By Brian Miller
Many of you have seen our new Embarq™ Fiberglass Entry Door System*, the most energy-efficient entry door available in the U.S. market. It’s fascinating to hear your responses when you get a first-hand look. The comment we hear most often? “Now THAT’s a door!” Its beefiness is impressive, but there are brains behind this brawn. I thought you might be interested in a peek behind the scenes about how this door was created.
We’ve Always Been This Way
The best new products come about when they’re aligned with a company’s “DNA.” In other words, when the product innovation is a match for the organization’s unique goals, philosophies, values and capabilities. When work began on Embarq, our goal was clear: to produce the most energy-efficient door in our market. And ProVia’s track record for energy efficiency made us uniquely qualified to take on this challenge:
- ProVia has been recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with the ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year award for Door Manufacturing four times, and the ENERGY STAR Sustained Excellence award four times
- ProVia is the only door manufacturer that has ever received any ENERGY STAR award for door manufacturing
- Whether its steel or fiberglass, energy efficiency is always a major consideration when designing our doors
- ProVia prioritizes energy efficiency education: through dealer/distributor training, marketing materials, and even our Sammy the Star program for elementary schools
- ProVia’s commitment to sustainability and energy efficiency extends beyond just products, with our programs for pollution prevention and recycling, and even the use of TriPacs (auxiliary power units that reduce fuel usage and emissions) on our trucks
enVision-ing the Future of Energy-Efficient Doors
As we set out on our journey to develop our new fiberglass entry door, the process expanded into a complete philosophy of creating unrivaled efficiency in home building products. We call this new way of thinking enVision. The first creation using the enVision philosophy is Embarq – the doorway to innovation and energy efficiency. There’s a mindset to enVision that’s critical to success: “don’t let old paradigms stand in your way.” This means that first, you have to throw out the old way of thinking.
Throwing Out Old Paradigms: The Making of Embarq
For several months we had 15-20 people meeting every week to work on the design of the Embarq door. The aha moment came from an industry meeting, where one person commented “until you guys get it through your head that a door doesn’t have to be 1¾” thick, you’re not going to improve energy efficiency.” With this, we opened our minds and started thinking that a door doesn’t have to be a certain thickness.
We began experimenting and designed a 2½” thick entry door that also incorporates other advancements. For example, we utilized a stepped edge, which was inspired by European door designs. We also added multiple sealing surfaces: Embarq has two weather seals around the perimeter of the door, instead of one. Both of these upgrades enhance our ability to prevent air infiltration. For the foam, ProVia engineers created the optimum balance between strength and energy efficiency.
Lots of Innovation, Simplified for You
Now that sounds like a lot of change, and it is. But even though Embarq is thicker, it does work with our existing jamb system and threshold. This helps us keep our manufacturing and product costs down, because we can utilize existing equipment and processes. This is also a great benefit for installers because you don’t have to install it any differently.
Additionally, we’re taking the body of knowledge we’ve developed for energy-efficient doors and utilizing it as we develop all of our products. You’ll benefit from our technological advancements on energy efficiency in the entire line of ProVia’s professional-class doors, replacement windows and vinyl siding.
One of ProVia’s Core Values is Future Focus: “We define our destination…and create the path to get there.” Defining our destination of creating the most energy-efficient door in the U.S. market was critical in achieving this milestone. But we’re not done yet. Right now we’re working on glass for Embarq. To maintain the doors’ beautiful aesthetic, we’ll incorporate the Plugless Trim we’ve just launched for our Signet fiberglass entry doors. This uses a clip system, which we’re modifying to accommodate the thicker door and glass. We’re also working to make sure that the glass that goes into Embarq maintains the doors’ high energy efficiency. Style options for Embarq with glass are underway for release in the near future.
Only From ProVia
If anyone was going to do this, it’s ProVia. We have an organizational structure and culture that allow us to be very nimble. We have a close team that works hands-on, face-to-face, without being separated into various offices around the country. This strengthens our ability to collaborate and remain very focused on a clear end goal, as a team.
ProVia has always emphasized energy efficiency and pursued continuous improvements with high energy-performing products. With the introduction of Embarq and our enVision program, we’re strengthening our commitment to leadership in energy efficiency.”
To learn more, check out our videos: Embarq: Revolution in Energy-Efficient Fiberglass Doors, and Core Values Drive ProVia’s Success.
*Embarq is available exclusively through ProVia Platinum Club dealers