyl windows are getting more popular in Florida, but they aren't available in a lot of colors. They are pretty much white, beige, and tan. They tend to be either laminated or painted, and both have some drawbacks. There are only two manufacturers that have decent designs and color choices, Custom Window Systems and PGT windows. PGT makes a PremierVue series that isn't bad, and if that is window replacement cost is fair, look at their 500 series.

Ian - Contractor in Florida - from 2012

CWS Windows vs PGT Windows

We're looking at Custom Window Systems for our hurricane windows, but there isn't much out there on the company. I'm also wondering what other companies I should look at in Florida?

Renton - Homeowner - from 2012

[Contractor's Response]

CWS does make good hurricane windows and they are not too crazy in terms of cost (or they shouldn't be). I recently put a ton of single hungs into a home in Florida and the homeowner was very pleased. They have a very cool latch and auto lock feature that is quite nice. The other company you should >look at is PGT, which is my go to window. It's more expensive and some homeowners just can't afford to go that route (in which case I suggest the Custom Window Systems). One downside to the CWS is no double hung because it's more difficult to make them hurricane code complaint.

I'm very bummed that we can no longer get Gorell Windows (out of business), the 5400 that they sold was a very hefty window and very well made. For very cost-conscious customers I would suggest the 9500 with several upgrades to make it code compliant. A very uninspiring window, but it does get the job done.

Bill - Installer - from 2012

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