April 9th, 2012
The R-5 Program
The R-5 program has seen a couple of enhancements over the past several weeks, and the R-5 program or volume purchase program, as it is sometimes called, has more updates in the works.
One of the changes to the program will be the removal of pricing from the website. I believe this will be helpful to manufacturers in the program and I also believe it will help ease confusion among homeowners who use the site. Also, as I understand, the 20-window minimum purchase will be going away. I do believe these are enhancements to the program. Many times, from a retrofit perspective, 20 windows was unattainable, so the homeowner didn’t qualify for the R-5 program.
However, from speaking to several window manufacturers, as well as what I’ve seen in my own experience, the homeowner leads from the R-5 site were very few and far between. There are manufacturers that have been successful with the program but my belief is this has been through commercial projects as well as new construction projects.
One of the new changes to the program that has some window manufacturers vexed is the reporting of all triple-glass sales regardless of whether these sales are part of the R-5 program or not. My own belief is the R-5 program people wants to illustrate that their program has increased the awareness of triple glass and high-performance glass sales.
I can’t deny that awareness has been created through the program, but I can tell you from my experience that triple glass sales from many window manufacturers has been increasing at a steady rate without this program. I believe the Energy Star Program over the past decade has had more to do with this increase in triple-glass sales. People are extremely familiar with Energy Star and see the logo on everything from computer monitors to televisions.
I would love to see some comments below on the pros and cons of the program, please weigh in when you can.