Choosing Hurricane Windows for Your South Florida Home
Living in Florida has its perks. Between the year-long warm weather, the bright sunshine, and the cool ocean breezes, it can feel like paradise. Yet as any homeowner in Florida knows, the cool ocean breezes can turn to hurricane force winds during a storm, sending debris flying at over 100 mph directly at your home. Here are some things to consider when choosing the best windows for Florida homes.
Hurricanes are a serious threat to homeowners in Florida. The high winds and driving rain can cause severe damage to homes, even ones that have been built to withstand such conditions.
One of the best ways to protect your home from hurricane damage is to install hurricane windows. These windows are impact-resistant, meaning that they can withstand the force of flying debris. They also have a special seal that prevents water from entering the home, even when the wind is blowing at high speeds.
South Florida hurricane windows are a smart investment before any hurricane season, as they give your home better protection against the wind and debris. Yet their value goes beyond the shelter against severe weather, providing protection against break-ins and offering enhanced energy and homeowner savings. When deciding which windows to purchase, you will want to consider its primary benefits, ratings, and materials.
Hurricanes are one of the biggest dangers homes face in South Florida. According to FEMA reports, non-impact windows and doors frequently are the first structures to fail, and once the winds get inside, a house can be torn apart by the changes in pressure very quickly.
Even if the home survives, water damage is more extensive where the windows have been damaged. Hurricane water damage can have a serious impact on a home’s interior. If water is allowed to seep into the walls or foundation, it can cause the structural integrity of the home to be compromised. Mold and mildew can also quickly grow in wet areas, leading to health problems for the occupants of the home.
Additionally, hurricane water damage can destroy personal belongings and cause extensive electrical damage. To minimize the impact of hurricane water damage, it is important to take steps to protect your home before a storm, such as ensuring that all vulnerable openings in the home are properly sealed to prevent any breach.
We offer impact windows certified by Florida and Miami-Dade County to give the protection your home needs when a storm strikes, as well as a Manufacturer’s Lifetime Warranty. What that means for you and your home is very simple.
When a hurricane watch is issued, you will not need to run out and buy plywood, or put up the shutters and keep your house in darkness until the storm ends. Your windows will be designed to hold up against the wind-blown debris and gusts of wind so that your family home has the best chance possible to withstand the hurricane.
If a window is damaged during a hurricane, you may be eligible for a full replacement at little to no cost depending on the warranty. This can generate significant savings to help you continue protecting your home for years to come.
Miami-Dade County is currently the gold standard of hurricane window tests. According to government hurricane data, all of Florida should prepare for wind speeds of over 110mph. Windows less than 30 feet from the ground need to be safe from small missiles traveling at 50mph, and windows higher need to be protected against both large and small missiles. Hurricane windows with the Miami-Dade seal of approval can pass those tests, and offer continuous protection for your home.
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The final aspect that our team at Paradise Exteriors recommends considering heavily would be materials. Each type of frame has its benefits and drawbacks, and the glass itself can be either insulated or non-insulated with a hermetically sealed layer.
Wood frames are highly recyclable, insulate well, and have excellent energy ratings. However, they need to be kept well-maintained to prevent rotting in humid, wet climates.
Rotting window frames can leave a home vulnerable during a storm. Strong winds can easily cause the glass to break, and the resulting holes can allow water and debris to enter the home. As a result, homes with rotting window frames are at a greater risk of damage during a storm.
To protect your home from potential damage, it is important to regularly check your window frames for signs of rot. If you notice any signs of damage, be sure to repair or replace the affected frame as soon as possible.
Aluminum storm windows are medium-maintenance. They need to be painted and touched up occasionally, but otherwise are going to last a very long time with no risk of warping or rot. They are strong and lightweight with excellent weather resistance.
Aluminum window frames offer a number of advantages over other types of material. They are strong and durable, yet lightweight, making them easy to install. They are also resistant to common issues with wood such as insect damage and rot, and will not warp or swell like wood frames can.
Lastly, you can paint them any color you like, and they will not rust or corrode. This allows you to color-match them to your previous frames or to create a new aesthetic for your home’s exterior.
Vinyl windows are a popular option because they are affordable, low maintenance, and will not need to be painted. For storms, they are both insulated and weather-resistant.
Vinyl window frames are popular among homeowners because they offer a number of unique benefits.
First, they are made from a durable, weather-resistant material that is low maintenance and easy to clean. Vinyl frames are also less likely to warp or rot, and they can be made to mimic the aesthetic of wood without the high price tag.
In addition, vinyl frames are energy-efficient, helping to keep your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer. As a result, they can generate significant savings on your energy bills.
These are usually used in warmer weather climates such as Florida that are prone to severe storms. They include two sheets of glass with a high-strength flexible interlayer sandwiched between them, to prevent the glass from breaking completely and the window giving way. There is also an insulated version which is more energy efficient. The insulated version has a third layer of glass.
Hurricane windows may have laminated glass that is also tempered for safety or the glass may be annealed or heat strengthened to provide additional strength. The combination of these preparation methods ensures a stronger, more robust glass surface that will remain durable through severe weather and continue protecting your home’s interior from wind, water, and debris-related damage.
Choosing the Best Windows for Florida
Simply put, hurricane windows are the best windows for Florida homes. With their durable design and superior sealing technology, not only can they ensure that your home remains constantly protected, but they can also provide other benefits such as UV light filtering, increased, energy efficiency, and complement the rest of your home security measures – all without any maintenance or setup required.
We over 20 years of experience at Paradise Exteriors and we know what it takes to keep a Florida home’s windows safe and secure. To see how we can protect your home and your family, give us a call and we can come out for a free estimate, or schedule an appointment with our showroom.