Hurricane Shutter FAQ
What is a hurricane shutter?
Storm shutters are products designed to limit damage to window and door openings caused by high winds and flying objects. They are popular in coastal areas, but storm shutters are rapidly growing in popularity in all areas threatened by high winds, hurricane conditions, or tornadoes.
Which product is best for me?
Please take a look at our shutter comparison chart.
Why should I have hurricane shutters?
Storm protection is a small part of the reason people decide to purchase these products. We find most make the purchase to protect the investment they have in a home and all the treasures inside. The motivation for those in coastal areas is hurricane protection, however, it's also comforting to leave your summer home for the winter knowing it's safe from intruders.
The coastal areas of the US are rapidly requiring storm protection on new homes and even homes that are undergoing a major remodel. Check with your local building department to determine your local requirements. Florida has already passed legislation requiring this protection. You may find your municipality will be doing the same. You will be dollars ahead come resale time if you have already installed approved storm shutters. Another reason consumers purchase storm protection is to satisfy insurance companies requirements to obtain reasonable cost insurance.
How much protection do storm shutters provide?
Hurricanes Hugo and Andrew were instrumental in an industry-wide upgrade of the standards for storm shutters. Standard building codes require a product to withstand 110 MPH winds. The newer standard, commonly called ASCE-7-88, increases the wind-load standard plus adds a positive and negative wind loads test and a positive and negative cycling test plus an impact test. The new standards are much more stringent and expensive to satisfy but do provide a real degree of protection. The only Florida counties that have formally adopted many of the new standards are Dade, Broward, Palm Beach & Monroe counties. In 2001, The State of Florida expanded the requirement for storm shutters on all new construction within the coastal zone designation.
Should I only protect openings facing the water?
Hurricane protection only works if the building remains intact. Leaving any windows or doors unprotected during a hurricane exposes your home to a total loss from the extreme pressure change caused when a window or door implodes from hurricane winds. This dramatically increases the internal pressures of your home while the hurricane is trying to remove your roof with the suction of high winds passing over your roof. The combination is often disastrous with total destruction of a perfectly good building. The bottom line? All openings must be protected, or you have virtually no protection in the event of a real hurricane.
The prevailing winds are from the South at my home. Should I install shutters on the South side only?
The real protection from hurricane force winds and wind driven projectiles must be applied to ALL openings regardless of the prevailing winds in your area. When Andrew struck Florida there was no such thing as prevailing winds. Tornadoes and heavy winds struck from every direction.
What materials are used for hurricane shutters?
The primary material used is Aluminum. The alloys and strengths are determined by the application. The extruded aluminum double-wall slat and a heavy wall aluminum roll formed resin filled slat has proven itself to be the only way to satisfy the new standards in a roll shutter application. Some roll shutters employ extruded vinyl slats or aluminum-roll formed foam-filled slats. These slats do not meet the codes for roll-up storm shutters, but can provide effective security protection in non-hurricane prone areas.
How do I design my new project to include storm shutters?
Most architects have knowledge of storm shutters but find it difficult to stay on top of new developments in every industry they must work with. Legends Direct will provide consulting on any project you may have. Refer your architect to us for assistance in designing an efficient, complete protection package for your home or business
Do your hurricane shutters meet the Dade-Broward County standards? Will I get that in writing so I can prove it to my insurance company?
We have the necessary documentation for your insurance company. The shutters all meet the Dade county standards. However, unless you require that specific Dade approval the SBCCI standard will serve to make your insurance company happy.
We are looking to purchase a mix of colonial shutters and accordion shutters for our home. How can we get more information on this?
We are available by phone at 888-795-9441 to respond to any questions you may have.