In Florida, having strong windows and doors is crucial because of the intense weather that houses must face. Whether it be powerful rain, winds, or flying objects, you want to know that you’ll remain safe in your home when storms come. The main way to tell if a product is durable is to view its ratings. We’ll talk about understanding ratings for hurricane windows and doors to fill you in on what the numbers mean.
The Design Pressure (DP) rating system is one of two scales that a manufacturer may use to indicate how much pressure a window or door can take without breaking or leaking. When determining a DP rating, the company will measure how well the window or door can block out air and water, as well as how much physical force it can stand. The DP rating numbers typically go from 20 to 60, with increments of 5 in between each number. The higher the rating number, the stronger the window or door will be.
So, how do you interpret the DP number that you see? Here’s an example to make things clear. If you see a rating of 50, this means the product will remain intact when it faces up to 75 pounds of force per square foot or 200 mph winds. To put it simply, a product with a certain DP rating must remain undamaged when it is put under 150 percent of the pressure that the rating states. Additionally, the 50 DP rating indicates that the window or door should remain sealed completely against 25-mph air intrusion and 8 inches of rain hitting it at 50 mph.
The issue with DP ratings is that a product only needs to meet two out of these three standards to earn a particular DP number. Thus, companies may only communicate the highest scores their products earned in two of the corresponding tests while failing to mention the results for the third. Consequently, DP ratings aren’t always representative of true durability.
The shortcomings of DP ratings led to the creation of a newer system called the Performance Grade (PG) system. PG ratings ensure that a window or door has met the requirements of all three resistance tests, rather than just two. This removes the possibility for a manufacturer to hide the weakness of their product. It also uses the same numbering scale as the DP system, making it easy to compare the two and understand both ratings for hurricane windows and doors. For instance, a window may fall within the requirements for a 40 PG rating for water and air intrusion. However, if it can only stand up to the amount of structural load that a 30 PG rating would indicate, the company must mark it as a 30 PG rating.
Get impact-resistant windows and impact patio doors in Florida by contacting Florida Window & Door Solutions. We’ve built our sturdy products to withstand the hurricanes that our state often sees.