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Cost of Hurricane Windows vs. Regular Windows: 9 Factors That Affect How Much You’ll Pay

Homeowners who are considering the cost of hurricane windows vs. regular windows will want to note that, while hurricane windows cost more up front, they offer superior protection against storms and offer significant long-term benefits.
Katie Flannery Avatar
cost of hurricane windows vs regular windows
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When it comes to new window installation or window replacement, one important factor to consider is the cost, especially in areas prone to hurricanes or storms. Hurricane windows, also known as hurricane impact windows or hurricane-resistant windows, offer superior protection compared with regular windows, although they do come at a higher initial cost than regular window prices.


How much do hurricane windows cost compared with regular windows? The answer depends on various factors. Hurricane windows are specially designed to withstand high winds, flying debris, and the impact of severe weather conditions. They are constructed with impact glass or laminated glass that is layered with a durable polymer. While not the same as bulletproof glass, these types of hurricane windows provide a level of security and protection that regular windows cannot match. Hurricane windows can last between 10 and 40 years depending on the type of glass, brand, and quality of the window.

The cost of hurricane windows includes both the materials and the installation. Impact windows installation is a specialized process that requires skilled professionals who are experienced in working with these windows. This can add to the overall window replacement cost. The type and size of the hurricane-proof windows, as well as any additional features like hurricane window shutters, can also influence the final cost.

While the initial cost of hurricane windows vs. regular windows may be higher, hurricane windows offer significant long-term benefits. They provide better protection, reducing the risk of damage to a home during severe storms. This can result in potential savings on repair and replacement costs in the event of a hurricane. Some insurance companies may offer discounts on homeowners insurance premiums for homes with hurricane window protection.

In contrast, regular windows do not offer the same level of wind resistance and impact protection. Though more affordable up front, storm windows may require more frequent replacements or repairs in the event of severe weather, ultimately costing more in the long run. The cost of hurricane windows vs. regular windows involves a trade-off between up-front expenses and long-term benefits. While wind-resistant windows may have a higher initial price tag, their ability to withstand extreme weather conditions and provide enhanced security can make them a worthwhile investment, especially for those living in hurricane-prone regions. When considering window installation or replacement, it’s essential for homeowners to weigh the cost of hurricane windows against the potential savings and peace of mind they offer.

cost of hurricane windows vs regular windows
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1. Hurricane windows have a higher cost for materials and installation than regular windows.

Hurricane windows do come with a higher cost when compared with regular windows. This price difference is primarily due to the specialized materials and installation processes involved in making the windows hurricane-resistant. The materials used in hurricane windows are engineered to withstand the force of high winds and flying debris during severe storms. This construction makes them more expensive than the standard glass used in regular windows. Hurricane windows cost from $3,083 to $15,721, with many homeowners spending an average of $10,005. Hurricane windows can cost from $100 to $2,100 per window, but the overall price depends on the window shape, style, size, and material as well as the number of windows, track style, window brand, labor costs, frame material, installation location, and permit fees. Labor can cost from $30 to $65 per hour, or between $80 and $400 per window. If older windows are being replaced with hurricane windows, the impact window replacement may require homeowners to spend an additional $50 per window for removal. The cost of hurricane windows ranges from $55 to $62 per square foot, and custom-made windows can cost up to at least three times more.

The installation of hurricane windows is a specialized and meticulous process. Installing these windows requires experienced professionals who are skilled in ensuring that they are properly fitted and sealed to provide the maximum level of protection. This level of expertise adds to the overall installation cost. While the initial cost of hurricane windows may be higher, it’s important for homeowners to consider the long-term benefits.

How much do windows cost? Regular windows can cost from $180 to $2,100 per window, with the national average at $565 per window. The total cost depends on the type and size of the window, the type and number of glass panes, the frame material, brand, installation location, and local labor fees. Labor typically runs from $100 to $300 per window.

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2. However, hurricane windows may be worth the additional cost to those who live in areas with frequent extreme weather events, such as hurricanes or tornadoes.

Hurricane windows can be well worth the additional cost for those residing in regions that frequently experience extreme weather events like hurricanes or tornadoes. These specialized windows are designed to provide a high level of protection, making them an essential investment for homeowners in storm-prone areas. The higher storm windows cost is justifiable for many homeowners when they consider the benefits.

cost of hurricane windows vs regular windows
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  • Enhanced safety. Hurricane windows are engineered to withstand not only high winds but also flying debris. This enhanced safety feature can protect a home and loved ones from potential harm.
  • Property protection. Hurricane windows help safeguard property from damage caused by extreme weather events. They can prevent water intrusion, which can lead to costly repairs and mold issues, and they reduce the risk of shattered glass causing further damage to the property.
  • Long-term savings. While the up-front cost is higher, hurricane windows can lead to long-term savings by reducing the need for window replacements or repairs due to storm-related damage. They can also result in lower insurance premiums, further offsetting the initial expense.
  • Peace of mind. Living in an area prone to extreme weather events can be stressful. Hurricane windows provide homeowners peace of mind, knowing that their home is equipped with a high level of protection against certain natural disasters.
  • Resale value. Hurricane windows can increase the resale value of a home, since potential buyers in hurricane- or tornado-prone areas may prioritize properties that have hurricane-proof windows. Hurricane windows can increase the value of a home at a return on investment from 75 percent to 85 percent.

