NFRC Spring Meeting Underway in San Diego

The National Fenestration Rating Council's (NFRC) spring meeting began yesterday in San Diego. One of the main topics on the agenda was the proposed nonresidential rating program.

Picking up where the Santa Fe meeting ended, the morning session's debate centered on whether existing layers of testing and validation inherent in NFRC's residential program will be applied to the upcoming program draft for the commercial industry.

Greg Carney, technical director for the Glass Association of North America, emphasized the need to put forth a simplified, cost-effective, software-based rating program that limits redundant and costly testing and validation.

To support his position, he cited statements from past meetings in which representatives from NFRC test labs have publicly backed the assertion that in very few circumstances did physical testing actually vary from the initial software calculation, provided the initial input data was correct and complete.

A number of industry attendees emphasized that, unlike the residential market, the explicit contract documents currently utilized in U.S. commercial construction already govern product adherence to specifications.

There was also considerable resistance to eliminating the testing and certification processes among NFRC members with testing lab and inspection agency backgrounds.
Subcommittee co-chair and board member Gary Curtis of the West Wall Group emphasized the need to ready the program draft for balloting quickly. He then initiated a public discussion with the work group recently charged with putting the proposed program flow chart into draft language. There was objection by some in the work group as to the short notice the members had to review documents prepared by NFRC staff.

Charlie Curcija, president of Carli Inc., reported on proposals for a project label certificate requirement. There was agreement the word "label" should be omitted, and the "certificate" would likely be generated on a per project basis.

NFRC meetings continue today and run through Thursday.

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