Everything You Need to Know About Hurricane Impact Glass

Did you know about 41 percent of superstorms or hurricanes that hit the United States also make a major landfall in the Sunshine State? This shows that apart from being popular for its balmy weather, living safely in Florida is nearly impossible without hurricane protection—and that’s where hurricane impact glasses come in.

These technological marvels not only help Floridians keep their properties safe from wind-borne damage during hurricanes, but they also protect them from break-ins and even excessive energy costs. The question is, where did impact glass come from? Here’s some background information on the history of impact glass for your consideration.

An Accidental Discovery

The invention of impact glass can be traced back to a laboratory accident in 1903. Edouard Benedictus, a French chemist, accidentally dropped a glass flask coated with “plastic cellulose nitrate solution.” Surprisingly, the pieces did not break into a slew of shards but remained intact, making Benedictus believe that they would make great material for his construction project. However, it wasn’t until the First World War that it became popular and was used in gas masks.

After Hurricane Andrew destroyed the Sunshine State in 1992, the market for toughened glass began to grow. However, it was not until 1995 that the glass gained prominence as reliable natural disaster protection. Miami-Dade County was the first municipality to implement legislation that included impact-resistant objects as its mandate for higher building code requirements.

After all these years, South Florida now has some of the most stringent requirements for building code laws and impact window testing. With hurricanes endangering the United States, especially Southeast Florida, installing hurricane impact glass windows or doors in the home, condo, or company property is the best bet for every Floridian.

How Strong Is Hurricane Impact Glass?

Hurricane impact glass is designed to withstand high winds, hailstones, blunt force objects—you name it. However, how strong is it exactly? While all impact glasses are “strong,” every pane is customizable based on the required strength. However, generally, they are capable of withstanding wind speeds of up to 200 miles per hour. Suppose a piece of flying debris strikes a window. In that case, the internal PVD polymer will prevent the glass from shattering into large, sharp fragments.

Can You Break It?

Considering that hurricane impact glass is designed to withstand the impact of a hurricane or debris flying at the highest possible speeds, breaking through the glass door or window with common conventional methods such as a blunt item or even one’s own hands would be almost impossible. It doesn’t matter whether the source is a storm-tossed piece of wood or an intruder trying to break it with a hammer—the glass simply won’t break.

How Long Does Hurricane Impact Glass Last?

Depending on the manufacturer and the materials used, most hurricane impact glass is guaranteed to perform perfectly for 10 to 25 years. However, when glass reaches the 10-year mark, it becomes increasingly vital to consult a professional for further evaluation, knowing that the glass is at an age where it may need to be replaced shortly.

The Final Cut

Hurricane impact glasses are a marvel of modern engineering, designed to protect your home and family from the devastation that hurricane-force winds can cause. However, installing or replacing windows and doors by making a DIY YouTube video your source of inspiration is something you shouldn’t do. With that said, if you’re located on Congress Avenue in Delray Beach or anywhere near Florida’s southeast coast, feel free to get in touch with A-Christian Glass. We’ve been in business since 1988 (that’s 37 years), aiming to make Florida—a hurricane-safe state.

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