News From Fimbel Architectural Doors

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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Fall Garage Door Maintenance: Hire a Pro

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During the COVID quarantine of 2020, you may be among the masses who took a deep dive into the home improvement projects that have stock-piled during our regularly scheduled lives. From painting rooms to planting seeds, we kept our local home improvement stores busy!

Maintaining operations as an essential business throughout, we also heard the stories from our dealers about homeowners revamping their garages. While we fully support the desire to DIY, we urge caution when it comes to the garage door. If you are eager for the reorganization of your garage, please visit our Pinterest page for lots of ideas (it's possible I may be an organization fanatic), but if you need your garage door serviced or replaced, we have some tips for you!

1. Safety First

In our organization, safety is our guiding light. All of our decisions must first pass through the net of safety. If it isn't safe...it doesn't happen. With this mindset, we encourage you to hire a professional for your garage door needs. While regular maintenance can be handled at home, such as the checking of the photo-eyes or confirming the track is lubed, when it comes to springs, track, and the sections, finding a pro is key.

While many feel the installation of a garage door simply couldn't be rocket science, we have to disagree. We work with many experienced professionals who will share stories told to them of hands being crushed between sections, fingers being lost when a spring is wound too tight, and whole sections being damaged beyond repair when they fall out of the opening. All of these occurrences are avoidable when done by a professional.

2. Not all openings are created equal

There is a good chance, if you have a newer home, that the opening of your garage door will either be 8' x 7' or 9' x 8' if you have a single door or 16' x 8' for a double door. For the most part this is easy when the opening is standard. What gets complicated if there are any imperfections in the level of the floor, the room above the door, and the area designated for the track. Any limitations here may require special set-ups or perhaps a special door.

To be sure your door moves safely, quietly, and consistently, the right tracks, springs, door sections, and operator will be necessary. A professional will be able to assess and prescribe the correct combination for your project. If there are questions, our engineers are standing by to help resolve issues and find solutions!

3. Experience brings efficiency

In a perfect world, life runs smoothly - like clockwork. But we know the world is not a perfect one. During most garage door installations, some aspects of the install may need adjusting. From snipping bottom rubber to accommodate hardware, clipping extra length of bar off the operator in a low ceiling garage to avoid hitting the car, or replacing angle iron to secure the install. Additionally, most installations require working with electricity which should always demand a professional.

Many of these on-site obstacles require the tools and materials to navigate without delaying the install. When the installer is prepared, you can be sure the efficiency (and cost) of the job remains on point.

4. Know when to repair and when to replace

We know it's not always clear when to replace or when to repair. Making this decision on your own may prove fatal. If you have concerns about the state of your door, please call a professional if any of these 'symptoms' occur:

  • It reverses direction
  • It's slow to open
  • It closes or opens by itself
  • You can see track misalignment
  • It makes strange noises
  • It has temperature inconsistencies
  • It's warped or weather damaged in some way


5. Warranties are your friend

Most garage doors and installations come with a warranty; however, most will be voided if repairs are attempted by the homeworner. In most cases, the installer will offer a service agreement during the warranty period, and the manufacturer will offer a warranty as well. Maintaining this coverage can truly help you maintain the life and safety of your garage door investment.

Find the Right Pro

When you seek out the professional to service or sell you your garage door, we encourage you to ask a lot of questions to vet out the right partner for your project.

      What company reviews are available?

What service packages are included with the installation?

What warranty comes with the installation and the parts?

Does the installer offer a satisfaction guarantee?

What can be done in advance of the installation to prepare?

How long has the company been in business?

How much experience does the installer have?

Are they licensed and insured?

When you attempt the repair or replacement of your garage door, you may end up lucky and only endure some frustrations and added finances, but we caution you as the risks may prove far more damaging. At Fimbel ADS, we have nearly a century of experience to help us guide you through the journey. Our doors are constructed to last, and we strive for your safety and satisfaction.

To find a dealer, please head to our website!

To learn more about our products please visit our Instagram page @FimbelADS. Follow along for more tips and beauty shots! 

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When to Install the Garage Door

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There are many reasons to replace a garage door from increasing curb appeal to the impressive return on your investment to accidentally driving through a few sections to new builds and renovations. Whatever your reason, we have some tips and tricks on how to protect your purchases. Far too often we get contacted by a homeowner asking how to repair damage from flying masonry or remove splattered block spots from the driveway installation.

I cannot tell you the sadness this causes us. There is pride built into each door we manufacture, and each process was designed for beauty and durability. When we see avoidable issues defacing our doors, it's like we become the Garage Door Lorax (The Lorax speaks for the trees...and...well...we speak for the garage doors). So at this time, we formally declare the garage door deserves a more strategic dot on the timeline for garage/exterior renovations.

While we can manage several of these issues through repairs and/or replacements, our goal is for your experience with our garage doors to be a positive one, so we are here today to shed some light on what to consider before scheduling the installation.

There are several factors that can help select the right door for you. While design usually tops the list of factors (you can read more about our door designs here), we will focus today on those that contribute to the overall and super critical conversation around the life expectancy of a garage door.

