HOW TO HURRICANE-PROOF
YOUR FLORIDA HOME

Living in Florida offers many perks, from sunny days to beautiful beaches, but it also comes with the reality of hurricane season. There’s no denying that Florida experiences the highest frequency of hurricanes compared to any other state in the country. As residents, it’s crucial to ensure our homes are adequately prepared to withstand these powerful storms. In Florida, hurricane-resistant features are essential for ensuring your home’s safety. Today, we’ll discuss must-have features to protect your home from severe weather, so you can feel safe even with the worst weather coming your way.

Choosing the Perfect Roof Shape and Materials

When it comes to hurricane-proofing your home, Protecting your roof should definitely be a priority, as this is your first line of defense. Choosing the right roof shape and materials can make a significant difference in its ability to withstand high winds and flying debris.

There are several different roof shapes and home styles throughout the country, all intended for different weather conditions. A hip roof is the best choice for Florida residents. It features slopes on all four sides meeting at a ridge, offering increased stability against hurricanes and distributing wind forces more evenly. Additionally, its design allows for better water drainage and provides extra protection to the walls, making it a practical and popular choice for homeowners in the region.

For roofing material, an interlocked metal roof proves to be the best choice. This type of metal roofing system features individual panels designed to interlock with each other, creating a seamless and watertight barrier over the roof surface. This interlocking feature provides several benefits for withstanding surface damage caused by rain and wind in Florida’s challenging climate.

Install Fiberglass Hurricane Doors on Your Home

During a hurricane, the strong winds often pick up and hurl debris, posing a significant threat to your home, particularly to your windows and doors. Debris could potentially damage or even break through doors, leading to rain and debris entering the home. This can result in a dangerous change of pressure indoors, increasing the risk of your roof detaching from the home. This is why it is crucial to have a solid door in place; fiberglass doors are widely recognized for their solidity, making them the premier choice for withstanding hurricanes. Experts from promoversmiami.com note that when moving into a new home, installing fiberglass doors should be the first home improvement you do. Having solid doors is essential to protecting your home and family. So, getting this out of the way as quickly as possible is a pretty good choice all in all.

Florida Home with Metal Hip Roof

Landscaping Considerations for Hurricanes

Considering your landscape is crucial for minimizing hazards during hurricanes. Opting for wind-resistant trees such as Sabal Palm and Cabbage Tree or plants such as Dwarf Yaupon Holly and Firebush not only adds aesthetic appeal but also serves as natural barriers against strong winds and debris, minimizing the impact of rainfall and reducing soil erosion, especially in coastal areas. However, proper maintenance of these trees is essential to avoid potential issues in the long term.

Homeowners should also take proactive steps to keep their home maintained, such as trimming dead or weak branches from trees to ensure tree health and reduce the risk of damage during storms. Securing outdoor items and moving them indoors before the storm helps prevent them from becoming airborne hazards.

Install Storm Shutters and Impact Windows

Storm shutters are a common sight across Florida, serving as effective protection against torrential rain and strong winds. However, they may not offer complete protection during hurricanes. Impact windows, made from impact-resistant glass, are another popular choice among Florida homeowners. These windows withstand heavy rain, strong winds, and debris without breaking, ensuring your home remains secure. The good idea is to install the doors, windows, and shutters in one remodel, and when it comes to packing for it, you should let the pros deal with it. This is the best way to make sure your items aren’t damaged when moving them into a storage unit while the remodel is ongoing.

Garage Door Bracing for Hurricane-Force Winds and Debris

One of the most common causes of severe structural damage during a hurricane is the garage door getting blown open. As we already mentioned with doors and windows, once the wind and rain have an entry into your home, pressure begins to build, potentially leading to the doors, windows, and even the roof being ripped off as the pressure seeks equilibrium. The best way to help prevent this is to ensure you have a sturdy garage door. Metal garages are deemed the best choice, these doors are built to withstand strong winds and debris present during a hurricane.  However, one crucial factor to consider when installing these features is timing. The best time to remodel is a very subjective topic, but most people seem to agree that winter is a good time to get a remodel done.

Proper Drainage Systems to Prevent Flooding

Ensuring proper drainage is essential for safeguarding your home against flooding and water damage, especially during hurricanes and heavy rainstorms. Installing efficient drainage systems, like gutters, downspouts, and French drains, is crucial to divert water away from your home and prevent pooling around the foundation. It also is important to consider purchasing flood insurance adding another layer of protection to your home.

Regular maintenance of gutters and downspouts is essential to ensure unobstructed water flows away from your home. Consider installing gutter guards to prevent debris buildup and potential clogs, which can lead to water damage.

French drains, installed along your home’s perimeter, effectively collect excess water and redirect it away from the foundation, making them particularly valuable for properties with poor soil drainage or areas prone to flooding.

If you are unsure if your home already has water damage, a few things you can do is check for cracks in the foundation or the sight or smell of mold.

Hurricane-Proof Your Florida Home Today

Hurricanes are incredibly dangerous, all things considered. The strong winds, heavy rain, and debris are enough to cause severe damage to your home. As such, when living in Florida, it’s incredibly important to make sure your home is prepared for hurricanes. Otherwise, you leave yourself open to some hazardous problems, such as the roof getting ripped off your home. Needless to say, this isn’t something you can afford to ignore, so doing the necessary remodels quickly is vital.