Volume 12, Issue 8 - October 2011

WDMA Update

The Standards are Aligned
Well, Architectural Wood Door Standards
by Jeff Lowinski

The Window and Door Manufacturers Association (WDMA) has released two updated editions of its architectural wood flush door standards, WDMA I.S. 1A-11, Industry Standard for Architectural Wood Flush Doors, and WDMA I.S. 6A-11, Industry Standard for Architectural Stile and Rail Doors. A major overhaul and rewrite of two existing, well-known industry interior architectural door standards, the new standards are fully synchronized with each other for both content and organization, with their focus on performance-driven specification.

Harmonious Standards
Other revisions were made to both standards to harmonize them with the 2009 Architectural Woodwork Standards, published
by the Architectural Woodwork Institute (AWI), the Architectural Woodwork Manufacturers Asso-ciation of Canada (AWMAC) and the Woodwork Institute (WI). Additional changes were also in-corporated to update and improve the standards, including revised face veneer charts, factory finish-ing guidance and an expanded specification checklist cross-referenced to the applicable standards sections.

Compare All the Standards
WDMA has prepared a comparison table to identify the major construction, aesthetic and other differences between the QSI, AWI and current and previous WDMA I.S.1A standards. The table shows the major changes between the 2004 and 2011 editions of the WDMA standards. For a copy of the full comparison table, go to technical center/technical bulletins on the WDMA website at www.wdma.com.

At their core, the WDMA standards continue to identify distinct performance duty levels for architectural doors based on their use. Specifiers can select the correct door for each opening based on severity of use, resulting in appropriate functioning as well as economy. This approach also means that product innovations and improved materials can be incorporated easily by the manufacturer, as long as the specified performance duty level is met and verified. It also means better use of costly and increasingly dwindling sustainable materials.

Leveling the Playing Field
Eight performance attributes and related test methods classify a door and its construction into specific performance duty levels. These include:
• adhesive bond durability (WDMA TM-6);

• cycle slam (WDMA TM-7)

• hinge loading (WDMA TM-8);

• screwholding (WDMA TM-10); and

• telegraphing, warp tolerance, squareness and door finish.

They also contain extensive detail about wood veneer face grading, selection, matching and assembly so specifiers can identify precisely the aesthetics they are seeking. The standards also identify common construction alternatives, such as meeting edge, transom, glazing, louver, panel arrangement, sticking and joinery details, to help specifiers understand their differences and identify them properly in specification documents. The specification checklist included in each standard further identifies the basic information required in an architectural door specification and, when applicable, identifies the default value or difference between criteria for premium or custom grade door.

One of the main drivers for revising the WDMA I.S. 1A and WDMA I.S. 6A standards was the cooperative effort to coordinate these documents with the 2009 edition of the Architectural Woodwork Standards. Both WDMA and the joint standards committee (the AWI/AWMAC/WI management committee that oversees the Architectural Woodwork Standard) worked diligently to identify areas where the two sets of standards differed, and to modify each of them to remove unnecessary conflict. Nowhere is this more evident than in the AWS adoption of the WDMA-pioneered performance duty level testing requirements, and in WDMA’s alignment of flush door veneer criteria. Both the WDMA and AWS standards now recognize performance duty level tested as the preferred standard over prescriptive door construction requirements, and also use the same set of HPVA veneer grading standards resulting in less confusion for architects/specifiers over the aesthetic features of premium and custom-grade doors.

Jeff Lowinski serves as vice president, technical services, for the Window and Door Manufacturers Association.



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