News From Fimbel Architectural Doors

Your Door - Your Way: The Euro-Dor

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The Most Versatile and Sustainable Garage Door.

Life is full of choices. From what to wear now that many are headed back to the office to how to care for our loved ones during this unbelievable time to deciding between the various milk products offered today. Our days and our minds are plagued by choices, and choosing the right garage door should not be one of them. We make it simple with the Euro-Dor: the only door to offer everything you need at a price point sure to please!

Whether your goal is a design from our library of options or is notably custom, the Euro-Dor offers you options to properly compliment your home. As in the example below, you see the door design remains the same (three sections, two panels, V-Grooves, grille section); however, the selected top options allow for these neighboring doors to shine in their own way showcasing that small design choices can have great impact! 

Image: EU505-Athens (left) with 32" Euro top (16 lites) and EU504-Brussels (right) with 26" Custom top (2 lites)

One with an arch top and 16 lites speaks to the traditional appearance of the home. The other, with the complementary transom with rectangular lites, shines with a modern edge. These two literally live beside each other, are built from the same stock, and have been individually selected to complete the varied appearance of the exteriors.

After seeing these two 'fraternal twins', I set out to get to know our Euro-Dor a little more intimately. What I found is that this particular construction, material selection, and patented processes make it the most versatile door in the garage door market today. We find a lot of Euro-Dors living out their time at the Jersey Shore and in Coastal areas which makes great sense for many reasons, such as its ability to withstand harsh geographical impacts, but a closer look reveals the Euro-Dor also accommodates virtually all architectural aspects because of its ability to transform its design and appearance to accommodate your desires. It is the chameleon of garage doors!

The Construction:

The Euro was the first vinyl product of its kind, and its patented innovation allows us to break boundaries in garage door design. Using a single sheet of material and dynamic machinery, we are able to run the design from section to section without interruption. This allows us to not only provide a precise and detailed design, but we can also customize it without limitation.

Here's how: Using a hand placed wood frame and nesting in our insulation, we laminate a vinyl back cover and a solid vinyl exterior that encases the face. This construction approach also provides significant structural stability to the door whereas many others use MDF and other composite materials to frame the inside. This slab now becomes a blank slate to bring you more for your door. Combining stability with sustainability, we chose smart material to provide both beauty and durability. The Euro-Dor wears 3/8" material on the face and edges, Versatex for unfinished and Tricoya for finished doors, that offers a smooth and clean aesthetic. We have options to add select profiles, such as V-Groove or Beadboard or Raised Panel, and nearly limitless designs to satisfy inspiration. 

Image: Euro-Dor standard profile, smooth face, tongue and groove, encased in vinyl

When looking at the garage door market today, we found doors that were made with formed vinyl, but their material, construction and design options clearly lack the level of quality and durability we hold with our nearly 100 year legacy. We also found doors that look quite like ours, in fact using the exact same vinyl material, yet they paled in comparison. What they lack is our sturdy wood frame and the single sheet of material on the face. This feature alone will provide sustainability and satisfaction for years to come, not to mention added design capabilities. With no overlays or section joints to contend with, the vinyl can live significantly longer.

Where others find themselves limited in their top and window design options we have crafted ourselves to be nearly limitless. Because of the single sheet application we can provide nearly any window configuration and design without inserts. Add to this our precision machining, and you can count on a replacement section (versus having to purchase the entire door as others require) when little Tommy hits the hockey puck into a section. 

Another distinguishing feature we found is the smooth, natural finish of our vinyl. VERSATEX is manufactured with the tightest tolerances, the brightest white, and the smoothest finish in the market. Our manufacturing techniques carve clean crisp profiles into the face of the door leaving edges sharp and finished smooth.

The Diversity of Design:

Using your unique design perspective, ambition, and talent, we offer you the opportunity to complete your vision with the quality and capabilities needed to truly round out your final project. Our doors allow you to capture architectural features used in original period designs or contemporary trends. For example, your windows can be nearly any configuration, any design, and nearly any location to tie features through the home to the garage door! You can accommodate any opening by customizing in 1" height and width increments or matching an uneven floor with a scribed bottom. The face of the door is fully customizable whether it's adding logos and routed designs to geometric shapes and windows to waves or anchors - you name it!

