Crystal Achievement Awards 2015: The Crystal Standard

Emily Kay Thompson
September 19, 2015
FEATURE ARTICLE | Design & Performance

Most Innovative Door

Embarq Fiberglass Door by ProVia

As a company, ProVia tells us that it has always emphasized energy efficiency and pursued continuous improvements in high energy-performing products. “With the introduction of Embarq and the EnVision program, ProVia strengthens its commitment to leadership in energy efficiency,” the company’s nomination states.

This year’s Most Innovative Door provides a U-factor of 0.10, which the company reports is the lowest recorded heat conduction measurement for entry doors in the United States.

Energy Efficiency is En Vogue

76% of surveyed window and door dealers reported that their customers show much concern over the energy efficiency of their windows and doors. Also, Energy Star certifications are a priority for Millenial generation home buyers—84 percent of this group is willing to pay 2-3 percent more for an energy-efficient home as long as they can see a return on their power bills.

*Sources: reader poll and National Association of Home Builders March 2015 survey.

“The design of the door, coupled with the outstanding mechanics beneath the surface, makes it a winner,” one of the Crystal Achievement Award judges comments.

Innovative Elements

ProVia’s Embarq Fiberglass Entry System is one of the most energy-efficient entry doors available in the U.S. market, according to the company. Embarq’s performance was independently tested by Architectural Testing Inc., a leading building products testing and certification laboratory in North America.

“As ProVia set out on the journey to develop this new door,” the company says in a statement, “it expanded into a complete philosophy of creating unrivaled efficiency in home building products. This new way of thinking is called EnVision, and its first creation is Embarq—the doorway to innovation and efficiency.”

To enhance efficiency and accommodate more insulation, the Embarq fiberglass entry door is two and a half inches thick, which ProVia reports is 43 percent thicker than standard exterior doors. It also features an integrated channel in the side rails and header of the door to allow for even more energy-efficient foam. The door’s dual perimeter seal creates a barrier against drafts and energy leaks and a custom-designed sweep accommodates the door’s added thickness and keeps out unwanted elements.

ProVia’s patented process allows a different series, style and finish to be used on each side of the door. It is available in six door styles and three wood grain species, including cherry, mahogany or oak.

“Swinging doors have always had performance shortfalls, simply by their operational design,” explains one of our Crystal Achievement Award judges. “ProVia’s start-from-scratch thinking produced an extremely low U-factor product.” The judge continues, calling out the shouldered panel concept as a unique element that enables a thicker insulating panel and dual weatherseals around the perimeter. “The custom sizing in width and height availability is also a big plus—especially for a fiberglass panel.”

Back to List of Winners

Thompson is editor of Window & Door,, and WDweekly. Write her at