Hurricane Season Home Preparation

When it comes to preparing for hurricane season, one of the most important things you can do is keep water, wind, and debris out of your home.

Related: Download Our Hurricane Guide

When windows or doors break, it often results in the home’s elements, separating from one another with catastrophic results. In the past, homeowners only had the option of boarding up their windows with plywood. Today, hurricane resistant impact windows and doors are a solution with proven reliability. There’s no better way to protect your home and have peace of mind during hurricane season than with impact windows and doors.

Take a Long-Term View

There is a trend of hurricanes growing stronger and retaining their strength further inland year-over-year. To learn more about this, explore our “How to Choose Impact Windows” whitepaper that discusses how the risk area has grown, and why it may continue to increase. Additionally, hurricane impact doors and windows are a long-term investment that can last years with proper maintenance. These are both critical factors that put expenses and material choices in perspective. Investing in the best impact windows and doors will ensure you are ready for anything this hurricane season may and future storms. In most cases, installing hurricane impact windows will lower property insurance costs, offering another long-term financial benefit.

Related: How Impact Windows Work Overtime

Identify Your Hurricane Risk

One in every 45 tropical storms will transform into a Category 5 hurricane and retain that devastating strength upon reaching the shore. After Hurricane Andrew, in 1992, the state of Florida created new requirements to protect its citizens. Building officials in Miami-Dade, Florida, developed construction code requirements, which are still among the most stringent in the country, to help save homes and lives during future storms. Throughout Florida, the risk is different depending on the location of your home. With a little research and partnering with an authorized impact window and door dealer, you can quickly determine your risk, what is required by law, and the ideal hurricane doors and windows for your home.

Related: CGI Products and Severe weather events

Wood, Vinyl, or Aluminum Windows and Doors?

An intense hurricane can tear windows and doors from a home if the frames are not adequately reinforced. Wood, vinyl, and aluminum are common choices for either window or door frames. Wood is affordable and an excellent insulator, but it does require maintenance (especially in coastal areas) and is the most prone to weakening with age. Vinyl is durable and typically less expensive than other materials, but the thicker frame appearance may not match your aesthetic. Aluminum is the most reliable choice but can require preventative maintenance to deter rust and corrosion.

Related: Know Your Windows

Impact Window Glass Options

Impact windows

Featuring our Sentinel Single Hung Window 110.

Once you start researching, you may be asking yourself, “How do I decipher the kinds of hurricane window glass options?”

• Laminated Glass:

Laminated glass is two sheets of glass bonded together with a robust and transparent interlayer. A silicone glazing process helps keep laminated glass from breaking away from the frame. Once sealed, the glass “sandwich” behaves as a single unit and is transparent like ordinary glass.

• Laminated Insulating Glass:

Laminated insulating glass is composed of three panes of glass: two panes of glass bonded together with a strong, clear interlayer for impact resistance and one pane for added insulation. The additional pane of glass is added to a laminated unit with hermetically sealed air space in between. It is commonly used in colder climates where the temperature difference is greater than 50 degrees between inside and outside during the winter.

An authorized window and door dealer can help you determine which glass type is ideal for your home.

Understanding Window Styles: A Guide To Window Style Selection

Protect Your Home with Impact Doors and Windows

Proper preparation for hurricane season is essential. Once you understand your hurricane risk and how it may change in the future, you will be ready to choose hurricane windows and doors. If you’d like to learn more about preparing your home, download our “CGI 2020 Hurricane Guide.”

New Construction: Windows and Doors Make a Difference

New home construction is tricky. There are millions of choices to make, and it can feel like every single one of them is permanent.

Related: 2020 Coastal Design Trends

But, when it comes to windows and doors, there’s no reason to stress. They not only provide personality to a home, but they give houses a different look and feel depending upon the time of day and season. Here are some considerations for door and window location and type in new construction.

Window and Door Options

When working with a builder, you have options on windows and doors. Sometimes these are filed under the “upgrade” category but don’t automatically count them out when evaluating your budget. When moving into a new home, there are things you can invest in later after you move in. But decisions during a build about windows and doors will save you time and money when you have an initial strategy. In other words, it’s easier to add a door or window when building a home than to go back and add it later.

