Hurricane Protection Options
How wind can affect your home.
You know that hurricane winds can cause tremendous property loss, but what you may not know is that a large amount of the damage is actually caused by wind-borne debris (such as tree limbs, signs, roof tiles, etc.) and not the wind itself. Debris penetrates windows and doors, allowing the wind to enter a home. This creates forces that the structure of the house is not designed to withstand, often lifting the roof or pushing out the walls and causing them to fail.
Even if the roof and walls remain intact, the rain and water damage from a broken window can be severe, leaving a home uninhabitable and resulting in a total loss of its contents.
Protecting your property, protecting yourself.
Many coastal areas across the country now have building codes requiring wind-borne debris protection in hurricane-prone areas. While builders and architects should be aware of the code requirements, you must protect yourself by ensuring that products used in your home meet code requirements.
Because not all impact-resistant windows or shutters meet code, you should ask to see one of the following test reports for the products being used and verify acceptance with your local building department.
- AAMA/NWWDA 101/I.S.2-97
- ANSI/AAMA/WDMA 101/I.S. 2?NAFS-02
- AAMA/WDMA/CSA 101/I.S.2/A440
- ASTM E1886 and E1996
- FBC Test Protocols TAS 201 and TAS 203 for shutters
- FBC Test Protocols TAS 201, TAS 202 and TAS 203 for impact-resistant windows
- Miami-Dade County product approval or NOA
The following chart may help you in evaluating the different products available for wind-borne debris protection. These products may also qualify you for homeowner’s insurance discounts. Ask your insurance agent for details. It should be noted that window film and masking tape do not meet building code requirements for wind-borne debris protection. Also, many deed-restricted communities regulate when and for how long shutters may remain installed.