Hurricanes are known for being one of nature’s most powerful storms. Capable of extraordinary wind speeds and heavy rainfall, hurricanes cause billions of dollars in destruction in the United States annually. While there is no way to prevent one from happening, there are many different measures you can take to protect your home from a hurricane.
Will Installing Hurricane Shutters Protect Your Home From a Hurricane?
Hurricane shutters can be an effective way to protect your home from airborne debris during a hurricane. Shutters can also lead to a more unnatural look to your home by adding bulky shutters above the home’s openings. Another downside is that they need to be manually closed to be effective during a storm.
Can I Cover My Window and Door Openings With a Sheet of Plywood?
If you are from a hurricane-prone area, chances are you have seen homeowners board up their houses with sheets of plywood covering the windows and doors, before a storm hits.. This has often been a popular and economical means of protecting your house, but is it effective? It may work, but the truth is that plywood is not primarily designed to withstand high impact and wind pressure. While it is cheap, you need to drill holes into the exterior of your home, leaving marks year-round. In many cases, homeowners install plywood over their windows/ doors simply because it’s better than doing nothing.
What Does Protecting the Openings in My Home With Impact-Resistant Windows and Doors do for Me?
Despite the many ways you can fortify your home’s openings in anticipation of a coming storm, none are as effective as installing impact-resistant windows and doors. Impact-resistant windows and doors—as the name implies— are designed to protect the building envelope from an impactful force of windborne debris. In the event that your impact-resistant window is struck by debris, your outer tempered lite may shatter into small rounded pieces (dice), however, your laminated lite should still remain intact to protect the building’s interior. The laminated lite will prevent the home from building internal pressurization. If you don’t have impact-resistant windows and your home is breached by airborne debris, the wind from an extreme weather event —such as a hurricane— can fill your house with air pressure causing a collapse. Impact-resistant products are designed to reduce the likelihood of this from happening. Once installed, all you need to do is ensure the windows and doors are closed and locked before a storm approaches.
Impact-resistant windows and doors are tested against the industry standards to certify impact resistance, wind resistance, and water infiltration. In addition to enhancing the home’s overall protection, impact-resistant windows and doors also have exceptional thermal efficiency. This helps to insulate your home better and can result in a reduction in your energy bill. The Viwinco OceanView impact-resistant product line provides the reinforcement you need to protect your home in the event of a hurricane, all while looking amazing. Our patented Tilt-n-Lock system comes standard on OceanView® single and double-hung windows, allowing single-handed operation and sleek, unobstructed views. Our fully customizable product offerings are designed to meet the needs of any project, because you shouldn’t need to sacrifice the look of your home for increased security. Additionally, the installation of impact-resistant products can also lead to reduced insurance premiums!
Common Misconceptions When Prepping Your Home for a Hurricane
When looking to protect your home from a hurricane, it’s essential to understand what is effective and what is not. One of the most common myths is that you should tape your windows to prevent them from shattering. The issue with this is that the duct tape will not prevent glass breakage. Instead, it has a higher probability of larger glass shards becoming airborne in the event of glass breakage. This of course, is more of a hazard in annealed glass lites that break into sharp jagged shards. Another misconception is that leaving your windows opened slightly can equalize the pressure inside and outside of the home. Leaving windows open is extremely dangerous because you’re compromising the building envelope allowing wind and rainwater to damage the interior.
It’s Not If a Big Storm Will Hit… It’s When!
According to a study conducted by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), over the last 40 years, the probability of a category 3 hurricane or higher has increased by approximately 8% every decade. As we trend toward increasingly more violent storms becoming the norm, it’s vital to take precautions to protect your home. Installing impact-resistant products not only adheres to the home’s security and value, but also grants homeowners the peace of mind. As we continue into hurricane season, this becomes increasingly important because it’s not a matter of if a big storm will hit… but when?