Hurricane season runs from June to November, but it peaks in August and September. Some of the costliest hurricanes to ever hit the U.S.—Katrina, Harvey, and Andrew—were all August hurricanes. With that in mind, here are some ways to reinforce your home and garage door for the upcoming summer storms. If you need help upgrading to a sturdier garage door model, just give us a call.
Be Ready for the Water
Storm surge isn’t a big concern in our service areas of Apex, Raleigh, and Wendell, but if you’re vacationing at the beach this summer, be aware that a big surge can take water to your roofline in a matter of seconds. The best thing you can do in this situation is to listen to official instructions and evacuate if it is advised. Before you evacuate, if you have time to safely do so, close your basement windows and turn off your gas and electricity.
Reinforce Your Garage Doors
Because your garage door is big (and heavy), you might think that it’s strong. But many garage doors, especially single-panel garage doors, are pretty flimsy. In high winds, cheap garage doors often blow in, or get pushed out by negative pressure. Once that wind gets inside your garage, it can tear off the roof, which in turn can tear off the side of the house it’s attached to. According to the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes, around 80 percent of residential hurricane damage starts with wind coming in through garage doors.
Experts say that if there’s only one bar across each of your garage door’s panels, it’s not able to withstand hurricane-force winds. The best solution is installing a wind- and impact-resistant double garage door. If a garage door replacement isn’t cost-effective for you right now, a more affordable solution is to reinforce your current garage doors.Three hinges are better than two, and an inch-thick deadbolt helps.
Don’t Tape up Your Windows
Every time there’s a hurricane heading for the coast, we inevitably see news footage of homes with a big X of tape across each picture window. However, tape won’t help anything, and could even hurt. While duct tape has some impressive capabilities, it’s no match for 110-mph winds. All tape does is increase the chances that the glass will break into larger, more dangerous shards. Instead, attach plain old 5/8-inch plywood over windows and glass panes in doors. For more tips, check out Lowe’s DIY guide to boarding up windows.
Another popular myth is that you should open your windows to equalize the pressure and prevent damage. The reality is, your home isn’t airtight, so the pressure will equalize without your help. Windows should in fact be closed, as open windows will only let in rain and flying debris.
Be Prepared with All American Overhead Garage Door
Having strong, wind-resistant garage doors is key to protecting your property during hurricane season. If you live in the Raleigh area and would like your garage doors to be strengthened, swapped out for a stronger model, repaired, or inspected, just give us a call.