Upgrade options don’t stop with simply adding new doors and windows to your floor plan. This is also an ideal time to consider upgrading to impact windows and doors. In the long run, this upfront investment can help you save you money long-term with potentially lower insurance premiums and much more.

Related: How Impact Windows Work Overtime

Door and Window Location

Accessibility can make the difference between liking and loving your home. Does your existing floor plan have a door far away from the kitchen that allows you to access your lanai ? Consider replacing a window closer to the kitchen with a door or adding a new French Door if entertaining outdoors is important, and you don’t want to have to carry food and drinks far. Do you like to store your backyard gardening tools in the garage? Maybe a side-entry door from the backyard to your garage would make things easier for you day-to-day. 

Window and Door Types

For example, if your initial floor plan offers a single swing door to your back patio, is it worth upgrading to a sliding glass door, so you can easily transport food to the grill and drinks out to your guests without having to turn a knob or handle? Or, do you love to grow herbs in your kitchen? There are a couple of window types that should be considered:

Fixed/Picture Window: A picture window gives you more sunlight for your plants (and maybe the perfect excuse to grow your plant family). 

Project-Out Window: Are you an avid baker who likes to air out the kitchen after a long day of baking? Consider adding a project-out window for easy kitchen ventilation.  

Casement Window: The ease of a casement window over the sink allows you to easily open and close your window with the use of a crank. Casement window screens also keep out unwelcome insect visitors.

Door and Window Design

Would you like your home to stand-out compared to your neighbors? It’s worth asking your builder if you have window frame finish options or other upgrades to select from. . You may also have the option to select from half circle, eyebrow, half eyebrow, arch, half arch, or trapezoid architectural shaped windows. These types of windows let you showcase your personal style and differentiate your home. Glass colors, hardware type, and additional options such as improved energy efficiency that could save you long-term on your heating and A/C bills may also be options.

Take the time to evaluate how you currently use your home or how you’d like to utilize your future home. This upfront effort can help you create a window and door strategy that will not only function for your family but maybe even make your neighbors a bit envious.

DWM Names the Top Door and Window Dealers 2019

For the 5th year, Door and Window Market Magazine (DWM) has  named their top door and window dealers. 

‘DWM editors undertook extensive research, scoured various sources and conducted field surveys for the latest annual sales and other information.’

We are proud to note that this compilation of top dealers/installers includes some of our very own PGT Innovation dealers.

Congratulations goes out to all winners but special note to our PGTI dealers Weather Tite Windows, Window Classic Corp, East Coat Windows & Doors, HBS Inc, Coastal Supply, and White Aluminum. 

The article can be found here

Investors can do well with PGT Innovations even if Florida doesn’t see another big storm for years.

Don’t take it from us, read this recent Wall Street Journal article by Ken Brown. 

To see the article directly, click:

At its most basic, an investment in PGT Innovations (PGTI)  is a bet that there will be hurricanes in Florida. That part is impossible to time. But investors can do well with PGT even if Florida doesn’t see another big storm for years.

PGT controls about 65% of the market for impact-resistant windows and doors in Florida. These windows can stop flying debris in a storm and are part of the building code in storm-prone areas. Last year’s Hurricane Irma, which led to the biggest storm evacuation in U.S. history, was a reminder of the state’s vulnerability after years without a major hurricane. Just 18% of Florida homes have impact resistant windows. The rest rely on storm shutters or plywood for protection.

PGT sales have been strong since then, but sales to existing homes were already up by more than 20% in the two quarters before Irma. That gets to the strength of PGT: After being hammered like the entire Florida building industry in the housing crisis, PGT rebounded, getting some growth from new home sales but more from renovations of existing homes. In the second quarter, sales for renovations grew 30% and accounted for 65% of revenue. To further dominate its market, PGT acquired its two biggest competitors.

The company’s healthy free cash flow—expected to be $62 million to $72 million this year—allowed it to pay down the debt from those acquisitions and to make new ones. This time it ventured out of Florida for the first time and in July agreed to pay $360 million for Western Window Systems which sells high-end, energy-efficient windows, from the West Coast to Texas.
There are good reasons for investors to expect PGT to keep up the momentum. The first half of this year was very strong: Sales were up 24%, earnings more than doubled and margins hit a record. Keeping step, shares of the company, which now has a market value of about $1.3 billion, have nearly doubled in the past 12 months.

