Should You Choose Impact Windows for Your Home?

Katie Smith
Written by Katie Smith
Updated January 21, 2022
woman and child sitting near window
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The right windows truly make an impact on your home

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Windows help brighten up your home and let you gaze outside, but their purpose is more than just aesthetic. Windows also protect your home from the elements, so choosing ones that can stand up to rough weather is crucial.

This guide explores how much impact windows cost, how they protect your house from damage, and the best types to choose for your home. 

What Are Impact Windows?

As the name implies, impact windows are made with impact-resistant glass and treated with ethylene-vinyl. They are far stronger than non-impact windows— some can even withstand winds up to 200 mph.

How Can They Protect My Home Better Than Non-Impact Windows?

Windows are one of the most vulnerable items in our home. Unlike regular windows, impact windows are tested and built to withstand high winds, branches, and other objects that get propelled during a storm. 

The International Hurricane Protection Association reports that once a window is broken or damaged during a storm, air pressure can cause major structural damage.

While Impact windows may still shatter if something hits them, they will remain attached to the frame and won’t send broken glass flying into your home. 

How Do I Choose Impact Windows?

pillows next to window
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Impact windows are put through rigorous tests and can only be certified as an impact product if they can meet hurricane codes by International Building Code. Make sure to look for certificates to see which standards the windows have passed before choosing.

What Are the Types of Impact Windows? 

There are three types of Impact windows: 

  • Aluminum: These are the strongest option, though the most expensive. They are lightweight, can be recycled, and don't require painting or much upkeep.

  • Wood: Wood impact windows are very energy efficient but keep in mind that the wood will eventually rot, and the windows will need painting. 

  • Vinyl: Vinyl windows are highly efficient and low maintenance.

You also need to decide if you want laminated windows or insulated laminated windows. Experts recommend opting for the insulated version, which has an additional pane of glass to provide warmth if you live in a colder climate.

How Much Do Impact Windows Cost?

worker installing new impact windows
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Impact windows are an investment and can cost about $40 to $55 per square foot. The average cost is about $8,200 per household, with installation prices ranging from $2,700 to $14,000, depending on which type you choose.

If you replace your existing non-impact windows, you will also need to replace your entire window frame. Impact windows need a strong structure and reinforcements to work properly. Once your impact windows are in place, there is no need for storm shutters or screens.

Other Benefits to Having Impact Windows

Not only will impact windows keep the debris out and your home safe, they also buffer sounds which can make your home or building more pleasant if you live in a busy area. 

Also, impact windows save on energy and insurance costs and make it harder for someone to break into your home. They also protect your belongings with an extra UV shield which can keep furniture and rugs from fading.

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