Hurricane shutters protect your windows during hurricane season. To ensure that they can perform to their full extent, it is necessary to take care of your shutters in the offseason when the threat of hurricanes is less imminent. The last thing you want is to have issues deploying your shutters at the last moment before the storm is upon you. You need your hurricane shutters in proper working order. Depending on the type of shutters you have, there are some simple things you can do.
Maintaining Accordion Shutters
If you have accordion shutters, you need to keep the tracks clear by cleaning and lubricating them. You should wash accordion shutters using warm water and soap before letting them fully dry. You don’t want to use a pressure washer, abrasive, or harsh cleaners on your accordion shutters, as these can cause damage. Clean shutters in both the folded and open positions to make sure you get rid of any debris that could be trapped. Let your shutters dry in an open position to prevent water and other debris from getting caught in any of the crevices. We recommend deploying your accordion shutters once a month to ensure optimal performance. When it comes to lubricating the shutters, it’s important to choose the right kind of lubricant. You should look for a silicone spray lubricant at the hardware store. Avoid using an oily lubricant, such as WD-40 since this can make salt, dirt, and debris build up faster.
Maintaining Roll Down Shutters
Build-ups such as sand, salt, and dirt can be make them more difficult to deploy or close when you need them most. Just like with accordion shutters, roll-down shutters need to be cleared of debris in order to keep the tracks working properly. You should use spray silicone lubricant on the inside of the tracks and make sure to spray all the corners and crevices. It is important to roll the shutters up and down three times in order to ensure smoother future operations. Wash the shutters using a hose, not a pressure washer, to get the debris from the hood without damaging the shutters. We recommend opening and closing them once a month to ensure optimal performance. As is the case with any shutters, you want to make sure they are completely dry before you roll them up for storage.
Maintaining Colonial and Bahama Shutters
Colonial and Bahama shutters are permeant fixtures on the home they need to be maintained in order to keep them functioning reliably and looking like new to not detract from the aesthetics of your home. When washing the tracks and shutters use mild soap and water, then rinse them clear.
Maintaining Storm Panels
Storm panels are maintained similarly to shutters. Wash the panels as you would the shutters and allow them to dry before storing them in a covered area. Use gloves when handling your storm panels and then store them flat on wooden blocks in order to keep them off the ground and dry.
Maintaining Hurricane Fabric Panels
Inspect them to make sure there are functioning correctly. Additionally, inspect them to make sure they do not have any holes or tears. The benefits of hurricane fabric panels is how low maintenance they are.
Maintaining Storm Screens
After use, you should wash your storm screen to remove any debris and dirt. Rinse the storm screens with clean water and, if you notice any stains, use a scrub brush and gentle laundry detergent in those areas. In order to prevent any mildew on the screen, make sure they are dried completely before you store them. Fold or roll your hurricane screens and then keep them in storage until it is necessary to use them again.
Inspect your shutters quarterly
It’s necessary to have storm shutters inspected yearly before hurricane season, even if you are keeping up with maintenance and proper storage. This is true no matter what type of hurricane shutters you have. This will give you a chance to make sure everything is in working order before you are faced with a storm. Doing this annually before storm season gives you the proper time to get your home’s protection replaced or repaired as needed, so you are not without shutters when you need them the most.
Fixing Problems You Find on Hurricane Shutters
If you do find any issues with your hurricane shutters when having them inspected, you don’t want to put off having these issues fixed. If you find that the crank or motor that powers roll-down shutters are broken then you need to have it replaced right away, otherwise, you risk being unable to deploy the shutters in time with an impending storm. You could use this opportunity to upgrade motors and choose one with a switch or remote sensor in order to make hurricane prep even easier.
Should You Repair or Replace?
When it comes to hurricane shutters, you don’t want to have DIY shutters like plywood and you certainly don’t want to make any DIY repairs either. If you have cracked, dented, bent or broken shutters then make sure to get them fixed before the next storm. In a majority of cases, repairing your shutters is possible, depending on the kind of damage you have and the type of hurricane shutters you are using. A repair can save you money so see if this is an option for you before jumping into a replacement. However, sometimes repairs cannot be completed and a replacement will be required. If the shutter is broken beyond fixing, this is certainly something you don’t want to mess with yourself. If it’s the offseason then you may be able to wait a little bit to get a replacement, especially if you can’t fit it into your current budget. However, if hurricane season is coming up then it’s essential to get the shutter replaced quickly in order to prevent any injuries or property damage to your home. Even though hurricane shutters are expensive, putting off a repair or replacement could mean more costly problems down the road, especially if a hurricane hits your area.
Hiring a Professional for Inspection Can Save You Trouble and Time
A professional inspection will help you find any cranks or motors that aren’t working and check for broken or missing slats, as well as any dents. While it’s entirely possible that you are able to do this yourself, using a professional can be helpful if you don’t have the knowledge or time to ensure that this gets done correctly. Protecting your family and home is a priority for hurricane season, and Home Safety Solutions’ professionals are here to help!