Can Hurricane Impact Windows Actually Break?

Hurricane impact windows were designed and developed to provide homeowners an added layer of protection against hurricane force winds and flying debris. Just like the safety glass on your vehicle, impact-resistant windows feature a 3-layer construction.  Basically, you have an inner layer of PVB (polyvinyl butyral) laminated between 2 layers of glass. When these 3 layers are laminated together (fused together using heat and pressure), it creates a stronger, more durable window.

Most of the time, impact glass is manufactured to withstand high winds to the maximum velocity of 200 mph in the hurricane zone. V&V Windows line of impact windows and doors have LowE glass or low emissivity glass. This helps to improve the energy efficiency. With the current situation, saving on your energy bills can be a big advantage apart from the dual protection of your house.

Protection from Shattering

Unlike standard windows that are easily shattered by flying debris and strong winds, the impact windows installed by V&V Windows are impact and shatter resistant because of the 3-layer construction discussed above. These 3 layers of glass and PVB are fitted into a sturdy aluminum frame for added durability and strength. Homeowners have a number of concerns during a hurricane or strong tropical storm, one of the main ones being high winds and flying debris.

When debris such as a piece of patio furniture or a tree limb hits a standard window, it will shatter the glass and blow it inward, causing anyone in its path to be seriously cut and injured. Conversely, impact windows are designed not to do this. While they may shatter, the lamination process ensures that the broken glass will not get dislodged from the frame and injure anyone. Furthermore, their resistance to shattering adds an extra layer of protection against burglaries and home invasions.

Can Impact Glass break?

V&V Windows’ hurricane impact windows were designed with personal safety in mind.  Before these products were developed, many of the injuries recorded during hurricane events were cuts and lacerations caused by flying shards of broken glass. The number of those injuries dropped significantly with the development and installation of hurricane impact windows. But the question remains, can impact glass break? In the simplest of terms, yes it can.

However, even though the glass can break, the inner layer of PVB material prevents the window structure from breaking down. So, even though it may get shattered on impact, the window itself will remain standing. In other words, shards of glass will not fly into your home despite the fact that it has shattered on impact. Housing code compliance requirements will vary based on where you live in Florida. As a result, impact windows are available in a range of designs and thicknesses.

For additional information on impact-resistant windows or to schedule an appointment for a free estimate, contact V&V Windows at your earliest convenience.