Hurricane Rated Doors

When choosing a commercial service door for a building, Cookson’s Steel Roll Up Doors and Hurricane Rated Doors are the top choice for architects and building managers worldwide.


With today’s constant news streams of weather related events, building damage from hurricanes, high winds and major storms is a regular source for news. 


Hurricane rated doors are engineered to withstand extremely high winds and have advanced features that lock the door in its guides to prevent failure. Manufactured from high strength galvanized steel, hurricane proof doors roll up to store in a coil above building openings.

Hurricane Rated Doors

To meet an increased demand and inquires, Cookson offers hurricane rated doors in many sizes, materials and options. What makes our hurricane proof doors different?  When high winds or hurricane forces happen, exterior doors and openings are the main weak point between complete building structure failure or not.

Hurricane rated doors are specifically manufactured that when installed correctly, all wind loads are transferred to the door guides and in turn to the building walls. It is a combination of dead load (total door hang weight) and live load (wind pressure forces) that make up what the doors need to ne engineered to.  Overhead door wall angles run from the bottom of the door to the top of the door coil housing. With critical exterior door wall fasteners above the opening to handle dead load and critical door wall fasteners within the opening height for live load, the pressure of the hurricane garage door is transferred correctly. Live hurricane door live load forces can greatly exceed the dead load force. It is critical to have a solid, full height industrial garage door mounting service at the door jams. 



Don't Worry About Door Damages

When a building fails to secure their building with hurricane rated doors, door failure can lead to massive damages to interior goods, loss of the use of that building opening until the overhead doors can be replaces and loss of building security. In addition, if an exterior roll up door fails, the high wind forces can create internal building pressures that has led to roof failures including roofs that have blown off increasing the catastrophic damage to the building and its interior.

When specifying hurricane rated doors, just specifying the wind speed is not enough. The PSF of the windload should be expressed in the specifications as different size heavy duty doors are engineered for different PSF forces not the wind speed.  The steel roll up door PSF windload is calculated using the not only maximum wind speed but door area, surrounding topography, roof slope, internal building pressure, mean roof height, directionality factors and several other factors.


Request Information on Hurricane Rated Doors

Hurricane Rated Doors Damage 4


So how do you determine the correct real windload needs? We have a complete department at Cookson that is here to help you find the exact correct product. It will depend upon several factors like the local code requirements and opening location variables. Providing only a MPH maximum wind speed rating leaves a lot of questions on the table. There are ten main factors we look at and varying values on any of them will influence the required PSF design door windload.

Many hurricane proof door specifications can have different windload meanings. Test or ultimate load is defined as the engineered limit of a door’s capability. Design load is utilized in areas where wind conditions cause structural concern. In addition, building requirements typically require proof of performance to a test load that is 1.5 times the specified design load. 


Hurricane Proof Roll Up Doors: Built Differently

Hurricane rated doors require a different construction and installation. It is an industry norm for overhead coiling doors to resist up to a 20 PSF windload. Depending upon the windload requirements, door sizes and manufacturer manufacturing practices, standard overhead doors may or may not offer windload construction. Specifically windload engineered garage doors are normally more costly due to various upgraded components. The ends of the rolling door curtain slats will contain specific windlocks as endlocks. Heavier or stronger materials are used for the windlocks and increased rivets are possible to decrease endlock failure. Heavier and deeper guide angles are used with wind load rated doors. Guides will utilize full height windlock bars inside each guide that the windlock engages with to retain the roll up door curtain within the guides. Additionally, hurricane rated windload engineered doors will contain heavier guide assemblies with heavier, stronger and closer bolt spacing. 


Building damage caused by substandard doors installed after Hurricane Ivan:
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Nearby Building with our Hurricane Garage Doors after Hurricane Ivan hit:

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Even though heavier gauge components are used, it is a common misconception that just increasing the gauge steel used in the overhead coiling door will increase windload capacity. In fact, a heavier curtain may actually delay the engagement of the windlocks in the overhead door guides, resulting in a higher bending loads on the slats and greater tensile loads at the wall fastener. What exactly does that mean? That not only does the hurricane rated door need to be a heavy duty door, but if the side guides and endcap windlocks are not designed and engineered to handle the door and windloads, the doors will fail.

 It is only when hurricane garage doors use a complete engineered design of windload rated overhead door, heavy duty guides designed to transfer windload pressure to the building and windlocks that keep the roll up door within the guides that a building will be safe from failures or extensive damage during a hurricane of high wind event. 



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