Tornadoes, Hurricanes, Storms and Your Garage Door!

Often being the largest opening on most homes, the
garage door is usually the most vulnerable to failure under
high wind pressure such as hurricanes, tornadoes and storms
in general. The pressure of the wind can destroy the garage
doors during a storm that allows water and wind to enter
the house. This can cause significant damage to furniture,
electronic equipment, the contents in general as well as the
house’s structure. The garage door is often overlooked
when strengthening the structure against high winds.

Massive building failures and strong winds have convinced
storm-prone communities that residents must be prepared
to employ active or passive reinforcement systems for their
garage doors. An active system is that specific type of
reinforcement that must be installed before a high-wind
event while passive systems are built into the product and
don’t need any activation from the owner. For the home
owner in hurricane-prone areas there are only two real
options: either a new garage door with a built in passive
reinforcement system or a garage door reinforcement kit.

The option of totally replacing the garage door is usually
an expensive procedure so a garage door reinforcement kit
would be a good choice if your budget for remodeling your
garage is low. Although is rather expensive, a new garage
door offers a more secure and safe option in front of a high
wind.

If you’d rather choose the cheapest option, that is to
reinforce your garage door you can protect your home in
one of the following ways: first of all install pressure or
impact resistant devices, such as shutters, panels, accordion
fold shutters on the garage doors or install pressure/impact
resistant garage doors that do not require shutters. If your
existing door is impact resistant but it is not wind pressure
rated, install an approved garage door bracing system to
increase the wind pressure resistance. A pressure/impact
resistant rating ensures that the device meets the wind pressure
and debris impact requirements of the Southern Building
Code Congress International standards or the July 1988
wind pressure and debris impact requirements of the
American Society of Civil Engineers adopted in September
1994.

When adding a garage door bracing first ensure that there is
enough and relevant documentation that the product has
been tested at a certified testing laboratory. The product
should be designed to withstand both positive and negative
wind pressure. You should contact a local garage door
supplier of approved garage door bracing systems to assist
you in the selection of the necessary system for your needs.

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