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Volume 6   Issue 2                March 2005

AAMA ANALYSIS


A Rosetta Stone for Window Standards
by Carl Wagus

In 1799, French soldiers engaged in rebuilding a fort in Egypt’s Nile delta came across a stone covered with inscriptions. These markings turned out to be the same text written in both Greek and Egyptian hieroglyphics. Named for the village in which it was found (Rashid, translated as Rosetta), the stone opened the door to translation of hieroglyphics. 

While one trusts that the recent evolution of window and door standards may not be quite as baffling as deciphering Egyptian hieroglyphics, it would be helpful to have a Rosetta Stone of sorts to compare them side-by-side. The table on the right is intended to serve that purpose by focusing on the differences among three industry standards.

A major aspect, for example, is expansion to encompass more products. 101/I.S. 2/ NAFS-02 added skylights, while 101/I.S. 2/A440-04 adds side-hinged exterior doors.
Note that 101/I.S. 2-97 and 101/I.S. 2/NAFS-02 are currently referenced by the I-codes and manufacturers may certify their products to either. 101/I.S. 2/A440-04 was formally proposed to the ICC for I-code adoption in February and the transition to it as the basis for AAMA certification was initiated at AAMA’s annual meeting that same month.

By labeling products based on tested compliance with performance-based standards applicable throughout North America and encompassing all window and door materials, manufacturers provide code officials with at-a-glance performance ratings to determine code compliance. Astute manufacturers seeking to comply with one or more of the standards should consult the following table as a guide.

Carl Wagus serves as technical director for the American Architectural Manufacturers Association in Schaumburg, Ill.

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