Fabrication Council tackles key issues
By Patrick Flannery
Fenestration Canada’s Fabricators Council met June 9 at the association’s Annual General Meeting in Mont Tremblant, Que., to discuss important issues and initiatives concerning Canadian window and door fabricators. The meeting was chaired by Lisa Bergeron of Jeld-Wen and included about 15 fabricators and invited guests.
The Council heard from Jeff Baker of Westlab, Fenestration Canada’s technical consultant that changes are coming to the Fenestration Installation Technician (FIT) certification program. The Canadian Standards Association will no longer administer the test, leaving the program entirely in Fenestration Canada’s hands. The future direction of the program was discussed, with suggestions that a training element be added. Home builder associations have reportedly expressed interest in helping promote the program to their members, driving growth in window and door installation training among residential construction workers. A task group was formed to research possible next steps for FIT and to present options to the Council.
The Certification and Testing Agencies Panel has produced a document answering 12 questions from fabricators about compliance standards and testing methods. This panel of testing and certification experts was convened for the first time in 2014 at WinDoor and continues to work to generate common responses to fabricator concerns over inconsistencies in interpretations of the North American Fenestration Standard and other standards. The panel will meet again at WinDoor 2016 in Montreal.
A potential Canadian Energy Star program for low-E storm panels was discussed. At this stage, NRCan is not pursuing such a program citing a very small storm panel market in Canada. The U.S. Environmental Protectioin Agency has issued an initial low-E storm panel specification and is likely to rely on the Attachments Energy Rating Council (AERC) to develop a rating, certification and labeling program for low-E storm panels and other attachments. Concerns were expressed over Energy Star’s proposals to certify storm windows. Fabricators Council members observed that rating storm windows is potentially problematic because a storm window’s energy performance is highly dependent on the window it is installed over and may create consumer confusion over the performance of the attachment itself compared to a new replacement window. Public comments submitted to the EPA can be found on EPA’s website.
Some changes to the Fabricator Council’s procedures were announced. Greg Dickie of Atlantic Windows and Gary Blad of Loewen Windows will now co-chair the Council with Bergeron. The Council will look at implementing meetings every two months, with participation via conference call for members across the country.
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