Best Window Material for Withstanding a Hurricane

As anyone living in a storm-prone area can tell you, having to supplement homeowners insurance with hurricane insurance is far from exciting. Depending on the home’s location and the home’s value, the premiums alone can range anywhere from $300 to $20,000. When homes are especially impacted by big-name storms, the deductibles can be as brutally high as $2,000 to $10,000 to cover the damages caused by these storms.

With Taylor Builders servicing the Tri-County area of South Florida, we understand the importance of building residential homes and commercial buildings that can withstand high winds and protect against other damages brought on by storm impact. This includes installing impact windows, which will not only protect the safety of residents and their possessions, but the installation of impact windows can even help save homeowners as much as $10,000 on insurance.

Why Impact Windows Matter

building contractor inspectionMany kinds of damage can be sustained from the presence of a storm, whether you’re experiencing a category 1 hurricane (74-95 mph) or a category 5 (over 155 mph). While damages from a category 1 hurricane can be less catastrophic than damages sustained from higher category storms, that doesn’t mean they’re less dangerous or that they’ll be less costly. This is especially true in the cases of older homes or buildings with poor construction.

One way homeowners can protect themselves against the damages of a hurricane, as well as the costs associated with them, is by installing impact windows. Whether it’s a new construction or a home renovation, it is never too late to consider impact windows as they are designed with materials that prevent shattering as a result of both high winds and flying debris.

What Impact Windows Are Made Of

Building Construction and RenovationThere’s a lot that goes into constructing an impact window, including what materials to use for the frame, the different types of glass, and even the space between glass panes. In choosing the right material for window frames, materials that won’t rust, crack or weather with age are prioritized. As such, vinyl, steel or aluminium frames are used due to their high durability and high strength.

In addition to sturdy frames, it’s equally important to have sturdy glass. In the case of impact windows, there are typically two types of glass used: exterior tempered glass and interior heat-strength glass. Tempered glass is designed to be four times stronger than ordinary glass, which means it has a higher resistance to blunt force. When hit by debris or other blunt objects, tempered glass will shatter into a spiderweb-like pattern but won’t break into shards the way ordinary glass would. This is effective against debris flying inside the home during a storm.

Interior heat-strength glass also offers additional protection against storm damage. In contrast with exterior tempered glass, interior heat-strength glass is comprised of two sheets of glass with a layer of glass film sandwiched in between them. Glass film is five times stronger than ordinary windows, and like exterior tempered glass, this also protects against impact from flying debris and other blunt objects. Instead of the glass breaking into shards, glass film also causes the interior glass to shatter into a spiderweb-like pattern while staying intact.

How Impact Windows Save You Money

Building Construction and RenovationBy making windows resistant to damage from strong hurricane-force winds and flying debris, impact windows also help prevent additional damages to the interior of a home or building. By having windows that won’t break during the onslaught of a storm,  rain and floodwater are kept from entering the home and will also keep debris from flying in. This alone will lower the cost of both insurance and the amount paid on deductibles.

In addition to protection against storms, there are other money-saving perks to having impact windows. One of these is protecting the interior of the home against ultra-violet (UV) radiation from sun exposure, which prevents the fading of color and preserves the home’s value. Impact windows are also effective at blocking out exterior noise, which can also reduce the cost of soundproofing a home. Impact windows also have excellent insulation, which can reduce energy costs by maintaining home cooling and heating.

With South Florida being prone to storm activity during peak hurricane season, protection against storms and cost efficiency is always a priority at Taylor Builders, whether it’s a new construction or a renovation of an older building. To learn more about how Taylor Builders can protect your new construction or building renovation against storms, please see our services page or contact us.