Re: replacement windows: Anderson vs Marvin vs Pella?
i install quite a few windows a year, with my experience id say anderson is probably at the top. Martins are really good. ive run into problems with pella's, though a good product i dont like their nail flange design as it makes for more work to properly seal the window. as of late i have been installing mostly peter kohler windows.
on the topic of energy efficiency, no matter what the brand or material the window is made of it can only perform as well as the installation. i've seen top of the line windows installed with nothing more than some screws and some red tape to seal the flange and these windows were really drafty. the way i install windows involves creating a drip pan on the sil with either blueskin or Grace vycor, then the window gets set into a bead of poly butyl window/siding caulk (flex) from there the nailing flange gets sealed on the sides and top with 4" Vycor and then the top gets a metal head flashing installed set into a bead of caulking as well
fire up the saw and make some dust