looking for info on lawsuits against caradco windows. I have major rot problems at many lower ends of my alum clad windows, I know company was bought by jeld-wen but company is not standing by fixing windows and I have over $35K in their windows in my home and have already replaced 2 large windows and now have atleast 6 more showing major signs of wood rot but could not be seen at earlier date as aluminum clad covers exterior wood. Any one knowing of info regarding this company or lawsuit or compensation to repair/fix windows I would greatly appreciate any info you can provide. Thanks!
How old are the windows?
General Contractor/Home Builder
Its not our job on these posts to provide such information. But I would look into the construction and installation practice of these windows before I was so sure that they are at the fault of your rot.
Being involved in the contruction industry for as long as I have It is rare that I find that builders do anything correct. They are always looking for the short way around things to get stuff done.
Window installation is one of them.
1, Many window manufactures have instructions on how their windows are to be installed. Almost all the time these instructions are not follows.
2. With execption of welded vinyl windows almost all windows leak at their corners.
3. Many window manufactures require water proof sill plates be installed with their windows.
4. The window frame area must be properly wrapped with some sort of house wrap and taped to seal all joints as part of the protection process. More important in wet windy locations.
5. The installation crew who by the way gets paid per unit to install, not by hour does not care if they tear or damage any jamb sill system that is in place when they put windows in. They let the next guy worry about it.
6. Improper finish and flashings. Most contractos do not install sill or header flashings on windows. Most window companies suggest that this be done. These flashings cost money, time and slow down the job. Caulking plays a big role in this as well. Did the contractor properly caulk the windows? Did they use backer rod? Did they use the correct type of caulk? No need to tell me I already know the answers, which is NO!
7. Did the window install instructions say that you must have some sort of weep system to drain any water that gets onto sills out? Some do.
Flashing a home is a lost art as most will agree. With all the new products out there many are using these new un-tested systems as a way around the old methods that have worked for many years. Each trade now only worries about their pocketbook and relies on the next trade that follows them to fix the issue. Sooner or later someone ends up either covering with metal, or caulk issues that should have been done right in the first place.
My suggestion is to first look at the installation instructions of the windows. See if how many directions that they provide were not done by the contractos involved in the process.
Look at the maintenance instructions if they provide them. Have the instructioins been followed?
You also said aluminum cladding covered the wood framing. Did they properly clad the windows? Was the wood under the cladding properly sealed and painted? Cladding simply covers up problems. Poor installation, existing decay and rot and a host of other issues. Did you maintain the caulk on the trim?
Personally I think your chasing your tail and as most folks are looking at the deep pockets to blame for the issues your having. When in fact its the install that was incorrect.
It's no wonder there are the "big bad builder" attitudes out there. It's pure ignorance like this quote that fuels this stereotype. **** if this statement were even close to accurate, all of our houses and buildings should be falling down by now.
I realize your going to come back with "I'm an inspector and I've seen a lot of things". Right, its your job to concentrate on the bad things. Just remember how many good things you have to ignore to see the all the bad things you speak of.
General Contractor/Home Builder
Jay your right. I am sorry I offended you, and I am an inspector and have seen and evaluated well over 10,000 homes in the past 10 years or so. I very rarely see jobs done correctly. I have also worked as an expert witness on many occasions with some of the largest class action issues in the north east and more times then not. It’s not the product manufacture who’s at fault, although they are blamed because they have the deepest pockets. It’s the way the product went in.
What bothers me it that people always want to sue as soon as they have an issue. The builders of today most, not all, do not build a home correctly. They cut corners, cheep out when they can get away from it and simply do not give a darn about anything other then the bottom line. If they were so good and did things correctly then tell me why they set up shell companies and close them once the development they build is done.
Part is because people do not want to take any responsibility and part that they cut corners and get away with stuff and do not want to be dragged into court for failure of the product they construct.
The reason for that post is to discourage the writer from blaming the window company for rot on the framing of the house. Tell me, if the windows were put in and they were the worst windows on the market, and if they were installed correctly with proper pan flashings and house wrap. The window may fall apart, but you would not experience rot on the framing.
Look at the EIFS industry. Class action law suites all over the country. Who are they blaming? Not the contractors, because they are already out of business but the manufactures of the product. This stuff has been around for decades. It always worked. But as soon as the home building boom came along this stuff became a homeowner’s worse nightmare. Why because both the contractors and the subs put it on they way they think it is to go. If you read the instructions you would see how to do it the right way, but never done that way. I spoke to many subs and asked them off record why they did it like that. Because they only could get the job if they cut the corners to save a few bucks. To do it right it cost to much to the builder and the builder would go to their competition. They need to eat.
