There's no force more powerful than Mother Nature, but these five tips can help you protect your home from wind damage
Your home should be the ultimate haven, a refuge to keep your family safe from all harm. But that doesn’t mean your home is invulnerable to wind and storm damage. In fact, the cost to repair wind damage to your home can range anywhere from $2,000 on the low end to more than $15,000 on the high end, depending on the type and extent of the damage. On average, though, you can expect to spend around $9,000, especially if you’re facing repairs to your roof, windows, or siding.
But you’re by no means powerless to the forces of nature. We’ll show you the five best wind mitigation tips for protecting your home from wind damage.
1. Identify Your Home’s Vulnerable Areas
Whether you’re battening down the hatches to prepare for a major storm or you’re just trying to expect the unexpected, the first thing you should do to protect your home from wind damage is a visual sweep of the house, both from the outside and the inside.
Look for areas that are most prone to wind damage. Generally, this includes your roof, especially your shingles, gutters, doors, windows, and siding.
You’ll also need to pay particular attention to anything the wind could pick up and turn into a projectile. This includes patio furniture, grills, and other objects. Either bring these possible missiles inside or secure them with strong cables or chains.
2. Reinforce Doors and Windows
You can install steel or aluminum storm shutters for windows, French doors, and sliding glass doors to prevent projectiles from shattering them. If you live along the coast, hurricane shutters offer great long-term protection. Hurricane shutters cost about $3,850 on average, which pales in comparison to the cost of severe storm damage.
You might install steel or aluminum storm shutters for windows, French doors, and sliding glass doors to prevent projectiles from shattering them. The cost of storm shutters generally averages between $50 and $60 per square foot of window.
And because garage doors can cause significant structural damage to the entire home in the event of a storm, it may be a good idea to hire a garage door company. They can help you identify any potential problems with your door and advise you on how best to secure it against wind damage.
3. Secure Your Shingles
When you’re preparing for a storm or simply trying to protect your home against unexpected wind damage, you’ll want to pay particular attention to your roof’s shingles. Loose shingles can not only become dangerous projectiles in heavy winds, but they can also leave your roof vulnerable to rain and hail damage.
And that can mean significant repair costs. In fact, the average cost to repair a wind-damaged roof is around $700.
So to protect yourself, you’ll need to secure any loose shingles. Use at least six nails or staples per shingle to help them stand up to the most punishing winds. It’s also a good idea to install a waterproof underlayment if you don’t always have one in place.
To get the most secure fit, you’ll also want to place your nails and staples at the edges of the shingle, where your shingles meet and overlap.
4. Secure Metal Siding and Roofing
Damaging winds aren’t just hazardous for your shingles. They can also tear away entire roofing and siding panels, making it easier for wind to enter the home. So, to protect your home against wind damage, be sure to secure metal roofing and siding to the frame of the home with exposed fasteners, such as screws and bolts, or with concealed clips.
Generally, you’ll get a more secure hold if you position fasteners close together at the edges of the panels. Take care to cover all siding edges, such as those along the corner of the home, with a metal cap or molding so wind can’t work its way beneath the siding.
5. Trim Trees
Perhaps the most significant risk for wind damage comes not from your home, but from your beloved landscaping. Even healthy and robust trees can topple onto your home in strong winds. And if you have weak and unhealthy trees close to your property, the chances of the wind bringing them crashing down are even greater.
So, at the very least, you’ll need to remove overhanging and weak limbs and branches. Ideally, though, you would remove any trees that sit uncomfortably close to your home. Make sure trees sit far enough away from your home to prevent damage if they fall. Generally, a tree should sit further away from the home than the height of the tree when fully grown. The cost to remove a tree will depend on its size.
By following the steps above, you can help protect your home from wind and storm damage, giving you and your family peace of mind.