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Universal Windows Direct Reviews

Read 2023 Universal Windows Direct Reviews and discover what consumers and contractors think of their windows and siding.

Have a question on window quotes, prices, or reviews? Send our site editor Dane your questions, and get personalized answers that can save you thousands of dollars on your project!

Additional Resources: Universal Windows Direct Prices

Editor's Universal Windows Direct Review

Universal Windows Direct is an Ohio based company based out of Cleveland. The company primarily sells the UniShield Plus, which is really a Polaris ThermalWeld series -- quite a good vinyl window. I wouldn't put in the top tier of windows, but it's not far off the UltraWeld series, which is the step up series. Universal Windows Direct also offers windows, siding, doors and windows to a regional customer base.

Universal Windows Direct Windows get 4.4 out of 5 stars based on the 10 Universal Windows Direct reviews below.

Dane - Site Editor

Universal Windows Direct vs. Apex

I have Universal Windows Direct, Apex Energy Solutions, and Inside Out (Anderson windows) coming out this week for window quotes. I am looking to replace 8-10 double hung windows. Are there any other window companies I should consider?  I am not interested in Bee Windows. I do not like their pressured approach to sales. I am not interested in Pella windows either. I will not go to a big box store because installation is as (or more) important to me as the window quality itself.

Karl - Homeowner - from 2022

[Site Editor's Answer]

Karl, here are my good and great window recommendations…

Dane or Tim

Dane - Site Editor - from 2022

UniShield Plus Windows From Universal Windows Direct

Dane, I am replacing 4 window in a condo unit in NJ. I received a price quote of $5028 or $4525 cash for UniShield Plus windows from Universal Windows Direct. Your price estimator gives a price of $2280 for this project. Are these quality windows, and do you think the price is fair?

Pete - Homeowner - from 2022

[Site Editor's Answer]

Pete, I would consider this window a premium window and if you are getting full frame replacement, then I get a price of $3520, which I think is fair. Anytime I see a price above $1K per window I advise getting a few more quotes to find out what's going on. It could be a fair price depending on what needs to be done on the existing frames and/or stops. It could just be a bid that is too high. Only way to know is to get a few more bids.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2022

Universal Windows Direct Bid

Hello! I live in the Indianpolis area and am trying to figure out replacement windows on a foreclosure I recently purchased. All current windows are low end vinyl installed when it was built 25 years ago and only a few still have kept their seals so the place isn’t holding in the AC at all and my energy bill definitely shows it. I plan to be here 30-40 years so am looking for a long term solution window ideally but have lots of projects to fix this house right now so the budget is strained.

Universal Windows Direct came out today and identified 19 windows (with the internal crossbars as they are required by my HOA) and a sliding glass door needing replaced and quoted verbally at just shy of $25k(!)for “their most energy efficient windows”. Big plus was the windows were lifetime of my ownership plus 30 years to the next owner so they certainly stand behind them it appears. He wasn’t pushy and that’s great too but I also didn’t get the bid in writing so I don’t know the exact window model as he understood I was early in my research mode so he was more chatty and telling me about windows in general. I think if I call, I can get that exact info easily though. He said the bid was good until the state fair ends at the end of this month. If I do even one window now, they lock in the price for all the others for up to two years, which is interesting of them to offer too.

1-In this current climate, is that honestly what I should expect to pay for “forever” windows?

2- Bee Windows and Renewal by Anderson are supposed to come out next week but your site gives me a hint they are even more expensive. Should I just cancel with them?

3- Who should I be talking to for “forever” windows in Indiana where it’ll be zero degrees this winter and 95 in the summer? Any other factors I’m missing to look out for?

Love your site! Thanks for the tips!

Chad - Homeowner - from 2022

[Site Editor's Answer]

Chad, Universal Windows Direct sells an okay window, but not probably what I would recommend for a long term stay. Get the bid from Renewal, but prepare for it to be like $2K per window. I would search through the following list...

Dane - Site Editor - from 2022

[Chad's Reply]

Thank you for your response! I’ll be working my way down the list as suggested but had one point of confusion - Universal Windows Direct called back for a “special rebate” to adjust their price to $21,300 and I got a chance to ask a few more questions about what the window was exactly- it’s the Polaris Thermalweld apparently! So does that change your thoughts on them at all since that is then listed in the good quality list you provided - or am I missing something else about them here?

And if they offer full lifetime replacement including labor, what isn’t good about them in the term term stay scenario? Are they just hard to work with to actually get free replacements? I’m learning a lot about this overall business and appreciate your insights to help fuel my convos with each of them.

Thanks again!

Chad - Homeowner - from 2022

[Site Editor's Answer]

Chris, yes that definitely changes my opinion! Excellent window and the drop in price is great. They have a good warranty for sure -- it's just that I'm always suspicious of whether in year 15 they are running out to change out a window...that's the cynic in me though.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2022

Universal Windows Direct Classic Costs

Thank you for the information. Currently 2 quotes fit our price range; Universal Windows Direct/Unishield Classic ($1930) or Plus ($2326) and Lowes/ United Series 5900 ($2833). Your thoughts?

