The industry hasn’t had a major product crisis for years, thank goodness. But the industry has a habit of creating its own crises; own goals that knock the industry off-course.
Usually they’re down to bad practice and reckless cost saving. And matching what others are doing, rather than doing what’s technically correct or sensible.
I’m thinking of the disruption, damage and cost of discoloured door panels; of peeling, cracking or bubbling foils; delaminating, warping and bowing composite doors; of pitting peeling hardware, and pinking profiles.
The industry recovered from these very public, painful crises. Those who were most involved suffered badly, but when the industry becomes associated with bad quality or bad practice everyone suffers. Buyers take longer to buy and the market slows down. At its worst, the industry’s reputation is tarnished. For decades, buyers associate it with particular problems.
Now the industry is sleep-walking into another unnecessary crisis.
The mark of a premium quality Sysco is designing and developing products with the end market in mind – whether it’s a multi-story commercial building, heritage home or new build semi. And designing for the climatic conditions they’ll have to perform in 10, 20 years from now. Some of US Presidential-contender Donald Trump’s friends may argue otherwise, but there is little doubt that the windows we make and install today will have to work in a warmer, wetter climate tomorrow.
What does that mean in practice? Well, Deceuninck is No.1 for colour, and colour is a big and growing part of the market, so we engineer our windows and doors to perform perfectly in tomorrow’s warmer world: in the factory, during installation and in long term use.
Colour is trending fast because homeowners want it. More than one in four windows and doors are foiled or coloured in England & Wales. In Scotland and Ireland, it’s around one in two. On the Continent it’s more than two in three.
So how will the windows and doors you’re making and installing work in a hotter tomorrow? White windows and doors won’t be a problem, but foiled and coloured will be.
Many will bow, twist and jam in tomorrow’s heat because they’re not made for it. We know because we test our own and our competitors’ products, reinforced as recommended. We test them to destruction in accelerated weathering rooms that expose them to the temperatures they will experience 10 or 20 years from now.
Will the new generation of foiled and coloured mechanically-jointed products survive tomorrow’s climate? Most won’t. Joints will be forced open in hotter temperatures.
Engineered for tomorrow does not mean ugly windows and doors you could stand a tank on. Deceuninck’s Heritage Flush Sash looks beautiful, and is designed to be outstanding. Fully welded or mechanically jointed in a wide range of light and dark colours, it’s engineered for tomorrow’s reality.
The car industry, and VW in particular, has been caught engineering its emissions to suit itself not the real world. However that plays out, it will cost car makers dearly.
This industry must make windows and doors for the real world, not the world we’d like it to be. No one gains from a self-induced crisis.
Roy Frost, MD Deceuninck UK & Ireland