Safety First: Prepare Your Home for Hurricane Season

The Atlantic hurricane season is here, officially open for business from June 1 to November 30. And according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center, this season is expected to be near or above normal. Despite the sheer power of hurricanes, you don’t have to feel vulnerable during the season, or year-round. Arm yourself with some basic information and a solid plan before the possibility of a hurricane arises in your area.

Satellite Image of 2017 Hurricanes Katia, Maria and JoseHurricanes Katia, Irma and Jose. September 2017. Image Credit: NASA Earth Observatory images by Joshua Stevens and Jesse Allen, using VIIRS day-night band data from the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership and Terra MODIS data from the Land Atmosphere Near real-time Capability for EOS (LANCE)

Hurricanes, sometimes referred to as tropical cyclones, are massive storm systems that form over the water and move toward land. Threats from hurricanes include high winds, heavy rainfall, storm surge, coastal and inland flooding, rip currents, and tornadoes. The strength of a hurricane is based upon its maximum sustained winds.

Tropical Depression: A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 38 mph or less.

Tropical Storm: A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 39 to 73 mph.

Hurricane: A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 74 mph or higher.

Major Hurricane: A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 111 mph or higher, corresponding to a Category 3, 4 or 5 on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.

The aftermath of Hurricane Camille. Biloxi, Mississippi, August 17, 1969. Camille was one of only three Category 5 hurricanes to ever make landfall in the United States. Image credit: NOAA.

Know the difference between a hurricane “watch” and “warning.” According to the National Weather Service, a hurricane watch means that there’s no hurricane yet, but weather conditions could cause one. Experts will announce a hurricane watch 48 hours before they think dangerous winds will begin. A hurricane warning is more serious. It means a hurricane has already started or is just about to start. For a deep dive into more specific advisories, watches and warnings, or to learn more about hurricane season in general, check out the National Weather Service’s Hurricane Center.

Aerial image of New Orleans' Ninth Ward after Hurricane Katrina devastated the area, causing levies to break and flood some of the city's poorest neighborhoods.Aerial image of New Orleans’ Ninth Ward after Hurricane Katrina devastated the area, causing levies to break and flood some of the city’s poorest neighborhoods. Image credit: NOAA

Even if there’s no imminent risk of a hurricane, there are steps you can take now to ensure you, your family and your home stay safe. Visit Ready.gov for up-to-date information, checklists and downloadable resources, like this 12-page FEMA eBook, How to Prepare for a Hurricane.

Originally built in the mid 1800s, the New Canal Lighthouse in New Orleans was heavily damaged by hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005. As part of JELD-WEN’s Reliable Lighthouse Restoration Initiative, the lighthouse was outfitted with aluminum-clad Custom™ Wood windows made with superior rot-resistant AuraLast® Wood and ImpactGard™ glass.

Doors and windows are the most vulnerable area of a home during a hurricane, particularly the glass. Just one broken window can affect a home’s structural integrity. Windows and patio doors with ImpactGard® protection are designed to resist impacts so even if the glass cracks, the fragments will adhere to the interlayer, ensuring the shards remain within the frame. ImpactGard® protection also meets the nation’s toughest building codes. These codes specify that windows must withstand a nine-pound 2×4 traveling at 50 feet per second (34 miles per hour).

JELD-WEN put ImpactGard™ glass to the ultimate test as part of the Reliable Lighthouse Restoration Initiative. Since 2005, JELD-WEN has provided windows outfitted with AuraLast® Wood and energy-efficient or impact-rated glass to lighthouse restoration projects. The Custom™ Wood windows and custom-designed wood or fiberglass doors are designed to preserve each lighthouse’s historic aesthetic. The combination of AuraLast® Wood and ImpactGard™ glass can help ensure that windows in coastal settings will not only look good, but will also stand up to harsh climates. Now that’s what we call peace of mind year-round, not just hurricane season.

The Modern Wood Window

modern-wood-window

Did you know that most wood windows have at least 70 parts?

JELD-WEN’s modern wood windows certainly aren’t the same as those made 50 or even 25 years ago. Wood windows once held the largest market share in the U.S. window industry until vinyl became the preferred material. Wood windows were officially eclipsed by vinyl windows in the 1990s. This happened for several reasons. Vinyl came to be perceived as more durable. The cost effectiveness of the vinyl window also made it popular.

However, the modern wood window is gaining market share. The market is expanding rather than deflating, mainly due to the new construction of wood windows. Most of this revolves around treated wood products. Treatments can help the wood resist rot and stand up better to the elements, even termites.

The need to create a more durable wood became a critical goal for JELD-WEN, one that was accomplished with the invention of AuraLast® pine. AuraLast has revolutionized our wood window offerings. Because it is treated to the core, it has the ability to resist wood rot, water infiltration and termites. But that’s not the only thing innovative about our wood windows.

What’s inside a wood window?