- Homeowner - from 2022

[Site Editor's Answer]

I think the Universal Windows Direct/Unishield Classic for $1930 would be my call.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2022

What Windows Does Universal Windows Direct Sells

So how do I get my project done without paying these ridiculous markups. I used your estimating tool and it gave me a total of approximately $4,600. Do I buy windows and then separately find an installer. Do the brands you gave me have a list of installers they work with.

By the way I used your link below and the first call I received was from Universal Windows. They immediately started in about the space age technology that goes into their windows.

Richard - Homeowner - from 2021

[Site Editor's Answer]

Richard, the cost calculators are no longer correct -- at least right now they aren't...not with what's happened in this industry and the demand. The brands I sent all use local dealers or install companies so you have to find the local company who sells those products in your zip code.

Universal Windows often sells the Polaris Ultraweld, which actually is a VERY good window -- space age though -- I don't think so :)

One of the reasons all the prices are going up is that the supply costs have gone up -- it's a vicious cycle that's causing the inflationary trends we are seeing.

I think the only real piece of advise I have is to collect four or five bids and then see what looks to be the best bang for your buck.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2021

Universal Windows Direct Prices

Hello Dane and team. Bit of seemingly simple situation. I just bought a condo in 63043 Missouri, and it has two windows in need of replacement. Ground floor, garden style, double hung. I've gotten quotes from 3 prospects:

Universal Windows Direct: $2007
Was told they use Polaris, and no other company in the area uses them. He didn't specify but I suspect it's their ThermaSheild relabeled as UltraSheild Plus.
14-16 weeks estimated time

Window Nation: $1965
They use HarborLight's midrange tier I believe.
14 -16 weeks estimated time

Penny Window: $1253
They are local, and told me they use MGM Industries (?) for their windows but I can't find much out there on them.
22 - 24 weeks estimated time

I'm having a devil of a time determining if $1k per window is absurd, or if this is the price paid for getting this started in the middle of a pandemic constrained supply chain. Overall reviews for Universal and WN are fairly similar also (generally positive, with a few noteworthy experiences some have had with both).

I like Penny Windows price, but the timeline is crazy, and I'm unsure of their window type and quality (other than what I found on MGMs website). They also will charge me for getting the county permit they need to do this work. But $1453 is still a better price.

Do you have any other suggestions, or clarifications? Are these quotes reasonable? I need to get and show SOMETHING to my county, or otherwise they won't issue my occupancy permit.

Aarin - Homeowner - from 2021

[Site Editor's Answer]

Aarin, a decent me a favor and look up Zen Windows of St. Louis. They get great reviews and let's see where they come in using their Nirvana series (really a Soft-Lite Classic, which is a very solid vinyl window.)

I'd be interested to know how their pricing compares because the bids I've seen out of them lately have seemed pretty fair...

Dane - Site Editor - from 2021

Prodigy Energy Saver Plus XpS Windows by Unicorp

What do you think about Prodigy Energy Saver Plus XpS Windows by Unicorp?

Krystal - Homeowner - from 2021

[Site Editor's Answer]

Krystal, I actually don’t know much about this window. I did some searching and they seem to get good reviews, but beyond this I don’t claim to know. I wish I knew more.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2021

Universal Windows Direct and Unishield Plus

Tim, I am looking at replacing my 21 windows which are double hung original 1971 single pane windows with storms. Apex came out and quoted $17500 or $830 per window. Seems high but I got another quote from Universal Windows Direct for their Unishield Plus for $16500. This is a double pane window vs Apex triple pane.

Both quotes seem high to me. What other brands should I get quotes on?

Ad a reference I live in Indianapolis Indiana and plan on being in the home another 5-15 years.

Thank you very much

Steve - Homeowner - from 2020

[Site Editor's Answer]

At first glance, they do seem high. Here are my suggestions for who to get a quote from:

[List Included Here]

Tim - Site Editor - from 2020

Polaris Ultraweld From Universal Windows Direct

Hi Dane, I may have gotten myself in a mess. I have been setting through presentations trying to learn about windows. I finally caved 2 days ago and felt that I was pressured and may not have made a good decision. I was hoping you could get back to me today, because I have a 3 day cancellation period without penalty. I have 18 windows I am replacing. No additives just Glacier White vinyl window. There are 15 double hung, 1 slider, and 3 small arches.

This is for thePolaris UltraWeld (I believe). It is through Universal Windows Direct. I have a bid for $14,800. After reading your reviews it seems high and should be more in the $10,000 - $11,000 range? I did contact the sales manager and she informed me I could get the UltraWeld window cheaper, but it would come with the metal spacer not the super spacer that is made exclusively for their company.

