Garage Door Replacement and Hurricanes
As hurricane season comes to a close, you may be wondering what you can do in the offseason to prepare your home for next year. After all, the best time to prepare for a hurricane is before it arrives. You do not want to be caught in the middle of last-minute hurricane prep trying to confirm your garage is safe. If you prepare now, you will be ready when the time comes. One of the things to consider is the state of your garage door. If you have an older door nearing the end of its usable life, perhaps it is time to consider garage door replacement. It might seem like a cumbersome prospect, but it’s far less troublesome than losing your belongings to the weather. Here are some things to look at when preparing your garage door for next year’s hurricane season.
Is my current garage door hurricane-ready?
If you have a newer garage door, it may be hurricane-ready out of the box. One way to find out is by locating the manufacturer sticker on the inside of the garage door. In addition to the manufacturer name, contact info, and model number, this sticker has a wind load rating. For the uninformed, a ‘wind load rating’ shows what wind speed the garage door can withstand. The wind load rating required for your garage door will vary depending on several factors. These factors can include your area, your house, and door size, which direction the garage door faces, and more.
Using this information, go to the Florida Product Approval website to determine the impact rating of your garage door. If the manufacturer name and model number are followed by an “A,” then your garage door is impact-rated. This means your garage should be able to withstand a hurricane. If it is followed by a “B,” then your garage door is not impact rated. You will need to do some additional prep work in advance of a hurricane.
What if my garage door is not hurricane-ready?
If you find that your garage door is not rated for impact resistance, you have a couple of options. First, if your garage door is older and nearing the end of its usable life, you can replace your garage door. Secondly, if your garage door is newer,, there are brace kits you can purchase from the local hardware store. These can be stored and used in the event of a hurricane. These brace kits install on the inside of your garage door, increasing the maximum force that your garage door can withstand. These would need to be installed at the same time you would install hurricane shutters or boards to your windows.
Why is it so important that my door stands up to a hurricane?
Besides the obvious cost to repair or replace a hurricane-damaged garage door, if your garage door is breached in a hurricane, it can cause major air pressure changes in your home. This sudden change in pressure in one part of your home can have devastating effects on the rest of your home. In addition, as the pressure rapidly increases or decreases in the garage, it can lead to a blowout in your roof or the surrounding walls. Needless to say, if you are in the home when this happens, the results could be catastrophic. This is why you and your home must be fully prepared in the event of a hurricane.
Contact our experts at Straight Up Garage Doors if you have further questions. We’d be happy to go over the options of garage door replacement, repair, or any other concerns with you.