5 Tips to Get Your Home Ready for a Busy Hurricane Season in Hawai‘i

You can take steps now to secure your home in the likely event of high winds this summer and fall.


Editor’s note: This article was originally published on May 24, 2019, and has been updated with more of the latest hurricane preparedness information.


NASA hurricane

Photo: VisibleEarth.Nasa.Gov


The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says that we should expect this hurricane season, typically June through November, to have above-normal activity. It’s smart to have a hurricane kit with items such as flashlights and a radio, but we can do even more in Hawai‘i to protect our homes if we get hit with a big one. Here are five tips to prevent damage.


1. Clip ‘Em

Hurricane clips, also called hurricane ties, secure roofs and decks to framing to help fight upward forces of high winds. They don’t look like ties or clips—they’re metal pieces screwed into both the roof truss and house frame for added security.


Hurricane prep frame

Photo: Steven Frame


2. Go for the Unbreakable

Consider adding storm windows, or impact-resistant windows, the next time you remodel your home or if you’re buying new. Storm windows have a panel of shatter-proof material between their two panes of glass. If something hits the window, the glass will crack, but the window won’t break or allow the wind to come inside.


SEE ALSO: Hurricane Preparedness Tips for Hawai‘i’s Storm Season


3. Don’t Be Shutter-Shy

In places like the Bahamas, homeowners install storm shutters when building their homes. Instead of temporarily boarding up a house with plywood, like many of us did during Hurricane Lane, install storm shutters. You can roll them down to cover all the windows, then roll them back up once the winds have passed.


4. Double Down

It’s smart to invest in impact-resistant, reinforced garage doors. Most garage doors are light to keep costs down, but the bulk of hurricane damage often happens after the wind tears off the garage door, leaving a house vulnerable. Wind ripping through a house gets under the roof and can reach you and your loved ones hunkering down inside—along with all your loose belongings.


5. Get a Trim

Not talking about a haircut here—if your home is surrounded by foliage, those plants may need a fresh cut to prevent hurricane damage. Nearby tree branches may break off and cause damage in hurricane-force winds; entire trees might even crack or uproot and fall onto your home. Have a professional handle the trimming or removal of trees now so you can rest easy when the winds start blowing.