August 5th, 2014
InstallationMasters™ Dream Home or Amateur Nightmare?
The growing trend of “Whole House” exterior remodeling projects – where clients also replace doors and windows when they replace siding or stucco – made me think about how many different types of siding surfaces, casings and window types an exterior remodeling specialist must be intimately familiar with today. Keeping air and water out of a hole in the wall with a door or a window takes a considerable amount of experience, knowledge and craftsmanship. The fact of the matter is, replacing doors and windows is not a project for amateurs.
No matter how efficient a door or window is manufactured to be, high-performance fenestrations won’t perform well if they aren’t installed properly. They must be integrated into the specific type of exterior wall surface surrounding them accordingly. Even the highest-rated but improperly installed door or window will not give the property owner the utility cost savings they expect; they won’t solve their water penetration problem and will continue to have air infiltration around them, too.
Fortunately, manufacturers and architects recognize that doors and windows that test well will not perform well if they are installed incorrectly – and they have done something about it!
The American Architectural and Manufacturers Association (AAMA) has training and certification for correct door and window installation through their InstallationMasters™ program.
The InstallationMasters™ website states the program is specifically designed to help installers:
- Avoid costly callbacks;
- Improve energy efficiency;
- Work more efficiently, optimizing both time and energy; and
- Maximize product benefits for happier, more satisfied customers.
InstallationMasters™installers become part of a select group and can use this additional training to sell their skills and ability on every project they bid.
The banner of the InstallationMasters™ website proudly proclaims “Show them you’re an InstallationMaster™… and watch your business grow.”
I believe experience, training, craftsmanship and knowledge is needed for proper installation of doors and windows. With so many varieties of exterior wall surfaces and fenestration models we need to deal with on a daily basis, guidelines and training are needed to insure end consumer satisfaction.
I applaud AAMA’s efforts to offer their training and certification program, but the end-consumer will not give the program the weight it deserves when making their purchasing decision unless more of us in the door and window industry do a better job of making the consumer aware of the importance of the InstallationMasters™ training and certification program. If the high-performance window being manufactured and bought gets a low-performance installation there will be dissatisfied clients and business will suffer. When they are installed properly and clients can shout from the rooftops about how their new windows perform, repeat business and referrals are more likely to occur.
I hope all of us will do our best to promote the program to the end-consumer and within our own companies. If we don’t, the InstallationMasters™ program will also fail to meet its performance intentions and the end consumer may have their dream home improvement become a costly nightmare.