Alside windows: are they worth buying?

Image source: Alside

Chris Gennone

By Chris Gennone

July 19, 2021

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As one of the largest building supply companies in North America, Alside has been manufacturing windows, patio doors, and vinyl siding for over 60 years. Alside windows are available in a variety of configurations, including casement, awning, bay and bow, garden, sliding, double-hung, and single hung windows. While Alside windows are well-known throughout the country, they have a mixed reputation among homeowners. Let’s take a look at the different types of Alside windows and what customers have to say.

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Types of Alside windows

New construction windows

1700 series (Eastern region)

Alside 1700 Series windows installed in a study

Image source: Alside

Average cost: $232 (before window installation)

The 1700 Series offers these key features:

  • Made from vinyl with fusion-welded corners
  • Available in single hung windows
  • Features a single mainframe, a reinforced meeting rail, and a sloped sill which helps prevent moisture from leaking in
  • Includes an insulated glass unit with Low-E glass (low-emissivity) and a warm-edge spacer system, and a U-channel design, increasing energy efficiency
  • Includes a limited lifetime warranty
  • Energy Star certified

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1900 series (Eastern region)

Alside 1900 Series windows installed in a bedroom

Image source: Alside

Average cost: $260 (before installation)

The 1900 Series offers these key features:

  • Similar to the 1700 series, the 1900 series features a single fusion-welded vinyl window frame
  • Available in single-hung and double-hung windows
  • Includes a sloped sill, reinforced meeting rail, and an integral brickmold J-channel for structural support, water management, and a sophisticated clear look
  • Features a dual vent latch for ventilation and easy cleaning
  • Energy Star certified

Casement/Awning Windows (Eastern region)

Alside Casement/Awning windows looking over a yard

Image source: Alside

The casement/awning windows offer these key features:

  • Features a vinyl fusion-welded mainframe and sashes which helps prevent leakage
  • Includes a multi-locking system that helps create a tight seal
  • Various lite configurations are available
  • Optional ClimaTech insulated glass packages designed to boost energy savings are available

Fairfield 80 Series vinyl windows (Western region)

Alside Fairfield 80 Series vinyl windows installed in a dining room

Image source: Alside

Average cost: $285 (before installation)

Fairfield 80 Series’ key features include:

  • Fusion-welded vinyl frame and sashes with insulated glass
  • Includes spacer system, interlocking rail, and a full capture sill which all help to prevent water and air infiltration
  • Has energy efficient ClimaTech iE carbonized foam liners that reflect heat
  • Available in casements, awnings, and multiple shaped picture windows
  • Full weatherstripping brings additional energy savings

Fairfield 70 Series vinyl windows (Western region)

Alside Fairfield 70 Series vinyl windows installed in a sitting room

Image source: Alside

Average Cost: $257 (before installation)

Fairfield 70 Series’ key features include:

  • Features a 45-degree fusion-welded mainframe and sashes
  • Includes removable fiberglass screens
  • The Intercept Warm-Edge Spacer uses a U-channel design that reduces heat loss
  • Comes with a water management system that helps with water drainage
  • Available in picture, single hung, and sliding windows

Vinyl replacement windows

Sheffield Fusion-Welded vinyl windows (Eastern region)

Alside Sheffield Fusion-Welded vinyl windows installed above a seating shelf

Image source: Alside

Average cost: $712 (before installation)

Sheffield’s key features include:

  • Sheffield windows feature a thick fusion-welded frame and a multi-chamber design that helps prevent air and moisture leakage
  • Available in double-hung, sliding windows, casement windows, bay and bow windows, and garden windows
  • All double-hung and sliding windows include an incredibly strong SteelForce reinforcement which is placed at the meeting rails to provide extra protection
  • A sloped sill and weatherstripping also helps prevent water from coming in and a spacer system helps insulate the window
  • Optional ClimaTech insulated glass packages available

