Take a look at how frames can affect impact door strength, which materials are most dependable, and why impact doors are the best choice for your property.
Florida building code requires each property in storm-prone areas like Miami Beach to have hurricane protection on all the windows and doors. To stay in compliance with the building code and to reduce the amount of damage incurred in the event of a hurricane or tropical storm, it's vital to invest in frames that enhance impact door strength.
While plywood covers, steel panels, or metal bars might look solid, they are not designed to withstand the impact of hurricane-force winds and might buckle under pressure. A door's frame is the most fundamental part of any door as it lays the foundation for the door’s strength, more so for impact doors that are designed with areas like Miami in mind.
Why are Frames so Important to Impact Door Strength?
A door frame is a framework of horizontal and vertical members to which a door is fixed.
Door frames play vital roles that ought not to be overlooked. For starters, the frame’s strength and durability directly affect the impact door strength and longevity. A week frame is more likely to wear out much faster and also poses a security risk as burglars wouldn’t require a lot of force to break-in.
Door frames provide sealing around the door, thus insulating the property. They also hold outside elements such as drafts of wind, rainwater, and dust at bay and prevent them from getting inside.
Why are Impact Doors the Best Choice for Your Property in Miami?
Impact doors, otherwise known as hurricane doors are constructed using elements and technologies that have been used for many decades in the automotive industry to offer protection from impact and severe weather.
Impact doors feature a unique type of glass called impact glass. This product is made by binding two thick layers of glass using ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) or polyvinyl butyral (PVB).
EVA and PVB give impact glass a unique property whereby it forms a ‘spider-web’ pattern upon strong impact - as opposed to shattering as normal glass would. This is a game-changing property because it gives impact glass the strength to protect your home or property from flying debris during violent weather. Learn more about the science behind impact doors here.
The benefits of impact doors, however, go beyond severe weather protection. Below are a few other benefits you will gain by installing impact doors on your property:
- Energy efficiency: Impact doors feature laminated glass and, in some cases,, inert gas interlayers. This provides a substantial degree of insulation from heat loss or unwanted heat gain during summer. The layers also provide much-needed acoustic insulation to people living close to busy streets.
- Protection from UV rays: The glass used in impact doors can be coated using a low-emissivity film which reflects away UV rays from the sun. This protects your furniture, wall coverings, and floors from sun damage.
- Impact doors and impact windows are generally more robust than other products in the market, meaning that they require an absurd amount of force to break, effectively protecting your home from burglars.
- Because of the increased protection offered, many insurance companies in Miami offer discounted insurance premiums on properties that feature impact doors and windows, saving you more money in the long term.
Which Materials are Most Dependable for Impact Door Frames?
Being the foundation upon which a door is laid, it’s crucial to find the best quality and material for your door frame. Traditionally, door and window frames were made from timber or wooden materials. However, wooden frames aren't the most effective because they require more maintenance and are susceptible to rotting in humid conditions.
To overcome those drawbacks, tougher and lower maintenance alternatives like vinyl and aluminum have been adopted in the construction of front doors and entry doors frames.
Vinyl is the most popular material for impact door frames. Despite offering a limited selection of colors, vinyl bears several desirable advantages as discussed below:
- It requires less maintenance. All you need is to wipe down the frames using a cloth rag every few months.
- It can withstand heavy impact from airborne projectiles without denting
- It's less likely to expand and contract across seasons which could compromise the door’s energy efficiency
A relatively new alternative to vinyl, aluminum also comes with a lot of pros. The most notable one is longevity. When properly installed, aluminum door frames can last up to 25 years without needing replacement.
Aluminum can withstand extreme weather conditions and takes an immense amount of force to dent or puncture. If visual appearance ranks high in your considerations, aluminum will be your best choice because it comes in a wide array of colors and designs.
Many people assume that aluminum reduces impact doors’ heat efficiency because it is a metal. While that might be true, the heat transfer sustained is negligible when compared to the amount of insulation offered by the overall impact door design and construction.
Learn even more about the differences between aluminum and vinyl frames, along with what Alco recommends, in this article.
Contact Alco Windows and Doors to Learn How Frames Affect Impact Door Strength
If installed incorrectly, door frames can leave gaps that allow air to flow in and out of the property. Such air gaps are a great compromise to energy efficiency and can blow up your energy bills. Such gaps and cracks also reduce your impact door strength resulting in more maintenance costs.
At Alco Doors and Windows, we endeavor to provide reliable services to all our customers in and out of Miami. Our team has over 3 decades of combined experience which we leverage to ensure that all impact door and impact windows installations are done to the highest standard.