Overall Quality of the Construction: When we build, we build to last. For nearly a century we have been manufacturing garage doors, and times have surely changed. Now we see design innovation and manufacturing excellence furnishing garages with absolute beauty and supreme function. At Fimbel ADS we are committed to carrying forth the quality and craftsmanship our great-grandfather built our family business upon while blending in the marvels of today's manufacturing capabilities. You will not find a more beautiful or durable door in the market because we have engineered our doors for your satisfaction.

Material Selection: We know that sustainability is important to today's buyer, and it is important to us. We choose materials that support our dedication to quality of the product as well as our dedication to sustainable practices and mindsets. Not only do we run on solar, we recycle every available component to reduce our imprint. Our chosen materials are engineered to work together to offer a beautiful and durable door you can count on. For example, the combination of the specifically chosen door material and the high-tech, eco-friendly paint system we selected is critical and allows us great confidence as we stand behind our products.

Geography: The combination of our construction and our materials results in garage doors that have withstood brutal impacts from hurricanes and intense winter weather, and they stand up to all of it while preserving the beauty. Because of these rigorous approaches to our final product, we are confident our doors will last whether they are living oceanside or mountaintop.

Required Maintenance: Our lifestyles are busy and continue to get busier which puts more demand on the products we purchase to bring nearly effortless maintenance. Though our doors look like wood, they are made of materials engineered for ease. Establishing a regular maintenance schedule with your installer will provide safe, convenient operation of your garage door.

Life Happens - We offer replacement sections on nearly every door we sell. You can be sure the sections will line up and the swap will be effortless when done by an authorized dealer. More often than not, manufacturers cannot supply just the one section thus requiring purchase of a whole new door. Not with Fimbel. Our technology gives you more options. So whether little Tommy and his hockey puck cause the damage, or an unwitting contractor attempts removal of cement with simple green*, we can offer you a replacement section you can count on.

*note: do not try this on a Fimbel garage door.

Now that you have selected a door that will bring you more no matter the circumstance, protecting your investment is rather simple but may require you to be proactive with the team. Having a discussion with the General Contractor on the project as well as the garage door installer is critical. They will need to discuss with the sheetrock team and the electrical team as well as others, so this conversation should happen early.

Here are some key aspects to discuss with your team prior to installation of the garage door:

  1. Is the flooring of the garage poured and levelled?
  2. Are the dimensions for the opening confirmed?
  3. Has the drywall for the garage been installed?
  4. Has electricity been run if the doors need to be operable?
  5. Will there be stonework done around the perimeter of the opening?
  6. Is the driveway completed?
  7. When are inspections scheduled? And what are they looking for regarding the garage door?

Coordinating this timeline will keep your beautiful doors from encountering any offense from falling ladders, splattered chemicals and materials, and whatever else a busy construction site can through at it. Our caution really boils down to this: We do not recommend installing the overhead doors early. They risk damage that may not be repairable. If there is no compelling urgency for safety, we suggest waiting until the end of the project to install the garage door.

I live in a 'smarter - not harder' world, and we aspire to bring that mindset to your garage door experience. In the photos above, we could point our several ways our gorgeous doors could be unnecessarily damaged, and we want to point that out to you to ensure you get more out of your door!

There is overwhelming evidence that a quality, high end garage door replacement adds value to your curb appeal and your wallet. "Compared with 22 other common home-improvement projects, an upscale garage door replacement offers one of the biggest bangs for your buck and costs much less than many other home improvement projects" according to the Remodeling Magazine's 2020 Cost vs. Value Report. Coming in at #2 with a 94.5% ROI at resale, the garage clearly deserves some consideration on when it will be installed to be sure you get the most out of it!

Find MORE in a garage door by finding your dealer today!

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Roaring Twenties Revealed

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At Fimbel ADS, we believe in offering your more in your garage door. We aspire to bring options to fully complement your project and satisfy your every need. The classic American carriage door comes to life with the Fimbel Roaring Twenties series. With its simulated battens, clean cut overlays, and the look of a swing door, it makes any project feel like home. The smart period detail combined with our advanced materials allow you to enjoy the look of wood with virtually no maintenance. Using patented construction and design flexibility, we offer nearly any combination of window and door styles. Roaring Twenties collection blends both tradition and innovation to welcome you home with a beautiful and durable door to stand the test of time.

The first step in navigating our product offerings is to understand that we make our doors in two innovative ways to offer a vast variety of styles and solutions. When buying a Fimbel door, you can count on the look of real wood, durable construction methods, low-maintenance, precision fit, bold windows, reliable R-value, and more, more, more! 

Our first construction platform offers carriage and traditional styles using a vinyl clad steel pan and applying vinyl overlays to create the look of a classic wood door. This door is exceptional for two main reasons – the first is the platform (pan) made of a smooth, steel base made for the elements that we coat (clad) in a thin layer of crisp, white vinyl. This innovation allows for the American Legends series to live nearly anywhere, even near the ocean, without rusting and rotting away in the elements. To this we add the smooth, solid white overlays made of sustainable material. Separating ourselves from the competition's fake wood grain completes the constructed look to appear as real, traditional wood. Both features ensure the longevity our ethics demand, the look we all crave, and a price point sure to please.

