Frequently Asked Questions
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- What sets CGI apart from the competition?
Performance, appearance, and quality. We know how important protecting your family is. Why leave it up to chance? CGI\’s performance ratings are unparalleled in the industry. Our internal quality standards go beyond those of any other manufacturer. Architects, consumers, dealers and manufacturers alike recognize our reputation for quality.
- What does CGI do that other manufacturers can’t?
Below are just a few examples.
- CGI’s windows and doors are test-proven to be the strongest products on the market today.
- CGI’s impact resistant windows can be installed on virtually any building, including high-rise buildings, and meet the most stringent impact code requirements.
- CGI offers 10’ tall impact resistant Single-Hung windows, French Doors, and Sliding Glass Doors.
- CGI’s Estate Collection Designer Fixed Windows actually match the sightlines of our other operable windows.
- CGI’s Estate Collection hurricane doors are available and approved in both in-swing and out-swing configurations.
- The hinges for CGI’s Estate Collection hurricane doors are made by Hager and are fabricated from solid brass or stainless steel.
- CGI holds three separate patents for components we use in our impact resistant products. We’re always innovating. Our three point door lock mechanism for our French Doors allow for improved security, operation and product strength. The patented design of the sash carrier on the Single-Hung and the patented quad roller system on the 375 Estate Horizontal Rolling Window improve the smoothness of the window operation and its functionality.
- How should I compare one hurricane window to another?
This is an important investment, so take the time to do your homework before you buy. Some important things to do when making a decision are:
- Take time to see the actual products for yourself. Visit one or more dealer’s show rooms and ask to see examples of different products. A well-made window not only should perform under severe weather conditions, but should enhance the beauty of your home. At any price point, a manufacturer’s attention to fit and finish and details like the designs of its muntin and glazing beads are just some of the obvious differences.
- Evaluate the strength of the impact window or door based on its design load (PSF- Pounds per Square Foot). The design load is the product’s ability to resist forces like that created by hurricane winds. Not all impact windows are created equal: they are approved at different levels of performance. The higher the PSF, the stronger the product. Compare the PSF rating to understand how products differ in strength. As an example, CGI’s 360 Single Hung hurricane window is approved as high as 210 PSF (equates to 290 MPH winds).
- Consider the product’s original intent when it was designed. Are you buying a product like CGI’s that was designed specifically to sustain the heavy impact of hurricane winds? Or, are you buying a product that has been modified to be able to meet only a marginal impact requirement? CGI specializes in impact resistant products unlike some other manufacturers. That means that 100 percent of our research and development is devoted to impact resistance.
- Do I really need products that are that strong?
Why take a chance? CGI’s impact resistant windows and doors are designed to higher performance thresholds. The benefits far outweigh the cost difference, and in many cases, the cost difference is minimal. Keep in mind; it’s not only the performance in a storm, but also the longevity of the product that makes it worth buying. The product features that make CGI products stronger also allow them to last much longer than the competition. We stand behind our products with an industry leading warranty. If you are considering purchasing impact resistant windows or doors, you owe it to yourself to understand the long term value difference between CGI and the other competitors.
- When shopping for impact windows, how do I know that they have the proper code approvals?
All code approvals are not created equal. Code approvals can be granted for many different product types, product properties and product uses. When evaluating code approvals, make sure the products are specifically approved for impact by a reputable governing agency such as Miami-Dade County and verify the approved performance levels (PSF). Some manufacturers misrepresent their products as impact approved, when in fact the product is not. Talk to a CGI dealer for more information. Beware of the following:
- Approved NON IMPACT windows and doors
- Impact windows and doors that are NOT approved for larger sizes, heights or locations in a structure
- So called “impact products”, which are simply impact glass in a non-impact approved window. Under tropical storm conditions, the glass could fly out of the window framing. Confirm the details with a CGI dealer.
- Is there anything else I should look for when comparing impact products?
