When homeowners prepare for hurricanes, they often bring in outside items that could become projectiles and board up windows to prevent breakage. A vulnerable spot that is frequently forgotten is the garage door. Because of the width of an opening, this is one of the areas that are most at risk to heavy winds and projectiles. Here are ways to protect the garage during this type of weather and other tips for keeping items inside the garage safer.
Protecting the Opening
- If it is unknown whether the existing door is impact or wind resistant, there should be a sticker or label with the rating somewhere on the door. If there is none, the door is probably not rated for either. This means extra measures must be taken to protect the home.
- If the door is new and in good condition, consider purchasing a bracing kit. These can be self-installed or installed by a garage door contractor. The kits will include a horizontal brace, track braces and solid shaft wheels.
- Invest in a simple vertical bracing system. It will contain only a single vertical brace and will not make the door hurricane-proof but will prevent it from blowing into the building or vehicles if it is compromised.
- Home with older or poorly maintained doors should consider purchasing a hurricane-resistant door that meets wind-load requirements for the address where the home is located. Wind-load requirements are available from local building code enforcement agencies. Impact-resistant doors are constructed with steel, and hurricane-proof doors include a heavy-duty spring/track system and twist-proof frames.
Protecting the Contents
No door can be considered 100 percent hurricane-proof, so it is always important to take extra measures to protect the items inside.
- Remove from the floor anything that could be damaged by water.
- Loose items are potential projectiles, so secure tools, paints or any other small items in heavy cabinets, or inside vehicles.
- Park vehicles as close to the wall as possible, to leave room in case the door is blown open. Do not park them against the door to provide extra bracing – this rarely works and causes more damage to the vehicle.
- Cover the vehicle with a tarp or canvas to protect the finish against smaller projectiles.
- Secure the door between the garage and the home, just in case the garage door is breached.
Without proper protection, a basic garage door can be easily damaged. Since this is where many valuable items are kept in an average home, the cost to repair and replace everything can add up quickly. For more information, contact Door Depot Of SW FL Inc or a similar company.