Both hurricane shutters and impact windows are effective when it comes to protecting homes from the dangers of a hurricane. Which one is better is ultimately a matter of personal preference. Hurricane shutters are typically more cost-effective and fast to install when compared with impact windows.
They provide excellent protection from wind, flying debris and are easy to operate. Impact windows on the other hand, provide a more aesthetically pleasing look and require no installation. Generally, impact windows will also provide better protection from sound, energy efficiency and water infiltration.
Although more expensive to buy, they also often qualify homeowners for credits when they file their taxes, which can help to offset the cost. Ultimately, the choice between hurricane shutters and impact windows comes down to a homeowner’s personal needs, budget and preference.
Are impact windows more expensive than hurricane windows?
Impact windows are generally more expensive than hurricane windows due to the additional features and performance benefits they provide. Impact windows have similar core construction materials to hurricane windows, in that they typically contain layers of tempered glass and heavy-duty frames.
However, what makes impact windows different is the addition of laminated glass and a stronger frame constructed with overall thicker layers of metal. Additionally, impact windows are designed to better withstand wind pressure, debris impact, forced entry, and other forms of damage caused during a hurricane.
Impact windows are also slightly better insulated in terms of heat and sound transfer, as the extra layer of laminated glass helps to keep the heat and sound out of your home. Ultimately, the added performance benefits of impact windows and the additional durability they provide come at a higher cost than hurricane windows.
Are hurricane impact windows worth it?
Yes, hurricane impact windows are definitely worth it. Impact windows are made with safety in mind and are designed to withstand powerful winds and flying debris that can be associated with high velocity storms like hurricanes.
Compared to regular windows, they are much more durable and offer a superior level of protection from the dangerous winds and objects that come from hurricanes. Additionally, the installation of impact windows offers the benefit of reduced energy bills due to the excellent air-tight seal of impact windows.
This seal provides an excellent barrier against heat transfer, meaning the interior temperature of your home will be more consistently regulated, resulting in lower energy costs. Furthermore, hurricane windows offer a great level of soundproofing from external noise pollution, and also give extra security from intruders who might otherwise gain access through a weaker window.
Lastly, many types of impact windows are more aesthetically pleasing than standard residential windows and can add value to your home if you are looking to sell it in the future. Thus, due to the multiple benefits associated with hurricane impact windows, they are definitely worth considering when it comes to installing new home windows.
How much money does impact windows save on insurance?
The exact amount that energy-efficient impact windows can save you on your home insurance premium varies depending on the company you work with. However, it is estimated that you can save up to 15% on your annual premiums when you install approved impact windows.
The reason for this is that these windows provide extra protection from severe weather, such as hurricanes and strong winds, thereby reducing the site for potential damage to the structure of your house.
Moreover, impact windows provide additional security benefits by making it harder for burglars to break in to your home. Ultimately, these features result in a reduced risk for potential losses to the insurance provider, which can translate into savings for homeowners on their insurance premiums.
Can impact windows withstand Category 5?
Yes, impact windows can withstand Category 5 hurricanes. The Miami-Dade County Building Code specifies that impact windows must be capable of withstanding the wind pressures of a Category 5 hurricane, with pressures of up to 150 mph.
Impact windows are equipped with heavy-duty interlocking frames, multi-layered glazing panes and reinforced corners that offer maximum protection from flying debris associated with hurricanes and other severe storms.
These windows are also designed to be watertight and to prevent water infiltration, even when subjected to the highest wind speed ratings. Additionally, these windows are often impact-resistant, meaning they won’t break on contact with an object, making them ideal for use in locations prone to hurricanes.
Are there different grades of impact windows?
Yes, there are different grades of impact windows available. This is because there are different levels of performance required depending on the specific building site and climate. Generally, impact windows are divided into three categories—high impact, medium impact, and standard impact.
Each type offers a different level of protection against strong winds and intruders.
High impact windows are made from highly durable materials such as fiberglass or polyvinyl chloride (PVC). They are often reinforced with extra structural elements, such as steel bars, in order to offer the highest protection from any kind of damage.
These windows are certified for use in hurricane-prone areas and withstand impact from large flying debris, high winds, and projectiles.
Medium impact windows are also very durable and are able to withstand impacts from medium-size flying debris, such as stones, sticks, and other objects. They are also approved for use in harsh climates and are less expensive than high impact windows.
Standard impact windows offer less protection from strong winds and flying debris, but they are still certified for use in most climates. They are usually made from aluminum or wood and are often less expensive and easier to install than other impact window options.
To determine which type of impact window is right for your project, it is important to consider the climate and building site, as well as your budget.
What is the difference between hurricane windows and regular windows?
Hurricane windows are designed to provide increased protection against extreme weather conditions, such as high winds and flying debris during a hurricane. They are generally composed of impact-resistant materials, such as laminated or tempered glass and heavy-duty frames.
Traditional windows are typically made from less durable materials, such as aluminum or vinyl frames and single- or dual-paned glass.
