The best hurricane windows can be the difference between your home experiencing minor damage in a severe storm – or being destroyed by penetrating wind and water that can lead to structural damage, even collapse.
When it comes to choosing the best windows for your home, this is your guide to the best impact windows, aka hurricane windows. It discusses what to look for in windows designed for high velocity hurricane zones (HVHZ) plus the best hurricane window manufacturers and the lines they offer.
Top Rated and Best Rated Hurricane Impact Windows
- Andersen Windows & Doors: Stormwatch Coastal Windows
- CGI Impact-Resistant Windows & Doors: Sentinel by CGI
- Loewen: StormForce
- Pella: Hurricane Shield
- PGT: WinGuard Hurricane Windows & Doors
- Simonton: StormBreaker Plus
- Weather Shield: Premium Coastal Windows & Doors
- Marvin: Coastal Solutions
- Jeld-Wen ImpactGard Protection for Windows
- MI Windows and Doors: StormArmor Impact-Resistant Package
Let’s get started.
What Makes a Good Hurricane Impact Window?
Hurricane windows are specially designed to withstand heavy impact and high-pressure force without shattering. They’re ideal for hurricane zones and locations in the interior of the country where high-speed straight-line winds cause severe damage. Hurricane windows, or impact windows, also offer improved security against potential break-ins and home invasions.
The most important component of a hurricane window is the layer of plastic or polymer material sandwiched between two glass layers. This is known as laminated glass. This laminated layer has a tear-strength up to five times stronger than that found in standard laminated glass. It prevents the window from shattering, and keeps wind, glass, and debris from entering the home. A similar glass technology is used for car windshields.
How Much Do Hurricane Windows Cost?
The average cost for a hurricane window is $62 per square foot, or approximately $1,085 per window for the most popular size. This number can really vary depending on what manufacturer you’re buying from, and what size and shape your windows are.
The Best Hurricane Windows Rated by Brand
These are the best rated hurricane window manufacturers and their impact window / hurricane window lines.
Andersen Windows & Doors: Stormwatch Coastal Windows
Andersen is a household name in quality windows. The brand’s Stormwatch series is specially designed to meet the building code requirements in coastal areas, which can be tough to do. An attractive feature of the Stormwatch windows is their hidden structural reinforcements, which adds strength to the windows without compromising beauty.
Andersen Stormwatch hurricane windows meet the most stringent AAMA (American Architectural Manufacturers Association) testing for windspeed and impact. Yes, they’re a little pricier than some options, but when it comes to the combination of good looks and secure protection against storm damage, Andersen Stormwatch coastal windows are hard to beat. Take a closer look.
Available in these series: Stormwatch windows aren’t their own line. Rather, like Jeld Wen ImpactGard windows and others, it is technology that can be used in Andersen A-Series and E-Series windows.
Frame Material: The A-Series window frames feature wood interiors and Andersen’s patented Fibrex exteriors. Fibrex is a composite material made of PVC and recycled ponderosa pine.
Series-E Andersen windows have wood interiors with aluminum-clad exteriors.
Average Installed Cost: $1,245
CGI Impact-Resistant Windows & Doors: Sentinel by CGI
These are one of the best impact windows because hurricane windows are the company’s specialty. It isn’t a sideline or “extra” for CGI.
Their goal for the Sentinel line is to offer energy efficiency and impact durability at an affordable price. Watch them being put together here.
Types: CGI Sentinel hurricane windows are produced in a nice range of types: Casement, outward-projecting awning, single-hung, fixed and designer fixed plus horizontal windows fitted with rollers for smooth performance. Complete your home impact windows project with Sentinel sliding doors and/or exterior French doors.
Frame Material: Aluminum
Average Installed Cost: $985
In the StormForce series, Loewen focuses on code compliance and durability in the most extreme climates. They meet or exceed the International Residential Code, Florida Building Code, Coastal codes, and even the strict Dade County certification.
Types: Among the best hurricane windows, Loewen StormForce impact windows are produced in casement, awning, double-hung, single-hung and picture/fixed windows. StormForce patio, terrace and sliding doors are manufactured too.
Frame Material: Douglas fir wood interior standard, which the choice of extruded aluminum cladding
Average Installed Cost: $1,015
Pella: Hurricane Shield
Pella’s Hurricane Shield series features products with laminated glass that protect your home from 99.7% of harmful UV rays. Their windows are also tough, and many products in the Hurricane Shield line can even be used in the high-velocity hurricane zone(HVHZ), as well as other severe climates. They pass Florida Building Code (FBC) requirements and those of Miami-Dade and Broward Counties.
Like all the best hurricane windows, Pella Hurricane Shield series windows and patio doors are constructed with laminated, shatterproof glass. As a bonus, they are Energy Star certified and might qualify you for an energy rebate from your local utility provider.
Types: Casement, awning, single-hung and sliding plus patio doors.
