When the Wind Stops Blowing

© 2005 Door & Access Systems
Publish Date: Winter 2005
Author: Mark Westerfield
Page 70


When the Wind Stops Blowing
Mark Westerfield, P.E.
Manager, Product Development and Engineering
Clopay Building Products Company

With the hurricanes of the last few years, we have all seen images of devastation and misery. When we see a roof blown off or a garage door wrapped around a car, we know that a building material did not survive the storm and will need to be replaced.

The Day After

But what happens to those buildings and building products that survived the storm? Specifically for garage doors, how does someone know a garage door will still operate as designed? Also, there have been instances where garage doors have survived one hurricane only to fail in the next, less-severe storm.

Therefore, two broad questions need to be answered:
1) Immediately after the storm, how do you evaluate a garage door to make sure it can still operate normally and safely?
2) Will a garage door survive the next high-wind event?

To help answer these questions, DASMA has created two Technical Data Sheets (TDS): TDS 174 and TDS 175.

Home Alone

TDS 174 is intended for non-installers and is titled “Post-High Wind Event Door Operation by a Building Occupant.” TDS 174 provides guidelines to follow; first a visual inspection and then an operational inspection.

During both of these inspection phases, if any problem is observed, TDS 174 directs the non-installer to seek the help of a trained door systems technician. TDS 174 also tells the occupant that they “should not attempt to repair doors themselves.” The document directs the building occupant to contact a professional door installer to help determine if the garage door and framing can withstand another high-wind event.

Analyze That

TDS 175 is for the professional installer or technician and is titled “Post-High Wind Event Door Operation by a Trained Door Systems Technician.” TDS 175 has many of the same inspection elements of TDS 174, but it also includes information about evaluating the garage door and its ability to survive the next high-wind event.

Specifically, TDS 175 asks that the door technician “check the door system for signs of stress or fatigue.” If these signs are present, the building owner should be notified of any assessment, including possible replacement of the garage door system. A professional engineer, architect, or inspector may need to be contacted to make this determination.



TDS 174 and TDS 175, like all DASMA Technical Data Sheets, can be found at www.dasma.com.