Windows Security September 18th2018

What is PAS 24:2016 and how do Everest get accreditation?

What is PAS 24:2016 and how do Everest get accreditation?

What is PAS 24?

PAS 24 is a benchmark of quality used across the windows and doors industry to provide a comparable standard for the security of a window or a door.  It guarantees that the production of the product has been monitored by an independent and certified company.  This ensures that when a customer buys a product from any manufacturer they know that it meets an agreed industry standard. Importantly Pas 24 is recognized by Secured by Design the UK Police initiative to reduce burglary and crime.  It’s been so effective at improving door security that in some instances the Police have to reconsider methods of gaining entry when executing an arrest warrant.

Everest strongly advises even if you do not buy from us that you always buy a product which meets this standard otherwise it is liable to be of a poor quality and enable easy access to your property. Look out for the BSI and Secured by Design logos as windows and doors need to pass PAS 24: 2016 to be able to gain these accreditations.

Mechanical Infill machine pressing 200kg of force against an Everest window

What does PAS stand for?

PAS is a Publicly Available Specification and is a standard set by an industry to ensure that all manufacturers in an industry are making and selling products that reach the industry benchmark for quality.  This ensures that when comparing products a consumer can be certain that any that carry the mark have been tested to reach exactly the same standard.  This is overseen by the BSI (British Standards Institution) who manage the setting and distribution of the PAS standards. 

How is a PAS mark obtained?

To obtain the quality mark a manufacturer has the product put through a number of tests performed by an independent company certified for testing by UKAS (United Kingdom Accreditation Service).  This is the UK regulatory body which ensures that any product testing company is fully compliant in how it performs tests and calibrates its testing equipment.

Importantly the testing and certification process also ensures that the manufacturing process can always produce a product that consistently meets the standard. The testing house regularly visits our factories to check and re-test the products to make sure they are still performing to the standards. If we then change a component in the product we may have to submit the product for a re-test.  This ensures you always know the product you are buying meets the standard.

Where are Everest windows tested?

Everest windows are tested to PAS 24 standards by Wintech engineering in Telford. Watch the team at Wintech testing our GrabLock below

Is PAS 24 accreditation enough?

PAS 24 is a minimum standard so it doesn't have a grading system, a window and door either passes and receives accreditation or it doesn't. Many of our windows and doors actually exceed the standards set by the industry in PAS 24.

What is tested?

Windows and doors are tested in three key areas:

Security – How long will it keep intruders out of the property for - this is not just the locks but the overall strength of the frame and glazing structure

Weather resistance – Does it keep the cold and rain out and reduce draughts

Endurance – for example how many times can you open and close the window or door to check hinge strength and handle quality

How we test Everest windows

1. Security

Locks are only a small part of a windows security design.  Areas such as frame strength, ability to remove the glass from outside the property are all important.  To test for security Wintech carry out 3 tests:

A glazing a frame test – the corner of a window is its weakest so pressure is applied to each of the four corners to test the strength of the glazing bead (the bit that holds in the window) and the tensile strength of the glazing itself. Over a 20 second period, the machine will apply 200kg (the weight of an adult male lion!)

Mechanical Infill machine pressing 200kg of force against an Everest window
Pictured: Mechanical infill machine pressing 200kg of force against an Everest window

The Second strength test is the mechanical loading test which replicates the action of someone trying to prise open the window and tests the strength of the profile pieces along with the locking mechanisms and other security features. This test increases the force even further to 300kg (the weight of an adult male tiger!) which is applied perpendicular to each piece of hardware. The machine pulls opposing edges in opposite directions with a series of hooks whilst also pushing on the opening sash with a hydraulic press. For good measure, a 100kg hydraulic force will then be used to press against the already tested frame to check the window hasn't been weakened by the previous force.

