WANTED: Strong and Long Warranties
MILLS RIVER, NC - Now, more than ever before, homeowners making large home improvement changes should take the time to carefully review product warranties. That's the advice of representatives from several leading building product manufacturers.
"Unfortunately we are in economic conditions in our country that are exceptionally difficult for some building product manufacturers," says Tom Riscili, president of Fypon®. "That means some companies are going out of business or are being sold. As a result, they are not able to stand behind their product warranties. This can be dangerous for consumers. Homeowners need to be vigilant about researching the companies, products and warranties they're investing in to assure adequate coverage and satisfaction in the future."
Ray Rosewall, president of DaVinci Roofscapes®, recommends seeking out "strong and long" warranties on major building products for the home, such as windows, siding and roofing. "First, search for a national manufacturer with a solid reputation that can be depended upon to survive the current economic stresses in the marketplace," says Rosewall. "Once you find that manufacturer, carefully review the company's product warranties. You're looking for a manufacturer that stands behind their product for many years, offers full replacement of potentially defected product and, ideally, allows transferability of the warranty to the next owner of the home."
As an example, Rosewall references his own company's 50-year warranty on roofing tiles. The warranty is issued to the original purchaser of the roof and may be transferred to additional owners of the home. DaVinci warrants that the company's roofing tiles will be free from manufacturing defects that could cause leaks under normal conditions. Should a problem arise, DaVinci offers options that include replacing the roofing tiles or a refund to the homeowner. Other companies, such as Simonton Windows® and Fypon, offer Limited Lifetime Warranties. For Simonton customers, the vinyl, hardware and screens in the window are covered for the lifetime of the product. Fypon also offers a Limited Lifetime Warranty on its urethane and PVC products for consumers, with terms clearly written out for homeowners.
"Warranties can be long, cumbersome documents, but it's very important for homeowners to read through them completely before making a product purchase," says Riscili. "Every reputable company has a web site or 1-800 phone number that you can contact to ask warranty questions and gain more insights into the product you're purchasing. Investing the time on research now will save headaches in the long run."
Another tip for homeowners: A manufacturer's warranty does not typically include installation or replacement costs. "Manufacturers can only warrant the products they make, not the installation of that product," says Mark Savan, president of Simonton Windows. "That's why it's important to review the installation policies of remodelers and contractors you hire. When top quality products meet excellent installation — it's always a win-win for the homeowner. Have a conversation with your remodeler to make sure you are comfortable that he and his employees, or any subcontractors they may use, have been 'factory-trained' to properly install the products according to the manufacturer's specifications.
"If installation issues arise, reputable manufacturers will send a field service technician to the site to investigate. At Simonton, our field service experts can easily determine if the issue is covered under our product warranty and will work with homeowners to find a solution that meets their satisfaction."
Finally, all three company leaders remind homeowners to make sure to register their warranties once their products are installed and to save original receipts. Only by registering products are homeowners eligible for warranty benefits that could be extremely important in future years.
For additional information on the companies mentioned in this story, visit www.simonton.com, www.davinciroofscapes.com and www.fypon.com.