Impact Windows Vs. Non-Impact Windows
Hurricane resistant impact windows and doors go through a series of rigorous tests. These tests are performed using the following six criteria’s air infiltration, water resistance, forced entry, wind resistance, flying debris, impact resistance and 9,000 internal/external pressure cycles. This type of cycling simulates the buffeting effect of hurricane force winds after the window is impacted and typically broken. The objective of these tests is to ensure that the impact resistant products, which are considered to be the weakest part of a building structure, will not be compromised or fail during the course of a hurricane.
Non-Impact products are products that have not met the required criteria as set forth above and have not met the hurricane building codes established by the State of Florida.
Advantage of Hurricane Impact Resistant Window and Doors
Impact windows and doors are designed to withstand the penetration of flying debris and to protect the structure from wind infiltration. The most severe damage to a structure is caused when the building envelope has been compromised by allowing wind to enter creating internal pressure that can lift the roof and cause other structural damage.
Impact approved windows and doors offer owners the benefits of year round protection, along with greater thermal efficiency, reduction in sound transmittance and additional UV protection.
Studies have been conducted to determine the difference in cost between impact resistant windows and doors and other code approved products such as accordion shutters, roll down shutters and wind abatement systems. When comparing the cost of an impact window and non-impact product, it is important to make sure to look at comparable quality. By combining the cost of the non-impact product and the shutter system together, typically the additional cost to upgrade to an impact resistant product is minimal. However, the value to your home or building will increase by a greater percentage with the installation of hurricane impact glass as your structure will now have the highest and best form of hurricane protection.