Mechanical loading test pressing against an Everest window with 300kg of force
Pictured: Mechanical loading test pressing against an Everest window with 300kg of force

The final security test a manual check which gives an engineer 15 minutes to try and break the window frame. The engineer will use a combination of standardised tools to 'attack' the window to test for vulnerabilities. This may seem like an easy test compared to the 300kg force from the hydraulic press but a manual check can get into all areas of the window frame to ensure no part of the frame has been left untested. This also best replicates a 'real life' example and uses the methods a burglar would use to get into a property.

An engineer testing an Everest window for any vulnerabilities missed by the machine
Pictured: An engineer testing an Everest window for any vulnerabilities missed by the machines

2. Testing our windows for weather resistance

For this the window is placed in a pressure chamber where they exert varying levels of air pressure on the opening sash to simulate wind pressure pressing against the glazing. They then test the water tightness by spraying the exterior face with a jet of water and checking for leakages.

An Everest window being tested for water tightness
Pictured: An Everest window being tested for water tightness

3. Testing our windows for endurance

Finally, it is time to test the endurance of the window. All of the furniture on the window needs to be tested for longevity and endurance, which involves opening then closing the window, this action of opening and closing the window is called a cycle. Everest windows furniture has been tested for 30,000 cycles which is roughly equivalent to 41 years of use!

A robot opening an Everest window to test the handles endurance
Pictured: A robot opening an Everest window to test the handles endurance

All of this testing ensures Everest windows are built to the highest standard for security, weather resistance and endurance and that we can make this claim using independent certified organisations.

How we test Everest doors

1. Security

Mechanical loading test - Mechanical loading tests the strength of the door by applying a force of 450kg (the weight of a camel) perpendicular to each piece of hardware, this is achieved by pulling opposing edge in opposite directions with a series of hooks whilst also pushing on the opening sash with a hydraulic press. This test is applied to multiple points on the door to check there are no vulnerable areas. This test replicates the action of someone trying to prise open the door and tests the strength of the profile pieces along with the locking mechanism and other security features. The force is applied over a 20-30 second period without shock force and then followed by a further 100kg force from the hydraulic press to push against the already tested frame.

A soft impact test tests the door's resistance to shock forces. A sand bag on a pendulum is pulled back and released three times. The shock of the sand bag is designed to replicate the door being struck with a uniformed force across a wide area of the door to test the doors general shock resistance. The sand bag weighs 30kg and is dropped from a set height of 800mm higher than its resting position.

A hard impact test is used to test the doors individual components resistance to shock forces. This is achieved by using a metal battering ram on a pendulum and is pulled back and released three times. The shock of the ram is designed to replicate the door being struck with a concentrated force. The ram weighs 50kg is dropped from a set height of 800mm higher than its resting position.

It is now time to manually test the doors, an engineer has 15 minutes to test the strength and security of the door and lock cylinder. The engineer will use the most common lock braking methods used by burglars such as mole gripping to test the strength of the lock. The tools to be used are set out by the BSI. A manual intervention test is then used which gives the engineer 15 minutes to break into the door with tools set out by the BSI.

A cut through is then used to see if the blade can make a significantly sized hole in a door. Two zones of the door are tested, zone one can be defined as anywhere on the door within 400mm vertically either side of the lock, while zone two is everywhere else on the door. Each test lasts for 3 minutes and the door will fail if the blade makes a hole greater than 50mm in diameter.

2. Weather resistance

The doors are then tested for weather resistance. The door will be placed in a pressure chamber where they exert varying levels of air pressure on the opening sash to simulate wind pressure pressing against the door. The door is then tested for water tightness by spraying the exterior face with a jet of water and checking for leakages.

3. Endurance

All of the furniture on the door needs to be tested for longevity and endurance. This involves opening and closing the window which is called a cycle. At Everest, we have tested our doors for 100,000 cycles!

Everest windows also carry Secured By Design accreditation which is a police initiative to help people improve the security of their homes, BSI (British Standards Institute), the worlds most recognised quality management standard and many more. Accreditations are a great way to continually meet and exceed the standard.

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'What is PAS 24:2016 and how do Everest get accreditation?'

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