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Changes coming to door codes

April 7, 2011  By Kevin Pelley

There are a great number of activities and initiatives going on at the
Canadian Window and Door Manufacturer Association in 2011.

There are a great number of activities and initiatives going on at the Canadian Window and Door Manufacturer Association in 2011. Some of them are benefiting the industry as a whole, and much is being done to provide an ever-increasing number of benefits to those firms who join the CWDMA. We continue to fund standards development and we are providing support for the CSA’s work on a certification program for window installation personnel.

Pretty, but possibly not to code.


Members only have access to our new comprehensive listing of fenestration requirements in codes and regulations. For the convenience and benefit of our members, CWDMA retained a leading codes expert to prepare a comprehensive summary of fenestration requirements in codes and regulations. Requirements for Windows, Doors and Unit Skylights in Canadian Building Codes and Regulations, and Energy Regulations is now available in the members-only section of the website. This document was prepared to assist members in finding window, door and skylight language in codes and regulations and to help the association to follow the codes and regulations in order to comment on proposed changes as they come up. The 36-page document includes an introduction, a summary of codes and regulations reviewed, requirements in the codes and regulations (within the part structure of the National Building Code and Unique Provincial Division, Parts 10 – 12), requirements in referenced energy efficiency documents and separate energy efficiency regulations.


A regular series of technical bulletins for members is planned and the first one has been posted on the members-only section of the CWDMA website. These bulletins are being co-ordinated by Technical Advisor Jeff Baker and will provide our member firms with informative and useful information on a variety of key technical subjects. The first technical bullet outlines sealed unit assembly logic and constraints. Safety glass requirements base on building code specifications and manufacturing constraints when supplying windows and doors units into Part 3 and/or 9 buildings have also been included. Self-flashing sills will be covered soon.

The association’s technical committee has established a sub-committee that is working on a key document. The 2010 National Building Code will have significant ramifications for the door industry. Requirements for doors to meet the national building code have been part of the code for about 20 years, but they were never enforced. It is anticipated that the requirements in the 2010 NBC will be enforced, as the new version comes into effect across Canada. Building code officials are going to be aware of the new requirements, which indicate that there must be a clear indication on the door that it complies with the code, which means that doors will require a label to demonstrate compliance with the code. Several jurisdictions could begin using the NBC 2010 in late 2011 or early 2012. Our side-hinged door sub-committee is preparing a document that will provide guidelines for testing and limited substitution component procedures.

This document will serve as a guideline to help the door manufacturer/pre-hanger determine the technical steps to have their entrance door systems tested according to the NAFS-08 standard (North American Fenestration Standard/Harmonized Standard AAMA/WDMA/CSA 101/I.S.2/A440) reference in the new Canadian National Building Code 2010 (CNBC 2010) and determine the procedures to substitute different components of their door system without re-testing. While site-built doors are covered in the CNBC 2010, this document will not include site-built door units at this time. Side-hinged doors according to the NBC 2010, shall be designed, constructed and installed so that they resist the ingress of precipitation, control air leakage, resist the ingress of insects and vermin, resist forced entry and are easily operable. The sub-committee has been working hard on this document for many months, and has included testing labs and certification agencies in the review of the proposed requirements.

Main entrance doors and their components, according to the NBC 2010, shall be designed, constructed and installed so that they control air leakage, resist the ingress of insects and vermin, resist forced entry and are easily operable. The exclusion of ingress of precipitation for main entrance doors assumes that this door is protected by the building structure or a storm door. Side-hinged door systems tested and rated to the water penetration resistance test pressure of 0 Pa must have a designation identifying the product for limited water (LW) performance.

The first section of this document will be a guideline that provides procedures to help side-hinged door system manufacturers test their entrance door systems according to the NAFS-08 to prove compliance with NBC 2010. The second section of this document will provide a procedure for limited substitution of components within an exterior side-hinged door assembly. It essentially defines conditions under which a waiver of re-test can be granted for the substitution and specifies additional tests, when required. This document covers all components normally assembled to form a side-hinged entrance door system and applies to both single and double door systems and both in-swing and out-swing installations.

This includes: astragals, door frames (jambs and headers), doorglass and doorglass assemblies, door and sidelight (slab-steel or composite), door and sidelight slabs (wood stile and rail), hinges and single point locksets, mullions, sills (thresholds), sweeps and weather stripping, transoms and full glass sidelights.

CWDMA is pleased to be working with the other associations in the window and door business, IGMA, WDMA-BC, AIPVFQ, and SAWDAC. We look forward to continued opportunities to be working together with these fine organizations in 2011 and beyond. The executive committee met with the chairs of the CWDMA committees for the second time during the winter. These meetings were established to assist and support the committees, which have been doing the heavy lifting in moving the association’s action items forward for the last several years. The session provided an opportunity to review key issues, exchange ideas and expertise, to brainstorm, analyze and to co-ordinate and leverage the work of the committees. Our thanks to the volunteers who dedicate their time and effort to provide support and leadership for CWDMA’s activities. And finally, you wont want to miss the CWDMA annual meeting in Banff, Alta., which will be held at the beautiful Banff Springs Hotel on May 26, 27 and 28. Plan to attend! •

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