3. Hurricane windows also provide better energy efficiency than standard windows, which could help homeowners lower their utility bills.

Another significant advantage of hurricane windows is their superior energy efficiency when compared with standard windows. This aspect of hurricane windows can be particularly appealing to homeowners looking to reduce their utility bills and improve the overall comfort of their homes.

  • Insulation. Hurricane windows are designed with multiple layers and special coatings that act as effective insulation. They can help maintain a stable indoor temperature by preventing heat from escaping during the colder months and blocking excessive heat from entering during hot weather. This insulation can reduce the need for constant heating and cooling, ultimately leading to lower energy consumption.
  • UV protection. Many hurricane windows come with UV-blocking properties, which prevent harmful ultraviolet rays from entering a home. This not only protects the furnishings and interior from fading but also helps regulate indoor temperatures, reducing the need for air conditioning.
  • Sealing and weatherproofing. The installation of hurricane windows involves a meticulous sealing process, which minimizes air leakage and drafts. This tight seal prevents conditioned air from escaping and unconditioned air from infiltrating the home, improving energy efficiency.
  • Noise reduction. In addition to energy efficiency, hurricane windows often provide excellent noise reduction. This can contribute to a quieter and more comfortable living environment, enhancing the overall quality of life in a home.
    Potential cost savings. Over time, the energy savings achieved with hurricane windows can translate into lower utility bills. While the exact savings will depend on various factors, including the local climate, homeowners can expect to see a noticeable reduction in heating and cooling costs.

4. Hurricane windows are harder to break than standard windows, which can help prevent break-ins and save homeowners from paying to replace stolen valuables.

The enhanced security provided by hurricane windows is another compelling reason for homeowners to consider investing in them. These windows are considerably more difficult to break compared with standard windows, which can significantly improve home security and potentially save homeowners from the emotional and financial costs associated with break-ins. Here’s how the impact-resistant nature of these windows contributes to home security.

cost of hurricane windows vs regular windows
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  • Burglar deterrence. The robust construction of hurricane windows makes them highly resistant to forced-entry attempts. Their ability to withstand attempts at breaking or shattering the glass acts as a strong deterrent to burglars. Many potential intruders may be discouraged from attempting a break-in when faced with the formidable barrier of hurricane windows.
  • Protection of valuables. In the unfortunate event of a break-in attempt, hurricane windows can prevent burglars from gaining easy access to a home. This can safeguard valuable possessions, such as electronics, jewelry, art, and important documents, reducing the risk of theft and the financial losses associated with replacing stolen items.
  • Peace of mind. Knowing that their home is equipped with windows that offer a high level of security can provide homeowners with peace of mind. This sense of security can improve overall well-being and help homeowners feel safer in their own homes.
  • Reduced replacement costs. In the event of an attempted break-in, standard windows can be easily shattered, necessitating costly replacements. Hurricane windows are designed to withstand such situations, potentially saving homeowners from the expense and inconvenience of replacing damaged windows.
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5. Having hurricane windows installed can help save homeowners time and money while preparing for an approaching storm.

Having hurricane windows installed can be a valuable time- and money-saving investment for homeowners when preparing for an approaching storm. These specialized windows contribute to a more efficient and cost-effective storm preparedness.

cost of hurricane windows vs regular windows
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  • Time efficiency. Hurricane windows require minimal preparation before a storm when compared with traditional storm-protection methods such as installing plywood or metal shutters. Instead of spending hours securing their home before a storm, homeowners can have confidence knowing their hurricane windows are always ready to provide protection. This not only saves valuable time but also reduces the stress and labor associated with storm preparation.
  • Cost savings. While the initial cost of hurricane windows is more expensive, they eliminate the recurring expenses of purchasing and storing storm-protection materials like plywood, metal shutters, or impact-resistant film. These traditional storm-protection methods like boarding up windows can add up over time, making hurricane windows a cost-effective choice in the long run.
  • Reduced risk of damage. By eliminating the need for temporary storm-protection measures, hurricane windows reduce the risk of damage, which can result in costly repairs or replacements.
    Convenience. Hurricane windows provide the convenience of year-round protection. Homeowners don’t need to worry about the seasonal task of installing and removing storm-protection materials, making them a hassle-free solution.

6. Homeowners who install hurricane windows could get a discount on their homeowners insurance premiums since there’s less risk of damage during a storm.

