In this comprehensive guide, I show you how to install DIY accordion hurricane shutters to protect your home during hurricane season.
Hurricane season starts on June 1st and ends on November 30th in the Atlantic Basin and Gulf of Mexico.
The Atlantic Ocean’s unpredictable weather patterns lead to powerful storms with high winds, causing potential damage to homes and properties.
So, homeowners in storm-prone areas (such as the State of Florida) need to be prepared before hurricane season.
To ensure your home is protected against these natural forces, install DIY accordion hurricane shutters for a cost-effective and practical solution.
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Why Are Hurricane Shutters Important?
Hurricane shutter protection is of paramount importance for several reasons:
Property Safety: Hurricane shutters provide a physical barrier against high winds, flying debris, and rain, reducing the risk of damage to windows, doors, and the interior of your home.
Personal Safety: Protecting your home means safeguarding your family and yourself from potential harm caused by shattered glass and debris propelled by hurricane-force winds.
Prevent Structural Damage: Hurricane shutters help prevent structural damage to your home. Furthermore, they preserve the integrity and reduce the need for costly repairs.
Insurance Premiums: Many insurance companies offer reduced premiums for homes equipped with hurricane shutters. Ultimately, it demonstrates proactive measures for storm preparedness.
Market Value: Installing hurricane shutters increases your home’s market value. In addition, perspective buyers appreciate the added protection and peace of mind.
Peace of Mind: Hurricane shutters protect and fortify your home. Also, this provides peace of mind during stormy weather and allows you to focus on your family’s safety.
Maintain Normalcy: With proper protection, you minimize the disruption to your daily life during hurricane threats. Moreover, you won’t need to board up windows or take last-minute measures.
Emergency Access: Some shutter systems allow for quick opening and closing. This enables easy access and exit points during emergencies.
In essence, hurricane shutter protection is an investment that offers both physical and emotional security.
Also, it’s an easy way to reduce potential damage, ensure safety, and provide peace of mind to those in high-velocity hurricane zones.
Different Types of Hurricane Shutter Systems
Obviously, storm shutters come in various types, each with its distinct features and benefits.
The different types of hurricane shutters listed below contain the information you need to choose the right solution for maximum hurricane protection:
These are permanently installed and provide durable protection against strong winds and flying debris. They close and lock easily, which makes them an ideal choice for last-minute preparations.
Apart from providing hurricane protection, these Key West style shutters add a tropical aesthetic to your home. Mounted at a 45-degree angle, they provide shade while allowing airflow and sunlight through. Additionally, they provide quality protection and can increase the market value of your home.
Colonial hurricane shutters are two-piece louvered shutters that attach to the wall beside each window. They provide functionality and decor with a touch of Southern charm to your home.
These are the most convenient type of shutters. Roll shutters provide excellent storm protection and roll down with the push of a button. They also serve as security shutters for your home or business by preventing forcible entry.
These are the most cost-effective option and most likely to fall within your price range. They are removable panels made from aluminum, steel, or clear polycarbonate that attach to the walls around windows and doors using bolts or tracks.
While not as durable or convenient as other types of shutters, these are a popular choice for their affordability. If plywood or non-permanent DIY hurricane shutters are your defense plan, then you’re in for a substantial amount of installing and removing.
However, if you are a dedicated DIY-er, installing your own accordion hurricane shutters can be a satisfying weekend project. With the right tools and detailed instructions, you can successfully safeguard your home against the storm season.
DIY Accordion Hurricane Shutters Installation
Accordion shutters protect windows, door openings, and even glass doors.
Moreover, they offer durability, ease of use, and adherence to strict building codes.
Designed to withstand hurricane-force winds, these shutters act as a robust barrier against flying debris and adverse weather conditions.
As a result, they ensure the safety of your home and your loved ones throughout the hurricane season.
Follow the step-by-step guide to install one of the most popular types of hurricane shutters:
1 – Gather Materials
First, gather the materials to install your shutters.
Accordion hurricane shutter installation materials include:
- Shutter Locks
- Plastic Caps
- Holdback Clips
- Tape Measure
- Chalk Line
- Silicone Caulk
- Safety Glasses
2 – Taking Measurements
Next, measure the width and height of your window frame.