The construction of wood windows is an engineering feat. Dozens of hands touch wood windows during manufacturing. We don’t “stock” wood windows. They are made based on orders. So, if you thought there was a warehouse in every plant with stacks and stacks of wood windows, that’s not really how it works. There is still a lot of handcrafting that goes into every wood window.

The modern wood window advantage

AuraLast is just one of the advantages of today’s wood window. There are additional elements that elevate it from where it began. It has an aluminum frame and sash for extra strength. Thermal breaks offer a barrier to reduce the flow of thermal energy into and out of a room. A concealed jamb liner is found in a double-hung to ensure smooth operation.

The subject of wood windows can become very technical. This is just a quick review to help you understand the importance of how a window is built from the inside out.

We invite you to learn more about our wood window lines, including W-2500™, Siteline® and Custom Wood windows.

10 Things You Didn’t Know About JELD-WEN Wood Windows

JELDWEN-wood-windows

Wood windows have been part of homes for hundreds of years. They were the original window material. Not until the 19th century did metal become a window material. Vinyl windows didn’t become a major player in the market until the 1970s.

Wood windows have gone through a makeover in the last few decades. The manufacturing of wood windows is a very technical process. This process has many steps and details. The process and the material have greatly improved.

We put together this list to introduce you to JELD-WEN wood windows.

  1. A JELD-WEN wood window has 70 individual parts.
  2. Our treated wood product, AuraLast® pine, is treated to the core.
  3. AuraLast repels termites.
  4. You can choose from a variety of finishes for the interior and exterior of your windows (even two different colors!).
  5. AuraLast is real wood, not a composite. The exterior of AuraLast windows doesn’t require cladding, allowing for a more accurate historical representation.
  6. Performance glass is available for most wood window lines, including energy-efficient and impact-resistant options.
  7. Contemporary or traditional glazing stops are available.
  8. Our wood windows are viable in coastal areas. Combining AuraLast pine with ImpactGard® glass creates a wood window product that can withstand Wind Zone 2 or 3.
  9. We offer American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) 2605 certified products.
  10. We have National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) rated products for the following areas: U-factor, solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) and visible light transmission.

Want to explore our entire wood window line and learn more? Visit our wood window page for information, options and reasons why our wood windows are different.

Window Glass Divided Lites: SDL Versus GBG

divided-lite

History, differences and what’s best for your home

The divided lite goes back hundreds of years to the first glass windows. Windows didn’t always have glass. Prior to this, they were just openings.

The original divided lites were individual panes of glass held in by mullions. Glass production was in its infancy so it could only be produced in pieces about the size of someone’s hand.

These glass panes then needed to be linked together to form a larger space. Muntins joined glass, thus the invention of the true divided lite. Muntins were originally made of cast iron but were replaced with wood in the early 1800s. Windows from this period are what would be considered a historic or traditional divided lite.

Glass becomes easier to produce

With the Industrial Revolution, glass production became easier and less expensive. Larger pieces of glass were produced. This meant the end of the true divided lite. However, the authentic look of divided lites was still desired then and now. Look at most homes today or even commercial buildings, and you’ll find some type of divided lite.

SDL versus GBG

With modern windows, there are two ways to achieve the divided lite look. Simulated divided lites (SDL) offer the most authentic look. SDLs are permanently adhered to both sides of the window with a narrow spacer bar within the insulating glass airspace. This look adds more depth. SDLs provide a bit more breadth in terms of options relating to shape and finishes.

Grilles between the glass (GBG) are as described, between the glass. The grille pattern is completely encased in the glass. This means less maintenance, as you won’t have to clean between all dividers. GBGs are also more budget friendly.

Ultimately, the use of SDLs or GBGs is a personal preference and depends on the type of look you want for your home.

Learn more about window options by viewing two of our popular window series: Siteline® wood windows and Premium™ Vinyl.

Exterior Door Materials: Wood, Fiberglass and Steel

exterior-door-materials

Check out this comparison of the most popular exterior door materials

When choosing the right exterior door, you’ll want to compare each material. The three most popular exterior door materials are wood, fiberglass and steel. Each has its own advantages. In this post, we’ll take a look at each material and provide relevant information so you can make an informed decision.

Wood

Wood is the most traditional and one of the oldest materials used for doors, dating back to ancient times. The earliest records of wooden doors are represented in the paintings of the Egyptian tombs.

Fast forward a few thousand years, and wood is still an excellent choice for doors. Doors can be crafted from hardwoods and softwoods. The most widely used are Cherry, Oak, Walnut, Mahogany, Knotty Alder, Douglas Fir and Pine.

Why you’ll love wood exterior doors:

  • Beauty and warmth immediately invites guests into your home
  • From modern to traditional, wood is versatile
  • Any stains or paints work on wood doors
  • Sturdy, heavy feel
  • Insulating core
  • Customizable based on size, style, accents, glass and more
  • Good at reducing sound

Fiberglass

Fiberglass has unique qualities that make it a great material to use in variety of applications. It’s strong yet lightweight. It also has weather-resistant qualities. It’s been used in aviation as well as in boats and car bodies.

