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ANSWERS, INFO & MORE

Frequently Asked Questions

Whether you’re wondering how Major got started, where we’re located, how our systems are made, what they’re made out of, or something far more technical, we have an answer! Read through the questions below to find out more, and if you don’t see your question asked or answered, drop us a line at vasb@znwbefxlyvtugf.pbz and we will do our best to get you the information you need.

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How long has Major been in business?
We began manufacturing daylighting solutions in 1980.

Where are you located?
We manufacture daylighting systems from our location in Wausau, WI (right in the center of the state – about 3 hours east of Minneapolis, MN and 2 hours north of Madison, WI).

Who owns Major Industries?
Major is a privately-owned company, purchased by Wayne Toenjes (Major’s current Owner and President) in 1993. Since that time, Major has become a leader in the daylighting solutions market.

What firms/companies have you worked with in the past?
We’ve worked with some of the largest architectural and engineering firms in the country, as well as some of the biggest contractors in North America. They come back to us for daylighting solutions because of our commitment to quality, on-time delivery and customer service.

Do you offer any AIA Continuing Education programs?
Yes – we currently have two programs certified with the AIA, and both offer HSW credit. Please visit our AIA-CES information page for additional details.

What is the average lead time?
We work hard to keep our lead times as short as possible, but they can vary depending upon a number of variables – especially during certain times of the year. It’s best to contact our sales department for the latest data available on current lead times.

What separates you from the competition?
Materials, design and service. While it’s important for you to decide on a supplier based on your needs, we feel that we use superior materials in our systems, backed by industry-long warranties, and back them up with superior customer service. We’ll work with you from initial concept to installation to ensure your system meets your needs.

How do I buy your systems? Who do I contact?
We sell our systems through a network of independent representatives, as well as through our inside sales staff depending on the area you’re located in. Find your location on our interactive map and contact your local salesperson. You can also call us at 888-759-2678 and we can point you in the right direction. For select smaller sized systems, you can also check out our online store – shopmajorskylights.com.

What does a skylight/wall system cost?
Costs vary depending upon the system configuration, and we encourage you to complete our online quote request form to get an accurate estimate. That said, a general range would be $15-30 per square foot for an average system, and $35+ per square foot for complex designs and some specialty options. Many will fall somewhere in-between those ranges.

How customizable are your products?
Very! We specialize in custom systems, and will work with you to create the best solution for your project. Not sure where to start, or if your design is achievable? Contact us at 888-759-2678 or fnyrf@znwbefxlyvtugf.pbz, or check out our architectural consulting page.

Do you only sell products in the U.S.?
While the majority of our systems are located in the United States, we sell systems in Canada and throughout North America – and have projects around the world.

What finish and color options are available?
All of our aluminum framed systems offer either anodize or Kynar® finish options, available in a variety of standard colors. We can also do custom paint colors and color matching if required. Click here for more information.

Can I walk on a translucent panel system?
While translucent panel systems are structural enough to handle the load, we recommend staying off the panels due to the possibility of damaging the FRP face sheets.

What is the lifespan of one of your systems?
Lifespans vary depending on the glazing material. Our translucent panel systems, like LightBasic™, Guardian 275® and Clima-Tite™ have a 25-30 year lifespan, while IlluminPC™ polycarbonate multi-wall systems have a 15-20 year lifespan, and Auburn® glass systems can last for 40+ years. That said, every daylighting system needs to be inspected regularly for optimal performance, and even glass systems generally need significant maintenance work around the 25 year mark.

How steep/flat can the skylight be?
Skylights operate at their best when placed on a slope, as this allows moisture to flow off of the system, but we understand that some designs call for low-slope options. Please contact out sales staff for additional information on which system might be best for your project.

Can a Major Industries daylighting system get me LEED credits?
LEED® requirements are generally based upon whole building performance and not a specific product. Our systems may contribute to LEED® certification in a variety of categories. Visit our Sustainable Design page for additional information and details.

Do you provide design assistance or just offer standard systems?
We take pride in being a custom daylighting manufacturer, and will work with you through the design process to make your design goals a reality (within reason and code compliance, of course!). We also offer architectural consulting to assist you with questions or concerns that come up during the design process. That said, if you’re interested in pre-engineered systems that can be on-site quickly, we have those as well!

