Choices in Hurricane Window Protection

Hurricane shutters are the most economical, therefore the most popular solution chosen by homeowners. However, hurricane impact windows and doors are also very popular because of the added benefits of convenience, security enhancement, better energy efficiency, sound proofing and its attractiveness over shutters. The least expensive system is plywood or panels; these offer great protection, but take a great deal of time to install.

Your considerations: Cost, appearance, and convenience (this one is often under estimated). http://smartwebsiteideas.com/

First, understand what it is your protecting: it’s not just the shards of glass from the broken window that are dangerous – having your roof blown off will really get your attention. During a hurricane, the strong wind that blows over your home creates a ‘lift’ effect on your roof. If a window or door opening is blown open during the storm, this creates an additional upward ‘push’ on the roof, thus doubling or tripling the lifting effect. This is how roofs are blown off.

Here are the vitals on your choices for hurricane window protection for your home.

Myth Buster- Window Film and a little info on Impact Windows:

Window film can reduce the sun’s damaging rays into your home and it is promoted to be a theft deterrent. It may also very well reduce the chance for shards of glass to go flying through your home in the event of a hurricane, but do you really think slapping a thin piece of film on your existing windows is going to keep your roof on in the event of a hurricane? By comparison, impact windows are almost three times as thick as regular window glass. Hurricane windows are made up of two layers of glass and sandwiched between these layers of glass is a strong tear resistant interlayer (film) that keeps the glass together in the event it is broken. They are much like the windshield of automobiles.

A key factor in the strength of impact windows is how the glass & interlayer are VERY securely attached to a reinforced frame (both mechanically and through the use of industrial adhesives) so the impact glass does NOT detached even under extreme pressure. The goal is to establish hurricane window protection for all openings (whether one does this through the use of hurricane shutters or impact windows, or a combination of the two) and keep the openings sealed so as to not cause a change in pressure inside the home thus blowing off the roof. The idea of putting hurricane window film on a regular window with its lightweight frame and expecting it to even remotely resemble a Miami-Dade approved impact window is ridiculous. Yes, it would be better than nothing, but your money would be better spent on plywood.

Plywood Shutters ($2 – $4 / sq. ft.):

A popular and effective choice, installing plywood shutters to fit snugly inside the window or door frame is an efficient and affordable option for homeowners. These shutters were effective even in the highest winds of Hurricane Andrew, and are relatively easy to install. If you are going to use this method, the plywood needs to be 5/8″ to 3/4″ thick, and since it takes a lot of time to prepare, it should be cut to size way before we have a storm bearing down on us.