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Future is Fiberglass for Doors

JELD-WEN, manufacturer of windows and doors, is putting some major muscle behind fiberglass this year, and the results are proving to be powerful.

Currently, fiberglass accounts for only about 12 percent of the exterior door market. JELD-WEN, believes that percentage can and should be much larger, but that growth can only come with major product advancements and improvements.

JELD-WEN has spearheaded a massive research and development effort into creating the next generation of exterior fiberglass doors. The result is being unveiled at this year's International Builders Show (IBS), where JELD-WEN is showing off its new Premium Fiberglass Doors with PÜR-Fiber technology for the first time. The company considers the launch of this new line to be its biggest initiative of the year, revolutionizing the way U.S. homeowners and builders traditionally have thought about fiberglass doors. JELD-WEN plans to roll out its new Premium Fiberglass Doors with PÜR-Fiber technology nationwide in June 2005.

According to JELD-WEN, PÜR-Fiber technology is a completely different process from how fiberglass doors currently are being manufactured and the company is proving it with dramatic tests and examples. PÜR-Fiber has more than twice the amount of fiberglass content that's standard in the industry (35 percent fiberglass content versus 10 - 12 percent), making it four times stronger than any other fiberglass door and giving it the ability to stand up to hurricane forces. To prove its strength, JELD-WEN plans to park a Corvette on top of one of its Premium Fiberglass Doors during IBS and will hold a contest to give the car away.

"It's a dramatic example, but strength is definitely an important attribute when it comes to doors," said John Monfore, product marketing manager for JELD-WEN fiberglass doors. "It translates to safety, security and peace of mind, which are top priorities for homeowners. The best way to know if you're getting maximum strength is to compare the amount of actual fiberglass content. Our new line far exceeds anything else that is out on the market today."

Besides strength, another big difference between Premium Fiberglass Doors with PÜR-Fiber technology and other fiberglass doors is the level of variety and diversity. JELD-WEN will offer 32 standard styles of Premium Fiberglass Doors, with much more pronounced, realistic looking wood grain including new Mahogany and Alder grains. Premium Fiberglass Doors will feature AuraLast wood by JELD-WEN to the stiles and rails door edges. AuraLast wood protects against wood decay, water absorption and termite infestation. Because AuraLast is real wood, it allows customizable sizing if the door must be modified to fit a particular opening.

As a very strong material, fiberglass provides great insulating properties and is extremely long-lasting and stable, making it a perfect choice for regions that experience harsh weather.

"The advantages for homeowners and builders are huge," said Monfore. "We've come up with a product that not only delivers all the benefits fiberglass offers, but goes well beyond them when it comes to strength, reliability and style diversity."

Already, JELD-WEN has taken fiberglass where many never thought it was possible to go. The company's Aurora custom fiberglass door line is so realistic when compared to wood, that many homeowners and builders are unable to tell the difference. This specialized door line has brought fiberglass to a new level with realistic "woodscaping" technology, and authentic custom designed wood grains and knots.

While very different when it comes to styles, performance and manufacturing processes, Premium Fiberglass Doors with PÜR-Fiber technology will be competitive in price to other fiberglass door products on the market. JELD-WEN's major emphasis on developing advanced fiberglass door technology rounds out the company's entry offerings, which include hundreds of steel, composite and solid wood styles and options.

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