Florida residents know that impact from a tropical storm is inevitable. Therefore, a question at West Shore Construction gets asked most often: “What are the best types of hurricane protection?” Whereas many would like a definitive answer, there is no absolute best choice. Surprisingly, this is a good thing because this creates room for personal preferences, residential styles, lifestyles, and budgets.

What we will do here is review the best options for storm protection for your home. We will detail each, and what homeowners can expect. This blog article will highlight aspects such as:

  • Types and styles of hurricane protection
  • Deployment and storage
  • Price ranges

As a result of reading through this blog article, you will have information that will help you make a choice. Ultimately, the best type of hurricane protection is the one that effectively guards your life and property against the impact of a hurricane. Everything else is a matter of personal preference.

Why Have Hurricane Protection for Your Home

According to the Florida Climate Center at Florida State University, no part of Florida is exempt from the effects of a hurricane. Even if your area does not get a direct hit, it is still essential to be prepared. The consequences of a severe tropical storm can significantly affect residents hundreds of miles away.

Wind-blown objects can create some of the most significant damage during a hurricane. Owing to Florida’s flat landscape, winds do not dissipate as quickly after landfall.

  • Downed trees
  • Broken branches
  • Forgotten lawn
  • Pool furniture
  • Lawn ornaments
  • Parts of homes

All the above are dangerous missiles on the wind of a tropical storm. These can be both from your own yard as well as from your neighbors.

Thankfully, the best type of hurricane protection will mitigate wind damage. A broken window or breached door creates potential damage from flying debris, and broken windows are a considerable risk in a storm. In addition to the glass shattering and exposure to flooding and projectile objects, broken windows destabilize the pressure in the home and can cause walls or roofs to collapse.

The Best Types of Hurricane Protection

So, what are the best types of hurricane protection available for your home? There are several options, and within each of those categories are some different styles to accommodate different tastes. Equally significant are differences in deployment to suit both the lifestyle and the physical ability of the homeowner. There are varying levels of maintenance required for each selection. Moreover, there is a price range among solution options that ensure protection for all homes, no matter what the budget. And no matter which you choose as being the best type of hurricane protection for you, each qualifies for discounts on homeowners insurance for Florida residents.

  • Hurricane shutters
  • Hurricane windows
  • Hurricane shades or screens
  • Hurricane fabric
  • Hurricane polycarbonate panels

Hurricane shutters

As the name implies, hurricane shutters close or cover up windows and doors. These can come in many different styles and materials. One of the benefits of all varieties of shutters is that they permanently affix to window and door frames and deploy with relative ease. This contrasts with other forms of storm protection which need to be stored when not in use. Some of the best types of hurricane protection in the shutter category include the following.

Bahama Shutters and Colonial Shutters

These extruded aluminum shutters are also considered decorative shutters, and they do double duty to add both charm and protection.

  • Bahama shutters hinge at the top of the window and open out and the bottom.
  • Colonial shutters hinge to the side of the window openings. These shutters may also be constructed for doorways.

Both Bahama and Colonial shutters are deployable from inside or outside the home. Another advantage is that these shutters also offer security and protection when there is no storm. They shield the home’s interior from prying eyes and deter intruders. Yet, style and charm remain intact. Decorative hurricane shutters are powder coated to match or complement your home.

Accordion Shutters

Permanently affixed to the exterior of the home and stored to the side of openings, accordion shutters are some of the most easily recognizable hurricane solution products from Venice up to Palm Harbor and inward beyond Tampa Bay. Many Floridians choose extruded aluminum accordion shutters as the best type of hurricane protection for their home. This is a good option for both windows and sliding glass doors alike.

Accordion shutters run on tracks that do need to be maintained by regular cleaning of debris. Additionally, greasing of the track helps facilitate smooth movement for deployment. Both sides of the shutters are open and close accordion style. When deployed, the sides slide together and lock in the center of the door or window opening. Furthermore, available in a variety of powder coated paint options, the shutters blend seamlessly against the finish of your home.

Motorized Rolling Shutters

This protection solution is not just for commercial and warehouse buildings anymore. As a matter of fact, motorized rolling shutters are common choices when considering the best types of hurricane protection, and this is true particularly for large openings.

  • Bay windows
  • Floor-to-ceiling windows
  • A wall of windows
  • Garages
  • Patios

These are all examples of areas where motorized rolling shutters might be utilized. These shutters have benefits that include versatility and convenience.

