It has been a long, hard road to the finalization of the Energy Star® Version 6.0 specification for windows, doors and skylights. While it’s difficult to say who the winners are, one thing is certain: everyone had plenty of time and opportunity to make their cases. Now, the only thing left to do is prepare for what’s ahead.

By our estimates, more than 300 manufacturers have already modeled systems that can meet the Northern Zone U-factor targets through design modifications that range from glass coatings to foam-filled frames. But, some others are left with decisions to make about how they plan to go to market now and into the future.

Some manufacturers might be thinking about abandoning Energy Star altogether. But, before they do so, I urge them to consider the potential consequences. Here are three highly compelling reasons for qualifying products:

  1. Consumer trust: 85 percent of consumers see Energy Star as a recognizable symbol of energy efficiency.
  2. State, Local and Utility Incentives: There are more than 1,180 financial incentives and rebates for a variety of energy efficiency upgrades throughout the U.S., most of which require windows and doors to meet Energy Star performance criteria.
  3. Progress: The Department of Energy continues to place a very high emphasis on raising energy efficiency standards and has been relatively successful driving these into building codes and programs like Energy Star. Falling behind now could make it more difficult to catch up down the road.

The “View from Here” is that companies that don’t have qualifying products in place by the deadlines could be missing out on sales and financial incentive opportunities. The Northern Zone deadline extension to January 2016 should give everyone plenty of time to explore all of their options, and to make design decisions that will help them seize every opportunity and carry their businesses into the future.

Visit for educational tools and resources to help you navigate Energy Star Version 6.0.

Do you have a plan for meeting Energy Star Version 6.0 criteria? Comment here or drop me a line at

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