What should I look for when choosing a translucent panel system?
Look for integrated moisture management systems, details like EPDM gaskets that outperform typical foam tapes, durable Kynar® finish options, high-performance face sheets and long warranties. If you have questions when creating a spec, feel free to contact us and we can assist you.

What tests should I look for in a daylighting specification?
All systems and glazing types have different requirements and test procedures, but some manufacturers, to try and exclude competition, like to throw in anomalous tests that are outside code requirements or have been carried over from different spec sections. If you’re unsure of an item in our specification, contact us or refer to AAMA (FGIA), ASTM or other standards for information on proper procedures and test guidelines.

How long is your material capable of spanning?
While it varies depending on the system chosen, each individual Guardian 275® panel, for example, can be sized up to 5ft x 20ft (depending upon load restrictions, etc.), but system spans can be hundreds of feet long. Contact us directly at fnyrf@znwbefxlyvtugf.pbz or 888-759-2678 for specific information related to your project.

How steep/flat can the skylight be?
Skylights operate at their best when placed on a slope, as this allows moisture to flow off of the system, but we understand that some designs call for low-slope configurations. Please contact our sales staff for additional information on limitations and which system might be best for your project.

How customizable are your products?
Extremely! We specialize in custom systems, and will work with you to create the best solution for your project. Not sure where to start, or if your design is achievable? Contact us at 888-759-2678 or fnyrf@znwbefxlyvtugf.pbz, or visit our architectural consulting page.

Do I always need a UL 790 class “A” system?
Not always – often a full UL 790 Class A system is not necessary because of IBC code exemptions for buildings with sprinkler systems, or other requirements that allow for Class B or C systems. Check your local codes to be sure.

Do you offer any blast protection systems?
Yes! Our Guardian 275® translucent panel systems can be configured for blast protection. They also offer the benefits of soft, diffuse natural light while keeping occupants safe.

How much support structure will I need?
Structural requirements can vary depending on local codes, snow and wind loads, spans, etc. Please contact us directly at fnyrf@znwbefxlyvtugf.pbz or 888-759-2678 for more information.

How much weight can your systems support?
Each system has different characteristics, but our systems are highly structural and can be configured for a wide range of conditions. Contact our sales staff at fnyrf@znwbefxlyvtugf.pbz or 888-759-2678 for more information.

What’s the difference between L/60 vs L/120?
While some manufacturers build their systems to meet deflection limits of L/60, Major builds systems that meet L/120, giving you a more rigid support. L/120 is often the IBC code minimum, but check your local codes for verification.

What is FRP, and what is a translucent panel system?
Translucent panel systems are made up of Fiberglass Reinforced Polymer (FRP) sheets that are attached to an aluminum grid core. These panels are then encapsulated in an aluminum frame. They are lighter than comparable glass systems, impact resistant, diffuse direct sunlight, block damaging UV and can be insulated for excellent thermal performance.

Where does fiberglass sheet come from?
We partner with Crane Composites – the largest manufacturer of architectural grade fiberglass in the United States – on our Ultimate Series™ face sheets, and then assemble daylighting panels at our plant in Wausau, Wisconsin.

How much do translucent panel systems weigh?
Translucent systems like Guardian 275® generally weight around 2.5 to 3 pounds per square foot depending on the configuration.

What are the differences between your translucent panel systems?
Our LightBasic™ wall and single slope skylights are value-oriented designs for warehouses, manufacturing centers, and anywhere budgets are a concern. Our main and most versatile system is Guardian 275® – available in skylight, canopy and wall system configurations. It offers the longest warranties, most options, and is available in specialty configurations like blast and hurricane protection, mixed glazed systems, unitized configurations and more. Our third system, Clima-Tite™, features the same Ultimate Series™ face sheet technology as Guardian 275® but with pultruded fiberglass framing for enhanced thermal performance.

What is fiberbloom?
Fiberbloom is a term used to describe the process of glass fibers breaking the resin surface of a fiberglass reinforced material. While this was common decades ago, new technologies and advancements have virtually eliminated this issue. Major currently offers a 25 year warranty against this type of excessive weathering.

Do you provide systems with thermal breaks/improvements?
Yes – all of our systems are available with poured-and-debridged thermal breaks, which are the industry standard. We also utilize thermal strut technology in our Auburn® single slope glass skylights.