Our second construction platform truly shines in the blend between tradition and innovation. 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 slab now becomes a blank slate to bring you more for your door. Using both 3/8" and ¾" material, primarily Versatex, we have options to add select profiles and nearly limitless designs to satisfy inspiration. You will see these designs in our Euro-Dor and Presidential Collections offering both carriage, traditional, and modern styles.

To achieve a more classic carriage look, we offer the Roaring Twenties. This series starts with the same platform yet adds solid, sturdy overlays pocketed (nested) into the face. The pronounced look of this classic style can be modified in myriad ways to satisfy decorative features and historic applications. Each of these series offers incredible longevity and beauty we can all feel good about! 

One of the predominant features found on a classic American carriage house door are the big windows. This highlight of the product is one to truly make it stand out. Where many others use window inserts or have to joint the pieces together, our tops are made of solid, one-piece vinyl material. This means the entire face of the top, or grille as it is referred, is one quality sheet of carved material with no joints or inserts. With options for finishing and a variety of upgrades, you can design to your heart's delight!

This series offers the true, classic look but makes itself at home in any opening. We offer 1" height and width increments in the Estate Collection products which gives way for Historic renovation where the opening is often an odd size or has uneven flooring. As seen in the image below of the Watch Hill Yacht Club in Rhode Island, we furnished them with 15 doors all of which had unique sizes to accommodate the various openings. Additionally, we are confident in our warranty regardless of their location to the water. For us this is no problem.  

The Roaring Twenties is loved by architects, Historic Preservation organizations, and mother earth and will certainly raise the envy level of curious neighbors. This construction method with it's sustainable and beautiful design will bring satisfaction for years to come. Since the unfinished Versatex appears similar to painted wood, there are many reasons for it to be loved. With virtually no maintenance and sustainability you can count on, we proudly offer you more!

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Ed Fimbel III, CEO of Fimbel ADS Retires

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Press Release: Ed Fimbel III, CEO of Fimbel ADS, to Step Down from Active Role in 2021.

(Whitehouse Station, NJ – January 18, 2021) Fimbel Architectural Doors, manufacturers of custom residential and commercial overhead doors have announced that its CEO, Ed Fimbel III, will formally exit his active role on January 15th.

Fimbel Architectural Doors will continue to be led by its current executive management team, which includes President, Erin Fimbel, Vice President, Bill Rasely and Vice President of Marketing, Michaela (Fimbel) Birdyshaw. "Continuous improvement, metrics-driven quality, and an exceptional customer experience will continue to be at the heart of everything we do." states Erin Fimbel. "Our family values are reflected in our commitment to our people, partners and customers. We pride ourselves on doing what we say we will and providing a sustainable and reliable product that we stand behind."

Ed began his relationship with the family-owned business as a young teenager more than six decades ago packing hardware cartons and loading freight during summer vacations. Having earned a BS degree in business, he went to work for a door distributor where he gained useful knowledge installing and repairing products and equipment. Upon returning to the business that bears his name, Ed combined that real world experience with an innate sense for, in his words, "practical engineering" to lead Fimbel on a path of growth and innovation that places them today as leaders in the overhead door industry.

Ed Fimbel III's decades-long tenure of company stewardship resulted in an exclusive focus on the use of advanced materials using patented manufacturing techniques and authentic period-correct architectural designs from Colonial to Craftsman to Contemporary. Among his many achievements was the introduction of CNC machining technology to the fabrication of Fimbel custom overhead doors.

With a history that can be traced to the early 1920's invention of the overhead garage door, in 1969 Fimbel Door moved from its original location in Hillside, New Jersey to more modern facilities in Whitehouse Station, New Jersey. Its current state-of-the art, solar powered operations, just across the street from its prior Whitehouse Station location, are complemented by 60,000 square feet of additional manufacturing resources in Eastern Pennsylvania.

Ed looks forward to turning his attention to some of his other passions, including activities as an amateur archeologist working with the Flemington Historical Society dating artifacts and curating educational exhibits. During his leisure time he also expects to be spending more time with his wife, grandchildren and three siblings, as well as sharpening his skills at skiing, tennis and golf.

As Ed transitions to a more relaxed lifestyle, he will continue to be involved with Fimbel new product development on a limited basis in 2021.

About Fimbel Architectural Doors

Fimbel Architectural Doors was formally established in 2004 as a custom door manufacturing business by Edward Fimbel III, following the sale of the former Fimbel Door Corporation. The roots of the company date back four generations to the original door manufacturing company founded in 1924 by Edward Fimbel Sr. Today, Fimbel Architectural Doors is a family-owned and operated company headquartered in Whitehouse Station, New Jersey. Using advanced materials and patented production methods, the company specializes in architecturally accurate, custom-made residential and commercial overhead doors. It operates manufacturing facilities in Whitehouse Station, New Jersey and Mcadoo, Pennsylvania. 

For more information, please enjoy The Story Behind Fimbel Architectural Doors

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