Storm Guide: How to Strengthen Doors

In high winds, doors are a weak point, especially their frames and hardware. Here’s how to reinforce them.

Strengthen the weak areas on your doors

stregthen doors

1. Strengthen hinges.

strengthen hinges

Replace the inner two screws on the jamb side of each hinge with 3-inch screws driven into the framing.

2. Secure door frames to studs with 3-inch screws.

secure door frames with 3 inch screws

For even more protection, take off the interior trim and fill the cavity between the frame and studs with minimally expanding foam.

3. Make sure the bold fully extends into the door frame.

dead bolt

Screw the strike plate to the framing with 3-inch screws.

4. Use a door sweep or adjustable threshold to keep water from blowing in underneath.

door sweep

Seal gaps around the sides with weatherstripping.

5. Remove screen or storm doors.

Removing them will help to protect them from damage.

6.  Cover glass with 5/8-inch plywood or metal panels.

Full view, patio or French doors should be protected with shutters or panels.

For double door or French doors, add heavy-duty barrel bolts (available at Lowe’s) at the top and bottom of the fixed door to help prevent the door from being blown in. Make sure screws are long enough to go 1 inch or more into the framing.

Information for this post was made in collaboration with Lowes for a severe weather guide.

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