Now, it’s a leading material for exterior doors. The sophistication of the processes used to create fiberglass doors makes it almost impossible to tell the difference between wood and fiberglass. Our Aurora® custom fiberglass doors are made to order and are handcrafted. Aurora doors even have imperfections created by hand for authenticity. When touching an Aurora fiberglass door, you can actually feel the grain and texture.

In addition to the Aurora, we have many other fiberglass door lines that provide all the great benefits of fiberglass at a budget-friendly price. Those include the contemporary Studio™ Collection and the Statement™ Collection, both offering multiple styles.

Fiberglass has many benefits that make it a durable, quality choice. The doors have energy-efficient cores with insulating properties. They also resist bowing, warping and denting. Fiberglass doors can be stained or painted, depending on the look you desire. They are often less expensive than real wood doors.

Steel

Steel is a great material option for exterior doors. It offers durability, safety and style. Exterior steel doors are dependable as well as aesthetically pleasing.

The best steel doors are made to last. They include wood stiles and rails with mitered top corners. Why does this matter? It helps prevent water absorption. A neutral, low-sheen, baked-on enamel primer reduces the occurrence of fading. Epoxy primer coats the back of steel doors to resist corrosion. An energy-efficient core is an additional feature. A steel bottom rail is added for strength. Proper coating prevents the door from rusting from the inside out.

Steel also provides additional security. Install an optional steel edge for added peace of mind. Steel doors are low maintenance and the least expensive of the three materials discussed. You can learn more about steel doors in our blog.

Which material is right for you?

Now that you have all the basics, it’s time to choose. You’ll want to consider several things to make the best decision including:

  • Budget
  • Architectural style
  • Climate and environment
  • Overhang
  • Accents and glass options
  • Paint versus stain

Here’s a quick comparison review.

Wood

  • Easy to stain or paint
  • Very customizable
  • Reasonable at reducing sound transmission
  • Insulating core

Fiberglass

  • Energy efficient
  • Weather resistant
  • Stain or paint
  • Highly durable
  • Affordable
  • Highly customizable

Steel

  • Water-damage resistant
  • Durable and resists rusting
  • Low maintenance
  • Best pick for smaller budgets

If you’d like to learn more about our exterior doors, you can browse all our options.

How Interior Doors Reduce Sound Transmission

interior-doors-reduce-sound

Your dishwasher shouldn’t be quieter. Better-performing interior doors reduce sound transmission!

How often are you irritated because you can hear your dishwasher or washing machine in the next room? Or maybe you’d like not to hear your teenager’s loud music? What if many of the sounds you’d like to block could be significantly minimized just by upgrading your interior doors? Well, that’s certainly a possibility.

In this post, you’ll learn how interior doors reduce sound transmission.

How sound travels

When sound comes into contact with a barrier like an interior door, some of the energy from the vibrations transfers to the door. The resulting vibrations in the door then set the air in motion, creating sound on the other side of the door. The mass and stiffness of the barrier impact how much sound will transfer.

Thus, the inside of your interior door is critical when considering noise reduction.

Why your interior doors matter

Busy homes or active areas create a lot of noise. However, you’d probably like to keep that noise confined to its space. Upgrading your interior doors is a budget-friendly, easy solution. You’ll want to determine the Sound Transmission Class (STC) and/or the OITC (Outdoor-Indoor Transmission Class). You can read more about STC and OITC in our blog.

Once you’ve determined what your level of sound reduction is, then you can review all the doors that meet those requirements. We offer ProCore® solid cores for all molded doors as an upgrade. This can reduce the transmission of sound by up to 50 percent compared to a hollow core door.

Our TRIA™ interior doors are carved from composite wood and have a solid core. The TRIA collection doors have the highest STC ratings of all our interior doors.

Where better interior doors will benefit you the most

Where to install higher-quality interior doors depends on the layout of your space as well as what occurs in it. We’ve discussed the annoying sounds of a dishwasher and washing machine. If your home has its own laundry area, install a solid core door here to reduce the myriad of sounds. Kitchens are typically open spaces now, so it might be harder to ignore the dishwasher.

They also make sense in bathrooms or bedrooms. Again, these are noisy areas, so a great solid door in a child’s bedroom will hopefully keep him or her asleep. For bathrooms, eliminate noise related to plumbing and the blow dryer.

By reducing the transmission of sound throughout your home, you can create a better experience for each of your spaces. And interior door upgrades are certainly not a blow-the-budget kind of upgrade. It’s worth checking out some better doors if the noise in your space is impacting your quality of life.

We invite you to review all our interior doors. Better interior doors reduce sound transmission, providing you a more serene environment. Just another way that JELD-WEN is here to make your possibilities come true.