Performance rules

Low-maintenance decking, quick-install replacement windows, sound-absorbent ceilings, indoor/outdoor masonry veneer, moisture-resistant sill pans — manufacturers keep seeking ways to make your jobs and your clients' lives easier.

March 31, 2004

Low-maintenance decking, quick-install replacement windows, sound-absorbent ceilings, indoor/outdoor masonry veneer, moisture-resistant sill pans — manufacturers keep seeking ways to make your jobs and your clients' lives easier.


With low-profile housings 5 1/2 inches deep, WhisperFit ventilation fans are especially suited for small ceiling cavities. An adapter permits the use of 3- or 4-inch duct. Depending on size, the fans move up to 110 cubic feet of air per minute with sound levels as low as 0.7-2.0 sones. Rated for continuous operation, each fan has an enclosed condenser motor with permanently lubricated bearings and, to prevent back draft, a built-in damper. Double hanger bars facilitate installation.


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SpectraLOCK grout with Microban combines the application ease of portland cement grout with the performance of epoxy grout, the company says. It locks in color, while the Microban inhibits the growth of stain-causing bacteria, mold and mildew. The product, which Laticrete says is ready for foot traffic in 12 hours, is available in more than 220 color combinations, including metallics, mother-of-pearl and glow-in-the-dark.

800/243-4788, x235

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The Aurora vinyl decking system's variegated surface is designed to resemble wood better than traditional solid-color vinyl decks. Boards have a wood-grain texture, are 1 1/2 inches thick and 5 7/8 inches wide, and secure to deck joists with hidden snap anchors. Each 2-foot-long snap anchor accommodates four deck boards and produces a 1/8-inch gap for percolation. Boards come in barnwood cedar (gray) and tropical teak (beige) and in 12-, 16- and 20-foot lengths. Matching trim is offered in 12-foot lengths.


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Weather Shield

Visions ELS vinyl windows feature a 4 9/16-inch jamb. They're available in single-hung tilt, single-hung picture and direct-set styles in various configurations, some of which have passed and exceeded DP-50 ratings. Other features include a built-in brick mold, fusion-welded corners, a warm-edge spacer, a frame and sash design with multiple pockets to minimize air transfer, and an integral finger lift and check rail interlock fortified with a double-wall extrusion. An integral nailing fin is optional.

800/477-6808, x3187

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Style Solutions

To celebrate its 30th anniversary, the company introduces 30 new polyurethane molding profiles ranging from a 3/4-inch-high chair rail to a one-piece crown dentil exterior molding almost 3 feet high. The additions increase the number of sizes that Style Solutions offers in products such as cove and dentil moldings and adds new styles such as triangle, rope and sill moldings.


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Owens Corning

Available in cherry, oak or poplar, QuietZone Acoustyle coffered wood ceilings integrate sound absorption into a custom millwork style. The pre-finished panels and trim pieces are incorporated into a standard metal T-rail grid mounted over sound-absorbing material. A 500-square-foot ceiling can be installed without special tools in eight to 12 hours, the company says.


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Astro Plastics

The ASTROpan door- and windowsill pan system channels water outside to limit the risk of rot and mold that can result from water intrusion. The system comes in standard jamb widths of 4 9/16 and 6 9/16 inches and in lengths of 38 1/4 and 74 1/4 inches. Kits, packaged in 24 sets for 3-foot rough openings and 12 sets for 6-foot openings, include adhesive caulk for job-site installation.


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Marvin Windows and Doors

The wood Ultimate Insert double-hung window offers a replacement alternative when the frame on an existing double-hung is in good condition. Like the previously available clad version, it installs directly into the existing frame without affecting existing trim, interior walls or exterior siding. All sizes are certified to a DP-30 rating and have insulating low-E II glass with argon.


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Oldcastle Architectural

Dufferin Stone masonry veneer can be used indoors and out for the look of natural stone. The product installs like brick. Each modular piece has a 4-inch-thick veneer and is laid using mortar. The line includes Surround Stone, which is designed to add authenticity around doors and windows.


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RS chimney fans can be used for wood-burning and gas fireplaces as well as stoves, ovens and barbecues. They mount atop a chimney and install with a speed control that allows the fan speed to be adjusted from the room where the fireplace is located. Made of cast aluminum and stainless steel, the fans double as ventilators that eliminate cigarette smoke, odors or other impurities and refresh indoor air.


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The Honed Finish collection of high-pressure laminates features a low-sheen satin finish with clefts and crevices to mimic brushed stone. Shown in Himalayan slate, the collection also comes in autumn Indian slate, Madras Indian slate, basalt slate, Baltic granite, Labrador granite and travertine. Baltic and Labrador granite also are new to the Etchings Finish, a polished, etched surface with fractures and fissures like those found in granite and stone.


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Overlay Init