Protecting openings like doors and windows is one of the key
elements of making a building resistant to high wind. That's
why modern codes in hurricane country require impact-resistant
glazing on doors and windows — or, alternatively,
Protecting older houses built before those requirements
entered the codes, however, is a challenge, especially if the
house has big expanses of vulnerable openings, or exposed
structures like a sheltered patio or a pool lanai.
One interesting solution is installing hurricane fabric
— tough, woven polypropylene developed for geotextile
applications that has enough strength to stop high wind and
flying debris. Several companies offer the product, along with
technical support on mounting and installing the material.
One early entry is a product called
Here's our old buddy
Vila taking a look at Armor Screen being installed on a
Florida home project.
And here's a
video showing the screen taking multiple hits from a flying
two-by-four in testing for large-missile impact resistance.
Another company with an informative website is
Fabric. Check out this video from the 2007 landfall of
Super Typhoon Krosa in Japan. With 120-mph gusts outside, one
of Hurricane Fabric's Japan techs sits calmly on the screened
patio in a T-shirt, with a candle burning and potted plants
resting peacefully nearby in their pots. As the video
demonstrates, fabric protection has the advantage of admitting
breathable air and visible light, without letting in heavy rain
Judge for yourself — Coastal Connection can't
verify any of these product claims or comment on the
installation details. But at first glance, hurricane protection
fabric certainly appears to be an interesting