Latest Articles in Design & Performance

  • Few people in the window and door industry are sorry to say goodbye to 2008. We reported more than enough stories this year on plant closings, lay-offs, restructurings, and even complete shutdowns of companies. I just wish I could say I was starting the new year brimming with optimism. Current forecasts for the economy in general, and the new construction and home improvement markets, don’t... more »
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    Boston—While other trade shows may be struggling, the Greenbuild International Conference & Expo held here last week was bursting at the seams. With over 25,000 attendees crowding the aisles of the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, the show, organized by the U.S. Green Building Council, provided evidence that demand for green is “real,” as one window manufacturer... more »
  • Right now, there’s much talk about the need to bail out U.S. automakers. Those in favor say actions are necessary to save the economy from falling into depression and put the U.S. in a leadership role in next generation energy efficient cars. A stimulus program for replacement windows and doors... ...is needed and the industry should lobby for it. ...might be... more »
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    Suppliers say cellular PVC and urethane products are poised for more growth
    Synthetic millwork and trim may cost more than traditional wood, but companies pushing the product see it continuing to gain market share. While the housing downturn may be slowing that trend, these suppliers see more builders and remodelers making the change in the long run.Cellular PVC millwork and trim products, which started out eight to 10 years ago as a “novelty,” have become... more »
  • My one prediction for the International Code Council final action hearings that took place in Minneapolis in September was that they were going to be quite lively— particularly with regards to the energy code discussions. There were 27 public comments that dealt with maximum U-factors for residential construction, and another 18 for maximum SHGC, also for residential construction. The hope... more »
  • While natural disaster newshounds watch alternating seasonal threats of East Coast hurricanes and West Coast wildfires like a tennis match, building codes have been shoring up the defenses in hopes of mitigating disasters such as 2005’s Katrina and 2007’s Witch Creek. We have devoted much discussion in these pages to the evolving codes and standards for hurricane wind, water and... more »
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    Getting ready for new NFRC and Energy Star mandates set to go into effect by 2010 is critical
    For certification, IG must pass accelerated weathering tests, which simulate weather cycling from -20 degrees F to 140 degrees F with high humidity and ultraviolet radiation exposure over a 63-day period. Based on the recommendation of the Insulating Glass Industry Durability Advisory Group, the U.S. Department of Energy plans to require insulating glass certification as a prerequisite... more »
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    Orlando, Fla.—"We just have to get through this,” said one distributor attending the annual exhibition and convention of the Association of Millwork Distributors last week. That attitude was shared by many, expressing quiet determination to hold on for now and get prepared for better times when they do return. No one expects that time coming soon, and that was reflected in... more »
  • "I want a job like yours where I can get paid to write about what I did for my summer vacation," my son remarked. He was responding to my comments that I thought there were elements of Roman architecture, both ancient and medieval, that were relevant to today's development of U.S. building codes, and that I thought I would mention them in my next column for this magazine. We had just... more »
  • Most window and door manufacturers are interested in components that will give their products a higher end look, but most have to balance cost concerns as well. That's still true but hardware and extrusion suppliers at GlassBuild last week indicated more manufacturers are showing a real interest in adding components or developing complete new lines that offer an enhanced appearance... more »