Can Windows be Hurricane Proof?

Posted by | Austin Windows | Posted on January 2nd, 2013

In light of the recent events linked to Hurricane Sandy, there are a lot of people, throughout the country, considering the safety of their homes should another, similar storm come ashore elsewhere. Unfortunately, with changing weather patterns, even leading meteorologists are suggesting that such nasty events may become the new normal. With that being the case, the people in and around Georgetown, Texas, should consider what impact hurricane-force winds could do to their own homes. While the impact might not be as direct as what Houston or Corpus Christi could experience, those winds of Sandy impacted areas further inland than Round Rock and Austin.

Today, even windows are built to withstand the high winds and torrential downpours associated with battering storms. The automotive industry has long made use of the glass capable of such feats. In an effort to defend drivers and passengers from the impacts of a collision, glass had to be designed that could handle the hard hits without impaling those in the vehicle. Laminated glass – two thin sheets of glass sealed around a laminating film was put up to the task. Even when the glass shatters, the film holds the pieces together and defends against items piercing the windows.

Experts in the window industry realized what this could mean for residents in high risk areas. New home windows could be made using the same materials, along with heavy-duty frames capable of bearing huge forces to better prevent collapse. The result, of course, would be new home windows almost worthy of being called hurricane-proof. While no window on the market can truly boast 100% efficiency against Mother Nature’s wrath, these safety windows are certainly better defending the residents as storms roll through or when a burglar tries to attack the premises.

In addition to impact-resistant glass and hardier framing materials, many homeowners are also choosing to have storm shutters installed. While this is more common in coastal communities, as news spreads of horrible storms around the globe, more and more inland residents are recognizing the important function that they can play. These shutters provide a nice aesthetic throughout the year as a decorative element of the home, but when needed, they can be shut tight in front of the window and locked in place. This further defends the window against the damaging forces of a storm.

While such features, especially impact-resistance glass may be costly, the glass is strong, durable and can hold up for many years to come. Furthermore, it is more likely to survive a storm than a traditional window, which means that you won’t have to worry about having all of the glass in your home replaced every time Mother Nature gets mad. These windows are capable of withstanding 200 mile per hour winds. Sandy’s force, thought strong, never came close to that strength, even when gusting. In addition, laminated glass is highly energy efficient and acts as a sound-blocking material, so the savings on heating and cooling bills can pay for the investment while you enjoy less road noise and increased safety. If you are in the market for Austin windows, consider the advantages of impact-resistant glass.