Ensure your measurements are accurate, as inaccuracies can lead to improper fitting and decreased effectiveness.
Keep in mind, most shutters are priced by the square foot.
3 – Preparing the Window
Then, mark the position of the shutter on the wall using a chalk line.
Make sure it’s level.
4 – Installing the Top Track and Bottom Track
Secure the top tracks above the openings where the shutters will be installed.
Make sure they are level and securely fastened, as this will ensure the smooth operation of the shutters.
5 – Installing the Shutters
Carefully slide the accordion shutters into the top tracks and secure them using the provided hardware. Next, test the movement of the shutters to ensure they open and close smoothly.
6 – Adding the Lock
Install the lock at the center of the shutters.
Essentially, this will keep them securely closed during a storm.
7 – Sealing
Apply silicone caulk around the edges of the shutter to prevent water intrusion.
Please remember to always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when installing your shutters.
8 – Removable Tracks (Optional)
Some accordion shutters come with removable tracks.
This preserves your homes aesthetics when you don’t use the shutters.
Advantages of DIY Accordion Hurricane Shutters
Opting for accordion hurricane shutters offers numerous benefits:
- Maximum Protection: Accordion shutters withstand high winds and flying debris. In addition, they provide robust protection during hurricanes and storms.
- Ease of Use: Their straightforward operation ensures that you can quickly prepare your home for impending storms without hassle.
- Code Compliance: Accordion shutters adhere to local building codes, including the Florida Building Code, International Building Code, and International Residential Code requirements.
- Enhanced Security: These shutters add an additional layer of security against forcible entry, safeguarding your home year round.
- Investment Protection: The enhanced protection they provide can contribute to an increase in your property’s market value, offering an additional incentive to secure your home against the elements.
Hurricane Shutter Installation: Professional vs DIY
While installing DIY accordion hurricane shutters save you money, it may not be the best decision.
The benefits of professional installation include:
- Shutter Choice: Professional window shutter installers help you choose the best combination of affordability and functionality for a long-lasting investment.
- Accuracy of Window Measurements: Inaccurate measurements can throw off your entire project, resulting in frustration and delays. Professional installers ensure accurate measurements the first time around.
- Peace of Mind: Professional installation gives you confidence in the protection of your home or business in the event of a storm. In fact, some offer high quality shutters with durable life-time protection.
- Energy Efficiency: Professional shutter installation reduce your energy costs by as much as 40% by reducing heat transfer. Additionally, they prevent radiant heat from penetrating your windows during power outages after a storm.
- Expertise: A professional shutter installation company provides expert service from start to finish, saving you time and effort.
- Code Compliance: Adherence to Florida Building Code (along with other local building codes) and International building code if applicable. This makes sure your shutters stand up to hurricane force wind and rain and the most stringent wind codes
In conclusion, safeguarding your home becomes a top priority during hurricane season.
By taking proactive measures and installing DIY accordion hurricane shutters, you ensure the safety of your property and your loved ones.
Moreover, These shutters provide a practical, long-term solution that combines affordability, durability, and ease of use.
Don’t leave the safety of your home to chance.
Take the initiative to install accordion hurricane shutters and fortify your property against the forces of nature.
With proper installation and maintenance, these shutters will provide durable, lifetime protection, offering you peace of mind no matter the forecast.
For more information about Hurricanes, visit the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
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Frequently Asked Questions
I included the most common questions about DIY accordion hurricane shutters below.
Are accordion hurricane shutters worth the cost?
Yes, DIY accordion hurricane shutters are indeed worth the cost.
However, the initial cost may be high. So, it’s a long-term investment.
Moreover, these shutters add value to your home due to their durability and low maintenance requirements.
How much do accordion hurricane shutters cost?
The cost of accordion hurricane shutters range between $15 to $25 per square foot.
Keep in mind, cost varies based on several factors such as the size of your windows, the material, and the complexity of installation.
What wind speed are accordion shutters rated for?
Accordion hurricane shutters withstand wind speeds of up to 175 to 200 mph. However, this can vary based on the specific product and manufacturer.
How do you secure accordion shutters?
Accordion hurricane shutters are generally secured using a locking mechanism.
This locking mechanism varies according to the specific shutter design.
For specific instructions on securing your accordion shutters, refer to the manufacturer’s guide or seek professional advice.