Image: Euro Raised Panel with Faux-Stain and Sunray top (top left), Custom Euro with carved design in wave form (top right), Modern Euro Plank design with Faux Stain (bottom left), EU505-Brussels with Black Factory Finish (bottom middle), EU18S-Santorini with double Grille top (4 lites each).

Color selection is a huge aspect of design. Using our D200 High performance finish, all Factory Finished products will be delivered with a clean finish to last! While most of our products do not require finishing and may remain natural, adding color to your project can add the wow-factor that we are after! Our vast and ever-expanding color palette includes blacks, charcoals, and dark greens as well as faux stains to truly replicate the look of wood without the maintenance.

With a cabinet like finish each door leaves our factory pristine and poised to last. We offer a standard color palette for solid finishes, but we also offer custom matching of any color you choose. If the desired look is to replicate a wood door, we offer nine standard faux finishes, but we also offer custom stain matching as well.

With additional options for decorative hardware, specialty glass, interior upgrades, and more, you can bring your dream door to life!

Image: Flush Euro with Factory Finish Cade Grey (top left), EU504-Brussels Overhead (qty.2) & EUQ10 Swing (top right), EU505-Athens Overhead (qty.2) & EUT100-A Swing with decorative hardware (bottom left), Factory Finish Faux Stain on EU with VG (bottom middle), GR24 Long Panel with Prairie Short Grille (bottom right)

The Lasting Benefits:

When we build, we build for beauty and durability that will last because we care about your satisfaction as well as our environment. From our processes to our products, we reduce, reuse, and recycle everything we can. We run on solar, and we love to help reduce your overall maintenance efforts and costs.

Doors in the Estate Collection offer efficiency and noise reduction by laminating the insulation to the interior of the door to keep it in position and reduce pockets where air can reside. Tight construction and quality materials offer you confidence and savings. Providing a sustainable product is important because we believe our legacy has a responsibility to generations that come after us. We want this door not only to last but to provide energy efficiency for your home.

Fimbel doors offer you a low-maintenance lifestyle. The clean appearance of the door should last for years to come with a gentle clean with mild soap and water. No harsh abrasives or undue elbow grease necessary. This aspect may be overlooked, but when we consider the supply chain for cleaning products, the effort to implement the cleaning, and the residual waste moving into the earth, we see our processes make way for sustainability.

One of the longest lasting aspects of our doors is the contribution made upon purchase. For every door we sell, we work with our partners at One Tree Planted to plant a tree on your behalf. We know the resources generously given by Mother Nature need replenishing, and we want to pay it forward!

Make it a Fimbel:

When it comes to choosing your garage door, we have made that easy for you with the Euro-Dor (part of the Estate Collection). This choice offers you long term satisfaction at a price point packed with value. Originated on the foundation of old-world craftsmanship and classic designs, we have added innovative technology and materials to offer unmatched beauty and durability. Using patented processes, this door was the first to show a continuous design from section to section using a single sheet of material. This innovation allows us to break the boundaries of what you THINK you can do with a garage door.

Reduce Holiday Stress to Enjoy what Matters Most

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We proudly manufacture a door that allows the low-maintenance and eco-friendly lifestyle for you for years to come (read more about those here)! We also want this same ease and confidence to find you in other aspects of your life and the approaching holiday season! Because we hold our family values above all else, we thought it would be prudent to share with you some tips to reduce holiday stress and increase connections and joy!

First things first - establish what is most important - your personal and family values. If you aren't clear on what these are, make a list of all the 'things' that need to be done and a list of all the values you hold close (this could be your family, your finances, your religion, or anything). Compare your lists and establish the events and expenses (financial, time, and emotional) that align with your true values and true joy. So make your list and check it twice!

Next - set yourself some boundaries. There are so many exciting and/or demanding ways for us to spend our time and energy during the holidays, but the hard truth is that you do not have to do any of them! Okay - don't miss Christmas with your grandparents or slack off on the food drive donations, but you do not have to attend every single thing you're invited to attend or contribute to! Just. Say. No.

Both of these first two steps are to help you avoid conflict internally and externally. When you are clear on what you want to do, the next step is to visualize how you want it to go. In any holiday gathering, there is the risk of conflict between friends and family (we are all usually wound pretty tightly this time of year); however, this year with even more heightened attention on COVID, politics, the economy, and more, our dinner tables may invite some awkward conversations. Get ahead of this by establishing the boundaries for the group and for you as an individual.

