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Is this a case of Elephants never forget?

DoRight's picture

I am not sure I have heard a kind word about Pella windows on this forum, ever.  Is this a case of elephants never forget?  Is this a case where everyone's opinion of Pella windows are based on the long since over and done with case action law suit against an admittedly major screw-up on Pella's ledger?  I am in no way defending Pella, and in no way argueing with anyone's opinion on the subject.  I just wonder if people have any RECENT experiences with Pella which drives their opinion.  Or is the distain driven by Pella's fit and finish or service and not jsut their past screw-up.

Thanks to all with respectful replies. 


I put in some Pellas a few (post #207399, reply #1 of 6)

I put in some Pellas a few years ago, they are still good.  They replaced "rot pruf" anderson windows that rotted out after 60 years.  Time will tell.  I suspect the andersons lasted longer than the Pellas will.

Here's your respectful reply. (post #207399, reply #2 of 6)

Why I don't know.

I've replaced many (how many?-many) Pella clad casements of PRE-late 90's that failed prematurely-rot in lower area of sash behind cladding in both unpainted bottoms as well as painted.

These and prior vintage had the cladding overlapped at the sides WRONG.  It appears this enabled them to have the same sash for either right or left hand as well as the same sash for awning style-no difference at all no matter how you turned them.

All of this style had the ability to catch water at the clad overlap.


Just lately-replaced 2000 and later vintage (a few) that had the cladding properly over lapped (starting at the bottom of the sash and going up-just like flashing).

Same result-rotted bottoms-these few all had paint on the non clad bottoms of the sash.

Appears the seals at glass to cladding shrunk back, lost seal, took in water.

Also, no or little tip to the bottom frames, thus water sits there till it drys out.

So, which would you pay for and install?


Back when our local distributor was still in bus., I used to recommend and install many Pella products.  However, over time-lost faith along with the local distributor which really was a class operation.  No local support and a problem product-started using others.

A Great Place for Information, Comraderie, and a Sucker Punch.

Remodeling Contractor just outside the Glass City.


Little tip to bottom frames" (post #207399, reply #3 of 6)

Little tip to bottom frames" - Do you mean the outside sill had little slope? Interesting that the 2000ish windows also had a problem. I know a couple, original to the house, with Pellas beautiful after 35 years. Probably all wood. So is the cladding the problem with these windows? Seems so. I would have thought posters would be all over this thread as dozens have damned Pella here over the years.


Little tip (post #207399, reply #4 of 6)

There's no sill on the casements.

Properly maintained original wood pellas with the exposed hinges (again-casements) are find.

Did the cladding cause the problems I mentioned-sure looks like it-the clad to glass failed and or/ the overlap being backwards let in water that had nowhere to go.

Many of the casements had just one prime coat or none at all on the unclad covered bottoms of the sash.



Limited numbers of professionals on the site is the reason for minimal response.

A Great Place for Information, Comraderie, and a Sucker Punch.

Remodeling Contractor just outside the Glass City.


Minimum of professional? (post #207399, reply #5 of 6)

Perhaps.  It used to be that if you spelled half of the word Pel ... you would get 6 angry posts.

I wonder if all clad windows suffer the same fate (spelling?) as Pellas?

All wood would be nice on the inside but I hate the thought of painting the outside.  But ......


No (post #207399, reply #6 of 6)

All clads do not suffer the same fate.  Our Marvins are fine-Installed in 89.

But, prior-unclad Marvins had a problem with the treatment of their wood-rotted out big time.

Pella had a period as well.  Whether it's a large problem, can't say. 

Andersen, I've never done repairs on like I have for many other manufacturers-all water intrusion related.


End grain mostly, but other cuts as well-running with the grain-sash dado's that were never primed (and couldn't be if they weren't done at assembly.

Much of the Pella history of bad press here previously was from poor distributor problems. 

A Great Place for Information, Comraderie, and a Sucker Punch.

Remodeling Contractor just outside the Glass City.