How Do You Install Hurricane Shutters?

Hurricane ShuttersEveryone can benefit from learning how to install hurricane shutters. These shutters are the first line of defense against these storms and are the most economical solution to protect property and lives, according the Sun Sentinel. Learning the steps involved in how to install hurricane shutters will save you time, money, stress, and Mother Nature’s destruction.

Step One: Gather Materials

You will need several items before you get started on installing hurricane shutters including:

  • Heavy gloves
  • Closed-toe shoes
  • Long pants
  • Screw driver
  • Wing nuts for shutters
  • The installation plan provided by contractor

To make future installations easier it is wise to keep all these materials together in one place. This will make step one much quicker in the event of a hurricane emergency. Once all the materials are gathered it is time to install the first shutter.

Step Two: Install the Shutter

This step requires removing the plastic caps from all of the bolts around the entire window. Make sure to read the installation plans provided and ensure that you understand all of the instructions. Begin at the bottom of the window or if they are vertically installed at either the far left or far right. Take the first panel and locate the holes at the four corners. Fit the holes onto the bolts and slide the panel to lock it. From here put the wing nuts on the two lower bolts and tighten it by hand as much as possible. Continue upward with the second panel. Fit the bolts to the holes, slide to lock, put the wing nuts on the lower bolts, and hand tighten. Repeat this process upward until reaching the final panel. Place the wing nuts over the very top bolts on the very last panel and snugly tighten with the screwdriver.

Step Three: Repeat

Repeat step two installing each shutter onto every window, door, or opening of your house.

Step Four: Take the Shutters Down

If you have temporary shutters and especially if they are steel you should remove the shutters as soon as the immediate threat from wind damage is over. Steel hurricane shutters keep you safe during a threat, but they can also trap you inside and not allow for an emergency exit from the house. It is recommended that steel shutters only be deployed during a threat and that they are removed as soon as the threat passes, according to Rebuild Northwest Florida. Additionally if there are left in place for extended periods of time steel panels can rust.

Step Five: Storing for Next Installation

Planning and practice are essential for being efficient at installing your hurricane shutters. What you may believe to be a simple few hour task can turn into an all-day event if you are not prepared and are unaware of how to install hurricane shutters. Before there is any threat, practice putting up the shutters and then store them in a way which will make the next installation easier. Mark and label each shutter panel with the corresponding window and protect any screws and nuts in a bag along with it. Additionally keep all the materials together in one easy to access spot. This will make installation in an emergency situation much faster and easier.

When Should You Install Hurricane Shutters?

It is extremely important not to wait until there is a hurricane warning in the area before deciding to install hurricane shutters for the first time. It will likely take a minimum of a few hours for you to successfully complete shutter installation even if you have practiced and are prepared. The beginning of each year’s hurricane season is extremely busy for installation companies so you will want to be ready before the season arrives. According to the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration’s Hurricane Research Division, the best and most effective time to have the shutters installed is when the house is being built making the shutters a part of the houses design. If the shutters are more temporary, it’s imperative that you practice to learn specifically how long the task will take you. It’s wise to put up temporary shutters when hurricane season begins.

Why Use Hurricane Shutters?

Anyone who lives in a coastal area or hurricane risk zone can provide protection for their property by investing in much needed hurricane shutters. These shutters offer protection for windows, doors, possessions, and most importantly any person inside the building. Without protection from the shutters wind and wind-borne debris can shatter windows and doors during a hurricane’s extreme winds. Once broken the fast moving wind will cause an extreme amount of pressure in the building and on the roof which can easily lead to roof failure. These shutters are your first line of defense against Mother Nature in a hurricane scenario.

Following these steps will provide you with the comfort of knowing your house and valuables are protected even if you and your family evacuate the area. By becoming aware of these steps involved in how to install hurricane shelters you can now feel confident in having a game plan this hurricane season.

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