Now that you can visualize your calendar, it's time to plan ahead:

  1. Be sure to find time to be quiet and embrace the stillness of the season. Remember the Reason for the Season: it isn't about the quantity of the presents or your presence, but it most assuredly IS the quality of the experience.
  2. Purchase and wrap all presents before the date of the exchange.
  3. Purchase/Prep all food dishes, beverages, or other contributions to the event well in advance - you never know when Costco will be out of cocktail shrimp platters!
  4. Schedule time to exercise and eat well. If you let your gas tank run empty, you may find yourself stuck in the garage.

Finally - in all situations - find the joy! Celebrate the small gifts as much as the large ones. Recognize the lights strung about on the way to work or to run errands. Marvel in the flurries and the twinkling ice. Watch a Hallmark movie and feel (a little cheesy and) warm inside. Recognize the effort in others even when the experience isn't shining. And know that you have given yourself the gift of being present.

It may be odd for a garage door manufacturing company to be doling out holiday stress advice, but we are more than just that. We are people first - people who want to make the most of each day and build strong relationships. We are a company that spans four generations, and we have learned over time that the true value of our business is the work we do with and for our family (which includes our family of origin, our family at work, and our family of partners). 

As the holiday approaches, we wish each and everyone of you a stress-free holiday lifestyle that matches the stress-free lifestyle of our doors!

Why Insulation is Important

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Winter is coming! If you are a "Game of Thrones" fan like we are, you might feel extra panic about this statement. But for anyone with a garage, you are likely seeing a to-do list building at that statement! It means we need to clean out the garage of the summer toys and equipment (check out this blog for more on that) and make way for the cars to avoid the winter snow and frigid temperatures here in the North East. It also likely triggers the reminder of increased energy bills and chilly mornings.

Every single Fimbel door we manufacture comes fully insulated because our commitment to the environment and to your satisfaction is built in. The garage can have a large impact on the overall efficiency and comfort of the home. This aspect is often overlooked when considering the home's needs. While every aspect of your garage should be insulted: the walls, the ceiling, and the garage door, we are naturally going to focus on the garage door.


Why Insulate the Garage?

Since 71% of Americans use their garage as the primary entrance to their home, it makes sense that this transition into the home ought to be a comfortable one. Entering the garage with the car, closing the garage door, and then proceeding to the home creates what's called a vestibule effect. This small action of entering the garage and closing the door prior to entering the home allows the unwanted temperature to remain outside. An insulated door allows for a smoother transition from the temperatures of the outdoors and the conditioned climate of the home's interior.

Even if the garage is insulated and drywalled, utilizing an uninsulated garage door will leave the garage cold. Regardless of whether or not you spend a lot of time in your garage, the positive impact of an insulated garage door could potentially add more than 20 degrees to a garage with an outside temperature of 20 degrees. Starting a car that is 40+ degrees is far more appealing than starting a car resting at 20 degrees.

While creature comforts are lovely and certainly appeal to homeowners on those chilly winter mornings, the benefits of an insulated garage and garage door go beyond comfort. With proper insulation homeowners can save up to 20% on their electric bills and truly bring energy efficiency to their home.


What are the Benefits?

If what you have read so far isn't enough to convince you, let's look at some additional benefits of an insulated garage door.

  1. First things first - back to the creature comforts - when a garage door is insulated properly, you should be getting a more aesthetically pleasing interior to the garage. We offer a high impact, pre-finished white interior. We also offer to add our ⅜' Versatex (smooth, solid vinyl) to the interior to bring elegance to your garage.
  2. An insulated door will reduce noise during opening and closing. You shouldn't hear the rattle and transition through the track system as the sections will be more solid and not only prevent but absorb a great deal of residual noise.
  3. While the door is closed, an insulated door will control noise entering and leaving the garage space. The insulation acts as a barrier to capture the sound, so if your kids are forming a rock band, the neighbors will appreciate the reduced noise.
  4. As the technology of our cars and their batteries continue to change, we know that they function better in a climate controlled garage. Starting your morning off right will be easier with an insulated door.
  5. It helps at resale. We know, thanks to Remodeling Magazine's 2020 report, replacing your garage door with a quality high-end door is a slam dunk on the ROI (Return of Investment) at resale with a shocking 94.5%.
  6. The average age of today's US homebuyer is 47. Which means that many homebuyers today are Gen X and Millennial with a tendency toward sustainability and efficiency. Offering this aspect as an element of your 'smart' home adds value.

