There are a lot of advantages to a hurricane rated door that you might not think about, beyond the obvious protection from hurricane rated doors. If you live close to the coast, you might need a hurricane rated door (or storm door) by law to prevent liabilities and damage from wind and water. But if you live further away, you may think that you don’t need one. However, there are some distinct advantages to installing a tougher, more secure door.
Prevent Damage from Wind and Water
Let’s get the obvious one out of the way first. If you buy a hurricane rated garage door, you’re going to fare better in a hurricane. Hurricane rated doors are built to resist the toughest storms, and short of tearing the garage apart, your door isn’t going anywhere if the water and winds pelt it. Hurricane doors are sealed with extra care to prevent water from gushing in the sides, and they’re reinforced in every way to ensure that they can withstand damage.
Storm doors use vertical reinforcement posts that can be dropped in when storms become imminent. As we’ll talk about later, there are bracings and temporary solutions that can be used in storm warnings to prevent damage. But hurricane doors come storm ready, and are also available with additional bracing and posting that prevents storm damage. These posts don’t sit on the door all the time, but can be easily installed when a storm warning is issued.
An above-normal 2020 Atlantic hurricane season is expected, according to forecasters with NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service. The outlook predicts a 60% chance of an above-normal season, a 30% chance of a near-normal season and only a 10% chance of a below-normal season. The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 through November 30.NOAA – May 21, 2020
The WindCode for a door is based on the amount of wind that a door can withstand. W1 is the lowest and W9 is the highest. In certain locations, such as Florida, you’ll need to have a certain level of wind code to meet building standards.
Additionally, doors are rated based on their ability to resist debris that is tossed around by the wind and storms. Garage doors are generally tested for their ability to resist debris by shooting pieces of wood at the door to see what kind of damage it can cause.
Keep Your Door Looking Good Over Time
When a door is built with materials to withstand hurricanes, the construction has to be creative enough to last for a really long time. It means you won’t get cheap paint that easily peels or lackluster materials that warp and fade in the sun. Hurricane garage doors are refined and simple, perfect for homeowners who expect a lot out of their investment.
Take a Hit Without Denting
In a hurricane situation, objects get blown around. For a door to really be hurricane rated, it has to be able to resist damage from objects getting tossed about by the wind. That means your door can also take a nudge from a car, a stray basketball, or a flying baseball without immediately caving on impact. It might not resist every object you throw at it, but it will certainly retain shape much better than other kinds of garage doors would.
Less Maintenance than Other Garage Doors
Because a hurricane door is built to last, it won’t need the kind of maintenance that other garage doors are going to need. Where other doors will need consistent inspections and tune ups—and you certainly should do this on a hurricane rated garage door—it can generally go longer without intervention. After all, what’s the point of a hurricane rated garage door if it isn’t going to be in working shape when the storm hits?
Prevent Water Damage
Water damage, even if it’s only an inch, can cost a ton of money. Hurricane rated doors do more than just protect from flying objects and high winds, they also prevent water from getting into your garage. That can save you thousands in water damage costs in a flooding situation.
Lower Insurance Costs
If you live in a location where storms are a concern, the insurance premiums on houses can be a lot of money. Different upgrades and security measures will drop that premium. A wind-rated garage door is one of those kinds of upgrades, because you’ll prevent further damage through wind and water. By posing a lower risk with your garage door, you’ll end up saving money on insurance over time!
People won’t break in through a hurricane rated garage door. Unlike the other kind of doors that you can purchase, there are additional brackets and hinges that prevent people from prying their way into the house. Even if you’re on a longer vacation or away from home for a while, you can have great peace of mind that your door is secure from forced entry.
Local Regulations and Standards
In certain regions, building codes require that garage doors meet certain standards for wind resistance. This is in places like Florida, where hurricanes can easily destroy houses. Garage doors installed in some locations need to have a certain level of wind resistance. Previously, you could use a normal garage door and prop it up with beams and resistance when a storm came up. You couldn’t use the door during this time, but it allowed you to protect your home from a hurricane. However, newer garage doors don’t need additional beams to prop them up. They come with the support structures that protect your house in the event of a hurricane.
Check local regulations about hurricanes and garage doors. Even if you aren’t coastal, you might be surprised by the wind-resistance regulations.
Can I Just Brace a Current Door?
Some people will want to skip the full installation and focus on simply bracing the current door that is in use. If a storm is approaching, there is aluminum and steel bracing that you can purchase to keep the door stronger. On the other hand, you can also purchase hurricane panels that can fit over the door and windows. Neither of these solutions is as effective or complete as a hurricane rated door, but they are certainly better than nothing if you’re in a tough spot.