What is HVHZ (Miami/Dade “rated”) Mean

What does HVHZ (Miami/Dade "rated") Mean?

What is HVHZ?

HVHZ stands for “High Velocity Hurricane Zone” and was established by the Florida Building Code in 1992 after damages caused by Hurricane Andrew. If you live in Florida, in Miami/Dade, Broward Counties or Coastal Palm Beach County, you are in an HVHZ. If you live anywhere else in Florida, you are considered a “Non-HVHZ” zone and follow standard building code.

Product Testing and Installation

In order for products (roofs, doors, windows, shutters, etc..) to be installed in an HVHZ zone they must go through special testing to get a “Florida Product Approval for use in a HVHZ”.  Large Missile Impact Test These test include shooting a 6ft 2×4 that weighs 9lbs multiple times at a product to test for failure.  If the shutter or window fails, then it does not get a “HVHZ” approval.  It’s important to note that the way the product is installed also is a factor in these test. An exact same product might have 2 product approval numbers (one for HVHZ and one for non-HVHZ) and the only difference is how the product is installed. For example – our .050 aluminum storm panels are approved for use in an HVHZ zone and Non-HVHZ zones. If being installed in an HVHZ zone, you must have a minimum separation from glass of up to 5″ and anchor spacing of 6″.  Here is Palm Coast (non-HVHZ) separation from glass is not required per ASTM E1996 and anchor spacing can be at 12″.

Can you install a HVHZ approved product in a non-hvhz zone?

Simple answer is yes.  You can install an approved HVHZ product in a non-HVHZ zone but not the other way around.  To reiterate, HVHZ building code is specific for Miami/Dade and Broward and is “additional requirements” above and beyond standard Florida Building code

What do we use and install?

All of our hurricane protection products have been tested and are approved for use in both zones (HVHZ and non-HVHZ).  When it comes to installing the products, we follow all local building code as to how they are to be installed.