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Great Lakes Window / Poor quality

1 30499 Tracy Road, Walbridge Ohio, United States Review updated:
Contact information:
Phone: 800-666-0000

Purchased 8 replacement windows less than 6 years ago. Over the last 3 years at least one of the windows has suffered a broken seal and mold is growing in between the dual panes of glass.

Great Lakes does send out replacement glass but I'm responsible for the cost of getting the new glass installed in the vinyl frame. They don't send a complete, ready to install pane.

3 of 8 windows (so far) is a horrible failure rate and I just hope to keep other prospective window buyers from purchasing the same low quality product I'm now stuck with.


More Great Lakes Window Complaints & Reviews

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  • Ar
      7th of Sep, 2009

    About 6 years ago we had a high-end PlyGem garden window installed as a replacement for a cheap, original construction wooden garden window. We went with gas-filled triple pane easy-clean glass with the insulation option on the outside bottom, and with oak base and interior trim. This is the best window/door on the house and we had only 2 years earlier spent over $30K on replacing all of our other windows and doors with Pella Designer series replacements. Don't get me wrong, the Pella stuff is good stuff, but the PlyGem garden window is a wonder of beauty and durability under extremely harsh weather extremes (golf ball size hail, high altitude UV, 100 degree summers, -15 degree winters, 3-foot snows).

    I can't recommend strongly enough the quality of materials and construction of the PlyGem garden window and its durability. BTW, it is PlyGem windows by Great Lakes Windows, not the other way around.

    Arvada, CO.

    +1 Votes
  • Ch
      15th of Nov, 2009

    I used to work for them and I can say the management sucks. People are trained to make windows as fast as possible and are not given the time to check for such things as seal failure in your case. If Its not broken or has a huge flaw by the time its at the end of the assembly line...guess what? Its going on a truck to be put in your home. I have been told to send defected materials because they will miss scheduled delivery if remade.

    -6 Votes
  • Gu
      25th of Jan, 2010

    I am a Great Lakes Windows dealer. I worked at the largest replacement window company in our state which died of big overhead in 2003, but some of us award winning workers decided to open a small overhead shop and still service the Great Lakes Window our former employer had sold 60, 000 of. We do this gladly and for free with the proven idea that people will recommend us and buy more windows from us. Your problem is that you don't know a good thing when you see it. Traco and Republic are gone, no warranty there. I am a Silverline dealer as well, the warranty has three sections and lettered A-W take away disclaimers basically saying they cover nothing if they don't want to. I have been to houses that have repurchased Marvin windows after the first claim of bad sealer only to have mold show up in a few years. Most of the companies won't cover anything after a few years. Most of them try to blame it on improper installation. Recently someone gave me a quote on the glass doctor for one small glass pack with a two year materials (only) warranty of $258 and Rapid Glass and other companies are like that. Most of us charge $150 trip charge at most for a large picture window or patio door glass and if there is another only $25 to $35 addtional. What you are whining about is a like a co- pay! You are so glad to finally get a company that answers the phone that you have lost your senses and think they should pay for everything. What you didn't say is that many of the Great Lakes Windows products also cover accidental breakage and perhaps your handling of the windows could be part of the problem.

    We service 60, 000 of the GLW windows from 16 to 11 years old and 10, 000 from the last 6 years. We have about 100 service requests per year and GLW sends the parts for the all with few questions, as they have a two home owner, life of the structure warranty and even though few people pay the $75 to transfer and some might even be a third home owner, they happily send the part. There are a few houses that get a couple of these a few years in a row, and then 20 others with zero ever. So you had a few seal failures on your windows and you're whining about a little labor charge? Check your attitude. Anderson and Pella and the other guys still in business would have you paying for the part too and with a lot of hassel to boot!

    You don't know how good you have it!

    0 Votes
  • Sp
      16th of May, 2017

    @GusH We bought a home with one Uni Frame window. The man and women died in the last year, and their son destroyed everything in the house that was paper. No warranty info. We need replacement parts. What do we do? Don't know who contractor was. [protected]

    0 Votes
  • Ma
      17th of Aug, 2018

    @GusH I am having a terrible time with my Great Lakes Windows. How can I contact you?

    0 Votes
  • Hi
      26th of Jan, 2010

    I have either installed or sold windows for over 30 years. The last 13 years I have owned the company that I have worked for. I find that the Great Lakes/Plygem window is one of the best on the market. When a problem arises, they take care of the parts and my distributor takes care of the labor. Maybe the homeowner who is having the problem should talk to their contractor about warranty work. We service our work. Did they buy from a reputable contractor? Any future work should include a specific written labor warranty.

    0 Votes
  • Ma
      9th of Feb, 2010

    This company sucks!!! I have had 4 windows damaged due to leakage. DO NOT USE PLY GEM OR GREAT LAKES WINDOWS!!!

    +3 Votes
  • K1
      2nd of Jun, 2018

    @Mark DeRo We are on our 2nd bow window and both leaked within a couple of years. It was difficult to get anyone to respond. When the second window first leaked they sent a guy out to fix it. And his response to our comment "it shouldn't have leaked this soon" was: "I wouldn't have a job if the their windows didn't leak". We were not impressed to say the least. Window continued to leak and we didn't notice it until the wood started to rot on the inside. Wonder how long it will take someone from Great Lakes to come out and what the labor cost will be to replace it

    0 Votes
  • Wi
      5th of Mar, 2010

    I have heard from a salesperson for the Ply-Gem product that the distributor targets elderly people for window replacement they may not need. The company has lists of potential customers (following obituaries of deceased spouses is one tactic) which they use to agressively sell window replacements for the entire home. These customers may have more pressing needs for their money and/or may not understand the true condition or replacement value in energy to their homes versus the money they are spending. I get a bad vibe about Ply-Gem in general. I bought one "Obama energy" window before I understood Ply-Gem's window problems and unsavory distributor marketing tactics. Time will tell as to how long the window lasts.

