Posted by: Eurex Shutters
When it comes to hurricane protection there are a lot of options to pick from. If you live in an area that is prone to hurricanes, like Southwest Florida the one thing that is certain is that proper hurricane protection is critical in order to protect your home and family. But with multiple options of hurricane shutters and impact windows the choices may seem endless.
One choice that is pretty popular for protecting your Florida home and loved ones is hurricane fabric panels. We’ll discuss the Pros & Cons of Hurricane Fabric Panels so you can decide if it is the right choice for your home.
You may also like article on The Pros & Cons of Roll Down Shutters.
Table of contents
- What is hurricane fabric? What’s it made from?
- How do you install hurricane fabric panels?
- Pros & Cons of Hurricane Fabric
- Pro: Hurricane fabric panels are quick & easy to deploy and remove
- Pro: Hurricane fabric panels are affordable
- Pro: Hurricane fabric are easy and compact to store
- Pro: Hurricane fabric panels have minimal effect on your home’s appearance
- Pro: Let the light shine into your home
- Pro: Safer to handle
- Pro: Easier to handle
- Con: Hurricane panels have to be installed before each storm
- Con: They are compact but they still require storage
- Con: Color choices are limited
- How to choose the right product for you
What is hurricane fabric? What’s it made from?
Hurricane fabric is a type of non-permanent hurricane protection. Each ArmorPanel Hurricane Fabric Panel is made from DuPont KEVLAR® reinforced, soft-sided fabric. DuPont KEVLAR® is an extremely tough yet flexible, light-weight and impact resistant fabric. Even though it is lightweight the Dupont website says Kevlar has a “tensile strength 10X greater than steel on an equal weight basis.” That’s pretty amazing, especially when you consider that the panels weigh a fraction of steel or aluminum alternatives of the same size.
So how do they work? Similar to other hurricane shutters hurricane fabric panels cover the vulnerable parts of your home, such as your windows and doors. They are an alternative to traditional metal and aluminum storm panels.
Hurricane fabric panels are also more affordable vs many other types of hurricane protection. No wonder why this product is so popular in Florida.
If you need a comparison of cost between different options make sure you read our guide on hurricane shutters cost.
How do you install hurricane fabric panels?
ArmorPanel Hurricane Fabric attaches with a grommet and wing nut installation, similar that of storm panels without the heavy lifting. This makes the installation relatively easy because of their light-weight nature.
Pros & Cons of Hurricane Fabric
Below are some of the Pros & Cons of hurricane fabric panels.
Pro: Hurricane fabric panels are quick & easy to deploy and remove
ArmorPanel hurricane fabric panels install relatively quickly and easily on your home. This is thanks to their simple grommet and wing nut installation system. Hurricane fabric is easier to handle and install vs. metal and aluminum alternatives given its ultra-lightweight nature.
Pro: Hurricane fabric panels are affordable
ArmorPanel Hurricane Fabric Panels are priced similar to metal and aluminum storm panels. That is pretty impressive considering their benefits vs those options. Fabric panels are priced considerably lower than permanent shutters.
How expensive is hurricane fabric? You can expect to pay around $17/SQFT.
They also offer other cost savings. First, you can save money on installing them every storm. Most individuals can install them themselves due to their lightweight. So you can save some money installing them yourself vs. hiring an installation service like with metal panels.
If you are looking for an affordable form of hurricane protection then ArmorPanel fabric panels might be a good choice.
Pro: Hurricane fabric are easy and compact to store
Say goodbye to the storage unit rental and/or take back your shed or garage. ArmorPanel hurricane fabric panels can be rolled, laid flat, or hung up for easy, compact storage. They can be stored at a fraction of the space requied by metal or aluminum panels.
Pro: Hurricane fabric panels have minimal effect on your home’s appearance
Fabric panels only get installed when a storm is coming. Why is that a benefit? Because there are no exterior housings, tracks, awnings, etc. They have minimal effect on your home’s appearance. In other words, it is a good option if you don’t like the look of hurricane shutters or don’t want to change the look of your home.
Pro: Let the light shine into your home
ArmorPanel panels are translucent so they allow light to shine into your home. This is a benefit vs metal and aluminum panels that black out your home. You will reduce the need to have candles, flashlights or a generator if the power goes out.
Pro: Safer to handle
ArmorPanel hurricane panels have smooth, safe edges. One of the drawbacks of metal and aluminum (and even polycarbonate) storm panels is your risk of cutting yourself when handling. ArmorPanel is a soft fabric with smooth edges.
Pro: Easier to handle
Hurricane fabric is a fraction of the weight of metal and aluminum storm panels. This makes the installation process easier. You can still pay someone to install them, but you might not need to because of their lightweight nature and easy to attach fastening system. This will save you energy (and the added cost of installation).
Con: Hurricane panels have to be installed before each storm
Hurricane fabric panels need to be installed and uninstalled for every storm. This is a drawback vs. permanent hurricane shutters. If you are considering hurricane fabric panels vs. metal or aluminum panels then there is not much difference. And they are easier to install than traditional panels because of their lightweight nature. But if you are looking for a hurricane protection option that does not require installation and removal before and after each storm these may not be the best option for you. In that case, you may want to choose a permanently installed option, such as roll down hurricane shutters, accordion shutters, etc.
If you don’t know what permanent shutters are make sure you check out our article explaining what are permanent hurricane shutters.
Con: They are compact but they still require storage
Like their metal and aluminum counterparts fabric panels do require storage. Yes, they take up less space then other panels. But you do still have to store them somewhere. So make sure you have enough space to tuck them away or you may have to find another solution.
Con: Color choices are limited
ArmorPanel Hurricane Fabric Panels come in one standard color, which is natural. This is not a major issue. That’s because they are not installed on your home all the time. But, it is still something to note.
How to choose the right product for you
There are many options when it comes to storm protection. Choosing the best hurricane shutters for your Florida home depends on your needs and preferences. Do your research and understand the pros and cons of each option. Make sure you are taking the steps necessary to protect your home and family, regardless of which product you choose. It’s also a good idea to research how to prepare your house & family for a hurricane.