BBB Challenges Window World $189 Window Claims

September 20th, 2011 by DWM Magazine

The Better Business Bureau (BBB) in Dallas has challenged Window World of Dallas on its advertised claim of one price for windows because it appears that most sales include an “additional charge” for energy-efficient windows as required in Texas, according to the BBB.

“The BBB’s role is to ask businesses to voluntarily adhere to standards for truth in advertising,” says Jeannette Kopko, spokesperson for the BBB serving Dallas and Northeast Texas.

“Window World of Dallas advertises, “Energy Efficient Premium Windows, $189*, Any size white vinyl, double hung window up to 4’x7’ installed, Solar Zone Low E (Add $45) to meet Texas Energy Regulations.” The asterisk refers to the statement, “*Some additional charges may apply.” The Better Business Bureau noted that if low-E windows were required in Texas, then most windows sold by Window World of Dallas would cost $234, the total of $189 plus $45. The BBB was concerned that even though the advertising discloses that “additional charges” may apply and that the cost for low-E windows is $45, the overall impression of the ad is that most windows cost $189.

The BBB asked Window World of Dallas to substantiate or modify the advertising claim offering any size window installed for $189. In response, the business stated that in Texas, low-E glass is not required in all windows. The business also maintained that the $45 additional charge is disclosed prominently. “The $45 up-charge for low-E is clearly not fine print, always in large font, directly below the $189,” Window World of Dallas officials told the BBB, according to the report. The BBB adds that Texas requires low-E windows for replacement windows in air-conditioned rooms, and the organization is concerned that consumers might not understand from the ad that in Texas the $189 price would apply only to non-air conditioned rooms, and the $45 “up-charge” would be required for all air-conditioned rooms.

The BBB says it asked Window World of Dallas for the percentage of its Texas customers who purchased the $189 windows for non-air conditioned rooms such as storerooms, garages or basements. BBB claims the business has not provided the information and has not modified its advertising.

Window World of Dallas has a BBB rating of F, the lowest rating on a scale from A+ to F. The reason for the rating is failure to substantiate or modify the advertising claim for $189 windows. However, the business has not been the subject of customer complaint to the BBB statement.

The challenge to Window World was part of the BBB’s ongoing local advertising review program. The BBB identifies advertising claims that may be misleading and seeks cooperation from businesses to comply with the basic principles for truth in advertising in the BBB Code of Advertising.

Window World officials had not responded to DWM’s request for comment at press time.



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