Hurricane windows must meet stringent standards to be rated as suitable for use in a hurricane, while regular windows do not. The standards may include wind load, water resistance, and windborne debris impact resistance.
Hurricane windows are also engineered to be tough yet flexible, so they can withstand strong winds without breaking or flying apart.
In addition to being more durable, hurricane windows are usually installed with additional features to enhance their performance, such as shutters, interlocking frames, and gaskets that help to form a tight seal against the elements.
Regular windows typically lack these features and may not provide the same level of protection against wind and wind-borne threats.
Which is better impact or hurricane windows?
When it comes to choosing between impact and hurricane windows, there is no clear-cut “better” option. Impact or hurricane windows both offer their own unique set of advantages when it comes to protecting your home.
Impact windows are made with a layer of plastic or vinyl between two pieces of glass and are designed to resist shattering on impact, while hurricane windows are constructed with a thicker plastic interlayer and specifically designed to withstand high-speed wind, rain, and airborne debris.
Impact windows are typically more cost-effective than hurricane windows, can reduce outside noise, and provide protection from poor insulation, drafts and air leakage. Additionally, they are widely available in most areas and can be customized to fit any existing window frame.
On the downside, impact windows don’t offer the same level of protection from extreme weather and their overall durability can be reduced with penetrating ultraviolet rays.
Meanwhile, hurricane windows offer an exceptional level of protection from high wind speeds and storm debris and are more reliable than impact windows. They are more secure, energy efficient, and have thicker glass layers designed to reduce UV rays and noise pollution.
However, hurricane windows tend to be more expensive than impact windows and can be hard to find in some areas.
Overall, the better window option really depends on the weather conditions in your area and the type of protection you are looking for. If you live in a relatively mild climate, then impact windows may be a better option; while those living in an area prone to hurricanes and other severe weather should consider hurricane windows.
What should I look for when buying a hurricane window?
When buying a hurricane window, there are several key characteristics to consider. Firstly, you should look for a window that is impact-rated, meaning that it has been tested with projectiles to simluate hurricane-force winds and conditions, to ensure that it can provide reliable protection in a hurricane.
Secondly, you should ensure that the window is manufactured with an energy-efficient Low-E coating that is specifically designed to help reduce energy bills, as well as helping to regulate the indoor temperatures in your home.
Thirdly, you should look for a window that is easy to maintain, so check that the window you choose is easy to clean and care for. Additionally, check to ensure that the window has been tested to meet local building code requirements, and look for a window that has air and water resistance ratings to protect against common weather events.
Finally, look for a warranty that offers protection on both labor and product, so that you are covered if any issues should arise.
Do impact windows increase home value?
Yes, impact windows can certainly increase the value of a home. Impact windows are specially-designed windows that are impact-resistant, meaning that they are able to stand up against severe conditions such as hurricanes, high winds, and even burglaries.
This makes them an attractive and desirable option for many home buyers. The increased level of protection and security that impact windows provide also lead to an increase in the value of a home. Moreover, impact windows can significantly reduce a homeowner’s energy costs due to their energy efficiency.
This, too, can increase the value of a home and save homeowners money in the long run. Additionally, the installation of impact windows can also help a homeowner secure homeowner’s insurance at a more reasonable rate.
All of these factors contribute to an increase in the value of a home.
What is considered a hurricane window?
A hurricane window is a type of window specifically designed to resist high winds and flying debris during storms and hurricanes. These windows typically feature low-profile designs with a minimal number of exposed openings, frames, and locking mechanisms.
The most common types of hurricane windows are impact-resistant windows, which are engineered with a special inner membrane layer between the two panes of glass that is designed to absorb the force of any debris or flying objects that may strike it.
They also feature high-grade frames and locking mechanisms that create an airtight seal around the window and may include additional reinforcements to increase the strength of the window. Lastly, these windows should meet the guidelines and codes set by the International Code Council (ICC) and the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE).
Are triple pane windows hurricane proof?
No, triple pane windows are not hurricane proof; they are however much more structurally sound than double-paned windows, which can blow out and cause damage in the event of a hurricane. Triple-paned windows are made of 3 layers of glass with two airspace between them, that are filled with argon gas.
This makes them much stronger than standard double pain windows, and better able to withstand extreme winds and pressure. However, they are still susceptible to shattering if they are hit hard enough with debris, and can still be breached as a result of a strong hurricane.
Therefore, triple-paned windows can help reduce the likelihood of damages in a hurricane, but may not necessarily be considered “hurricane proof. ”.
Are double pane windows wind resistant?
Yes, double pane windows are wind resistant. These types of windows are constructed in such a way that they are able to withstand high winds. This is because they have two panes of glass and a space between them that is typically filled with an inert gas, such as argon or krypton.
This means that the air in between the panes is an effective barrier against outside air movement. The gas acts as insulation, creating a layer that is resistant to wind and temperature fluctuations.
In addition, the window frames of double pane windows are usually made of a strong, durable material that can also withstand strong winds.