By Howard Van Natta / Published June 2021
Hurricane season is ramping up in Florida, and if this year is similar to the last, then it will be costly. The cost of the 2019 season may exceed $19 billion. Statistically, mid-September is the most active time for hurricanes and tropical storms, but officially the Florida hurricane season won’t end until November 30. What can you do to protect your Florida home?
There are several products you can invest in to keep your property safe from the worst damage. Impact windows and impact doors are some of the quickest and most effective ways to keep the storm from wreaking havoc inside your house. We’ll cover how you can plan for the risk of hurricanes in Florida before it’s too late.
Because of its unique topography, Florida sees the worst wind damage from storms. These coastal areas are collectively known as the wind-borne debris region. This is one reason why Florida homeowners need to take special precautions to protect their houses with hurricane windows and hurricane doors.
The Florida Building Code designates certain areas of Florida as the “wind-borne debris region.” Mostly, these areas are positioned around the coasts of the state, but there are also a few areas designated as wind-borne debris regions that are inland. These inland regions are all within a mile of the coastline with a mean coastal high-water level [the average height of the high waters over a 19-year period], where winds can reach 130 mph. Any location that sees wind speeds of 140 mph or higher is typically designated as a wind-borne debris region according to the Florida Building Code. Further inland, near Orlando, wind speeds tend to top out at 100 mph.
If a house is located in the wind-borne debris regions, the Florida Building Code stipulates that the property must have some protection from the high winds of a hurricane or tropical storm. Impact doors and impact windows have all been approved in Florida for hurricane preparation and protection. People with homes located in the Miami-Dade and Broward county areas must comply with even stricter building code requirements. The homes’ hurricane protection devices must meet these requirements to get a Miami-Dade Notice of Acceptance (NOA).
Hurricane winds produce some of the worst and most costly damage to Florida homes. If you own property in Florida, there are many things you can do and products you can purchase to protect your property in the wind-borne regions and inland. The following hurricane preparation tips can be used several months before a hurricane, a few weeks before a hurricane hits land, and a couple of days before the storm reaches the coast.
When you own property in a region prone to natural disasters like tropical storms and hurricanes, you must keep abreast of developing and worsening weather conditions. Knowing in advance if a storm is brewing off the coast will go a long way to ensuring that you take the necessary steps to protect your property. Consider downloading an app from a Florida weather service and sign up for notifications for storm conditions and impending hurricanes.
Hurricane windows and hurricane doors are critical for protecting your home from wind and water damage in a hurricane. These incredibly durable impact doors and windows can also protect the home from intruders. With hurricane windows and doors, you’ll save money on hurricane preparation for your house and your energy bills. A Florida home with hurricane windows and doors also offers an attractive feature for prospective buyers if you’re looking to put the house on the market.
Understandably, most people do not want to leave their home before a hurricane strikes. But in some cases, it may be necessary to leave the area. You don’t want to be caught off guard forming evacuation plans at the last minute, so it’s a good idea to create one ahead of time just in case. Follow these steps for an emergency evacuation plan:
No matter if you’re bugging out to the hurricane shelter or sheltering in place, you’ll need a supply kit to get you through the storm. Try to build the supply kit at least a month away from hurricane season so you can guarantee you’ll get the supplies you need. In a disaster situation, price gouging occurs, and many required items will be out of stock. Everyone’s supply kit will be different, but start here to give you some ideas of what you’ll need.
In a hurricane, standard doors and windows sustain a lot of damage when they aren’t made of high-impact materials. High quality impact window and door products are made with the highest industry standards and are designed to withstand hurricane-force winds and rain. These durable doors can also withstand powerful impacts from any high force, including those from home intruders.
Hurricane impact windows do more than just protect you from storms. They can prevent intruders and save you money on your energy bills.
Howard Van Natta
President, Wright’s Impact Window & Door
Howard Van Natta is president of Wright’s Impact Window & Door. In business for 47 years, Wright’s Impact Window & Door in West Palm Beach, Florida, helps you protect your home the “Wright way” with state-of-the-art premium products manufactured in Florida and installed by a team that strives to provide the highest level of customer service. To learn more or to request an estimate today to fully protect your home and family from hurricane damage, call (833) 950-1888, email marketing@wrightswindow,.or visit wrightswindow.com.