Living here in sunny South Florida is a true pleasure for most of the year; however, as we all well aware of and have experienced each & every year, hurricane season edges up on us quite suddenly or so it seems. Is your home properly protected? If so, that is wonderful and I congratulate you for your wise decision and best yet, you are likely reaping the benefits of reduced insurance rates because of that wise decision to protect your home. love ones and your irreplaceable valuables. But, if your home has not been protected, then I can only ask, why not? The evidence is in and has been for a very long time, impact-resistant windows & doors save lives, valuables, and almost as important, they save you from worrying about what you are going to do as you track the path of another hurricane as it is featured on the weather channel and on every other news station in what was formerly sunny South Florida!
Impact-resistant windows & doors now come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, colors, and functions. There truly is a window or door that will fit every opening, in your home or place of business, that will protect you and your loved ones from the ravages of a hurricane, tropical storm, or even a determined intruder. What makes these windows & doors impact-resistant? Well, there really is no secret recipe to design such an impact-resistant product, but after Hurricane Andrew decimated South Florida in 1992, there certainly was a need for such products. Andrew laid bare the sad fact that we, in the hurricane zone (HVHZ) were not being properly protected by the products on the market at that time. So, impact-resistant products were demanded and the local building codes were toughened up requiring such products or shutters to be installed whenever a change was being made to your home or place of business. In fact, these codes keep getting tougher and tougher so that the hurricane windows and doors tested today are stronger and safer than ever before. In fact, the Miami/Dade testing protocols are the strongest, toughest, and safest in the world today.
Impact-resistant windows and doors will provide you with many benefits that other impact-resistant products cannot. For example: an impact-resistant window provides full protection while letting the light in 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year. You are fully protected every day of the year with out having to add or remove any products. Whether you are at home, away on a vacation, or you are a snowbird residing here only a portion of the year, you have the best and safest protection for your home and/or business that is available today. But, not only will your home be safer, it will be quieter too; in fact, so much quieter that you will be surprised at how noisy the world is that we live in once you open your windows to get in fresh air on the 9 days a year that you might actually want to do so. As well, impact windows and doors filter out the harmful UVA & UVB rays of the sun that cause the sun fading of your pictures, paintings, furniture and flooring. You see, impact-resistant products are a laminate. Two sheets of glass sandwich a sheet of plastic, kind of like glass plywood, and it is this combination that has revolutionized the window & door industry! It is the soft center, the plastic core that can take credit for impact-resistant products’ versatility and performance as glass alone was never able to attain the needed specifications of a demanding building code as we all saw after Hurricane Andrew.
The three layers (two glass and one plastic) that make up impact-resistant glass protect us from wind-borne as well as human-borne debris. No more stones being kicked up and going through our front windows when a lawn mower or weed-whacker pass by; break-in artists are stymied when they try to enter your home illegally by the same unique features that protect your home from a Category 5 Hurricane. Impact-Resistant products are much more than just glass; they are a very unique and specialized system. It is only the combination of impact-resistant glass, held in place by heavy duty, thicker, stronger and tougher impact-resistant, frames, made of aluminum, vinyl, fiberglass, or clad wood, and are installed by professionals trained to meet the requirements of a very demanding, and justifiably so, Florida Building Code, as well as the tough as nails Miami/Dade testing protocols that in total make for an impact-resistant window or door that will thoroughly and properly protect your home.
That is not to say that these products will not crack, they may, but they take a phenomenal amount of abuse, pressure, and impacts without allowing the harmful penetration of projectiles or water. With impact-resistant windows and doors installed in your home or business you will be in a much safer & quieter environment, that is now much more energy efficient than ever before. Basic impact-resistant glass is actually more energy efficient than your original single pane of glass and the way that the glass is put into the heavy-duty impact-resistant frames, especially if it is tinted gray, green, or bronze, cuts way back and reduces air and water infiltration significantly! When you add in that your new home & business full-time protectors will be sealed with new caulking, then the leaks of old, both water & air, will only be a distant memory. But, that is not all, today you can have even more energy efficiency, much more, as new and exciting energy efficient additions to your impact-resistant products are now available and under the new Florida 2014 Building Code are now required in many places.
These additions include Low-E coatings that can help turn a sun-ravaged, hot house into a much cooler and comfortable home. Low-E, and there are several types of varying efficiencies, is added as a coating between the glass and is most often used in conjunction with an additional non-impact sheet of glass, that is referred to as insulating glass. This combination when added to the already formidable impact-resistant glass makes for a winning and saving combination. Not only will your home and business be protected from intruders, windborne debris, and air & water infiltration, but you can now have an even quieter energy-efficient home. Most heat penetration, what we in the industry call, Solar Heat Gain (SHGC) comes through your windows & doors, but now you can be in control of where the heat comes in, by keeping it out with a glass combination that commonly known as and called insulated, impact-resistant glass with Low-E and possibly Argon (a heavier than air, gas that slows down the transfer of heat between the glass panes that make up an insulated, impact-resistant glass unit). These exciting additions leave you in control; depending on what your local codes call for, you can add or leave out Low-E and choose to add it only when and where it is really needed, usually in the openings that face the harmful and very hot rays of direct sun, such as Western exposures.
We are living in an interesting and potentially dangerous time as weather forecasters are predicting, with the advent of global warming, more and ever more-powerful hurricanes, as the Ocean and Gulf waters heat up. Insurance companies keep raising their rates to compensate for real or imagined crises, but for the first time in history, you do not need to stand by and feel helpless as events that are out of your control swirl around you. Now you can keep the weather out, keep intruders out, and for the first time, keep the heat out as well! Impact-resistant and Insulated, impact-resistant products with Low-E can and will envelope and protect all that is dear to you in a quiet, energy efficient shield. Save some money, save time, and save yourself some aggravation by protecting your home with the only products that matter in our unique South Florida environment. Don’t pay FPL or your insurance company one dime more than you have to; protect your home, your family, and the environment as well by looking into the purchase of insulated, impact-resistant doors and windows and one more point. If you do choose to do so, make sure that you only contract with a Florida licensed and reputable installation company. Check out the Better Business Bureau or Angie’s List. Protect yourself first financially from unlicensed and untrained scam artists (let’s face it we all live here in South Florida and we have all heard the stories, so be safe and be aware, ‘Caveat Emptor’ and then, once you are sure that you made the right choice, and only then contract to protect your home and place of business from the worst that nature and mankind has to offer!