What was the Biggest Industry Story of 2012?

Christina Lewellen
December 18, 2012

As we wrap up 2012, we should pause and reflect on how far we’ve come over the past 12 months. Each year, we look back at some of the top industry stories of the year, as well as mainstream media stories that caught our attention.

In the past year, we’ve seen some companies downsize and some expand; we've seen both the Environmental Protection Agency and the Federal Trade Commission target the window and door industry; and we've witnessed some signficant company ownership changes certainly worth talking about. 

Please take a moment and weigh in on what you believe is the most significant industry story of the year and why.  Please also take a moment to share your thoughts about 2012 in general. Send an email or post a comment below.

From all of the Window & Door team, we wish you a prosperous New Year and a safe and happy holiday season.


Survey Results as of 1/7/2013:


What Was the Biggest Industry Story of 2012?

Changing Energy Star and New Most Efficient Criteria




Continued Company Closings (Dove, Gorell, Regency)




FTC Claims Against Window Manufacturers




EPA Fines for LRRP Violations




Consolidation in the Door Industry




Nearly half of poll participants indicate that energy efficiency tops the list in terms of the biggest buzz-producing stories of 2012. I won't be surprised to see that 2013 brings similar attention to this topic as manufacturers and dealers scramble to keep up in this area.

We also see fall-out from our economic challenges ranking high on the list, with more than 30 percent of participants noting that continued company closings and consolidations is what was most memorable about 2012.

Contact Christina Lewellen, senior editor, at clewellen@glass.org.


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Seems like the discussion here is about energy effiency - I purchased 2 Andersen sliding doors in Oct 2012 that will not seal when the door closes. Only way they seal is to be firmly locked- this might not be an issue if I had not previously in 2006 purchased seven (7) Pella sliding doors that have very tight weather seals when closed (without having to be locked) - Should I have known this problem with Andersen I would have used Pella - I am retired mechanical eng and this is a very poor door design & I cannot see how they could have cleared the "Energy Performance Rating"


Although it was not the "biggest" story, the intervention into the industry by the FTC was, in my mind, the most significant.

While free market supporters cry foul at the idea of the government's efforts to exert influence over an industry, one must question the industries logic and motivation of proceeding down a path that they were aware was one with the "slippery slope" of advertising. Were they convinced that their claims were worth the cost of being warned and drawing attention to an entire industry? Talk about putting a bull's eye on your shirt!!

Why attract the attention of the government when your data is questionable, at best? One sure way to bring regulation into an industry is to prove to the government, beyond a reasonable doubt, that the industry has no desire or ability to police itself. This holds true for not just the glass or window industry, but for any industry.

When will the corporate world get a firm grasp on this concept instead of blaming the government for "over regulation" when they have clearly brought the regulation upon themselves? It seems that publishing the truth has become more "rocket science" than simple words and I simply don't understand why. How difficult would it have been for 3 or 4 other glass manufacturers to get on a conference call and say, "Hey Cardinal....can you tone it down a little before we all get put under a microscope? I mean 30%?? Come on, Dude! No independent test data?? Are you kidding??" Not taking action against such advertising displays is nearly as bad as committing the act. If you're sitting in the same car when someone else in the car commits a crime, aren't you guilty of something also if you don't at least speak out in objection?

Industry needs to draw it's own line in the sand and not let anyone cross it, but the mindset just simply isn't there today. I suppose that nobody wants to be the bad guy for fear of being exposed the way public figures are these days. Someone always has "dirt" on someone else.

Why is it that they can agree on across the board price increases but not advertising rules? Industry leaders need to act like leaders or stop abusing the title. They also need to quit pointing accusatory fingers towards Washington regarding leadership skills until they can practice what they preach.

I realize that D.C. is far from perfect but can't you at least uphold a little patriotic respect for a great country that allows you to enjoy the most lucrative lifestyle in the world? And if you don't believe that it does, move to some other country and pay taxes there and live and work under their system. Just remember that every time that you wave your money around, you should envision it as an American flag and thank a veteran who fought for your right to make it and have it. It's also time to quit figuring out a way to avoid paying taxes and turn the money over to the government to take care of our warriors and their families. Every time I see a commercial for a veteran's charity, it turns my stomach that our government leaders refuse to care for them after sending them off to fight, be wounded and die.

I guess I got a bit off topic, but I felt like it needed to be said.

As the kids say, "Peace - out"