What finish options and colors are available?
All of our aluminum framed systems offer either anodize or Kynar® finish options, available in a variety of standard colors. (We can also provide custom color matching.) We can provide finishes that meet AAMA 2604 and 2605 standards. Click here for more details.

What color options are available for your FRP face sheets?
The two most commonly specified FRP sheet colors are Crystal and White, but we also offer exterior sheets in Ice Blue, Aqua, Tan and Desert Rose. We also offer Spectra-Grid™ colored insulation that provides a stained glass look when light shines through the panel, and is a great way to incorporate school or logo colors into a facility.

Is your Crystal FRP face sheet completely transparent?
No. While Crystal provides the most light transmission of all our sheet colors, it is not fully transparent due to the fiberglass that’s embedded in the resin to give the sheet its strength.

Do you offer warranties on your systems?
For our translucent systems, we offer industry-best warranties against color change and fiberbloom (up to 20 years). Our Kynar® paint finishes are also warrantied against chalking and fading, and we also provide warranties for materials and workmanship. Contact our sales team for additional information on warranty options.

Can I get a translucent panel without the grid pattern?
No – the grid in a translucent panel system in integral to the structure of the panel, and supports the FRP face sheets. We do offer some unique design options for grids, including Verti-lite which mimics the look of channel glass, and can also work with you to create a custom pattern.

Can the grid pattern in a translucent system be a different color?
Because of the way the panels are manufactured, the grid is always black. But some sheet colors, like White, can mask a bit of the grid lines. We can also work with you on a custom grid pattern, and offer custom vinyl overlays to alter the geometric look.

What is the maximum size of a single translucent panel?
While the maximum depends on load requirements and other variables, the largest continuous panel available would be roughly 5ft x 20 ft (may vary depending on loads and code requirements).

Are translucent panels impact resistant?
Yes! Translucent panel systems are impact resistant, and offer hurricane and blast protection configurations. They can “flex” with the force of a large impact, making them a good choice for these types of extreme environments. Contact Major for additional information related to your project’s specific needs and we can help find the right solution.

Are your translucent panels sealed air-tight?
No. Translucent panel systems are designed with weep holes to let them “breathe” a small amount to keep condensation from collecting in the panels. These weeps work in conjunction with weep holes in the framing to direct any moisture back outside the building.

How does the built-in moisture management system work?
It starts with high-performance EPDM gaskets and high-performance sealants to keep moisture out of the system. Integral guttering on our framing members also traps any internal condensation and redirects it to the exterior.

Can I use more than one glazing material in the same system?
Yes! We have some great solutions for mixed glazed systems for both skylight and wall system applications. It’s a great way to get the light control benefits of translucent panels with the views and ventilation control of glass and operable windows.

What’s the difference between FRP systems and polycarbonate multi-wall?
FRP panel systems and polycarbonate multi-wall share some features, including diffusing natural light, but are very different from one another. FRP panels glazing is a sandwich panel design featuring two FRP face sheets and an aluminum grid core, while polycarbonate multi-wall panels are made only of extruded polymers. Polycarbonate multi-wall has a slightly shorter lifespan (15-20 years vs 25-30 years), and more prone to expansion and contraction, but it’s also more lightweight and hits a lower price point. Check out our Guardian 275® and IlluminPC™ pages for more details.

Do you provide systems with thermal breaks/improvements?
Yes – many of our systems are available with poured-and-debridged thermal breaks, which are the industry standard. We also utilize thermal strut technology in our Auburn® single slope glass skylights.

What finish options and colors are available?
All of our aluminum framed systems offer either anodize or Kynar® finish options, available in a variety of standard colors. We can provide finishes that meet AAMA 2604 and 2605 standards, and can custom color match. Click here for more details.

What warranties do you offer on your systems?
IlluminPC™ polycarbonate multi-wall systems feature a standard 10 year panel weatherization warranty, and both IlluminPC™ and Auburn® glass skylights offer  standard material and workmanship warranties and finish warranties that cover Kynar® finishes up to 20 years and anodize finishes up to 10 years against things like chalking and fading. For more information on warranties and options, contact our sales team for additional information.

What is the maximum size of a polycarbonate multi-wall panel?
While the maximum depends on load requirements and other variables, the largest continuous panel available would be roughly 19 inches by up to 20 feet + (may vary depending on loads and code requirements).

