How to protect windows from hurricanes
Hurricanes are coming, and fast!
They might be here before you even know, they might catch you by surprise, they might destroy important parts of your house like your doors, windows, etc.
It is important to understand how to protect your windows against hurricanes since it is vulnerable if not the most vulnerable part of your house during a storm. Windows can fail, break, bend, and others.
Letting water into your house, causing a flood and not to mention the thousands of dollars in expenses for replacing everything in case you don’t have home insurance, so it is best to know how to protect your windows from hurricanes.
There are a couple of different methods each of them offers their type of protection, all are good, but some are way better than others. Some are Plywood, hurricane shutters, hurricane impact windows and hurricane film. We want to mention each along with their advantages and disadvantages, along with an opinion at the end of this article.
Hurricane film is a clear plastic film that is popular because it’s unobtrusive and can be left in place year-round. Many homeowners also like the fact that cinema blocks UV light that can fade carpets and fabric. This is a perfect option for DIYers because they can install this peel-and-stick hurricane film for about $25/linear foot.
The downside to film — and it’s a big one — is that while it may keep glass shards from becoming dangerous missiles, it does nothing to prevent wind from blowing in the entire window frame. That’s why most insurance companies don’t offer discounts for hurricane film, so this option is not all that perfect as it only prevents your window from shattering.
Plywood is a useful and inexpensive option for covering your windows when hurricanes are coming. You’ll spend around $1 or USD 2/sq. Ft. if you do the work yourself, as well as a contractor, might charge somewhere between $3–$5 USD//sq. Ft. Set aside a weekend to measure, cut, and pre-install all plywood for a typical house.
For better protection select boards that are 5/8 inches thick and approximately eight inches larger on each side that the opening you’re covering. Use heavy-duty screws and anchors (when in wood) or expansion bolts (when in masonry) to attach the plywood to home’s walls and not in the window frames.
The downside to plywood is that it must be put up at the last minute when a hurricane is approaching. Plywood also blocks light coming into a home, so it’ll be very dark inside if power is lost. Pre-installing screw anchors around openings speed up installation. More expensive than plywood is panels made from steel, aluminum, plastic, reinforced fabric, or composite materials.
Roll-up or accordion shutters are permanently attached to a house, which makes them easier to deploy than plywood. All you must do is pull the shutters into place before a storm. Some shutters use perforation or translucent material to let in light.
Storm shutters are expensive, depending on styles and materials. Expect to spend anywhere from $10-$50/sq. Ft. for professional installation. Aluminum shutters are typical but also look for shutters made of reinforced fabric or aluminum-wrapped foam.
With these glasses, you are expecting to pay as much as $50/sq. Ft. for single-glazed impact glass and $70/sq. Ft. for double-glazed glass. High-impact windows, which typically are made up of two panes of tempered glass separated by a plastic film and look like standard windows, so they don’t affect a home’s appearance. As a bonus, they’re always in place.
Other than cost, the downside to single-glazed glass is that it’s not very energy efficient. Also, while the glass is impact resistant, water is still likely to penetrate the interior in a hurricane if not installed correctly. High-impact glass windows usually qualify for discounts on homeowner’s insurance policies.
All these options are viable options each with their pros and cons, in our opinion the best one is, in fact, the high impact glass windows, sure it might be expensive, but these windows are the ones that offer the most protection in the long run, as well as you, your family and most importantly, your home will be safe from hurricanes and much more.
So, these are some of the ways you can get your windows protected. We hope you are now informed as to which option you would like to defend your home windows with.
Our preferred option is impact glass for windows and doors, if you need to talk to a specialist you can always write or call us.
You could read to0: HURRICANE SHUTTERS OR IMPACT WINDOWS, WHICH ONE SHOULD I CHOOSE?