Make sure the products are approved for Large Missile Impact resistance. There is a lesser impact requirement which is called small missile. The tougher standard is the large missile (which also happens to qualify as small missile). However, the opposite is not the case and a small missile product cannot be used where large missile is required. Contact your CGI dealer for details.
- Do I really need impact resistant code products?
If you live anywhere that is subject to wind damage, you do. The only way to be certain that the products will perform properly is if they are approved by one of the governing bodies. Many consumers also buy impact resistant products for the other benefits including the burglar deterrent feature and security.CGI products have deterred many burglaries in the past. Imagine how better you will sleep at night knowing how difficult it would be to break into your home. With a non-impact product, burglars can simply enter the house by breaking a window. CGI’s industry leading warranty provides break in protection. See warranty for details.
- How do I get a premium reduction in my home insurance when I have code approved impact windows and doors?
Contact your insurance company. Insurance regulations change frequently, however, currently many insurance companies offer discounts for hurricane protection.
- Does CGI offer regular (non-impact) windows and doors?
No. CGI manufactures impact windows and doors. While some manufacturers may offer many different products, CGI is only focused on impact resistant windows and doors. Manufacturing an impact product varies greatly from a non-impact product and CGI has been manufacturing impact products longer than most other companies.
- How do I get a quote on CGI products?
CGI only sells its products through recognized dealers. Please contact your local CGI dealer.
- Can I replace the existing glass on my windows and doors with impact glass and get the same level of protection?
NO. An impact window is a combination of a strong frame, impact glass, secure method of attaching the glass to the frame and a strong method of attaching the framing to the structure. While the glass may be able to resist the impact, the window framing will not be able to hold the glass in place. This type of upgrade is not recognized by any building department or insurance companies.
- Will hurricane film on my existing window and door glass provide impact protection?
Films that are applied to existing glass are not approved as an impact resistant product. They may be approved and actually hold valid Miami Dade County Notice of Acceptance (Product Approval) as a plastic component. This simply means that the film material is flame retardant. Window films serve the same level of impact protection as installing impact glass into a non-impact window, except that the film may scratch. While the film may hold the glass shards together, the glass with the film will fall out of the window frame. Sometimes film dealers offer to overlap the film on to the window frame and claim that this resolves this problem. This window treatment is not approved for impact resistance by Miami-Dade County. Refer to the question in this section that reads “Can I replace the existing glass on my windows and doors with impact glass and get the same level of protection?”Reflective window films may be very good at reflecting the sun and making the home more comfortable. This is the same benefit that can be achieved with a coated glass product.
- Why impact windows and doors vs. shutters?
When you are evaluating hurricane protection options such as impact windows versus shutters, there are several factors you should consider:
- Do you live in the home year round? If not, who will put up the shutters when you are not there?
- Are you physically capable of installing the shutters by yourself? Are you likely to put the shutters up if a storm comes?
- Do you like the look of roll-down or accordion shutters mounted to the exterior of your house?
- Is energy efficiency important to you? Shutter systems do not provide you with energy savings like impact resistant windows and doors.
- How important is home security to you? Unlike shutters, impact resistant windows and doors provide 24/7 protection against intrusion.
- With impact windows and doors you will enjoy a significant reduction in outside noise and 99% of ultraviolet rays will be eliminated.
- What about safety? Oftentimes shutters remain installed after a hurricane, blocking egress in the event of a fire. Also, during a hurricane closed shutters block outside light and visibility.
- Consider what happens if a shutter fails. If glass behind the shutter breaks, the house “envelope” is breached possibly resulting in a catastrophic building failure.
- Leaving the shutters up while gone invites potential burglars.
- What are the advantages of aluminum vs. wood?
- Aluminum window and door frames and sash are among the strongest designs available.
- Wood degrades in the harsh southern climate of high humidity and sun.
- Aluminum is a recyclable green product.
- Aluminum windows and doors provide years of protection, proven by years of installations in hurricane prone areas.
- Aluminum windows and doors are factory finished and require minimal maintenance.