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FTC Cracks Down on "Seriously" Exaggerated Window Claims

By Erin Weaver

This article originally appeared on BuildingGreen.com.

May 14, 2012

If you’ve ever wondered just what a product guaranteeing “up to 50 percent savings” will deliver, you have something in common with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC). FTC has reached a settlement with five manufacturers of replacement windows, part of a larger effort to rein in deceptive claims in environmental marketing.

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The companies named in the settlement (Serious Energy, Gorell Enterprises, Long Fence & Home, THV Holdings, and Winchester Industries) were found to have made unsubstantiated claims—for example, that their windows would “cut energy bills in half.” The settlement requires that statements about windows’ energy efficiency be supported by reliable evidence and prohibits “guarantees” that consumers will achieve a certain percentage of savings by replacing their existing windows. When the phrase “up to” is used, the agreement requires evidence that all or nearly all consumers will reach the target specified.

The FTC has also published a fact sheet called “Shopping for New Windows?” to highlight factors involved in replacing windows for energy savings. For more information, visit www.ftc.gov.

Copyright 2012 by BuildingGreen Inc.

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