When you live in a place that suffer from hurricanes, there are certain measures you have to take in order to make this awful experience a little less dangerous for you and your loved ones. One of these measures is to adapt your windows to take the massive damage and prevent the flying debris from getting inside your house and injuring someone. This is extremely important because let’s face it, in most cases you’re dealing with winds that go up to 200 miles per hour.

The tests performed to certify that the impact windows are actually protecting your house may vary from your location but, in general, the guidelines follow the same standard. The guidelines for the tests are created by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), a respected organization that develops extensive guidelines used to test materials and, therefore, to make sure that these materials are, in fact, the adequate choice for that application, in our case the hurricane proof window.

But what types of tests are actually conducted to certify that a window is actually impact resistant?

There are two fundamental elements to test and certify that a window is indeed a storm proof window. The first one is called The Missile Test, and its goal is to measure the impact requirements of the hurricane windows. A missile that weighs 9 pounds is shot from a cannon at 50 feet per second (approximately 35 miles per hour). The first shot is aimed at the center of the window, and the second shot is aimed at one of the corners. As you can imagine, the window will pass the test only if it can take both those impacts.

After passing the Missile Test, the window now has to pass the Cyclical Test, which will certify that the window can take the wind pressure. The tester must put the impact window inside a chamber and submit it to 4500 positive cycles and 4500 negative cycles. The positive and negative cycles are used to simulate the wind and will make sure that the storm windows can remain intact even with a speed of 200 miles per hour.