If you live near the coast and are looking to purchase replacement windows for your home, there is something important you should know before you sign a contract for new windows. Most replacement window manufacturers don’t cover the hardware finish on windows and patio doors installed in coastal homes in their product warranties, or if they do, the coverage is often for a far shorter period of time.
What constitutes a coastal home exactly? Typically, a replacement window manufacturer will classify any home within one to two miles of the ocean as a coastal home, not just oceanfront properties. Every manufacturer has different clauses regarding coastal homes in their warranties, and they can usually be found in sections that list “exceptions” or “limitations” in a company’s stated warranty.
For example, Simonton guarantees the finishes on their window and door hardware for 10 years in their warranty—unless you live within two miles of the ocean. Then, your hardware is only covered for one year. Some replacement window manufacturers, such as Milgard, limit their warranty coverage for windows installed in “highly corrosive environments,” so you may not even know if windows installed in your home would be fully covered.
As you are probably aware, if you live near the ocean, the salty air can corrode certain metals, such as brass, stainless steel, or aluminum. The hardware on replacement windows and patio doors is no exception, which is why a manufacturer typically won’t guarantee the finish on product hardware beyond a certain amount of time.
If you live near the coast, it is important to know what the warranties on the various replacement window brands cover. You can ask your San Diego replacement window salesman to supply you with warranty information on the products he or she has quoted, or you can always go online and find that information for yourself. Even if you are provided a print copy of a manufacturer’s warranty, you still may want to go online and find the warranty. Most online copies are “searchable” and you can easily search for keywords like “coast” or “ocean” to find their warranty limitations that are specific to coastal homes.
Your San Diego replacement window dealer may have a warranty of their own that affects coastal homeowners, so be sure to ask. Michal Bohm, owner of BM Windows in San Diego, has decided to offer some additional coverage for products installed in coastal areas that is lacking in the warranties of the product manufacturers he uses.
Bohm says, “At our company, we have made the decision to cover standard hardware on any of the replacement windows and sliding patio doors we install, regardless of where the home is located, through our own company warranty. We saw this as an opportunity to offer something that very few San Diego replacement window companies or replacement window manufacturers were offering. It’s one of the many ways we show that we care about our customers—by taking care of them long after we have made the sale.”