UltraMaxx Fusion-Welded vinyl windows (Eastern region)

Alside UltraMaxx Fusion-Welded vinyl windows installed in a kitchen

Image source: Alside

Average cost: $627 (before installation)

UltraMaxx’s key features include:

  • UltraMaxx windows feature a fusion-welded frame and sashes and multi-chambers which provide an insulated barrier against air and moisture leakage
  • Available in double-hung, sliding windows, casements, awnings, bay and bow windows, and garden windows
  • Insulated glass packages are available
  • Heavy-duty SteelForce reinforcement at the meeting rails provides extra durability and a spacer system helps reduce heat loss

Mezzo Energy-Efficient vinyl windows (Eastern region)

Alside Mezzo Energy-Efficient vinyl windows installed in a living room

Image source: Alside

Average cost: $425 (before installation)

Mezzo’s key features include:

  • Mezzo windows feature an expanded glass area with Low-E triple-pane glass with two surfaces of argon gas
  • Includes cavity foam insulation providing thermal protection and reflects radiant heat, saving energy costs
  • Available in single-hung, double-hung, sliding windows, and picture windows
  • Energy Star certified

Fusion Quality vinyl windows

Alside Fusion Quality vinyl windows installed in a family room

Image source: Alside

Average cost: $262 (before installation)

Fusion’s key features include:

  • Features a vinyl mainframe and crack, warp, and peel resistant sashes
  • Includes a bulb seal to prevent air leakage and a sloped sill that helps drain water
  • Has insulated glass with the spacer system, saving energy costs
  • Dual vent stops help with easy opening and ventilation
  • Available in double-hung and sliding window configurations

Customer reviews

While Alside remains a large window manufacturer amongst other companies like Andersen and Pella, they are also not immune to criticism. Many customers and window installers have complained about Alside’s cheap design and window warranty issues. Here’s what customers and contractors had to say.

Negative reviews

Grant had this to say, “We have Alside windows in our new home. They are poor quality windows. None of them slide smoothly and will bind when sliding. Because of that, you must use two hands to operate the windows (both large and small windows). When flipping the locking mechanism the frame deflects, indicating weak frame structure.”

“I’ve put in a lot of different windows, and the Alside Sheffield is one that I really hate to see. I think it’s just cheap. Instead of a sloped sill, like every well-designed window out there, the frame has the same extrusion on all sides. It’s a cheap shortcut that saves millions on factory equipment.”

Heidi H. commented, “I am extremely unhappy with Alside's Warranty Department. We made an online claim in March 2018 for a warranty issue on a window in our home. We cannot get anyone to call us or email us back.”

“We bought these windows for the whole house about 11 years ago. In the last 5 years, these windows have started to fail,” said Roger E. “The seal is apparently defective as the inside of the double-pane is getting a brown film especially near the grills. About 2 months ago I called for another replacement for a failed window. After picking it up from the distributor, I opened it when I got home and found just the glass. It was not mounted in a frame. I called Alside and was told these windows were discontinued.”

Positive reviews

However, Alside’s new energy-efficient Mezzo series of windows have received more positive feedback.

“The newer Alside Mezzo is a decent window, probably on par with the Pella 350 vinyl series. These vinyl windows are pretty darn solid.”

“My husband and I are leaning towards the Alside Mezzo because of the price and the great reviews for the installers.”

“We put in Alside windows several years ago and they are great. No problems whatsoever and though not cheap the price was fair. One screen broke and our contractor immediately got us a replacement. I would highly recommend it as an option to other overpriced and more well-known brands,” said Jill H.

Are Alside windows worth buying?

Alside vinyl windows installed in a kitchen

Image source: Alside

Our humble opinion is no. While some Alside windows series are cheaper than other manufacturers, they’re not made as well and can lead to issues with leakage and repairs. If you’re on a tight budget, Alside can provide some benefits, but there are better quality windows for a similar price.

Get in touch with a local contractor today.

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