Volume 12, Issue 1 - January/February 2011


Study Predicts U.S. Door and Window Demand to Exceed $31 Billion in 2014

Demand for doors and windows in the United States is forecast to rise 6.6 percent per year to $31.2 billion in 2014, according to Windows & Doors, a new study released by The Freedonia Group Inc., a Cleveland-based industry market research firm. This increase is a rebound from the 2004-2009 period, when demand fell 4.3 percent annually, reflecting the collapse of the housing market between 2007 and 2009. Although housing completions will remain below the level reached at their cyclical peak in 2006, the recovery in new home construction will fuel above-average gains in the residential market for doors and windows through 2014, the study says.

Among material types, plastic doors and windows will see the most rapid growth through 2014, advancing over ten percent per year to $7.4 billion. Gains will be spurred by rising demand for fiberglass entry doors, which will take market share from wood and steel entry doors. Freedonia attributes the increase in fiberglass popularity to the material’s low cost, aesthetics and energy efficiency. While traditionally wood doors were seen as more attractive than those made from fiberglass, improvements in processing techniques have enabled manufacturers to make fiberglass that more closely resembles wood. Further gains for plastic doors and windows will be supported by continuing demand for vinyl windows because of their low cost, durability, minimal maintenance requirements and energy efficiency, according to the study.

Metal doors and windows accounted for the largest share of door and window demand in 2009, overtaking wood products, which saw their share of the market decline due to the steep drop in spending on residential building construction, where wood doors and windows are most commonly used. Metal doors and windows are expected to continue to lead the market in 2014. Demand will also be supported by the nonresidential market, where metal products are sometimes chosen because of their low cost and durability.

Demand for wood doors and windows is forecast to rise 7.2 percent per year to $10.9 billion in 2014. The rebound in residential building construction activity will drive gains, especially in the high-end housing market. Wood doors and windows are seen as aesthetically pleasing products that add value to a home. However, strong plastic door and window demand, which is taking share from wood, will prevent wood products from supplanting metal products as the market leader, the study reports.

Jeld-Wen of Canada Ltd. Fined $50,000 for Incident That Injured Worker at Plant
Jeld-Wen of Canada Ltd. recently was fined $50,000 for a June 2008 incident in which an employee was injured at its manufacturing plant in Vaughan, Ontario. The Ontario Ministry of Labor (OML) brought the fine against the company for the incident, which it said violated the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

According to reports from the OML, the worker was using a table saw to cut a piece of wood at the plant on June 3, 2008, when the incident occurred. As reported, the saw blade had a guard on it, but the saw would not make the required cut if the guard was left in place; as a result, a supervisor advised a worker to remove the guard to make the cut, according to the OML, and the worker’s hand made contact with the unguarded blade while making the cut, and the worker lost part of two of his fingers.

Jeld-Wen of Canada Ltd. pleaded guilty to failing to ensure that the table saw was equipped with a guard or other device to prevent access to its blade, according to the announcement.

In addition to the fine, the court imposed a 25-percent victim fine surcharge, which will be credited to a special provincial government fund to assist victims of crime.

Simonton Part of Fortune’s Home and Security Spin-Off
Simonton Windows® is part of the new Home and Security business that will be spun off by Fortune Brands Inc. in 2011. Plans were announced on December 8, 2010, for the Home and Security business unit to be spun off as an independent, publicly traded company to current Fortune Brands shareholders.

“We’re excited that Simonton Windows is positioned for continued growth as a market leader in the new Home and Security business that’s being developed,” says Mark Savan, president of Simonton Windows. “The new structure will provide us with excellent opportunities for our brand to be a key participant in a stand-alone publicly traded company purely focused on the home products market.

“While details are still being finalized, we anticipate this exciting development will take place within the next six to nine months. During and after the transition we expect no changes in our operations,” he adds.

As part of its announcement, representatives of Fortune Brands communicated that its Board of Directors unanimously approved, in principle, a separation of the company’s three strong consumer businesses–distilled spirits, home and security and golf products.

Edgetech I.G. Seals Deal to Bring Gas-Fill Technology to America
Edgetech I.G. recently announced that it will partner with United Kingdom-based Inagas, a provider of gas-fill machinery. Under the agreement, Edgetech will be the exclusive distributor of Inagas products in North America and Central America, and also will distribute the products in Germany, France, Switzerland and Austria.

“Inagas’ technologies are worlds ahead of the competition in terms of accuracy, reliability and ease of use,” says Mike Burk, manager, workplace learning and performance, Edgetech I.G. “With Inagas gas-fill equipment, productivity and quality are dramatically improved over the analog filling options currently available in the Americas.”

Edgetech will offer the full range of Inagas products, including gas fillers and test equipment.

briefly …
Gorell Windows and Doors in Indiana, Pa., announced recently that its sales of doors and windows over the past two months was 12.5 percent higher than the same eight-week period in 2009.


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