Weathering The Storm: Enhanced Building Codes Increase Demand For Impact Rated Windows And Doors
February 07, 2012
KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. — Call it a perfect storm: improved building codes along with the availability of advanced technology is generating greater demand for impact-resistant windows throughout the Gulf Coast and the Atlantic seaboard.
For JELD-WEN, the world’s leading manufacturer of reliable windows and doors, that demand gives rise to innovative products designed to withstand extreme wind conditions, offering homeowners more options for windows and patio doors that will meet the specific needs of hurricane-prone regions.
“For years, the focus has been on Florida. But now, building codes in areas ranging from Texas to New England are driving demand for windows that can withstand high winds and impact from flying debris caused by severe storms,” said Les Stephens, product marketing manager for JELD-WEN.
Impact-resistant products are an important safeguard against extensive internal damage from severe winds and debris. In addition to impact ratings, windows and doors are rated by how they withstand positive and negative air pressure caused by wind. This rating is called design pressure (DP). The higher the DP rating, the greater the protection against damaging wind loads. In Florida’s Wind Zone 4 where the basic wind speed is greater than 140 miles per hour (MPH), windows must meet a DP rating of 65 or higher.
Offering homeowners more options for severe weather protection
When it comes to technology options designed to meet the code requirements of the different Wind Zone areas, JELD-WEN® Wood windows offer the ultimate in storm protection with a SentryGlas Plus® (SGP) interlayer. Available with both monolithic and insulating glass options and a full warranty, JELD-WEN’s Custom Wood windows feature top-of-the-line ImpactGard® protection.
JELD-WEN’s Vinyl and Aluminum window offering of ImpactGard protection also has expanded substantially. In addition to the original SGP interlayer options, JELD-WEN also offers two choices that feature a polyvinyl butyral (PVB) interlayer, which is commonly used in the industry.
These significant changes result in four different impact-resistant glass options designed to meet a wide variety of building and energy codes, feature offerings, budgets and warranty coverage considerations. JELD-WEN’s ImpactGard protection offerings feature industry-leading warranties, including:
- A 10-year warranty on the interlayer and unit for ImpactGard SGP Plus
- A 10-year warranty on the interlayer for ImpactGard SGP with monolithic glass
- A five-year warranty on the interlayer and unit for ImpactGard PVB with insulating glass
- A five-year warranty on the interlayer for ImpactGard PVB with monolithic glass
With more than 20 window and door manufacturing facilities, JELD-WEN offers the ability to supply homebuilders anywhere in the U.S. with the largest selection of windows and doors available from any manufacturer.
How ImpactGard protection works
ImpactGard protection consists of laminated glass with an interlayer sandwiched between two sheets of glass to deliver extra impact resistance. It may be insulating glass with an additional layer of Low-E coated glass, separated by a warm edge spacer, which increases its energy efficiency.
ImpactGard protection helps prevent wind damage by resisting impacts from debris and keeping the building envelope intact during storms. In fact, windows with ImpactGard SGP protection can withstand a nine-pound 2x4 timber traveling at 34 MPH per ASTM E 1996 requirements. Even if the glass cracks under pressure, the fragments will remain adhered to the interlayer, minimizing the danger of falling or flying glass.
JELD-WEN is the only manufacturer in the nation to offer impact-resistant technology for its complete wood, vinyl and aluminum window lines. Wood windows with ImpactGard protection are available nationwide. Vinyl and aluminum windows with ImpactGard protection are available in the southeastern states.
“ImpactGard protection delivers reliable peace of mind,” Stephens said. “Not only is ImpactGard excellent protection in stormy regions, it is also energy efficient.”
ImpactGard protection also reduces ultraviolet exposure by blocking 95 percent of harmful rays, which can cause fading of some fabrics in the home. Exterior noise also is reduced. Compared to a standard dual pane window that has a Sound Transmission Class (STC) rating of around 27, an insulating laminated glass unit can achieve an STC rating of up to 35, which means it can block even loud construction noises. An Outdoor-Indoor Transmission Class (OITC) rating may also be used for comparing building façade designs, including walls, windows, doors and combinations of those. The OITC rating for a dual pane window is around 22, with an insulating laminated glass unit achieving a possible OITC rating of up to 28.