Impact Resistant Windows Vs. Hurricane Shutters: Which Is Best For You?

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If you live in the Gulf South, you understand the destructive forces a hurricane can have on your home. Impact resistant windows and hurricane shutters are two of the most common options for protecting your home during storms. Here's what you need to know about impact resistant windows vs. hurricane shutters: their pros, cons, and which option is best for you.

Benefits of impact resistant windows

Impact resistant windows use strong laminate between two glass pieces to absorb impacts and increase durability. This type of glass was first manufactured for automobile windshields, and is now a popular type of window to install in the Gulf South.

When normal glass is hit by flying projectiles during a storm, it can shatter. With impact resistant glass, the pieces remain attached to an inner membrane along the window frame. This glass can withstand a hit from a piece of wood or strong winds. It can withstand impacts like a 2x4 traveling at 50' per second or winds up to 200 mph.

Impact resistant windows protect your home and the people in it from storm debris, theft, and other damage 365 days a year. Even if you're traveling, these windows safeguard your home.

Impact resistant windows can make your home more energy efficient and reduce outside noise. They have an extra laminate layer and pane of glass compared to non-impact windows. They can also save you money on your insurance premiums.

Learn more about windows here.

Drawbacks of impact resistant windows

When considering impact resistant windows vs. hurricane shutters, the biggest difference is cost. Replacing all the windows in your home with impact resistant windows is a major investment. Impact windows can be twice the cost of a normal non-impact window of same type and size.

If something hits the laminated glass on your impact window, the glass will crack and you will need to replace it. However, the window will still prevent the object from entering your home.


Benefits of hurricane shutters

Hurricane shutters are installed over a window to protect the glass underneath. They provide a number of benefits for homeowners. First, hurricane shutters are a much more affordable option than installing impact resistant windows.

Hurricane shutters come in varying wind and impact ratings, depending on their size, shape, and more.

Shutters also provide a certain finished look to a home, adding character and a bit of charm. They can be used to bring in color or complement a more dramatic look with dark, elegant tones. Today's shutters are also easier to use.

Rollgard shutters now have motors, so you can open or close them easily with a switch at home. Choose from multiple types of hurricane shutters to find the look and functionality you want.

Like impact resistant windows, impact rated hurricane shutters also can save you money on annual insurance premiums.

Learn more about shutters here.

Drawbacks of hurricane shutters

During a storm, a closed hurricane shutter does not allow visibility like an impact-rated window. The shutter blocks the view completely or partially. Visibility is limited or nonexistent when the shutter is in place.

If you have a second home, hurricane shutters may not be ideal since you need to be there to use them. Some models also require you to go outside to operate, which can be challenging for those with mobility issues.

Impact resistant windows vs. hurricane shutters: What should I get?

The best form of hurricane protection for your home is hurricane shutters with impact resistant glass underneath. If your area often has severe storms, install these together for the best protection from flying debris.

If you can't install both, you have a few options. If budget isn't as much of a concern, and you're planning on being in your home long enough to recoup the investment, impact resistant windows are a great option for protecting your home.

Hurricane shutters are a cost-effective option for those on a budget or not staying in their home long-term. They are affordable, attractive, and offer great storm protection.

If you are trying to choose between impact resistant windows and hurricane shutters in the Gulf South, contact LAS. We can provide you with more information about your options. Our team provides FREE estimates for your next home project.

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