Are polycarbonate multi-wall panels low-maintenance/stay clean?
Yes – they are low maintenance, and are often kept somewhat clean just from occasional rainfall. That said, every daylighting system should be cleaned and inspected regularly for optimal performance.

Is polycarbonate multi-wall impact resistant?
Yes! Polycarbonate multi-wall systems are also highly impact resistant and flex with the force of an impact. Contact Major for additional information related to your project’s specific needs and we can help find the right solution.

How does the built-in moisture management system work?
It starts with high-performance EPDM gaskets and high-performance sealants to keep moisture out of the system. Integral guttering on our framing members also traps any internal condensation and redirects it to the exterior.

Can I use more than one glazing material in the same system?
Yes! We have some great solutions mixed glazed options for both skylight and wall system applications. It’s a great way to get the light control benefits of translucent panels with the views and ventilation control of glass and operable windows.

How easy are your systems to install?
Each system is unique, and requires different materials. IlluminPC™ systems feature snap-together polycarbonate multi-wall panels that can be assembled quickly. Guardian 275®, LightBasic™ and Clima-Tite™ translucent panel systems are also lightweight and offer large panel sizes for easy handling on-site and fast installation times. Auburn® glass skylights may require additional hands on-site due to the weight of glass. No matter which system you choose, we provide detailed drawings and installation instructions, and offer live help if you run into issues on-site. You can find basic installation instructions here.

Are your daylighting systems low-maintenance?
Yes – they are low maintenance, and are often kept somewhat clean just from occasional rainfall. That said, every daylighting system – translucent panel system, polycarbonate multi-wall or glass – should be cleaned and inspected regularly for optimal performance.

Can I walk on a translucent panel system?
Major does not endorse walking on our systems for any reason, and would discourage walking on any skylight without following proper OSHA guidelines for safety protection. While translucent panel systems have the strength to handle that type of loading, walking on the panels can cause surface damage to the FRP face sheets. Please contact our Technical Support Manager for more specific information.

What happens if a panel is damaged during the shipping process/during installation?
We all know the perils of shipping, which is why, when you order from Major, we’ll handle freight claims and related paperwork for you. If an issue occurs on-site, we’ll work with you to get the right replacement parts delivered quickly.

How do you install pre-assembled single slope skylights?
You’ll receive installation instructions with your system order, but we also have some example videos that can help.

Does fiberglass yellow?
This is one of the most often asked questions from people familiar with older translucent panel technologies, and the answer is yes and no. All exterior building materials change slightly as they age, especially when exposed to environmental extremes, and can lose color intensity or shift hues. We’ve worked hard to utilize material advancements and, along with the help of partners like Crane Composites, have created Ultimate Series™ face sheet technology to address color change concerns. We’re now able to offer up to 20-year color change warranties, the best in the industry.

Does polycarbonate multi-wall have a longer lifespan than FRP?
No. Despite some claims, polycarbonate multiwall has a shorter lifespan than translucent FRP panels (generally 15-20 years).

Is glass better than all other glazing materials?
As a manufacturer that sells all types of glazing options, we love glass, but while it has some fantastic attributes, it’s not necessarily the best choice for every situation. Each option has advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to look at a number of different factors when choosing a daylighting solution – the type of space, occupant needs, thermal performance needs and aesthetic requirements.

Do you still manufacture plastic dome skylights?
No – but we do manufacture smaller sized translucent panel and glass skylights. Some smaller systems can be purchased online at shopmajorskylights.com, or contact our sales team for information on partially and fully pre-assembled options available in select systems and sizes.

Is your Guardian 275® system related to Guardian Glass or Guardian Industries?
No – there is no affiliation.

Is it true that all skylights leak?
No – but poorly installed or improperly designed skylights do. That’s why it’s important to work with a reputable manufacturer willing to stand behind their products. Also look at materials used and built-in enhancements like moisture management that assist in maintaining the longevity of the system.

Can I afford to add a skylight or translucent wall system to my facility?
We know that budgets can sometimes be tight, which is why we offer a wide range of systems and options in a variety of price ranges. But beyond initial costs, consider that access to natural light has been shown to benefit health and productivity, student performance, and even increase sales in retail settings. On top of that, natural light reduces the need for costly artificial light sources and can also lessen loads on HVAC systems, saving even more money over the life of the system.