Minimizing Wind Damage from Hurricanes
The openings to your home are the weak points in a storm; a broken window or door can allow the air pressure fluctuation needed to destroy a structure. Reinforce doors and windows with storm shutters, or even plywood, to prevent failure of these key structural elements. You can find plans for plywood windows shutters here: http://www.apawood.org/level_c.cfm?content=pub_searchresults&pK=hurricane%20shutter&pT=Yes&pD=Yes&pF=Yes (Free registration required) Another weak point is the garage door, make sure your garage door is wind rated or buy a new door or retrofit kit to make it stronger.
Another key to preparing your home is eliminating flying debris that could damage your property or cause injuries. When there is a hurricane watch, move furniture, garbage cans, potted plants, and lawn decorations inside or to the garage. Anything that could be blown around by the wind should be moved inside or secured.
If you’re remodeling or rebuilding, make sure your contractor is aware of the hurricane building codes and use them. New codes include the use of metal straps to secure brick to walls, and the roof to the main structure, and waterproofing for roofs. These new precautions can seriously minimize the amount of damage inflicted by high winds.
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