Passive House Pilgrimage to Austria: Skylar’s Tour of the Optiwin Window Factory

Skylar blogs about the culmination of his Passive House tour in Innsbruck, Austria: the Freisinger Window plant.

This post is part of a series, “Hammer & Hand’s Passive House Pilgrimage to Austria”:

  1. First Installment, by Zack
  2. Second Installment, by Sam
  3. Skylar’s Magical Passivhaus Tour, by Skylar
  4. Skylar’s Tour of the Optiwin Factory, by Skylar
  5. The Tradeshow Floor, by Skylar

For an American-based Passive House builder and designer, one of the biggest challenges is finding high performance Passive House-certified windows and doors.  So I was very excited to visit the facility (Freisinger Window Construction) manufacturing some of the world’s very best high performance windows (Optiwin Passive House Windows), and to get a chance to see their newest designs and technology.  Our tour group got an in-depth view of the plant’s European manufacturing process.

Our tour bus in front of the Freisinger Window Construction manufacturing facility.

Here we see the hardware mounting station.

Dr. Feist, the founder of the Passive House standard and building movement, comments on the recycled polyurethane foam used to insulate the window frame, and the durability of the thermally-broken protective cladding.

A closeup view of the window gaskets after paint.

High performance triple pane windows awaiting installation into the assembled sashes.

This is a very cool door.

A Freisinger rep shows off wood destined for Optiwin Windows.

Mortising machine for the door and window hardware.

Recently-treated window sashes.

Dr. Feist loves Passive House windows.

The new slim-line Alpha series, which will soon be available in the US, is seen on the left of each of these images.  The new series promises more solar gain and higher overall performance.  Exciting stuff.

Thus ends my tour of the plant for Optiwin Windows.  I came away really impressed by the facility and inspired by the precision that goes into the manufacture of high performance windows and doors.  Thanks for geeking out with me!  And check out yesterday’s post for a tour of three cool Austrian Passive House projects that I visited and photographed.

– Skylar

Back to Field Notes