What Else is Needed?

For the most part, garage door manufacturers use a foam to insulate their garage doors, but this isn't enough. To get the most efficiency out of your garage door, it is important to understand more about R-Value, making the door weather tight, and insulating the glass sections.

R-Value measures the thermal efficiency (resistance to heat flow or temperature conduction of a product). It is used to represent energy efficiency and stands for Resistance Value and is represented in imperial units. It is calculated by the thickness and physical properties of the product. Simply put, a garage door with sufficient R-Value will keep heat inside the garage during winter and cool air inside during summer. Read more in our recent blog on R-Value.

But this isn't enough. Since the garage door will open and close and must remain mobile around all four sides, it is critical to maintain the perimeter weather-stripping and the bottom seal. Additionally, purchasing a door, such as a Fimbel door, with interlocking tongue and groove sections is very valuable. This design reduces the temperature and the weather from penetrating the garage.

The last suggestion we have to maximize your garage efficiency is to utilize insulated glass on any glass sections of your garage door. Failing this will not only cause issues with the temperature control, but it will also likely cause condensation in conditioned garages. For more on this, read our blog on condensation.


Why a Fimbel Door?

We have been manufacturing garage doors since our great-grandfather began his business in 1924. In that time we have made and insulated doors in many ways, but we know the value of protecting your home, your assets, and your finances. We are here to help you find satisfaction in your home.

Combining innovative materials and technology with classic craftsmanship, we have built two dynamic platforms upon which you can design your dream door. Our American Legends is built on vinyl-coated steel and adorned with smooth, solid overlays in your design choice. The Estate Collection, including our Euro-Dor, Presidential, and Roaring Twenties Series, offers a blank slate built on a hand-crafted wood frame and laminated with smooth, solid material to design nearly any style you wish.

To learn more, please find a dealer by using our dealer locator. We look forward to offering you more! 

Condensation and your Garage Door

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Over our 97 years in manufacturing, we have learned that condensation can be an issue in many garages. While many associate the presence of condensation with a manufacturing defect, it is important to understand the issues surrounding condensation and how it may impact your garage and garage door.


What is condensation?

Condensation occurs when the moisture in the air is in contact with a cold surface and water droplets accumulate. It often occurs in a warm garage with high humidity, which is the concentration of water in the air, and a colder surface such as the glass section of your garage door. Essentially, it is characteristic of a warm, humid garage and a cooler garage door surface due to a colder exterior temperature. The lower the outside humidity, the faster the interior humidity will be drawn out causing noticeable droplets. People often assume the windows are leaking, but in reality, it is quite likely condensation.


Why worry?

More garages today are conditioned, often heated, as opposed to garages of the past, so this issue is unfamiliar to most. Understanding the impact of a conditioned garage and the environmental region can preserve the longevity of your door and the garage. Consistent condensation can cause structural damage to various aspects of the garage and the garage door.

Unlike the entry door to the home, the garage door will not maintain the same controlled conditions as the garage holds more humidity and additional variables than the entry door.

Condensation can present itself from a variety of conditions. The geographic and environmental impact can play a part if additional moisture is brought in regularly from wet or snow-covered cars or boats. Use of a humidifier or refrigerator or freezer units can contribute to more condensation. It is not only what is in your garage that can impact the humidity and condensation. It can even present more prominently when the laundry room is located nearby the garage. While there are many other factors to consider such as the ventilation and vapor barriers in the garage, we have solutions!


What to do?

Now that you are educated on how condensation presents itself, we have some suggestions to mitigate the situation. We highly encourage the use of insulated glass on a glass section of your garage door. This decision alone can remedy the issue of condensation on your garage door. The insulated glass helps to balance out the humidity and temperature ratio and reduce condensation.

We also suggest utilizing quality weather-tight seals around the door, wiping snow and rain from cars, managing the appliances and heating systems, and opening the garage doors at intervals to balance out the humidity and temperature. If condensation persists, we suggest reaching out to your home builder or find an HVAC professional with whom to consult.


What door do I need?

