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How do Storm Windows Differ from the Impact Windows?

When you have a home in an area prone to hurricanes and storms, then the first thing you would like to do is to look for different ways to protect the home from extreme weather. This is the reason why upgrading your windows should be the first goal. When planning for an upgrade, you must have heard the terms impact and storm windows, and as a homeowner, you would love to know the storm windows vs impact windows difference.

When we talk about both options, they have different levels of protection from flying debris and wind pressures. Although the functions of both windows may look similar, they are quite different from each other. In case of an emergency, going for the right option can make a huge difference, and that is why you have to go for the right solution according to your requirements.

What are Storm Windows?

For those who are looking for an innovative solution to enhance the resilience of their home against extreme weather without compromising on the architectural design, then storm windows can be the perfect option. If you are wondering what is a storm window, it is an additional unit that you can install over the exterior’s top. This way, a buffer is created against different types of elements.

One of the main advantages of a storm window is that it is capable of withstanding rain, wind and snow. So, if you live in Florida where you may experience varied seasonal weather, you will find it to be an ideal choice. The storm window also offers noise reduction, improved energy efficiency, increased home value and above all, it is a cost-effective solution.

What are Impact Windows?

These windows are specially designed for dual purpose, which means that they protect against extreme weather and also offer everyday functionality. Although the impact windows consist of various hurricane window features, people prefer them for improved performance and versatility no matter what the weather condition is.

There are ones who ask ‘Do you need hurricane shutters if you have impact windows’, the answer is that the majority of homes have windows that may not close or operate properly, and it could be problematic in case of a hurricane, but if you have impact windows, you don’t need hurricane shutters. These windows have two layers of glass which keep them from breaking apart, thus preventing any property damage or injury when the weather conditions are severe.

Impact Windows

Are Storm and Impact Windows the Same?

Storm and impact windows are two different terms and both can be used interchangeably, yet they are not the same. It doesn’t matter whether you choose a storm window or an impact window, these are the ideal options to protect your home from violent storms and extreme weather. Those who ask what is a storm window should understand that its main function is to resist damages caused by the wind.

In comparison to the storm windows, the impact windows give you better protection against projectiles and flying debris. Other than that, these windows are soundproof and offer more insulation. If you are in Miami, Florida, you should keep in mind that it is a hurricane-prone area, so there is always a risk of impact damage. Some people wonder ‘Are hurricane windows bullet proof’, the answer is that these windows are a perfect solution for hurricanes, but they are not able to stop a bullet from passing through.

hurricane windows

Which One is the Right Option for You?

When you have to decide between storm windows vs impact windows, then it is crucial to understand all their features. There are numerous benefits and distinct characteristics of each option, and this can bring enhancement to a home in a different manner. So, whether it is security and protection, material and construction or energy efficiency, one has to make a thorough comparison of all the features before going for one.

• Material

Your maintenance needs and durability are directly influenced by the impact vs non impact windows. Normally, the frames of the storm windows are made of vinyl and aluminum and have a single glazing, so, there is extra protection for the windows.

The frames of the impact windows are reinforced and made from heavy-duty aluminum. These windows come with laminated glass that is specially designed to resist shattering in case of any impact.

• Safety and Security

In terms of security, both the impact and the storm windows enhance home safety in completely different ways. In case of a forced entry, storm windows offer minimum deterrence, because their main purpose is to protect against damages caused by the weather.

When we compare the impact windows vs regular windows, we can see quite a bit of difference. The laminated glass of these windows can stand up to harsh weather, while also providing a barrier against break-ins. These windows will remain intact even if someone strikes them forcefully.

• Energy Efficiency

With an additional layer of insulation and reduced air infiltration, storm windows can enhance energy efficiency in the existing windows. If you are thinking about what do storm windows do, these windows function as a buffer against the temperatures outside.

Normally, there is superior insulation and multilayered glass that the impact windows have. So, if you install these windows, you not only get increased energy efficiency but the UV rays are also filtered out, which means that you also get protection against sun damage.


• Is buying storm and impact windows a costly option?

If you are wondering what do storm windows do or what the impact windows are, the answer is that both types of options offer protection features and durability. The prices of both the options vary, because it all depends on their material, size and design configurations.

• Can storm windows be helpful when there is a hurricane?

There is a misconception among many that storm windows might be capable of withstanding hurricanes, but the reality is different. These windows are not designed for such type of protection and therefore, it would be better to go for the impact-resistant windows to defend against hurricanes.

• Are there any drawbacks of impact windows?

When comparing impact windows vs regular windows, one of the main drawbacks of impact windows is that they are costly. Other than that, there is also a potential for reduced light transmission and visibility, because these windows have protective layers and thicker glass as compared to the regular ones.


When going for storm windows vs. impact windows, it is never easy to decide between the two, yet it all depends on your needs. If you are looking for versatility and affordability, then storm windows can be a great option. On the other hand, impact windows offer energy efficiency and superior protection. As a homeowner, you have to assess your budget, local climate, and safety needs, but both options offer comfort, home security, and peace of mind. You can contact us for more information or hire us for storm or impact windows in Miami, Florida.

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