Are Impact Doors Required in Florida?
If you’re in the market for new exterior doors for your home in Florida, you’ve likely seen quite a few options for impact doors. As you assess your options, you may be wondering if impact doors are required in Florida. Given the harsh weather we often experience, impact doors are a smart choice regardless of where you live in Florida. However, there are only certain areas in the state where they’re absolutely required.
Understanding Impact Door Jargon
Very simply, an impact door is one that’s designed to withstand sudden impact. When wind-borne debris is swept up during a storm, it can turn into a projectile that comes in contact with your home. Impact doors are designed to resist shattering or caving in when this happens. However, it does get a bit more technical than that. There are two types of labels that impact doors may have:
Doors with a ‘WBDR’ designation are required in Wind-Borne Debris Regions. This includes much of the southern half of Florida as well as coastal regions that are at higher risk of experiencing wind speeds of 140 mph or more. These doors feature impact-resistant glass (if they include glass in their design), helping to prevent the glass from shattering or caving in if met with impact.
Doors with an ‘HVHZ’ label are specifically designed and required in High Velocity Hurricane Zones. This is a more specific region of Southeast Florida, namely Miami-Dade and Broward Counties. In addition to the impact-resistant glass that WBDR doors are required to have, HVHZ doors also feature a steel plate built into the core of the door for enhanced protection against even higher wind speeds.
Knowing whether you live in a WBDR or HVHZ will help you determine what type of impact doors are required for your home. This will apply to any exterior doors you’re looking to replace on your home, including entry doors and patio doors.
Choosing the Right Exterior Doors for Your Home
Still not sure exactly what type of impact doors you need? Turn to the professionals for help. A reputable window company in your area will be familiar with local building requirements and can help look up whether your property falls into one of these zones. Of course, even if you live in an area of Florida where impact doors aren’t required, you may still want to opt for this more durable and protective door option. As hurricanes continue to worsen and cause more damage than ever before, ensuring your home has the best protection can provide invaluable peace of mind.
At Max Guard Hurricane Windows, we proudly offer and install impact doors and windows for homeowners in Southeast Florida, and we’d be happy to handle your door replacement project. Contact us today to learn more about the features and benefits of impact doors and to find out if this type of door is required for your home.