This has been a big trend in window replacement
as people are more and more concerned about sustainability as a lifestyle. For example, Andersen has a window called the 100 Series that is made — quite literally — out of the sawdust that they suck off their factory floor with huge tubes. The sawdust is created when they cut the wood for their wood windows, but they are able to re-use it by making a composite material called Fibrex out of it. In addition to reclaimed wood, they also use recycled glass — 18 to 24 percent of the window is recycled — I don’t believe any other window is near this.
These windows have been a huge seller — even in this economy. The reason: The price is right (it is Andersen’s most economical window), and when that is the case, consumers love to go green. It is also one of Andersen’s most energy efficient windows (qualifies for the federal tax credit), and is extremely strong and durable.
In addition to those reasons, sustainability is much higher in people’s consciousness. It’s establishing itself beyond trend to a lifestyle. There is continued concern for using resources well. Economic conditions are also forcing many consumers toward maintenance and improvement of their current homes, and they’re now focusing on practical versus extravagant changes with an interest in quality products that will last.
The 100 Series — http://www.andersenwindows.com/100-series/index.html — is also new — it started out in the West, and is just now rolling out to the Eastern side of the country.
Finally, people just aren’t moving as much as they have in the past, so they want to make changes in their existing homes that improve comfort, energy efficiency and give them low maintenance features they may not have had before.
These windows qualify for the federal tax credit and come under Andersen’s EcoExcel label, which guarantees a window will qualify for the credit.