Frame Material: Vinyl
Average Installed Cost: $1,090
PGT: WinGuard Hurricane Windows & Doors
The WinGuard series from PGT is one of the best-selling brands of impact-resistant windows and doors in the United States. They hold the most Miami-Dade certifications in the industry plus other standard HVHZ and local building code requirements for coastal areas. The company claims that they have never received a report of impact failure in any of their WinGuard products.
Types: Casement, awning, horizontal/roller, single-hung, fixed and architectural shapes in both materials. A double-hung window is offered in the vinyl series. Sliding and French doors are produced too.
Frame Material: WinGuard has an aluminum option and a vinyl option
Average Installed Cost: $1,165
Simonton: StormBreaker Plus
Simonton’s StormBreaker Plus windows and doors with KeepSafe maximum laminated glass are reported to reduce unwanted outside noise by 50%, keeping the inside of your house peaceful and quiet when you’d like it to be.
The StormBreaker Plus series from Simonton Windows has the benefit of offering a vast number of window shapes and sizes, as well as plenty of color options to fit your home.
Types: Two casement styles, double-hung, awning, rolling/sliding and a nice array of fixed shapes. StormBreaker Plus sliding and garden doors are also offered.
Frame Material: Vinyl
Average Installed Cost: $940
Weather Shield: Premium Coastal Windows & Doors
Weather Shield offers some of the best warranties available on their products, which makes them an attractive consideration for the best hurricane windows for your home. The company confidently backs its windows because of the tough PVB plastic interior layer in its laminated glass.
When you’re buying an expensive product made to withstand huge amounts of pressure, you want to know that the company who made the product is backing up their promises with a long-lasting warranty. Weather Shield also emphasizes energy efficiency in their designs, while offering an impressive selection of 7 wood interiors and about 20 factory finishes.
Types: Casement, awning, double-hung and fixed windows plus hinged patio doors.
Frame Material: Aluminum-clad Wood
Average Installed Cost: $1,195
Marvin: Coastal Solutions
Marvin is an old and well-respected company that really knows the window business. One of the attractive features of the Coastal Solutions collection is that they offer a custom wood exterior option, specially designed to match the building style of older coastal homes. The Marvin Coastal Solutions series uses corrosion-resistant hardware, and is built to withstand even the harshest weather, so they meet the rigorous AAMA 2605 standard for extruded aluminum cladding.
The Coast Solutions technology can be ordered on Marvin Ultimate and Marvin Elevate windows.
Types: The options in the Ultimate Series are several casement, awning, and double-hung styles plus fixed/picture windows. The Elevate windows with Marvin Coastal Solutions glass are casement, awning, double-hung and fixed.
Did you know? The Marvin hurricane / impact door options are the best of any brand. Coastal Solutions glass and structural technology are offered on bi-fold, sliding and multi-sliding and several styles of French doors.
Frame Material: The Marvin Ultimate windows have wood interiors with aluminum-clad wood exteriors. Elevate windows have wood interiors with fiberglass exteriors.
Average Installed Cost: $1,325
Jeld-Wen ImpactGard Protection for Windows
Jeld-Wen doesn’t make a hurricane window series, but many of Jeld-Wen’s windows can be fitted with ImpactGard glass. ImpactGard is not a window line itself, but an upgrade that can be installed in Jeld-Wen window lines, such as the Premium Atlantic coastal window line.
ImpactGard technology works by using glass that is laminated with a layer of flexible material, much like the other brands considered the best impact windows. This material keeps the glass from breaking apart in the case of a severe storm, protecting the home from dangerous pressure or debris. Jeld-Wen’s ImpactGard window protection has been tested to withstand a nine-pound object striking the window at 34 miles per hour.
ImpactGard technology also reduces outside noise and protects the home from harmful UV rays.
Here is a short video explaining how ImpactGard works.
Types: Premium Atlantic, the most popular type of Jeld Wen windows with ImpactGard, are produced in casement, awning, single-hung, sliding, fixed and fixed-shape windows.
Frame Material: Aluminum
Average Installed Cost: $1,050
MI Windows and Doors: StormArmor Impact-Resistant Package
Using a technology that is similar to Jeld-Wen’s ImpactGard, MI’s StormArmor is a window protection upgrade. StormArmor can be used to enhance a selection of both aluminum and vinyl-framed windows from MI, and offers protection from hurricane-force winds and severe storms. StormArmor works to keep wind, debris, and water out of your home during hurricane season. StormArmor products are also protected by a 10-year warranty, so the buyer can have peace of mind about purchasing this protection.
Did you know? MI Windows made CertainTeed-branded windows for several years, but no longer. There are currently no CertainTeed windows available.
Frame Material: StormArmor is offered for both MI vinyl and aluminum windows.
Styles: All MI Windows styles.
Average Installed Cost: $1,100
Having the right impact windows during a severe storm can make all the difference. In addition to protecting your home during a bad storm, hurricane windows also provide the benefits of UV protection, outdoor noise reduction, and even higher security from home intruders. Don’t let your home go unprotected this hurricane season! Do what you can to find the best hurricane windows for your home.