Standing Strong Against Hurricanes with Steel Buildings

By Mark Hiatt   |   Posted In: Prefab Metal Buildings

Standing-Strong-Against-Hurricanes-with-Steel (1)

Hurricanes Are Getting Worse, But Steel Buildings Continue to Stand strong

Hurricanes are known to leave a trail of destruction in their wake, and the trends are pointing towards hurricane season getting even worse over time. The 2020 hurricane season was the most active season on record; it came to a cataclysmic close with Hurricane Iota ripping through Central America as a strong Cat 4 storm in mid-November!

As storms look to get worse (an effect of global warming, say, scientists), we must make better plans to withstand them. There’s really nothing we can do to prevent a hurricane, but there are steps we can take to make our homes and businesses safer. While nothing may be hurricane-proof, steel construction has been shown to be much more resilient in the face of hurricane-force winds than construction framed with wood or other materials. Metal buildings from Carport Central stand strong in the face of a myriad of natural threats. Our durable steel structures are engineered to withstand wind, rain, and other forces which might bring down a building of lesser quality.

How Hurricanes Wreak Their Havoc

Traditional construction often collapses in the face of hurricane-force winds thanks to the onslaught of intense winds, wind vortexes, air pressure differences, hail, and torrential rain. The wall facing the wind experiences the greatest wind pressure; it can be nearly 70 pounds of pressure per square foot! This intense pressure causes walls to cave in, windows to shatter, and the winds whip around the building’s edges to create vortexes. These vortexes have double the force of straight winds, but can create pinpoints of negative pressure, ripping apart features like siding and shingles. Hail and rain can pound down too, serving to weaken many “traditional” building materials.

Hurricanes Wreak Their Havoc

A pre-engineered steel building is the best option to withstand a hurricane’s effects. These metal buildings are made more hurricane-resistant thanks to extra bracing, particular roof angles, welded trusses, and reinforced steel framing. At Carport Central, we specialize in providing structures that are as weatherproof as possible. Our buildings are crafted to stand strong for years, and can be engineered to meet any needed wind load certifications that may be required in your particular area.

Making Your Metal Building Hurricane-Resistant

If you live in a hurricane-prone area, you need to choose a prefab metal building plan that’s as hurricane-resistant as possible. The strength and resilience of these steel structures offer better protection for you, as well as for your possessions.

1. The Right Shape

Arguably, the most important feature of a hurricane-resistant custom metal building is its shape. The tall design of traditional buildings causes torrential winds to rip them apart. We suggest opting for a one-story metal building. Another applicable aspect of shape is your building’s roof design. Gabled roofs tend to catch wind, and can be ripped apart by vortexes. Opt for a hipped roof with a slope of 12-14 degrees. This combination should prevent most structural damage caused by typical hurricane-force winds.

2. The Strongest Frame

Framing is the skeleton of your structure. Strong, durable frames are what ensure that your metal building will withstand hurricanes. Traditional wooden framing can be easily ripped apart by vortexes and high winds, leaving your house, workshop, or storage building to crumble beneath the immense pressure of the storm. Steel framing is the best way to ensure that you and your stuff stay protected. All Carport Central buildings use premium steel framing.

3. The Best Paneling

The shape and framing are important, but so is the exterior material used to cover your building. High winds can rip off wooden paneling as easily as they can asphalt shingles. Brick or steel are really better options. However, brick veneer can get pretty expensive. If you’re looking to be as safe as possible while staying within a budget, the steel paneling used by Carport Central is a sound, cost-effective option.

4. Limited Openings

Even the strongest steel buildings suffer in a storm if there are lots of openings and points of access. Perhaps you’re considering a garage with open-framed openings. While this does make for easier access to your structure, it can also make your building more vulnerable to wind threats, especially in the event of a hurricane. For this reason, we advise you to install doors over every opening, and to consider limiting the number of building access points if you’re located in an area that’s prone to experience hurricanes.

5. The Right Windows and Doors

While planning for your access points, we also recommend you to consider impact-resistant doors and windows. One benefit of going this route is that even if your doors or windows should break under extreme duress, they won’t shatter into dangerous shards & pieces. Hurricane shutters are also something else you might want to consider installing over your windows, as well.

Hurricanes are hugely destructive, and this can cost you thousands of dollars every hurricane season if you aren’t well-prepared. Designing your prefab metal building to be hurricane resistant is your best option to withstand this potential seasonal devastation.


1-Building Codes are Being Raised to a Higher Standard

In many areas, hurricanes are a part of life. While we must live with them, we don’t have to suffer every year. Disastrous hurricanes like Iota have taught many localities to develop better building codes to help keep you and your property safer. Most building codes are intended to prevent major death tolls and devastation. However, there are still areas that can be improved in many areas. Thus, state & local building codes continue to be tweaked & adjusted in order to help prevent wind damage and water intrusion.

2-Hurricane Resistance Done Right

As building codes are raised to a higher standard, so should our construction methods. Your pre-engineered steel building can be installed in a way that helps prevent costly damage caused by hurricanes. The three best ways to do this are to use waterproof building materials, to elevate your steel building, and to choose a fast-drying design.

· Waterproof Building Materials

The two most important things to keep waterproof where buildings are concerned are the foundation and the insulation. The foundation needs to be made of a material that won’t fall apart amid floods and heavy rains. We suggest a concrete foundation, as it’s the best option that is both waterproof and durable. Insulation can be a little more complicated. We suggest avoiding any moisture-absorbing insulation in the internal cavity. Common cavity insulations can harbor moisture, and thus promote the growth of harmful mold or mildew.

· Elevated Structures

Metal buildings may seem like a bad idea in hurricane-prone areas since they’re typically built on slabs, not stilts. However, there is a way to elevate steel buildings so that they are well-suited for areas that frequently experience flooding. Traditional slabs can be raised. Instead of having your slab be at ground level, it’s possible to elevate most slabs at least 18 inches in order to help make your building less susceptible to rising floodwaters.

· Fast-Drying Design

It’s important to make sure that your prefab metal building is made of fast-drying materials. If rainwater or floodwaters were to get inside the structure, you want the building to be able to dry out quickly. This is best done by choosing only vapor-open materials and avoiding any unnecessary internal insulation. Good ventilation is critical for building in a hurricane-prone area. Buildings made without fast-drying materials are much more likely to foster rot or mold growth.

Build More Resilience Into Your Structures with Carport Central

While we can’t do anything to stop a hurricane from approaching your area, Carport Central can help you to have the most hurricane-resistant structure possible. We want you and your stuff to stay safe no matter what Mother Nature decides to throw your way! Choosing a premium, pre-engineered metal building from Carport Central is really one of the wisest investments you can make. Got questions about steel as a building material, or about the size, design, and customization options available to you through Carport Central? We’d love to provide you with some answers! You can get in touch with one of our dedicated building specialists today by simply giving us a call at (980) 321-9898!


  • Mark Hiatt

    Mark Hiatt brings over 20 years of commercial construction experience as a licensed engineer in NC, SC, and VA. Design-and-build is his specialty, and he serves both as a structural engineer for American Building Network and as an engineering consultant for Carport Central.

    View all posts

Get Started

It's fast and easy. Get your instant quote today!

Need Immediate Assistance?
Call Now
(980) 321-9898


Helpful Steel Building Tips
Learn more about our precision-engineered metal buildings, and gain a wealth of useful tips and insights by joining our newsletter list.
Call Now
(980) 321-9898