When you have to prepare for hurricanes each year, you need to have a permanent method for protecting your windows. Hurricane shutters are the most affordable way to protect your windows each time a storm comes through your area. When it comes to the type you use on your home, there are a few different options.
Option #1: Storm Panels
A storm panel is made from corrugated aluminum or steel that overlaps one another in order to provide stronger protection. They are affordable yet strong. Storm panels can be used for both windows and doors.
With storm panels, the mounting material is permanently installed, but the actual panels are removable. You will need somewhere to store the panels, but as they can stack up on one another, so you don't need too much space.
Storm panels can attach to your windows using a few different attachment methods. You can have tracks that are bolted to the top and bottom of the windows that the panels slide into. You can have a C-shaped track to slide the panels into, and then bolts to hold everything together.
It can take more time to get ready for a storm with storm panels, as you have to individually prepare each window. Plan to spend ten to fifteen minutes preparing each window with this system.
Option #2: Accordion-Style Shutters
Another type of hurricane shutter is accordion-style shutters. Accordion-style shutters are permanently fixed to your home. They fold up inside of a case on the side of your windows. A slide runs across the top and bottom of your windows, that wheels on the shutters glide on when you open them up to get ready for a storm.
Some people don't like the bulky appearance of accordion shutters, and they break more easily over time than other types. You should be able to quickly prepare all your windows for a storm within half an hour with this type of system.
Option #3: Colonial Hurricane Shutters
A popular option is colonial hurricane shutters. They are two pieces of shutters that attach to the wall next to the window when not in use. Many people like the decorative appeal of colonial style.
To use the shutters, you have to unclamp them from the walls of your home, and then shut them. Then, you have to use a center rod or storm bar to lock them in place and ensure they don't swing open during a storm. It can take around an hour to prepare your home for a storm with these.
If you live in an area with frequent hurricane warnings, you need to have a permanent protective solution for your windows in order to keep your home safe. When choosing storm shutters, be sure to choose ones that you can easily operate and get into place quickly.