When you’re looking for new or replacement windows for your home you should look for quality and commitment from the manufacturer. One way manufacturers show that they stand behind the quality of their product is by offering warranties, another way is to submit their products for performance certification. Certifications, like warranties, are a sign of commitment.
One of the most valuable certifications for windows is offered by the American Architectural Manufacturers Association↗ (AAMA). Read on to learn more about AAMA certification for windows.
The AAMA began offering third-party window performance ratings in 1962 and its certification program has been accredited by the American National Standards Institute↗ (ANSI) since 1972. Over the years the AAMA Certification program has gone on to set and promote the highest quality standards for residential and commercial windows.
The AAMA offers several certification programs:
The AAMA label expresses value. When a window passes the AAMA certification program, it means the window is likely to perform at a high level for a long time.
An AAMA certification requires stringent performance tests conducted by an independent and accredited AAMA lab. The AAMA Certification Program assures customers that the windows they selected match the quality of the product sample that was tested (as long as it is properly installed).
The Gold Label certifies that a sample of a particular type of window passed performance tests for resistance to air leakage, water penetration, and wind pressure. In addition to unit testing, individual components of the window have passed independent performance tests making them eligible for use in AAMA-certified windows.
During the certification process manufacturing plants are inspected by third-party validators. Surprise inspections are performed twice to review production lines, component inventory, and quality control records. Because only a sample is tested, the manufacturer’s production line must be certified to assure that the line units are built to the same specifications as the sample unit that was tested.
There are a few ways to know if your window is AAMA certified. The first is to check for a label, the AAMA provides labels for products that have been independently tested and met their code requirements. If your window doesn’t have a label but you know the brand and series (brand and make) of the window, you can try looking up the product using AAMA’s Product Certification List↗.
Ask the window company you are working with about AAMA certification for their windows. While all reliable windows have National Fenestration Ratings Council↗ (NFRC) ratings, not all windows have AAMA certifications. The window company you’re working with should know or have access to information about AAMA certifications for the windows you are interested in.
The AAMA has nearly 100 manufacturers in its database for certified products, to see more companies visit the Certified Products List↗.
The AAMA also works closely with other organizations including the NFRC. To learn more about the NFRC check out our related posts below or ask about AAMA or NFRC certifications when you meet with one of our consultants.
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