Retrofitting Your Home for Hurricane Protection – part one
The key to hurricane protection is to block all entry points for the hurricane wind into your house. Also the exterior of your house should be strengthened so that the hurricane winds and wind debris do not create cracks in the exterior. This means that you may have to retrofit and strengthen the roof, windows, doors, and garage doors.
You should factor retrofitting your home for hurricanes anytime you are getting a home-improvement job done. Ensure that whatever additions you have in mind conform to the local building code. Compliance with codes is essential as they mean that your house is up-to-date with the latest safety measures that experts have come up with from past experience.
Any construction on an open ground or within 2000 feet of an open expanse of water is at greater risk from hurricane winds and the subsequent damage. Tree limbs, pebbles, dirt, parts from mobile homes, carports, awnings, etc can create openings that can let in wind and water into your house. These and similar items can become wind borne and damage your roof and windows.
The first step to retrofitting a house for hurricane protection is to check what retrofitting, if at all, is required. Get an architect or civil engineer to run a check on your house to find out any potentially weak spots that need to be reinforced. See what is required, do you need hardware to strengthen the doors or do you need to secure the patio. Is the garage door sturdy enough to withstand hurricane winds? Get roofing professional to determine any repairs that may be required. Do tiles need replacing? Are the roofing boards secured to the trusses?
Get in touch with your local building department for maximum understanding on how to best go about a retrofitting project. They may also be able to guide you to contractors who have a reputation for retrofitting at reasonable rates. The local building authorities will also help you get a building permit should one be required for carrying out a retrofitting project.
Sooner or later your roofing will give way; patchwork and temporary repairs may help you for a season or two but ultimately you may have to consider replacing the roof. Check your roof for leaks, light creeping through cracks, discolored paint, peeling wallpaper, cracks in the gypsum boards. These are signs that the roof needs repairs. Asphalt shingles need to be replaced after around 15 years; you may have to replace them early if you live in a region with high winds and hot sun.
Tyler M. - September -2020 - Manteo, North Carolina
The Accordion Shutter project wrapped up finally this morning. Did the final walkthrough, just wanted to let you all know it all went well. As last time, it was a pleasure to work with you all. I appreciate the attention to detail with shipping. Hopefully I will be able to snag a few more projects like this one the in the future. I hope you all have a great weekend. I look forward to working with you all again. Let me know if you would like any photos.
Debra H. - August - 2020 - Tortola, British Virgin Islands I wish to thank the Empire Construction team for efficiently and effectively processing my last order of accordion and rolling shutters. I will be placing another order soon!
Cary A. - July - 2020 - North Port, Florida
I would like to compliment your company on a great product, and your labeling. It was very easy for me to install. Thanks again!
Mark M. - May - 2020 - Surfside Beach, South Carolina Hi Elizabeth, I just wanted to let you know my order arrived today. Everything looks great! I will not hesitate to recommend Empire, I am very satisfied with the whole ordering process. Thank you for the excellent service and product.
Mike A. - April - 2020 - Daytona Beach, Florida Michael, Bill and staff, Thank you for all your help with re-setting the Rolling Shutter I purchased from you. It is back up and runnning with the limits set. You’ve been very helpful as usual!!
Lew G. - March - 2020 - Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida Thanks again for your advice, technical support, and for all your help and Michael's help. You gave the best customer service and helped me find the best product for my needs. You guys have been awesome and thank you for putting up with me!!
Douglas C. - January - 2020 - The Villages, Florida First let me express how pleased I am with my new rolling shutters and how the whole process was handled. I received the shipment nicely packed with no damage to the contents. The assembly and mounting went very well and the end product fit perfectly, works very well and looks great!
Doc and Christy B. October - 2019 - Waynesville, Georgia
Hello again, it’s Christy B from Waynesville, Georgia. My husband and I have installed 6 out of the 9 roll shutters and we cannot say enough about them! The quality and workmanship is excellent, the shipping packaging was quite satisfactory and the fit is perfect. The shutters roll nicely and the installation video on your website is what we went by. After the first one’s learning curve, the rest have been no problem at all! We hope that you get some additional orders from up here as several of our friends and neighbors plus a local general contractor are anxious to check the shutters out. Our daughter in St. Augustine is jealous.....their subdivision builder used window storm panels and she hates manhandling them and storing them. Thank you Liz, Barbara, Mike, Bill and the rest of the staff. We are very, very pleased that we chose your product to protect our home.