You have a lot of options in the market today, but your best bet is a Fimbel door. Using advanced materials and technology together with classic craftsmanship, our doors are built to be beautiful and built to last. In this video, you will get a closer look how to buy a garage door, but here are the basics:

  • Our vinyl-coated steel platform on the American Legends offers the Carriage Style design we love with a smooth, clean appearance of the surface and overlays. Our standard offerings come in four sections with a customizable top section to accommodate any height and design preference.
  • The Estate Collection, built on a single sheet of smooth, white Versatex offers vast design capabilities. While nearly every aspect of these products can be customized from the height and width to the top section to the profiles on the face to whatever your heart desires, our standard offerings are three sections with big, beautiful windows.
  • All Fimbel tops are engineered to keep your door free of defects when properly installed and maintained.

Either construction method will bring you a low-maintenance, long-lasting, gorgeous door that will serve your garage needs both inside and out.

To find out more about our products, please use our dealer locator to find a dealer near you! 

What’s the Hype about R-Value?

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R-We know that things have changed over the years and keeping up with the terms can be challenging. One such buzz word that has become newsworthy in our industry is R-Value. Everyone wants a 'good one', but few homeowners know what it means especially with respect to the garage door. Our goal is to demystify it with some simple information to help you find the right garage door for your home.


What is R-Value?

R-Value measures the thermal efficiency (resistance to heat flow or temperature conduction of a product). It is used to represent energy efficiency and stands for Resistance Value and is represented in imperial units. It is calculated by the thickness and physical properties. Simply put, a garage door with sufficient R-Value will keep heat inside the garage during winter and cool air inside during summer.

The higher the R-value the more effective the material/product is at preventing heat transfer. What we find interesting is that when interpreting the data, R-16 is NOT twice as effective as R-8. For example, R-8 equals 90% amount of heat flow reduction whereas R-12 equals 93% and R-16 is 95% amount of heat flow reduction. For frame of reference, the recommended R-value for basement insulation in North America is R12.

One interesting fact to know is R-value measures only conduction, and thus doesn't provide the whole picture. R-value doesn't take into account individual factors such as wind, humidity, and temperature changes which can cause air flow and leakages. Also not accounted for in the calculation is rising hot air and forced air from various mechanical systems in and around the home.


How do I choose the right door?

Since so many factors are involved, it is also important to choose the right garage door as well as maintain the efficiency of the whole garage. Because of this it is important to choose a garage door that is specifically built for your opening to prevent air flow leaks or excess water and humidity in. It is also important to have a smoothly operating track and operator system.

Is there more to a door than R-value? Absolutely! When you purchase a Fimbel door, you can count on weatherproofing to be addressed in the tongue and groove between sections. This is the 'Lego' feature to be sure the sections fit snug when closed, move easily when opened, and protect your garage from the elements and bugs! The weather strip at the bottom (the rubber astragal) needs to be durable and correctly positioned as it withstands ample use and endures the temperature fluctuations of the seasons. Additionally the exterior perimeter weather stripping must also be properly installed and maintained to seal out unwanted elements. Finally - having the door fit just right in the opening will help to weatherproof your garage even if it is an uneven floor that needs a door to be scribed to match. At the end of the day, without the right fit of the product and weatherproofing, the R-value is obsolete, and a snug fit is a must!

Is my home's R-Value high enough?

According to the United States Department of Energy, "just 1 in 5 homes constructed prior to 1980 are sufficiently insulated." Homes built today are required to meet certain standards for R-Value as set by the U.S. Department of Energy; however, this was not evident in homes built prior to the mid-1970's. When you boil this down, "approximately 80% of homes built before this time are in need of better insulation!" We know another buzz-word across all industries is sustainability, and we aspire to tackle this through our products and practices.

Sustainability, according to Investopedia's Definition, is defined as "meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet theirs", and we couldn't agree more. With Sustainable Architecture spreading in the world of design and architecture to encompass both functional and formal, we are ready to meet you there with the right product for your garage.

Whether you find inspiration in nature, the neighborhood, or the newest concept, our goal is to offer solutions to bring your vision to life while offering beauty and durability you can count on. From Residential to Commercial and Historic to Contemporary, we rely on nearly a century of experience to craft a product built to last a lifetime and bring elegance to every environment. Whether you are the architect, the builder, or the homeowner, we truly believe that we have something that will make your life, your project, and therefore your bottom line, positively and profoundly better.

To learn more about our products, please find a dealer near you using our Dealer Locator tab on the website!

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