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What do the AAMA and NFRC Certifications Mean?

Shopping for new windows can be very confusing. When you look at different brands and talk to different companies, everyone will tell you why their products are the best. Some of the things you will hear you can just chalk up as regular old marketing rhetoric. But there are certain things consumers really ought to be looking for when they're thinking about window replacement and trying to figure out which direction to go with the job.

Certifications a Sign of Commitment

AAMA and NFRC certifications are a sign of commitment to quality and performance standards by the window manufacturers whose products bear the marks of certification. The American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) sets all of the performance standards for the window industry to follow. They are in charge of overseeing these standards, including window certification and educational programs for participants in the industry. When a particular window passes AAMA tests and is certified, it means that particular window product is very likely to offer a high level of performance on your home for a very long time.

Similarly, National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) labels tell consumers some important performance information about the window before they buy. The NFRC is a nonprofit organization that was created by the U.S. Department of Energy in partnership with the window and door industry. It provides a system of comparable ratings on windows and other home products that pertain to the energy performance of those products.

An NFRC label is laced on the window to tell consumers thinking about purchasing it about its U factor. A window's U factor involves an assessment of its ability to block heat, light transmittance, and air leakage that gets through the window assembly. NFRC and AAMA certifications show a commitment to quality.