Look at the flashing trade... Where are they? I will tell you. They are not around. The $8 an hour guy is now doing the flashings on a home. The builder gives them a caulking gun and a tube of caulk and says fix. Points at the windows and doors and away he or she goes. How often do you see step flashings put on cement chimneys. Not to often. Why? Because the mason contractor cut corners.
Look at roofers who patch a chimney with a coat of asphalt instead of replacing the bricks and chimney cap. What about the water proofing guys. Do they bother to find the leak or do they just dig up the entire basement for $20 grand. You know the answer to that. Look at LWP posts. Somewhere in them he is saying do the job right!
Sure there are lots of good guys out there. Your company is most likely one of them. But finding them are rare, and most consumers are not willing to pay for the job as it should cost. I know I own one of these companies. We turn down most of our jobs because the owner wants things done for less. Less means just that. Less of something. I do not sell less of anything. It’s all or nothing.
Oh yea I also do point out the good things when they are there.
I will also tell you who else is at fault. It’s the building departments. These people are so backed up with work because of the housing boom; they take days to get to a job to see it. Its not that they do not know what to look for as most of them are very well educated. I have been on jobs where the framing was inspected, the plumber and HVAC guy came in and made Swiss cheese of the framing cutting critical members and the like. Only to see the same inspector come back for an insulation inspection and not even say a peep about what has happened. Forget licenses. They are a joke as well. Until they begin checking for them on the job. And the papers and local ads stop selling to those who are not licensed in their trade. And we get the guys who work out of their trunk of the car. We are going to continue to have shoddy workmanship on many of the homes and improvement projects around the country. And until this changes the stereotype will continue.
I would say something about the architects but they are always right... I am sure Richard could concur that even on jobs he designed he found contractors cutting corners even though he told them to do it a special way. Only to have to fight with them to get them to change back the way he told them to do it in the first place.
It’s a sad fact Jay, in this industry there are more poor contractors then good ones. Just look at how long they stay in business. I have a list of contractors who work in the NJ area that I use for something else that I am involved with. I have called several of them on occasion. And many of them that I call on that were in business just a year ago are long gone, or working under another name.
Now perhaps in your part of the country its better, but human nature tells me its not so. I wish it was...and again I am sorry you feel that I am stereotyping contractors but its one fact I can back up based on my experience. But I always accept comments on my postings from you and several other folks on this board as sometimes my point I am trying to make is misunderstood and needs to be clarified.
Keep up the good postings.
I'm in if there is a lawsuit. I have a 15 year old house with caradco (crapco!) windows. ALL have rotting issues. At first we couldn't understand why we had to keep having the house repainted. We kept blaming it on picking poor painters until we realized it was the windows themselves that are the problem. Appearantly, the wood was probably damp when the windows were made so now they don't hold primer - no matter how much you put on or paint and consequently rot! Every window in my house is like that. I was told too that "they are the new anderson windows" The company did offer an incentive to replace the windows - giving us a 30% discount to buy more of their "new" windows. But this is still a major expense which I shouldn't have to incur on a 15 year old house! Plus I have no interest in ever purchasing another Crapco product! Additionally, all windows are drafty and my large picture window is permantly fogged as is a glass door!
Actually HCC, you do make a lot of good points. Sadly this is an industry where there are a lot of bad contractors who cut a lot of corners and they ruin it for the rest of us. And as the downturn in the housing economy continues, it will get worse. Contractors are hungry and unfortunately bidding on a project now is like throwing a bone in the middle of 10 different dogs. Crude analogy but effective. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to realize that corners will be cut to save money to keep overall cost of construction low to win projects.
Also yes, we pride ourselves on being one the few who don't cut corners. I tell my customers that if they want to get more bids on their project, they are free to do so but we will not be the lowest price, more likely to be on the high end. I use it as a selling point and it has served us well. Even in todays economy we are as busy as ever and rarely do we have to bid against anyone for our work - it all comes from referrals and reputation.
Getting back to windows, you are right in that this is one of the areas where contractors like to cut corners - it is very expensive to do it right, an expense that should not be left out. I actually put this expense as a separate line item on my bids for flashing windows. I do this to show people how much money it takes to do it right and also to point out when someone asks why my bid is more expensive than someone elses. I'v actually had homeowners ask to find a way to do this cheaper - something we will not budge on.
