Protect Your Garage Doors from Hurricanes

Prepare Your Garage Doors for Hurricane Season

Protect Your Garage Doors from Hurricanes

As summer begins, many people on Florida’s Gulf Coast prepare for the devastating storms by stocking up on essentials, checking the generator and making sure that their home is secured. While these things are important, making sure that your garage door is secure is just as necessary.

A garage door can collapse into the garage and cause major damage to a vehicle or other valuable items stored. Even worse, a door that comes loose can become an air born projectile and can cause even more damage to life and property.

You probably have a few questions about securing your garage door. If so, take a look through our Hurricane Preparedness Q & A below.

Hurricane Preparedness

How can I protect my garage door before hurricane season arrives?

According to experts, “the single most important improvement you can make to your home is to install a hurricane rated garage door”. Chances are, if your door is more than six years old, it does not meet the new Florida Building Code criteria for safety against hurricane winds.


Posted in: Hurricane Preparedness

Why do I need to replace my garage door with a Hurricane rated garage door?

“As the single largest opening on a house, the loss of a garage door during a hurricane can lead to an uncontrolled buildup of internal pressure resulting in a complete or partial blowout of the entire roof system and supporting walls,” said Mark Westerfield, manager of product development and engineering for Clopay Building Products Company, the largest U.S. manufacturer of residential garage doors. “Hurricane Andrew taught the building products industry and homeowners some valuable lessons on the importance of being prepared for the worst-case scenario.”


Posted in: Hurricane Preparedness

Can I have safety without sacrificing style?

A reinforced door doesn’t necessarily mean covering the garage opening in a solid block of steel. Certified Garage Door, Inc. also offers code compliant carriage house style doors with impact resistant windows. There are many code compliant design options available to complement most architectural styles, from Contemporary to Mediterranean. Clopay is the first manufacturer in the industry to develop decorative windows that can withstand 350-pounds of impact energy. The company is also offering its new Coachman Collection steel carriage house doors with WindCode reinforcement. The doors look like hardwood on the outside, but are actually crafted of layers of steel and insulation topped with custom designed, coped wood grain finished PVC overlays. New technology means people don’t have to sacrifice style for safety.


Posted in: Hurricane Preparedness

Is a permit required to replace my garage door?

Yes! The garage door makes up a significant portion of the outside wall of your home. As such, it is actually a structural element, whose strength is crucial to the integrity of the home in the event of hurricane force winds. It is for this reason that cities and counties require permits for the replacement of garage doors, thereby insuring the strength and safety of the door and the remaining structure.


Posted in: Hurricane Preparedness

How do I open my garage door if the power is out?

If the power goes out, homeowners may need to disconnect their electric openers to manually open the garage door. That can be easier said than done so we suggest homeowners learn how to do it before an emergency arises. To prevent having to search frantically for a garage door instruction manual in the dark, here are some helpful tips:

  1. Disconnect the garage door opener when the garage is in the closed position, not when it’s open. Otherwise, if the springs aren’t balanced, the door could suddenly drop to the ground and cause injury.
  2. If the springs are properly balanced, the door will open easily with the lift handles. If it is difficult to open, have a Professional garage door service technician check the door as soon as possible to avoid further damage or safety risks.
  3. Lock the door. When the automatic opener is disconnected the door is not securely shut until you manually slide the lock bar.
  4. Reconnect the opener when the power comes back on. Make sure the door is unlocked when the opener is reconnected. Electrically opening the garage door while the lock bar is still in place can cause major damage.
  5. Invest in an automatic door opener that includes a battery back-up feature. That way, when the power goes out, the garage door will still function using the opener, as will the entry keypad and the safety sensors, and the garage door will be locked and secured.

Posted in: Door Openers, Hurricane Preparedness

What do I do after the storm to open my garage door?

Post-High Wind Event Door Operation By A Building Occupant

  1. Building occupants should not attempt to remove, adjust or repair doors, springs, or any other door system components, or anything to which they are fastened. Doors are large, heavy objects that move with the help of springs under extreme tension, and can cause serious injury or death. Only trained door systems technicians should remove, repair or adjust doors.
  2. If a building occupant is unsure of the condition of the framing surrounding the door to which the door is attached, a building contractor or design professional should be contacted.
  3. If any problem is observed during visual inspection, visual inspection should immediately cease, the door should not be operationally inspected and a trained door systems technician should be contacted to resolve the problem.
  4. If any problem is encountered during operational inspection, the door should be immediately and carefully lowered to the closed position and a trained door systems technician should be contacted to correct the problem.
  5. Any deformation of panels, tracks or hardware can make a door questionable with regard to withstanding another high wind event. A professional door installer should be contacted in this case.

Visual Inspection

  1. Begin inside the garage. The door should remain closed during this activity. A flashlight and a step stool or ladder should be kept handy.
  2. Door alignment. Check for misalignment of door or door components, or evidence of damage including broken or cracked glass.
  3. Opening frame. Visually inspect jambs and header for proper attachment to the structure including any loose or improperly attached connections.
  4. Door track system. Visually inspect for any looseness of fasteners or misalignment of the track. If OK, continue with the inspection.

Posted in: Hurricane Preparedness