How to Protect Sliding Glass Doors in a Hurricane


If you’re a resident of a southern coastal state like Florida, Georgia, or the Carolinas, you’re likely accustomed to dangerous and intense hurricanes occurring throughout late spring and fall. These hazardous storms are not only frightening but can also be extremely damaging to your home’s windows and doors.

hurricane wind and rain

Without proper protection during a hurricane, your home’s windows and doors can be easily damaged by airborne debris and winds exceeding 120 miles per hour — leading to personal injury risk, property damage and widespread water damage. Worst case scenario — with broken windows and doors during a storm, the pressure inside your home can rise and destabilize the walls and roof of the structure.

While your home’s sliding glass door allows you quick, easy access to the pool and large scenic views of your beautifully sculpted landscaping, they’re a vulnerable point during harsh weather. To best avoid hurricane-related damages, protect your sliding glass door with these effective and dependable solutions before the storm hits.

High-Impact Resistant Glass

For many homes located throughout areas prone to regular hurricanes, local codes may already require high-impact, hurricane-rated glass and windows. If your house isn’t in an area with strict local regulations, remember that a quality storm protection solution for sliding glass doors is to install high-impact glass. It’s crafted with a plastic film situated between two panes of tempered glass. This product is very difficult to damage, but if it does ever break, it will stay in place and won’t shatter and become a personal injury hazard.

hurricane resistant sliding glass windows

Hurricane Film

A quicker and more cost-effective option for protecting sliding glass doors is applying hurricane film to your glass panes. During a storm, hurricane film will protect your glass from shattering if it’s impacted by incoming debris. This plastic covering can be applied to your sliding glass door and won’t affect its overall appearance. It will also stay in place year-round. However, while hurricane film prevents dangerous glass shards from forming after breakage, it won’t stop the window from being blown from the frame.

Storm Shutters

For permanent storm protection for sliding glass doors, consider installing storm shutters for your home. Available in roll-up and accordion designs, storm shutters are crafted from perforated or translucent materials to let light in and are typically made from reinforced fabric, aluminum-wrapped foam or aluminum. They’ll be permanently attached to the side of your home, so they can be quickly and easily set up when a storm unexpectantly hits.

storm shutter glass windows

Emergency Boarding

When many recall images of a hurricane, they think of homeowners nailing strips of plywood over their windows and doors. If a hurricane is expected in your area, emergency boarding is an effective solution for protecting your doors and windows against damage.

There are two different ways to board up your sliding glass door for hurricanes — preventatively or as recovery. If you have enough time to prepare your property for the incoming storm, you can call an emergency board up company to cover your sliding glass doors and windows with plywood, protecting the glass against wind damage and impacts.

If the hurricane hits when you least expect it and your windows are damaged during the storm, you can have recovery board up services cover the hole in your window and prevent additional damages until you can replace the glass. With board-up services for your sliding glass door, you can avoid unwanted damages, reduce liability risks and improve chances for insurance coverage.

emergency window board up

For Glass Repair, Replacement or Emergency Boarding Services, Trust Glass.com

When you need emergency boarding services before a hurricane or immediately following a brutal storm, trust Glass.com to help you find responsive, effective and empathetic glass professionals in your area. In addition to boarding, we can also help you locate experts to perform glass repair and replacement services. With Glass.com, you can request free estimates and quickly schedule services with professionals in your area. To learn more, call us at 888-85-GLASS or complete our online form.

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Glass.com attempts to provide accurate information but cannot be held liable for any information provided or omitted.  You should always work with a licensed, insured and reputable glass shop that can assess your specific needs and local building codes and offer professional services. Never attempt to cut, install, or otherwise work with glass yourself. All content is provided on an informational basis only.


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By Daniel Snow

Daniel Snow serves as the operations manager for Glass.com and is also a contributing editor. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management from George Mason University and has a background in the real estate industry. After high school, Daniel even worked at a family-owned glass shop for a short period of time and is an Auto Glass Safety Council certified installer.

In his free time, Daniel enjoys being outdoors, especially around the water where he can be found surfing, fishing, and boating. He has a passion for bringing old vehicles back to life and loves working with his hands to restore cars, boats, and motorcycles.


5 responses to “How to Protect Sliding Glass Doors in a Hurricane”

  1. Investing in storm shutters is a good way to provide protection to the windows in a house especially if someone lives in a hurricane-prone zone and has to protect their house on a daily basis. Now that I know why storm shutters are a thing around here, it’s a good idea to get them installed at the same time I need to replace some of my broken windows before the next hurricane hits.

  2. We bought a home in North Florida recently. It is great we get mild seasons instead of hot and raining or hot and dry. But in the first two week a Catagory
    3 hurricane hit. The previous owners had no shutters and cheap thin glass. The house had 2 sets of double sliding glass doors. We boarded them as best we could with 72 hours warning. I put the bottom screws through the aluminum door frame.
    One of the screws ripped through the frame and then another. That let in enough air to blow both door panes in. Though it was expensive we put French doors with hurricaine shutters. They give the same great view and are stronger and reliable. If you already must replace your glass door already it is not so expensive.

    • Valerie, there are emergency board up service providers who place plywood over windows and doors prior to extreme weather events. Plastic or fabric storm panels could be installed instead. There are also clear films that can be applied over the glass, usually referred to as security film. This film could help keep the glass in place in the event that it breaks. However, the best option is likely to consult with the apartment complex management to determine what they recommend and allow.

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