By the time a raging hurricane arrives at your doorstep, it's already too late to worry about installing anything other than plywood as temporary protection for your windows and doors. If you live in hurricane country, installing hurricane shutters should be one of your top priorities before a storm ever shows up on the radar. However, there are many hurricane shutter choices available, so you'll need to carefully research your choice. One very popular option is the rolling hurricane shutter. This consists of a metal or polycarbonate shutter that rolls down from a an enclosed box attached to the exterior of your home. Here are a few of the pros and cons of this particular style.
Strength and Security
One of the major benefits of a rolling shutter is that it offers unbeatable strength and protection from the elements. This also extends to home security and protection against break-ins. Rolling shutters are typically made from metal or polycarbonate, both very durable and long-lasting materials.
Ease of Operation
Of all the hurricane shutter options, rolling shutters may be the easiest to operate. When not in use, the shutter panels roll up into an enclosed and unobtrusive box. There are two options for deploying and retracting them: mechanical and electronic. Mechanical rolling shutters use a variety of cranks such as mechanical, strap, and pole cranks, and some simply require manual action to accomplish the job. Electronic shutters use a motor to open and close and also have the option for a battery-operated backup system. Some electronic shutters also have a manual override option that allows you to operate it by hand. They can easily be raised and lowered by one person, so they are ideal for people who live alone.
Once these shutters are installed, they are permanently affixed and roll up into an enclosed box above the window when not in use. They require no further installation and no storage space for attachable panels like storm panels.
The strength, dependability, and ease of operation of rolling shutters doesn't come cheap. Rolling shutters typically cost between $350-$1200 per window plus installation. While that's certainly an investment, for many people the cost is very much worth the protection, especially considering that losing your windows during a hurricane can lead to bigger and much more expensive problems and insurance headaches.
The electronic push-button operated rolling shutters also require a backup system powered by battery so that they can be operated during a power outage.