Matthew B. - September - 2019 - Long Island, Bahamas Your Rolling Shutters are an Amazing Product! Thank you so very much. Wonderful service from beginning to end. Much appreciated.
Gary L. July - 2019 - Island Park, Idaho
You have a great product. The way you shipped it in a big box was so nice.
I was so impressed. Attached is a picture of the installed shutters. It was a pleasure to install these Rolling shutters. You guys make it so easy. Thanks again!!
Rodney D. - June - 2019 - Sable, Texas I received the Bahama Shutters. Thank you for the quick shipment and for including one put together already so I know how they go up.Your company service is wonderful and I already have neighbors asking where I got them.
Larry A. - March - 2019 - San Diego, California I am writing this email to say Thank You to everyone at Empire. I have just finished installing the rolling and accoridon shutters you shipped to me on order 26692.The quality of your product is excellent, and your delivery was shorter than expected. The care that was taken by the people that packaged my shutters is above and beyond, and greatly appreciated. The patience Michael Joiner and his sales team showed me over the weeks I was debating what kind of shutters to by, and from whom, was also greatly appreciated. I would be happy to be a reference here on the West Coast if you should ever want one. -Larry
Mark P. - February - 2019 - St. Croix. U.S. Virgin Islands Thanks Empire Construction! Job well done with no issues. I really appreciate purchasing your products. I'm also looking forward to doing more business with you guys in the future. You guys are the best!!
Judy S. – January – 2019 - Cocoa Beach, Florida
Thanks so much for all your help!! My husband is thrilled with the Rolling Shutters and they look great.
Guven Y. – January – 2019 – Malabar, Florida
Thank you very much for everything. All of the Bahama Shutters have been hung and they all look great! They are very quality work and I am getting a lot of inquiries about them.Thanks again.
Gerald B – December – 2018 - Mattapoisett, Massachusetts
The Rolling Shutters are up and running and fit perfectly. They appear to be a very high quality product.
Jan T – November – 2018 – Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida Barbara,I just wanted to tell you the storm panels went up very nicely and you sent me all the proper panels. I'll be ordering the panels for the rest of the house after the holidays. Thank you again for your assistance and it was a pleasure working with you.
Mike G. - October - 2018 - Port Charlotte, Florida
Excellent Product! Thank you Ryan. Please pass my thanks along to Bill and the rest of the team as well. I am really impressed with the system we received. Thank you all for continuing that quality product with good support.
Robert H. - September - 2018 - Beaufort, South Carolina
My Accordion Shutters are up! The windows took about 1.5 hours each. The shutters all fit very nicely, the material and finish is excellent, and they look very good. They are not intrusive at all. I am pleased, my wife is pleased ( you know that is important) and my neighbor, who helped me was impressed based upon his window/door experience. Good job! Thanks.
Marcus J. - August - 2018 - St. John, U.S Virgin Islands Hello everyone at Empire, Marcus from St. John here. This project is being done by me and 1 helper, and we're going back much stronger, with many more tap cons, and wedge anchors than the original installers had done. Your rolling shutters are amazing, great quality and workmanship. Everything is going great so far!
David G. - July - 2018 - Sarasota, Florida
We wanted to self-install so we bought accordions and roll downs from Empire Construction.We measured our window and patio and sent Empire the specs.The shutters were an exact match.Installation is very doable for two reasonably mechanical people. In this case it was only one mechanical person and some extra hands. The accordions were a breeze as installation was mostly marking holes for spots, drilling holes, and screwing them in.Our accordions have locking pins that hold them open and act as a second lock when closed. Even if a projectile breaks the lock the rods will keep the shutters closed.These shutters are Bertha HV1. They are High Velocity Hurricane Zone Approved. Having seen a wide range of shutters we are extremely happy with the quality of the product we received!!
Jim J. - June - 2018 - Homestead , Florida
I installed fourteen aluminum accordion shutters which I purchased from Empire Construction.I could not be happier with my choice.The shutters are made very well and are powder-coated.The purchase included all of the required hardware which was powder-coated to match the shutters.The company is very customer-oriented.Michael and his staff were wonderful.They were attentive, helpful, and a delight to work with.The installation video on the website made the installation very easy.I highly recommend Empire Construction to anyone considering a purchase of hurricane shutters. Thanks again. Please say Hi to everyone,
Steffan L. - May - 2018 - St. Croix, US Virgin Islands, Florida
I picked up my shipment today at Paradise freight here on St Croix. Your shipping (and your products) deserves the highest rating. Thanks for excellent service..