Homeowners who choose to install hurricane windows often enjoy the added benefit of potential discounts on their insurance premiums. Insurance companies recognize that hurricane windows significantly reduce the risk of damage to a home during storms and other severe weather events, making the property less susceptible to costly claims. As a result, they may offer policyholders a reduction in their insurance premiums as an incentive to invest in these protective measures. Hurricane insurance is also available to those in storm-prone areas. Knowing how to get hurricane insurance can help homeowners plan ahead before the beginning of hurricane season.

7. Homeowners on a limited budget may want to consider installing hurricane shutters over their standard windows as a cheaper alternative to installing hurricane windows.

For homeowners on a limited budget, considering the best hurricane shutters as an alternative to installing hurricane windows is a practical and cost-effective option. Hurricane shutters provide a layer of protection against extreme weather conditions without the higher up-front costs associated with hurricane windows.

cost of hurricane windows vs regular windows
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  • Affordability. Hurricane shutters are generally more budget-friendly than hurricane windows. The price of hurricane shutters ranges from $1,950 to $6,094, with the national average at $4,022. They come in various types, including accordion, roll-down, and panel shutters, each with its own price range. Homeowners can choose the type of shutter that best fits their budget while still providing essential storm protection.
  • Protection on demand. One of the advantages of hurricane shutters is that they can be easily deployed when a storm is approaching and then retracted when not needed. This means homeowners can install them as needed, allowing for flexibility in terms of both cost and convenience.
  • Variety of options. Hurricane shutters are available in different materials, including aluminum, steel, or polycarbonate, with varying levels of durability and cost. Homeowners can select the material that aligns with their budget and storm-protection needs.
  • Potential insurance savings. Similar to hurricane windows, having hurricane shutters in place may also qualify homeowners for insurance discounts.
  • DIY installation. Some types of hurricane shutters are designed for DIY installation, which can further reduce the overall cost of adding storm protection to a home. It’s important that homeowners follow manufacturer instructions carefully to ensure proper installation and effectiveness.
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8. Alternatively, homeowners can look into installing storm windows on the interior of their home’s existing windows to protect their home at a lower cost.

Another budget-friendly option for homeowners looking to protect their homes from storms without the expense of hurricane windows or hurricane shutters is the installation of storm windows on the interior of their existing windows. Interior storm window installation offers several advantages, making them a practical choice for cost-conscious homeowners.

cost of hurricane windows vs regular windows
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  • Cost-effective solution. Interior storm windows are typically more affordable than hurricane windows or exterior hurricane shutters. They provide an extra layer of protection against strong winds and flying debris without the need for a significant investment. Storm window installation cost ranges from $3,262 to $17,238, with many homeowners spending $10,047. The overall price depends on the style, size, type, and brand of windows; the frame material; location; number of windows; and local labor pricing.
  • Ease of installation. Many interior storm windows are designed for easy DIY installation, making them accessible to homeowners who prefer to take on home improvement projects themselves. This can further reduce the overall cost by eliminating installation fees.
  • Energy efficiency. In addition to storm protection, interior storm windows can improve energy efficiency by reducing drafts and heat loss during the colder months. This added insulation can lead to potential savings on heating and cooling costs.
  • Versatility. Interior storm windows are a versatile option that can be used temporarily during hurricane season and removed during calmer seasons. This flexibility allows homeowners to balance storm protection with their budget and convenience.
  • Less visual impact. Unlike exterior hurricane shutters, interior storm windows do not alter the appearance of the home’s exterior. This may be preferable for homeowners who want to maintain the aesthetic appeal of their property.

9. Ultimately, homeowners will need to weigh the costs of hurricane vs. regular windows against the risk of damage to their home when deciding on which type of window to install.

The decision to install hurricane windows or standard windows needs to be a well-considered one, taking into account various factors, including budget constraints, the level of risk in the area, and personal preferences. It’s recommended that homeowners consider their budget carefully before choosing the best replacement windows. Hurricane windows come with a higher up-front cost due to their specialized construction and installation. If there are budget constraints, homeowners may want to explore more cost-effective options, such as storm shutters or interior storm windows. For those who live in an area prone to hurricanes, tornadoes, or frequent severe weather events, the added protection of hurricane windows may be a worthwhile investment to safeguard a home and belongings.

The long-term benefits of hurricane windows, including potential energy savings, reduced repair and replacement window costs, enhanced security, and peace of mind, can go a long way when homeowners are paying more for the initial investment. It’s also advised that homeowners consider their personal preferences regarding convenience, aesthetics, and ease of maintenance. Hurricane windows offer year-round protection without the need for temporary preparations, while some homeowners prefer the flexibility of installing storm shutters or interior storm windows only when necessary. Local building codes or regulations may require specific storm-protection measures, and compliance with these codes is essential for ensuring the safety and resilience of a home.

Ultimately, the decision between hurricane windows and regular windows will need to align with a homeowner’s unique circumstances and priorities. It’s recommended that homeowners consult with professionals in their area, such as contractors, window specialists, and insurance agents, to gather relevant information and make an informed choice that best suits their needs and budget.