Why Impact Rated Windows Are Better For Your Home

As custom home contractors in a coastal city, impact-rated windows are something Sea Island Builders encourages all our clients to invest in.

Why? Because when hurricane season comes, you want to be sure that your interior is safe from flying debris, and standard windows simply can’t provide you with that kind of security.

But that isn’t the only reason why impact-rated windows are a wise investment for a new home, whether you’re starting from scratch or remodeling.

What Are Impact-Rated Windows?

Let’s start by covering the difference between standard windows and impact-rated windows.

Impact-rated windows are reinforced to hold up under large amounts of pressure. Some can withstand projectiles that weigh 9 pounds and travel at speeds as high as 34 mph. Like the windshield of your car, the glass may break but it won’t shatter. Instead, it’s designed to hold the broken pieces together using a clear plastic layer to keep them in place. These windows also provide more protection through a high-duty frame.

Impact-rated windows make coastal homeowners better prepared in the event of a storm. In our part of South Carolina, building codes require homeowners to have at least DP50-rated (short for Design Pressure 50 pounds per square foot) windows at minimum, and if they have these non-impact-rated windows, they must also have storm protection. It can be difficult to find a contractor who can put up storm protection right before a big storm because of high demand, which is another reason homeowners are better off choosing impact-rated windows.

The Advantages of Impact-Rated Windows

So if you don’t live in a coastal area at risk for hurricanes, why should you care about impact-rated windows? First, it protects you against other weather elements, such as hail and high winds, but the advantages go far beyond that.

Protection against Home Invaders: If these windows are designed to protect you from hurricane-force winds, you can imagine how hard it would be for a burglar to try to gain access to your home by breaking one.

Noise Reduction: Tune out those noisy neighbors (and their dogs!) The design of impact-rated windows means you’ll hear less of the not-so-great outdoors inside your home.

Energy Efficient: Compared to DP50-rated windows, impact-rated windows are better at insulating your home, so you’ll place less strain on your heater during the winter and your air conditioning during the summer. In fact, certain brands, such as Eco Window Systems, include a layer of resin between the panes to further improve insulation and reduce the thermal conduction of your window glass.

Prevention against Fading: With 99% protection from UV rays, impact-rated windows also mean that you can still enjoy ample amounts of natural light in your home – without suffering from fading furniture, curtains, and carpets.

It’s true that impact-rated windows are more expensive, usually about twice the price of DP50-rated windows, but you may actually end up saving money in the long run due to reduced energy costs, increasing the longevity of furniture, and avoiding the theft of your property as well as costly repairs due to the weather. You’ll also receive a discount on your home insurance, which can be between 2 and 25% depending on the number of windows and your insurance provider.

For many building a new home or remodeling their current one, impact-rated windows are an investment that just makes sense.