Deciding which hurricane protection product is best for your window can be tricky, especially if you live in areas prone to hurricanes like Boca Raton, FL.
Using regular windows is not an option, as they can never withstand the impact of stormy hurricane winds. This is when impact windows, hurricane shutters, and the like come in. Even though they all provide some level of protection to the home, impact windows have to be the most trustworthy option compared to the rest.
This blog post will show you the unique features of impact windows and their benefits compared to hurricane shutters and others.
The Different Hurricane Protection Products for Your Windows
The hurricane protection options for windows are diverse and can be used for residential and commercial buildings. They are as follows:
One of the most basic materials used for hurricane window protection is plywood. Installing plywood sheets over your glass windows can offer some amount of protection to your window during extreme weather. However, they must be cut to size and screwed into the window’s exterior when a storm approaches.
- They are very affordable
- They offer some amount of protection
- Plywood sheets can be installed without professional help
- They are labor-intensive and time-consuming
- Plywood boards completely block out natural light
- They are aesthetically unappealing
- The plywood sheets must be installed and uninstalled before and after every storm.
- They can easily be ripped away from the home by a hurricane wind of over 100 mph.
- They are not reusable after tropical storms
- It takes time and effort to bring it down.
Hurricane Window Fabric
Hurricane window fabrics are bouncy fabrics that you drape over your window to deflect the impact of damaging debris. These fabrics are quite similar to a trampoline and are much easier to install and remove, as you only need to clip them into place before a storm.
- Window fabrics help absorb the impact of severe storms.
- They are easier to install and take up less storage space when not in use.
- They allow some amount of light and visibility when used
- They may not protect your window from shattering when hit with a stronger object.
- They have to be re-installed every time a storm approaches.
Window films provide an extra layer of security for your window, protecting it from rain and wind. However, they won’t stop glass from breaking when hit by flying debris.
So, when your glass window shatters, installing a film will only help hold the glass in place, reducing the possibility of injury from glass shards and keeping the home safe from water, wind, and debris.
Despite being beneficial for some reasons, window films are not a good material for hurricane mitigation.
- They are affordable
- They protect the window from rain and high winds
- They also hold the window in place even if the glass has been shattered.
- They don’t block out natural light
- They are not hurricane-resistant.
Storm panels are one of the most economical hurricane windows and major barriers against storms. They are corrugated panels made from solid metal, aluminum, or plastic and are designed to overlap.
- Storm panels are very strong
- They are very affordable
- They can also serve as security shutters
- They are heavy and very difficult to install
- They are not fixed and need to be installed before a storm and removed after
Hurricane shutters are made from wood, fiberglass, translucent polycarbonate, aluminum, and steel. They are strong and provide solid protection for windows during a hurricane.
These storm panels are installed over the regular glass windows to guard against being destroyed by flying debris.
Since there are different kinds, some shutters can be closed remotely, while others need to be shut down from within or outside the building. Popular examples are accordion shutters, Bahama shutters, and colonial shutters.
Although shutters are practical, there have been some cases where flying objects hit them right on the lock that holds them, leaving them open and unable to protect the window behind them. So even with shutters, you still won’t get 100% protection from flying objects.
- They are more effective than other window coverings
- They are cost effective
- Window shutters are easy to install and remove
- They come in different styles, so you can still maintain the aesthetics of your home.
- Installing shutters does not provide protection against noise
- They do not let in much light.
- Some models require you to go outside before shutting them.
- They are bulky and unattractive
Using impact windows in your home is one of the best ways to protect your property from severe damage. Impact hurricane windows were first manufactured for automobile windshields to protect cars from accidents. However, they are now used as protection from hurricanes in most Florida homes.
The normal glass will shatter when hit by flying debris during a storm, but the glass and window frames used to make impact-resistant windows are strong enough to absorb all external impacts completely.
Most impact glass can withstand even the force of wind up to 200 mph.
- Impact windows look like a regular window
- They keep your home protected from wind, storm debris, and theft.
- They safeguard your home even if you are far away.
- Impact windows significantly reduce outside noise.
- They are very easy to install.
- They let in enough light and protect against UV rays.
- They are aesthetically pleasing.
- Impact glass increases the value of your home.
- You don’t need to do anything except keep them shut before a storm.
- Installing impact windows will help you save money on your insurance premiums.
- They are quite expensive
- You need to remove old, pre-existing windows to have them installed completely.
Which One Offers Better Protection
From the various hurricane protection products listed above, impact windows have proven to be the best and most reliable product for the home. Their level of protection is outstanding and can be compared to none.
Why You Should Go For Hurricane Impact Windows
- All the materials used in producing impact windows can withstand pressure and wind, saving you money on repairs and re-installation.
- Impact windows are installed independently and do not require any external protection.
- Having impact windows installed will allow you to monitor whatever is happening outside during a storm, rather than leaving you in the dark like other products.
- Impact-resistant glasses not only offer protection from hurricanes but are also force-tested against burglary, boosting the security of your home.
- They help reduce noise by over 70%, so your home remains as quiet as possible despite being in a storm.
- Having impact hurricane windows installed will also help improve your home’s resale value, offering you a much higher ROI.
- They are made with laminated glass, so they won’t shatter easily.
Impact Windows Vs Hurricane Shutters: Do I Need One Or Both Of Them?
No, you don’t. Installing both at the same time defeats the purpose of the impact windows.
Hurricane shutters are also a great layer of protection, but impact windows are much better as they can withstand category-five storms and the debris that comes with them.
Having hurricane shutters installed alongside impact windows will only have you spending more when you can easily spend less by sticking with impact hurricane windows.
By adding hurricane shutters to your impact windows, you would lose the ability to see through your window when the shutters are closed. You’ll also need to go around the house to close all the shutters before a storm, as you won’t be able to do so from inside.
Are Impact Windows Required In Florida?
Yes, they are. The Florida Building Code requires all homes built after 2001 to have storm protection for their windows.
Residents living within one mile of the coast, where wind speeds can reach 110 mph, are especially vulnerable. Installing impact windows is the right hurricane protection for many homeowners.
This is a wise way to save lives, prevent damage, and reduce the cost of repairs.
Getting the Best Hurricane Impact Window Installation Service in Boca Raton, FL
Hurricane impact windows have proven to be the best and most effective protection product for your home whenever there’s a storm. To make better decisions for your home, you need to go for the best, and A Christian-Glass is here to cater to your needs.
We are the top suppliers and installers of hurricane impact-resistant windows and doors in South Florida, with over 35 years of experience protecting families from the havoc caused by hurricane storms.
With our high-quality materials, we have successfully completed over 50,000 projects in Florida and beyond. Therefore, contact us today to get a free estimate for all the windows in your home.
Remember, the most important thing is keeping you and your loved ones safe during the hurricane season in Florida. Call us now to take that step.