International Builders’ Show Opens Today
Window and door manufacturers are among the exhibitors unveiling hundreds of new products at the International Builders’ Show, which opens today at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL. The National Association of Home Builders expects more than 100,000 attendees again this year at its annual event.
Residential window and door makers have assembled on the show floor in full force, with some industry booths being among the largest in size and scope.
Andersen Windows, always a large presence on the floor, is using the Builders’ Show as an opportunity to update the identities of companies that, on the heels of several recent acquisitions, now fall under its umbrella. Industry attendees can see a new look for the American Craftsman, KML by Andersen and Silver Line Windows & Doors brands. Like Eagle Windows & Doors, which Andersen acquired in 2005, American Craftsman and Silver Line will identify themselves with the tag line, “An Andersen Company.”
Andersen also introduced a new hinged inswing patio door as an expansion to its popular 200 Series window and patio door line. The door features traditional French styling and glass fiber construction with an exterior aluminum frame. The offering is designed as a complete system that includes the door panels, frame, hardware and lock mechanism.
Windsor Windows & Doors is launching a new vinyl window line at the show. Expanding on its Next Dimension product offering, the Next Dimension Pro line is targeted at architects, builders, and contractors seeking a more attractive alternative to aluminum, or a lower quality vinyl product. The line includes single-hung, slider, picture, fixed and geometric shapes and combines energy efficiency with builder-friendly installation features.
Weather Shield Windows & Doors announced at the end of last year the rollout of Visions Windows & Doors as a stand-alone brand of vinyl windows and patio doors. The new brand and business unit, focused on solely vinyl product development, marketing and sales, makes it official debut today in Orlando.
Weather Shield itself focuses on energy efficiency this year, highlighting its new Zo-e-shield Glazing Systems. A proprietary combination of glazing components and coatings, the company reports, results in as much as a 60 percent improvement in center-of-the-glass U-value and about a 68 percent improvement in solar heat gain coefficient over clear insulated glass.
On the door side, Plastpro is featuring its True White fiberglass doors. The skins on the doors are said to be white throughout to provide lasting aesthetics. The doors are paintable, but it is not required. Therma-Tru is featuring the Tru-Defense line of entry and patio doors, which are certified systems that can meet coastal and impact requirements.
Given the Florida location, numerous other manufacturers are highlighting impact-resistant products. YKK AP America and Gorell Windows & Doors are each featuring impact-rated vinyl products. Simonton is focusing on an expanded line of impact-resistant patio doors. In addition to the debut of its Series 700 vinyl casement windows, Atrium Cos. is highlighting its SafeHarbor impact program, which includes windows, patio doors and protective shutters.
Reflective of the current push among traditional fenestration providers in the energy efficiency arena, some alternative window and door options now feature enhancements of this nature as well. Pittsburgh Corning, for example, is introducing its Insolar low-E glass block product, the first the company has offered with energy-efficient qualities. The product is manufactured with patent-pending technology to reduce both heating and cooling loads, improve comfort and decrease glare to protect against the harmful effects of UV rays on furnishings and building materials such as paint, fabric and natural wood.
Hardware suppliers exhibiting at the show this year include Winkhaus North America, which is featuring several new products. Despite the recent slowdown in the market, the company is looking forward to a strong year. “Our new product lines, especially the new stainless steel One Motion multipoint locking system, offer features that help our customers to sell more doors to North American consumers in this difficult environment. Therefore, we are optimistic for 2007,” says Rudy Kessler, president.
Hoppe North America debuts its HLS 7 Series multipoint hardware, which is made from stainless steel and other non-corrosive components and offered in a variety of combinations. An anti-back drive feature on the new line prevents locking points from being disengaged from the outside by possible intruders, enhancing security. An exterior handle lockout feature allows users to activate the multipoint hardware from the exterior door by lifting up on the handle, which is a preferred feature in the entry door market.
In the window hardware arena, GU Hardware displays its new line for push-out casements, targeted for new window models offering old-world features. A British company, Mighton Products, is exhibiting also to display its powered hardware for hung windows.
Window & Door is exhibiting at IBS in Booth W6174—we hope you’ll stop by and see us. You can pick up our Quick Guide to the show featuring names and booth numbers for all the fenestration industry exhibitors. We want to hear your thoughts on the show’s best new products, as well as get your feedback on the magazine and WDweekly. Editorial staff will be on-hand to answer questions and assist with magazine and e-newsletter subscriptions.