Also, I would not receive the Lifetime Warranty no questions asked and is transferrable for 30 years to the next homeowner. Going with the UltraWeld with the metal spacer, I would only receive a 20 year prorated warranty. Is this all true and what do you think I should be paying for these windows? I am in the St. Louis, Missouri area.

Cindy - Homeowner - from 2019

[Site Editor's Answer]

Cindy, a couple of points here. One, I personally would not go with any company that puts pressure on your to sign today--unless its a smoking deal and they are trying to keep their installation team working (ie filling in a day of work.) This isn't the case here. That bids strikes me as pretty high.

The Polaris Ultraweld comes with the Intercept spacer, which is quite good. It is a stainless alloy, which makes it pretty equivalent to the super spacer.

Polaris provide a Lifetime Warranty on their windows, but you would not perhaps get the same labor warranty (which is never lifetime). Check out the Polaris warranty with this link -- it's a page long and specifies quite a bit. Polaris Warranty

I'd get a few more bids to see what else is out there and wha prices are offered. I think you can get a better deal. Google "Simonton windows in Cleveland, Ohio" (if you don't live in Cleveland, use your specific city and state) and see what local companies come up who carry the following recommended brands. Sunrise, Okna, Soft-Lite, Polaris, Kensington, Vytex, and Zen.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2019

Universal Windows Direct Polaris UniShield Plus

Universal Windows Direct sells the Polaris UniShield Plus, but I can't figure out which window this actually is. I check Polaris's website and they sell three windows—Polaris ValueSmart, the ThermaWeld and UltraWeld. I'm replacing 14 windows, all double hungs, and one sliding glass patio door. UWD bid out the project for $8310 and ProVia bid out the Endure for $14,200. Which is the better deal in your opinion?

Steven - Homeowner - from 2018

[Site Editor's Answer]

Steven, the Polaris UniShield Plus is I believe their ThermalWeld mid range window. It's a good mid range window. The ProVia Endure is better for sure, but there is a huge price difference. Assuming you like UWD and feel that their installation will be good, then that's what I'd go with.

You may want to look at more quotes.

Tim - Site Editor - from 2018

Polaris UniShield Plus vs. Okna 500 Deluxe

I am looking at 2 replacement windows by Universal Windows but different contractors. One is Okna 500 deluxe (energy saving package). The other is Polaris ( UniShield Plus). In your opinion, which are the better windows? The warranties are the same. Thank you for help.

Robert - Homeowner - from 2018

[Site Editor's Answer]

Robert, I would go with the Okna 500 DX over the Polaris Unishield Plus. Universal relabels the Polaris window and sells the Unishield Classic, which is the Polaris ValuSmart window and the UniShield Plus, which is their ThermalWeld. The ThermalWeld is a nice window, but the Okna 500 DX is the much better of the two.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2018

Universal Windows Direct Plus Vs. Apex Energy Solutions

Hello Dane, I'm in Charlotte NC and looking at replacing 22 windows. I have quotes from both Apex Energy Solutions and Universal Windows Direct Plus. They are close, but I'm trying to determine quality difference and anything else about the companies. Apex offers just the 1 product Insignia windows, and Universal has 4 types and we are looking at the 2nd level up (the plus).

Any thoughts or insights would be appreciated.


Mike - Homeowner - from 2018

[Site Editor's Answer]

Mike, I don't know enough about either company to give you a strong opinion either way. I tend to hear better things about Universal Windows Direct than about Apex Energy Solutions. Based on this, I would go with the Universal Windows Direct, but I would ask them to provide you with some performance data on the window series you are considering. I would pay particular attention to air infiltration, which should not be above .12.

That's sort of my over under for a decent mid range vinyl window. Feel free to send me the data and I'm happy to give you my opinion.

Dane - Site Editor - from 2018

Unishield Plus vs Ply Gem Windows

We are looking to replace our patio door. Do you recommend the Plygem or Unishield Plus? Thanks.

Mary - Homeowner - from 2016

[Site Editor's Response]

Mary, first off, let me apologize for how long it took to get back to you, the email fell through the cracks. I don't know a ton about Universal Windows Direct, but I did take a look at their website.

It appears that Ply Gem and Universal both make decent windows and doors, probably mid range quality for each. Ply Gem is obviously the bigger company and that has some positives in terms of warranty, overall strength of company and replacement parts.

Universal is much more regional and that has some advantages also - they will both sell the door and install the door so if there are any problems, you know actually who to go to. Assuming you like the Unishield Plus patio door and feel comfortable with their warranty and the installation team, I might go with them for a simple fact that they are responsible for the whole project and therefore it leaves little question as to who is responsible if something should go wrong in the future.

I'm assuming you are in Ohio and there are some excellent companies that sell patio doors in your area. Take a look at our Ohio replacement window link and get a few more bids from local companies that service your town or city if you would like some additional comparison pricing and options. I would put the first two or three companies on the list into the first tier and Wallside probably on par with the selections you have now. Good luck and let me know how it works out!

Dane - Site Editor - from 2016

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