Hurricane-Resistant Doors and Windows Prove Effective at Mexico BeachOctober 19th, 2018 by Drew Vass, Executive Editor
After the unimaginable damage of Hurricane Michael, one house along the Gulf of Mexico stands unaffected. Russell King and Dr. Lebron Lackey’s home in Mexico Beach, Fla., is still standing thanks to their special attention to codes and hurricane-resistant doors and windows. The New York Times reports that the two built this house “for the Big One.”
Custom Window Systems, Inc., based in Ocala, Fla., supplied the doors and windows for the house. According to Custom Window Systems (CWS) president Rodney Miller, King and Lackey went above and beyond the building codes when they built their beachfront home. This led them to purchase the 800 Series WindPact Plus doors and windows from CWS. This series is made and tested to withstand high velocity hurricane zones. The windows are made to withstand a wind pressure of 70, and wind speeds around 180 mph.
The Times reports that before the hurricane, King and Lackey hired someone to reinforce the doors and windows. Miller explained one of the doors, which had a faulty lock, was fixed before the storm. Other than the door fix, there was no need to cover or board up the house’s doors and windows.
In a Fox News interview, Lackey explains that he and his uncle spent around 15- to 20-percent more on building costs than they would if they had not gone the extra mile. Miller explains that while there is initial sticker shock when hurricane proofing, it is worth the extra cost.
“If you’re in a hurricane or debris area, you have to do something,” says Miller.
Out of all the doors and windows on the house, Miller says that only two of the windows cracked on the outside. Since only the outside panes were affected, there was no water damage in the house.
When it comes to preparing for a storm, Miller says that good doors and windows are equally as important, but you can’t always expect to be unscathed in a hurricane.
“People tend to think [doors and windows] are like aquariums, but you can only protect against so much,” explains Miller.
With the intensity of these storms, homeowners in hurricane prone areas need to be conscious of things they can do to protect their homes. Miller says that recent codes are allowing homes to withstand more storms, but many of the homes that were destroyed were older with out of date codes.
“There is far more wind damage in inner coastal areas where codes don’t exist or aren’t required,” says Miller. It is these homes that received the brunt of the damage. Codes are vital to home survival, and should not be taken lightly when building.