Motorized rolling shutters are made of interlocking aluminum slats running along vertical guides. These slats roll up on themselves and are stored at the top of the opening. Similar to accordion shutters, rolling shutters come in a variety of colors to blend with the exterior of your home.

Ease of deployment is a feature that has homeowners considering motorized rolling shutters as the best types of hurricane protection. With the touch of a button, your hurricane protection solution is ready for duty. No need to crank or pull. With today’s technology, your home can be protected remotely. In the same vein as other hurricane shutters, motorized rolling shutters offer year-round privacy and protection for your property.


Hurricane Windows – One of the Best Types of Hurricane Protection

Hurricane windows may be one of the simplest storm protection solutions on the market. Installation and deployment are the same and simultaneous. There are many advantages to installing hurricane glass, and these contribute to them being considered one of the best types of hurricane protection.

  1. Every glass in the home, whether window or door, can be traded out for impact-resistant glass.
  2. Hurricane glass is UV resistant. All windows block some of the ultraviolet light from the sun and the maximum is usually about 60% for regular glass windows. Impact-resistant windows block up to 99% of UV rays while still allowing the sun to shine in. Furnishings are protected from the fading that naturally accompanies exposure to ultraviolet rays.
  3. If one considers that the best type of hurricane protection is the one that is always deployed, hurricane windows make the cut.
  4. This glass is resistant to the high velocity impact of hurricane-driven debris. Likewise, it is resistant to intruders trying to enter your home by breaking the glass in windows or doors.


Hurricane Shades or Screens

Another storm protection solution with multiple benefits are motorized hurricane screens. As with motorized rolling shutters, these screens deploy with the touch of a button. Not only this but they incorporate into innovative home systems for automatic or remote deployment. Some customers may determine this to be the best type of hurricane protection for their home when considering how this fits into their lifestyle.

Hurricane screens are made of ballistic material. When screens deploy, this material repels dangerous flying debris. Unlike motorized rolling shutters, they do let light through, which is a benefit if electricity goes out during a storm. These screens are versatile, providing year-round use. Your screens can be partially lowered to shade your outdoor living space from harmful and glaring sun. At night, screens lower fully to keep the bugs away. The way they improve outdoor living could make this, for some, the best type of hurricane protection. Lastly, screens come in colors to match the home’s exterior.

Install hurricane screens in a variety of areas, such as:

  • Garages
  • Patios
  • Lanais
  • Balconies
  • Gazebos
  • All outdoor living spaces.


Hurricane Fabric

For other customers, hurricane fabric is the best type of hurricane protection for their needs. Made of ballistic material, hurricane fabric pieces are custom cut to fit openings that need protection. Permanent anchors, colored to blend in are placed in the exterior walls of the home. This, around windows, doors, and garages. Hurricane fabric panels quickly deploy in advance of a hurricane. One person can manage this task on their own. Furthermore, panels come with their own storage bags and effortlessly store away when not in use.


Hurricane Polycarbonate Panels

Last on our list of storm protection solutions are polycarbonate hurricane panels. It is first on some customers’ list of the best types of hurricane protection for them.

Constructed of nearly indestructible polycarbonate material, these panels deflect windborne projectiles to protect the glass panes of your home. Made of a lightweight material, each panel is easy to carry. This makes it simple for a single person to install and protect their home in advance of a storm. These panels are clear, which allows light into the house if the power goes out. As with hurricane fabric, windows and doors are measured and anchors affixed into the walls. These colored anchors blend into the home’s exterior. Polycarbonate panels are simple to store away when not in use.


In Summary

When customers are pondering which is the best type of hurricane protection, there are several things to consider. There are many types of storm protection solutions over various price points. Some are decorative, others are not. Some deploy with the push of a button; conversely, others require more effort and planning. Advantages of some include year-round lifestyle benefits. We all agree on one element regardless of the option decide to employ. The most important thing is ensuring your family and property are safe. The good news is that any of the above mentioned alternatives will provide that for you.


Connect With Professional Installers

Deciding on the best type of hurricane protection for your home may be an easy choice or you may still have uncertainty. West Shore Construction has a long history of helping customers make these difficult decisions. Please call us at (727) 488-8182 or reach out to us in a message. We are here to answer any questions you may have. When you have decided which storm protection solution is right for you, our professional and expert installers will make sure your home is ready for the next tropical storm.