- AAMA Analysis Columns
March 13, 2018
AAMA Analysis Columns
The following articles written by AAMA staff were originally published in Door and Window Manufacturer Magazine.
Fiberglass Reaches the Next Level; Updates to Standard Reflect Material’s Growing Stature, March (by Rich Rinka)
Window performance is a complicated concept. The big picture is not defined just by U-value or glass type. It is not discerned by debating the purported merits of the different framing material. Each framing material offers its own unique performance characteristics and special advantages for dealing with the performance challenges posed by climate, building design, buyer preference and/or budget for various applications. Any controversy based on the purported generic superiority of material type is rendered virtually immaterial when one stops comparing the basic characteristics of isolated samples of unsupported material and concentrates on the performance of the complete fenestration unit.
NAFS 2017 Updates; It’s More User-Friendly Than the Previous Version, February (by Rich Rinka)
A fitting cap to an eventful year was the release of the 2017 edition of the North American
Fenestration Standard (NAFS) — aka AAMA/WDMA/CSA 101/IS2/A440. Six years in the making since the previous 2011 edition, the updated standard for windows, doors and skylights features revisions that at once expand coverage yet render the standard significantly more user-friendly.
PVC Use Grows As Technology Advances; Strong Standards Have Helped Spark a Materials Revolution, December/January (by Rich Rinka)
A landmark in the industry’s historic progression beyond fenestration framing made of either wood or aluminum was AAMA 303, Voluntary Specification for Rigid Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) Exterior Profiles. Issued 20 years ago, it was the first among today’s polymeric material specifications, which now include six formulations in addition to PVC (fiberglass, ABS, composites, etc.).
Trust but Verify: The Windows Version; Accredited Field Testing Can Set Customers’ Minds at Ease, November (by Jason Seals)
Throughout the fenestration industry, we say that a window’s performance is only as good as its installation. After all, even the most robustly conceived and certified design can be compromised by installation errors. In addition, water penetration at or near a fenestration product opening may actually originate from the surrounding construction. This is particularly true in the case of unexpected air infiltration or water penetration—the latter of which can lead to finger-pointing over liability for damages.
Are Your Patio Doors ADA-Compliant? Accessibility Isn’t Just the Law; It’s the Right Thing to Do, October (by Rich Rinka)
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) has prompted several government agencies to publish regulations and guidelines requiring that public buildings and multi-family dwellings (buildings consisting of
four or more dwelling units) include certain features of accessible design, all of which reference ICC/ANSI A117, Accessible and Usable Buildings and Facilities. The latter identifies three types of dwelling or sleeping units. Each may include balconies, patios or terraces. These are classified as Type B units (often called “adaptable” units), Type A units and “Accessible” units, which are fully wheelchair-accessible.
HUD Regulates Manufactured Housing: But Will Agency Adopt AAMA’s Updated Standards?, August/September (by Rich Rinka)
For decades, regulations governing the construction of manufactured housing units have been communicated by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in the form of its Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Standards, 24 CFR 3280.
Drainage Systems: Hidden Helpers; They Keep Water Out, But You Don’t Always See Them, June/July (by Rich Rinka)
The vertical elements of the building envelope—including doors and windows—should be viewed as a complete system rather than a collection of separate components. The portion of this system known as the water-resistive barrier (WRB) must shed rainwater from the roof to the ground without allowing penetration into the wall cavity or the building interior. The critical consideration in a door or window installation is to
be certain that it is fully integrated with the WRB, thereby maintaining the integrity of the drainage plane of the exterior wall.
Stop Leaks, Improve Performance; Integrating Doors and Windows with Water-Resistive Barriers, May (by Rich Rinka)
Product certification, while verifying robust resistance to water penetration, cannot ensure the intended
performance of doors and windows after installation. Even the best-designed product can allow excessive water penetration if installed improperly.
Who Tests the Testers? Accreditation is Critical When Choosing a Laboratory, March (by Rich Rinka)
Quality professionals know that repeatability and reproducibility (R&R) of measuring devices are cornerstones of reliable quality control. In the product-certification world, the R&R concept translates to
ensuring that test results are consistent, agreeing from test to test (repeatability) and from lab to lab (reproducibility). Only in this way can a reliable comparison be made among products in terms of whether they meet the requirements of the North American Fenestration Standard (NAFS). This is particularly important for manufacturers of residential fenestration products, who depend heavily on certification to NAFS to differentiate their products.
Drip, Drip, Drip... Standards Help Avoid Condensation Aggravation, February (by Rich Rinka)
While condensation on windows was once considered to be little more than an unavoidable nuisance, nowadays it is taken much more seriously. The collection of moisture can stain or damage interior surfaces and degrade the indoor environment. In primarily residential venues, this can result in mold growth and lead to costly remediation and even lawsuits over alleged toxic reactions.
Make Sure Your Coatings are Covered; Paints, Finishes Must Meet Rigorous Certification, Too, December/January (by Dean Lewis)
In this series of articles that concludes with this installment, we have examined the importance of
components in ensuring long-term fenestration product performance—especially as employed in the AAMA
Component Verification Program, a subset of the AAMA Certification Program. In addition to hardware,
sealants and weatherstripping discussed in previous articles, the finish applied to the basic framing material is critical as well.