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March - April 2003

WDMA Opens Up

What’s in a Label?
Everything and More!
by Alan J. Campbell

For the window and door industry, labels, trademarks and associated standards are crucial benchmarks. Labels and standards associated with window, door and skylight products help the entire distribution chain select the most applicable product. 

The Window and Door Manufacturers Association (WDMA) continues to update and modify standards to meet real-world applications. An example is the move to performance-based standards. These standards follow manufacturing guidelines based on how products will be used. 

Window, door and skylight manufacturers may comply with applicable voluntary standards, which include: 

• AAMA/WDMA NAFS-1—North American Fenestration Standard

• ANSI/WDMA I.S. 1-A—Architectural Wood Flush Doors

• ANSI/AAMA/WDMA 101 I.S. 2—Voluntary Specifications for Aluminum, (PVC) and Wood Windows and Glass Doors

• WDMA I.S. 6—Wood Stile and Rail Doors

• ANSI/WDMA I.S. 6-A—Architectural Wood Stile & Rail Doors

• AAMA/WDMA 1600 I.S. 7—Skylights

• WDMA I.S. 9—Wood Primary Entrance Doors

These standards are voluntary, but considered guiding principles of the industry and respected coast to coast by building code officials and others in construction. 

Look for the Hallmark Label
In addition to following applicable standards, manufacturers may also participate in a program called Hallmark Certification. This program allows a special label to be emblazoned on those products that meet its requirements. In addition, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) accredited Hallmark recently, adding further credence to the program. 

Hallmark Certification provides a method of identifying products manufactured in accordance with certain WDMA standards and is referenced by HUD/FHA in their minimum property standards and by many other government agencies. Manufacturers who demonstrate conformance to WDMA standards may participate in the program, which includes inspection of manufacturing facilities, product testing and other requirements. 

Here’s what makes up the Hallmark Certified label:

Product Designation Code: Indicates the product type, performance class, performance grade and maximum-size tested.

Product Type: Each product type and class requires minimum test sizes for entry into the class. Twenty different window and door product types are included, for example, awning, top-hinged, vertical sliding windows, dual-action hinged glass doors and more.

Performance Classes: Window and door products are divided into five performance classes that include residential (R); light commercial (LC); commercial (C); heavy commercial (HC); and architectural (AW). 

Performance Grade: Products are designated by the design pressure for which they have been tested in pounds per square foot or psf. The structural test pressure for all products is 1.5 times the design pressure. Each performance has a minimum performance grade. Those include R 15 psf; LC 25 psf; C 30 psf; HC 40 psf; and AW 40 psf. In addition, products may be tested to optional performance grades higher than the minimum grade in increments of 5 psf.

Maximum Size Tested: Maximum size tested is required on designations reporting or recording individual product performance. The maximum size tested is designated by width times height in inches and rounded to the nearest inch. Test size is a critical factor in determining compliance with standards. Each product type has a defined gateway or passport set of primary requirements before entry into the product performance class. 

Alan J. Campbell, CAE, serves as president of the WDMA in Des Plaines, Ill.

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