Latest Articles

  • While driving through central Illinois recently, I was struck by the beauty of a wind turbine farm. The vanes of the turbines responded to the movement of the wind over the open plains with grace and dignity, providing a visual indication of the wind’s movement that cannot otherwise be seen. The wind is like electricity and God–the primary evidence of its existence is in its effects.... more »
  • With Energy Star almost a given, manufacturers put more focus on the look of their windows
    The number of products carrying an Energy Star label and the number of companies that signed up for the government’s R-5 program provide ample evidence of that energy efficiency is a high priority for window manufacturers. But more manufacturers are also saying good performance numbers are not enough in today’s market. “When people buy windows today, they expect them to be... more »
  • Manufacturers and dealers gearing up to take advantage of rapid developments in tablets and mobile technologies
    About a week after Apple introduced the iPad in 2010, Geoff Roise at Lindsay Windows in Minnesota bought one for one of the company’s production supervisors to try out. “It’s impact immediately became apparent,” he states. “I would send him an email with a question and I would get an instant response.”     Line leaders at Lindsay Windows now... more »
  • I love this phrase: “channel blurring.” Thank you Home Channel News for a very interesting article on the mix-and-match happening in retail channels. This “channel blurring” can be seen in Home Depots selling household cleaning supplies, the article points out, or traditional hardware stores selling pet supplies. The strategy behind such efforts is that when shoppers are... more »
  • Suppliers see some improvement, but agree that manufacturers are cautious
    Window and door manufacturers have not been buying a lot of new equipment lately. Suppliers aren’t predicting any dramatic upturn soon, but they do predict some movement as window and door sales begin to increase slowly. “We believe the market has been getting stable,” says Sanjay Parikh, general manager for Joseph Machine Co. “There is still definitely more supply than... more »
  • Sure, there were concerns about a tax credit hangover in the replacement and remodeling market as the year began, but most industry folks I talked to were talking positively about 2011. It might not be a gangbuster year, but I got the sense that most window and door manufacturers and dealers in this segment were looking for growth. Unfortunately, we've been getting mixed signals of late. On the... more »
  • There is an adage that goes something like this: What you don't know won't hurt you. Well, I'm not sure how true that is. It leaves an awful lot to chance. And as businessmen and women, we independent window and door dealers can't afford to leave too much to chance— especially in this economy. One perfect example of the dangers of leaving something to chance is the Department of Energy... more »
  • Commercial products are being added
    The U.S. Department of Energy High Performance Windows Volume Purchase Program begins Phase II in May. After a year’s experience, the program is being expanded to include commercial windows. Also noteworthy will be changes to the program Web site to provide more pricing information to potential buyers. The purpose of the program, initially known as the R-5 Window Program, has been to bring... more »
  • It may not be for the best of reasons, but the storm clouds over the housing market may have a silver lining in the form of a brighter outlook for home remodeling and window replacement. Researchers surmise that, in the context of the depressed number of new housing starts, a significant increase in remodeling activity is reflecting a shift toward reinvesting in existing homes over building new... more »
  • Some interesting news this week from HUD and DOE. In the Obama Administration's continuing efforts to encourage energy efficient upgrades to the nation’s residential housing stock, the PowerSaver lending program is now open for business. In a nutshell, homeowners with decent credit and some equity in their homes are eligible to seek low-interest loans for up to $25,000 to complete... more »