How to Store Your Storm Shutters and Panels

Storm panels and shutters provide you with protection from hurricanes and severe weather.  These safety solutions require installation, removal, and storage and are sometimes seen as cons to choosing to have panels as your hurricane protection. Knowing how to store your panels properly can make the process less frustrating.

Storing Storm Panels

Properly storing storm panels can help you reduce injuries and save storage space in your home.

Always Protect Yourself First

You should be wearing proper protection anytime you are going to be handling your hurricane panels. This is because storm panels are typically treated with oil to prevent any corrosion and prolong their life. Using proper gloves will help reduce any negative side effects that you could get from coming in contact with the coating.

It’s important to use caution when handling panels. Pay attention to all the potential risks, such as dropping the panels on yourself or a family member, cuts, or having the panels fall when being stored. Safety is always the number one priority.

Proper Storage Procedures

Storm panels should be stored in a flat area instead of storing them leaning against something vertically. The reason for this is to prevent the panels from falling onto people or your property and causing damage. The exception would be to store wooden shutters horizontally in order to prevent any warping.

You also shouldn’t store panels anywhere above your head. Aluminum and other metal panels can be very heavy and it can be dangerous to get them down when needed. You can also use a storage rack for your panels. The hurricane panel company you received your panels from may have some storage options for you.

Cover your shutters and panels with a tarp in order to keep them clean and free of dust. Remember to never store them in an area where they could be exposed to a lot of moisture since this can increase corrosion damage to your panels and result in your storm panels not functioning correctly.

Pay Attention to Order and Numbers When Storing Storm Panels

You should have panels that are numbered by position.  Pay close attention to these numbers when storing your panels in order to make installation quicker and easier. When you need to install or deploy your panels again, you may have limited time with a storm approaching so it’s important to make this process as easy as possible. You should install, remove, and then store the panels in the right order.

Don’t Forget About the Hardware

Keep in mind panels won’t be that helpful to you without the necessary hardware. Store the fastening screws and bolts and any other hardware in a safe place. It’s advised to have a system for your hardware storage in order to make installation easier in the future. An example you could use is to create a zipped bag to hold the hardware for each specific window so that none are misplaced.

Can You Leave Hurricane Shutters Up All Year?

Since you can’t get through hurricane season without proper hurricane protection, such as panels or shutters, some people put up or keep their hurricane shutters up all year in order to avoid the hassle of putting them up when a storm approaches or for other perceived safety reasons. Keeping hurricane shutters up and deployed when there isn’t a storm can be costly to you, as well as dangerous.

There are many municipalities that are starting to enforce codes for hurricane shutters that only allow the shutters to remain up for 14 days during the uncertain times of the storm. This is due to a few reasons, including that engaged shutters can interfere with fire rescue missions, and hurricane shutters that are used all the time require more maintenance and have a shorter lifespan. Additionally, if you engage your shutters for an extended time period, the public safety may be compromised as it can invite burglars into the home. When used correctly, hurricane shutters are one of the greatest investments you can make for your home, but proper storage furthers this investment.

The typical advice is to put up hurricane shutters when there is a hurricane watch issued for your area. A hurricane watch is issued days ahead of the storm based on when hurricane conditions are expected to start within 48 hours. This should still give you plenty of time to put your shutters on and get everything ready for the storm without having to damage your shutters by keeping them up throughout the entire hurricane season. With proper storage and labeling, deploying your shutters should not be a hassle.

The Importance of Proper Hurricane Protection Storage and Maintenance

Hurricane shutters and panels are often the first lines of defense against the dangers of hurricanes from debris, pounding rain, and harsh winds. Shutters are an important shield between the storm and yourself. Your shutters will be useless to you if they are not properly protected, maintained, and stored. Keeping your shutters maintained along with properly stored helps extend the life of your shutters and keeps your home protected.

Don’t wait for a hurricane watch to be issued to learn that your shutters weren’t stored correctly and are no longer in working condition. The sand, dirt, dust, and salt that are blown around can cause build-up, as well as corrosion. The functionality of your shutters will then be compromised.

Before hurricane season, it is advised to have your shutters inspected and serviced when necessary. This will make sure that shutters are in the right working condition and that there haven’t been any problems with storing during the offseason. Professional experts look for any dents, broken or missing slats, and broken cranks or motors. If there are issues uncovered during the inspection, you don’t want to put off fixing these issues since you never know when a hurricane is going to strike. Replace any broken parts or upgrade any existing parts that need it as soon as possible. This way, you can make sure you are getting the best return on your investment and have years of hurricane protection. While repairs cost money upfront, they will save you money in the long run. Having everything fixed and ready to go before a hurricane is at your door will ensure that you prevent costly damage to your property.

In order to properly maintain the shutters, you should operate them at regular intervals. This will help keep the track clear of any debris or dirt to make sure all moveable parts are operational.. You should never use any acidic or abrasive cleaners on your shutters and you also don’t want to power wash them to ensure the shutters are not damaged.

If you don’t properly store your hurricane shutters and panels then not only can they be damaged and useless to you in a hurricane, but there could also be damage to your home or injuries to yourself. Remember it’s important to store shutters based on the material used. In order to prevent the wood from warping, store panels upright, but to prevent shutters of other materials from falling, store them horizontally.

Contact Home Safety Solutions for Your Hurricane Protection Needs

At Home Safety Solutions, we have the solutions to help you with your hurricane protection. Whether it’s shutters or panels, not only can we help you find the right solution for your home, but we can also guide you through the process of installation and storing in order to protect your investment. Contact us today so we can help ensure t your property is ready before a storm hits and make sure that you have the right knowledge when it comes to storing your shutters!