JSW, if you have drafty windows, it would be more likely an install issue rather than the windows themselves - unless of course the draft is coming through the window itself rather than the area between the window and the wall.
General Contractor/Home Builder
I understand what you are saying and since you don't know me you are trying to understand what I am saying. This is not a contractor issue or an installation issue. This is a defective window issue! There are too many complaints whenever the name Caradco comes up to keep making excuses for them. The other window companies love Caradco because it gives them so much business. Just tell them of the problems you are having with your window and they correctly guess - " it's a Caradco, right?"
There is no reason that people should have to replace their windows after 10 or fifteen years!
I'm not making excuses for any one or thing. I was simply offering to help get to the source of the problem. Help in which I'm finished giving.
Edit: I will offer you this though. Your lawsuit will get nowhere. You want to blame the window manufacturer because they are crappy windows. But guess what? It's not against the law to sell a crappy product, it happens all the time not only in windows. You alone made the choice to buy them so you alone are liable. Maybe it was you who should have did the research into window manufacturers and chose one that was reputable, instead of opting for a cheap window. And even if you bought the house with the windows already there, it is your responsibility to research your purchase.
Its amazing to me how many people out there want a BMW for the price of a taurus.
General Contractor/Home Builder
I am a condominium owner in a ather large complex which was constructed in the late 90's and early 2000's. I have 17 windows and almost every one of them is rotten, causing black mold onwindows keeps thier surfaces as well as the trim. The paint on the interior of the windows and trim just keeps flaking off. Even if they repaced these windows (which they probably won't), would I want the same problems again? Get real. If there is a lawsuit out there, count me in!
Caradco Blues I share your pain with Caradco windows. 10 years ago I built my house and was convinced that Caradco was one of the better window manufacturers. After 2 years I had the first window show signs of the seal breaking. They came out examined it and said all the moisture was not removed when manufactured. They would not pay the labor to install the new window but did send the new window.
4 years later on of my simulated light windows had broken seals and they sent a new window which I had to paint the inside (the outside is metal clad). When I was in my 8th year more windows started to break seals and I was told they would not send any more replacement windows but would however send new glass and I would have to take the windows apart to install it. There are two major flaws with this. First the wood rots on the interior when the seal breaks and secondly the metal cladding would not be able to be put back w/o serious wrinkling.
I was told that the 20 year warranty only covered the glass even though the warranty implied otherwise.
I totally disagree with The Home Care Club when they say they were installed incorrectly. Mine have been checked and there is not an installation problem causing the seals to break.
If there is not a CLASS ACTION suit I believe we should join forces and look into this. 10 years ago when I built my home I put $15K of Caradco windows in because of their warranty only to find out they can interpet the warranty any way they want to.
I also realize Jeld Wen bought Caradco and they must also honor their warranty.
Ok - Does anyone know how to go about filing a class action suit? There are enough of us out here with the exact same problems.
Wow, I love the theories explaining why the windows did not last. What type of research did you do and what sources did you refer to? What kind of tests did you conduct?
How about the government banning the wood treatment Penta? Search any wood product manufacturer from this time period (even andersen, etc...) and you will discover issues that are eerily familiar.
Also, Caradco no longer exists-who are you going to sue? I experienced the same issues you are having. Jeld-Wen's Customer Service responded to my call within two days. They are not obligated to help in anyway, yet they still honor Caradco's warranty and even offer a discount things that are not covered by the warranty. All of their new stuff has a 20 year warranty across the board. 20 years! There is not another wood window manufacturer that can do that.
Regardless, why play the blame game? Let's all move forward, research our door and window purchases, investigate warranty information, hire reputable builders, and get on with life.
we also have major problems with our caradco windows, they are 11 years old and are rotten, if anyone has any information that they can give us,reguarding repairing or replacement we would greatly appreciate it. thanks
My problem with these windows is the seal breaks and then the wood rots. They replaced several when my house was 6 years old. They sent the windows and I had to paint and install them. 2 years ago (my house was 9 yrs old) I had 4 more windows with seals broken and rot. They said they would not replace the window, only the glass. They know this is impossible because of the metal clad on the outside. One poster implied these were cheap windows and we were looking for better quality and opted for cheap windows. This is not the case, if I had wanted cheap windows I would have bought Marvin like the sales tried to get me to for half the price. The warranty does say the glass is warranted for 20 years and this would be ok if you could just replace the glass. I would really like for us to join forces and try to get these replaced by Caradco/Jeld Wen.
Contact me at email@example.com
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org about a Class Action Lawsuit on the Caradco Wood Windows (Rotten)
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