For any property owner or manager in South Florida planning some sort of renovation, it is vital lớn understand the Florida Building Code (FBC) và its requirements. TheFlorida Building Code was created in 2000 in response khổng lồ Hurricane Andrew in 1992. Before then, counties & cities could create theirbuilding codes so long as they met state minimums. However, Hurricane Andrew demonstrated how lax codes or poor enforcement could endanger lives & property và create a statewide disaster. Municipalities can make amendments that are stricter than the statewide code, but no local code can be lesser than the current edition of the FBC.
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Florida Building Code Explained: Window và Door Replacement Requirements
The Florida Building Code is updated every 3 years khổng lồ accommodate changes in climates, the housing market, & building material industries. The newest version of the FBC will go into effect January of 2021, and it will be referred lớn as Florida Building Code 2020 (FBC 2020), as it will be created this year. FBC 2020 will be the 7thedition of the Florida Building Code.
A common question among Florida property owners is "Are impact windows required in Florida?" The short answer is no. However, when it comes lớn replacing or installing new windows and doors, the FloridaBuildingCode has very specific requirements as to lớn what is acceptable. According to FBC 2017, the version currently being enforced in our state, all glazed openings within a structure need khổng lồ either be impact-resistant or use impact coverings (like shutters). Some single-family homes can get approvalfor using plywood, but there must be pre-approved fastening systems in place.
All window and door projects, both replacement và new construction, need to be permitted with the local municipality. Therefore, no matter the type of product being installed, it must be proven khổng lồ the building department when applying for the permit and during inspections that there is proper hurricane protection either installed or on property.
Since the Florida Building Code requires either shutters or hurricane windows (another name for impact windows), homeowners and property managers must decide which protection is right for their property. Since both options are acceptable within FBC 2017, the decision will likely come down to lớn other factors lượt thích cost, labor, aesthetics, or what other additional benefits there may be. If you are trying lớn decide between hurricane shutters or impact windows & doors to lớn protect your home and family, visit our shutters vs impact page to tải về a free copy of our comprehensive analysis on the subject.
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South Florida is a unique place when it comes to trang chủ building, and windows and doors are no exception. While all of Florida must follow FBC, areas throughout South Florida, like South East Florida, have even more stringent codes. One such example is the High-Velocity Hurricane Zone, aka HVHZ. HVHZ is an area consisting of coastalPalm Beach County, Broward County, Miami-Dade County, và Monroe County. HVHZ requires stronger impact products than the other parts of Florida, meeting wind speeds between 170 mph & 200 mph, depending on your exact location.
Other areas in Florida require impact products or shutters that meet Wind-Borne Debris (WBD) certification. These products can be certified as impact-resistant but would not be authorized in the HVHZ unless they pass those tests as well.
How to lớn Determine Your Required thiết kế Pressures (DPs)
Determining whether you are in the HVHZ is the first step in deciding the proper products needed for your project. The next consideration is what exposure the building is considered. Relation to lớn large open areas (like bodies of water or large areas of flat land) and height of the building determines the exposure. Our entire service area falls under either Exposure C or Exposure D. Exposure C is for any building under 60 feet tall & that is at least 1,000 ft from a large open area. Exposure D is for any building within 1,000 ft of a large xuất hiện area that is at least a mile wide, or any building that is above 60 ft tall no matter the location. Certain important infrastructure buildings like schools & hospitals must meet Exposure D requirements no matter their size or location.
Finally, within a single building, there are 2 different zones;zone 4 and zone 5. This is because the corners ofbuildings experience stronger forces from wind and flexion from the building moving during a storm. These zones are determined by the length of a single wall. Zone 5, which can require significantly higher negative design pressure ratingsthan zone 4, are any openings that are within 10% of the wall’s length from the corner. For example, for a wall measuring trăng tròn ft, any opening within 2 ft of the corners would be considered zone 5 & need higher design pressures.
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What Does This Mean for Your Window and DoorProject?
So, what vày these requirements mean for you? First & foremost, the specific FBC requirements for your building will determine what design pressures (DPs) your new products, whether they are hurricane shutters or impact windows & doors, must meet. All these products must undergo both missile testing, which determines impact resistance, as well as cyclical testing. The cyclical testing determines the product’s thiết kế pressures, both positive và negative. These DP ratings refer to lớn how much pressure, measured in pounds per square foot (psf), that the sản phẩm can withstand before it breaks or is altered beyond acceptable parameters.
If your building is required khổng lồ have high DPs, sometimes negative DP values for high-rises can be as high as -130psf, you may become more limited in kích thước or material types for your hurricane protection. Khổng lồ meet the changing demands of the Florida Building Code, manufacturers are constantly innovating lớn create larger & stronger products. Impact window and door manufacturers like ESWindows và CGI Commercial offer aluminum windows as large as 15 ft tall and are approved for use in the HVHZ.
The Florida Building Code can be complicated to lớn understand for those with little or no experience dealing with it. If you are considering new impact windows and doors, it is recommended that you speak with a seasoned professional who understands all these requirements & has access to lớn a variety of product options to lớn meet the demands of the FBC. Lớn get a free consultation and estimate from the experts at Window và Door Replacement Company, fill out our khung or gọi 561-623-8446.