Particularly if you live in an area that is prone to extreme weather conditions, such as hurricanes, tornadoes, or heavy snows, it is critical that you construct your home from materials that can stand up to such wear. Many traditional building materials, such as wood, are simply unable to withstand major weather events and can leave you with a crumbling home. Try alternatives to wood or lightweight aluminum for sturdier housing construction.
1 – Weatherproof roofing materials
The best roofing materials for a home vary by geographic region. In the northeast, asphalt shingles are the ideal roofing material because they can support the weight of heavy snows, whereas in the southeast, the risk of hurricanes makes metal a better roofing choice (and it will resist mold, algae, and other growths that are commonly caused by the humidity in this region). Metal is also ideal for individuals in the northwest, because of the heavy, frequent rain in the region. Residents in the Midwest get a heavy snowfall similar to the northeast, but often even more severe, making slate tiles a better option than asphalt. Slate is strong and doesn’t wear out quickly, even after many years of heavy snows.
2 – The strongest windows
The least stable parts of any home are the doors and windows. While a sturdy front door and weatherproofed windows will be enough for the rain and wind in most regions, it is advised that individuals who live in hurricane risk areas have missile-proof windows. This may seem excessive, but high winds funneled through the narrow opening of a broken window have the ability to demolish a home from the inside. All new homes in areas of high hurricane risk should be fitted with missile-proof windows.
3 – Retrofitting for tornadoes
At this juncture, we can’t build a home that is resistant to tornadoes, but there are some things we do know about building in tornado prone areas. Traditional wood frame homes with aluminum siding are extraordinarily dangerous for individuals who live along major tornado paths. Steel connectors can be used to retrofit these homes. A steel connector works by connecting neighboring parts of a wood frame house with a thick piece of steel and several nails or screws. The key is to make the home function like it is constructed as a single piece.
4 – Beat the weather with steel
For new homes in tornado prone areas, recycled steel beams are an ideal building material because they can be made to fit together as one piece. This is the more advanced version of retrofitting a home with steel connectors. Houses made from steel beams resist high winds better than wood or brick. The resistance of the metal to mold and other moisture also makes steel beam homes ideal for areas frequently hit by hurricanes.
For more information on protecting your home from weather or in the unfortunate event of your home being affected by severe weather, visit this page.