Putting Up Your Hurricane Shutters
This information is provided for the benefit of homeowners whose homes have been hurricane-hardened by REBUILD. It deals only with advice on how to put up the steel hurricane shutters that have been provided by REBUILD. For additional hurricane preparedness information please see the resource links at the end of this page.
When to Put Up Your Shutters
When a hurricane has entered the Gulf of Mexico, it is a good idea to begin following the storm’s projected path as well as the number of days until landfall and the forecast for local wind speeds.
We suggest that you begin putting up your shutter panels before wind speeds start to increase and that you allow yourself two days to complete the job. It is not advisable to put up shutters when there are high winds, rain, or lightning.
What You Will Need
- A pair of heavy work gloves
- A container to store the caps from the shutter bolts
- Wing nuts: ¼” washered wing nuts made specifically for panel shutters
- Battery-operated or electric screw driver
- The installation plan provided by your contractor showing which sets of shutter panels go with which windows or other openings
- A ladder if needed
- If you have shutters above ground level, we recommend that you get a friend or neighbor to help you.
How to Put Up the Shutters
We think you will find it helpful to watch this video which shows step-by-step instructions. Here’s a summary of the recommended steps:
- Bring the shutters out of storage and place the set of panels for the first window or opening near that opening.
- Remove the plastic caps from all of the bolts around the window.
- Put on work gloves.
- Beginning with the bottom of the window, take a shutter panel and fit the holes at the four corners onto the bolts. Slide to lock, put wing nuts on the two lower bolts, and finger tighten.
- Proceed upward with the next panel and repeat step 4 until all panels for that window are in place.
- Place wing nuts over the top two bolts on the last (topmost) panel.
- Tighten snugly, but not too tight, using a battery-operated or electric screw driver.
- Repeat steps 1-7 on the next window or opening.
Note: If you have vertically installed shutters, begin either at the far left or far right of the window (or opening) with the first shutter panel. Then work your way to the other side following the fastening instructions above.
When to Take Down the Shutters
WHEN DEPLOYED, STEEL PANEL SHUTTERS MAY NOT ALLOW FOR EMERGENCY EXIT FROM YOUR HOME. YOU SHOULD USE GREAT CAUTION SO YOU ARE NOT INADVERTENTLY TRAPPED INSIDE YOUR HOME. WE RECOMMEND ONLY DEPLOYING STEEL PANEL SHUTTERS WHEN A WINDSTORM IS THREATENING, AND THAT YOU REMOVE THEM AS SOON AS THE THREAT HAS PASSED.
Steel shutters can rust if left in place for long periods. This would be a good time to lubricate the shutter bolts, before you put the plastic caps back over the bolts.
Suggested Resources for Hurricane Preparedness