Know Your Stuff
Understand Your Products to Ensure Success
b y C r a i g C a r s o n
much I like what we do, primarily
for the variety of projects I get to
ve mentioned several times how
products, or even
ways to help the birds
see glass so they
don’t ﬂy into it.
work on, not to mention how stimu-
lating it is to learn about new products
and how they are incorporated into
the building envelopes. Exciting new
technologies include jumbo fabricated
glass capabilities, electrochromic and
thermochromic products,or even ways
to help the birds see glass so they don’t
ﬂy into it.All of this can be heady stuff.
But there’s a downside to these new
products. That happens when a rep
calls on architects without knowing
enough to say whether it can meet cer-
tain cost or performance requirements.
I often hear after the fact that the
architect or building owner doesn’t
understand why, when an alternate is
requested for a new glass type, it costs
more than what the salesperson had that they don’t have the budget to use they’re designing the building. It’s our
said they should expect. In some cases these glass types.
the architect is told the glass will cost
professional responsibility to know,
and to help guide them to using prod-
ucts that meet the code.
a certain amount more per square foot Code Concerns
over a standard low-E unit and offer
They are not alone however. Where
Over the years I’ve helped some very
better performance.That might be par- I live and work in Colorado the adop- agitated architects who have spent
tially true.Maybe the glass does costs X tion of the 2015 International Build- weeks or months on projects working
dollars more than the product to which ing Code (IBC), which includes the to get that “look” only to ﬁnd out that
it’s being compared, but that’s usually International Energy Conservation the system they were designing around
our cost to cost comparison without Code, is not universal. In fact, we still will not meet the IECC requirements.
additional sales tax or markup.
have cities and counties using the 2012 As I’ve said before … the devil is in
Now, I don’t want to paint these ﬁne IBC and even some with 2009 version. the details. n
people who are trying to make a living It would be simpliﬁed if we had
with a broad stroke of a paint brush mandatory statewide energy
and say that they’re purposely mislead- code requirements,as many other
C r a i g C a r s o n is the
ing anyone. They’re not! But I would states have. The lack of statewide
like them to check with the contract requirements can sometimes
glazing community to ensure their cause problems early in the de-
pricing reflects realistic cost differ- sign assist portion of the project.
ences. This can help us avoid hearing This happens when architects
from architects who are disappointed don’t know to what requirements
manager for Alliance Glazing
Technologies Inc. in
USGlass, Metal & Glazing | April 2017