    -1 Votes
  • Wi
      26th of Apr, 2010

    I have been trying to get a Great Lakes rep to my home for over a year now. All of my windows in my 6 year old home look like they have mold growing in the glass. I can't even see out of my windows. I am still trying to get them here. I am once again on a 3 week waiting list. We will see. The installer has informed me i will have to pay for the installation of the new windows which is going to cost me a fortune since i will have to have two installers to replace my large dining room window. At $50 to $100 an hour to install it will cost me thousands to replace all of my windows. Why should i be responsible for paying for faulty windows, when the company is clearly aware they have a problem.

    -1 Votes
  • Da
      9th of Jul, 2010

    I purchased 13 replacement windows nine years ago. One had to be replaced because my son droped it. The company that sold and installed them replaced it at no charge. NO Complaints! Sometimes good companies get a bad name because of bad dealers. Get ahold of the attorney general in your state.I bet they wont have to wait long.

    +1 Votes
  • Bu
      16th of Sep, 2010

    i used to work for great lakes/plygem windows, and I ran the window frame cleaning machines. I can say from personal experience that the quality of the windows are great, despite what some people might say, they do inspect every window before it goes to finals[before they send it out, and trust me they will not hesitate to send it back down the line if there are any defects and the person who caused or overlooked the defect has to correct it before it is sent out to customers. Just because the management likes for you to be very fast paced at your job does not mean that they overlook damaged of defective windows, they have an hourly target that you have to reach so that the windows are sent out to their customers in a timely manner. I have seen the end result in the making of the windows and the windows are by far the best quality window that you will get or purchase. They are a good investment and compliment your home perfectly.

    +4 Votes
  • Sc
      15th of Oct, 2010


    +2 Votes
  • Dj
      21st of Dec, 2010

    you guys all confuse the [censor] out of me - thanks for the helpful [censor]ing confusion

    -2 Votes
  • Pe
      24th of Dec, 2010

    I DID purchased 21 top of the line ply gem windows that have been inspected by the manufacturer who said they were installed correctly, but they leak, buzz and can blow a candle out with them closed!!! The company has been giving us the run around since May! I WANT MY MONEY BACK!!!

    -2 Votes
  • Si
      9th of Jan, 2011

    We too have spent thousand of dollars replacing our windows with Plygem windows only to have the same problem. The repair tech has been out numerous times only to tell us you can't stop wind from coming in on real windy days!! I thought that was what they told us when we replaced them, that we won't feel that anymore with their windows RIGHT!!! Don't waste your money on these windows. They are just as bad as their support once you have paid for them. Take the money and run!! Now we are left to deal with leaky windows or spend thousands again to replace these. I sure hope the CEO is enjoying our money!!

    -3 Votes
  • Pe
      9th of Jan, 2011

    What was the manufacturing plant you got them out of, Toledo Ohio? We live in Iowa and they came from that plant, maybe if that is the same plant we could collaborate??

    0 Votes
  • Ma
      23rd of Jan, 2011


    -1 Votes
  • Di
      17th of May, 2011

    PlyGem should be called Lie Gem.

    -1 Votes
  • Sa
      17th of Jul, 2011

    I agree very poor windows. we have had one window replaced because it cracked when the new one came we found out we paid for front windows with a higher rating with gold window grids only to find out you cannot get that window with grids in them but we paid for them, out of all pour windows 21 windows three of them have broken seal (our front livingroom windows) they all crank out only 3 window we can open because the cranks do not work! WOW!!!

    -1 Votes
  • Pa
      19th of Aug, 2011

    Cindy was so pushy and agressive. First she was late, then I could not get her to leave after she'd been here 3 hours!!! I practically had to beg her for the estimate that was over 50% more than any of the others we got!! I hated the fact that I had to fill out a "workbook" and play games with her. For this type of sales tactic alone I would never, ever buy from her and I will tell everyone I know to avoid Ply Gem, Great Lakes, and Remodel America's windows and other products!!

    -1 Votes
  • Ka
      25th of Nov, 2011

    I brought ll windows and a patio door from great lakes back in 2002 since then 3 windows heaved fogged up and one has broken. Since the windows are fairly new yet I fee that they should be replaced with no charge. not so. I will have to pay over$ 2, 000 just for these 3 windows not including labor. I will never again buy windows from any dealer that sells Great Lakes windows.

    0 Votes
  • Ma
      6th of Dec, 2011
    Best Best Advice

    I have had Great Lakes windows since 12/2005. Two years ago, I had a window lose it's seal and fog up on the inside of the two glass panels. Called Great Lakes, gave them the number from the sticker on the window, and with no problem, a replacement window including the frame was shipped, popped the old out, popped the new one in. 12/6/2011, I have had another window lose it's seal, same thing, provided the needed information, and the window is on it's way. My experience with Great Lakes customer service has been nothing short of great.

    +4 Votes

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