The second half of the year definitely would get a boost if another hurricane hit Florida. Even without a storm, though, the company’s backlog is up 64% compared with a year earlier in part because the tight labor market has stretched out the post Irma boom. The company’s guidance calls for slowing growth, which looks unlikely given the backlog. While the stock’s valuation is at the high end of PGT’s historic range, there is evidence the company has moved to another level in terms of scale, diversification and customer awareness of its products.

There are risks. Tariffs have driven up the cost of aluminum, though PGT has been able to hedge its exposure and raise prices to offset the increases. New home sales are sluggish and the growth rate in the company’s renovations business is well above housing turnover, which is what typically drives renovations.

Nobody should wish for a storm, and PGT shares should do well even without one.

Top Three Reasons to Invest In Impact-Resistant Windows Now

Top Three Reasons to Invest In Impact-Resistant Windows Now

There are important steps to be taken in advance of a hurricane to ensure homes are protected from impending harsh weather conditions. Our impact-resistant windows have long been at the forefront of such protection, offering a variety of styles and options to serve the diverse needs of homeowners. For years, however, a value-custom line of impact-resistant windows wasn’t available. Until now.

CGI is proud to offer Sparta, our all-new value-custom impact-resistant window line. CGI Sparta windows are available at a price you can afford while still offering durability and style, equipping your home to withstand the test of time. With hurricane season underway, these are three reasons to invest in impact-resistant windows now.

  1. Strong windows are now at a strong price

The number one reason to buy Sparta impact-resistant windows? Affordability. This year, impact-resistant windows are more affordable than ever. Sparta impact-resistant windows are accessible to homeowners looking for strong, quality products at an equally strong value. Sparta windows provide benefits beyond just hurricane protection, however. They protect from potential intruders, significantly reduce outside noise, and prohibit 99% of ultraviolet rays from entering your home. The decision to upgrade to impact-resistant windows has never been easier.

  1. Strengthen the vulnerable

A window serves as one of the main entry points in a home, and is therefore one of the most vulnerable spots on a home facing extreme weather. If windows are damaged during a storm, high winds and debris can enter the home, put pressure on the roof and walls, and damage it from the inside out. Replacing non-impact windows with Sparta value-custom, impact-resistant windows creates a stronger barrier against a storm – preventing high winds from entering your home, and keeping your home secure and your loved ones safe.

  1. Year-long preparedness

In the case of an imminent storm, not all homes are prepared equally. While covering windows with plywood or shutters may be the most economical way to protect a home, this protection often requires immediate action by homeowners in the last moments before a storm. Further, the hazards that can result from improper installation can be costly, or even dangerous. Passive protection, on the other hand, embraces year-long preparedness. There is no need to scramble in the last moments before a hurricane to coordinate (and pay for) installation of plywood or storm shutters or to try to apply these cumbersome products yourself. Sparta impact-resistant windows provide passive protection by safeguarding your home from hurricanes and extreme weather, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Learn more about Sparta and find a dealer near you.

CGI’s Sparta Brings Strength and Affordability to Homeowners

CGI’s Sparta Brings Strength and Affordability to Homeowners

When considering an upgrade to impact-resistant windows, there are many options to choose from and cost is likely a big part of the decision. For years, a value-custom option for impact-resistant windows wasn’t available to homeowners. While the unmatched safety and protection that impact-resistant windows provide is as clear as the windows themselves, purchasing impact-resistant windows can seem financially out of reach. To better meet the needs of all of our customers, CGI is proud to offer Sparta, our all-new value-custom impact-resistant window line. Now having impact-resistant protection from storms is more attainable than ever.

Sparta is here
As a leader in the impact-resistant window industry, PGT Innovations recognized the need for a value-custom impact-resistant window line, and we’re excited that CGI is launching Sparta to fill that need. With Sparta, you can expect the same strength, quality, and performance you’ve come to expect from other CGI products at an affordable price. These durable value-custom windows will keep your home and loved ones safe from the next big storm. Sparta windows offer passive protection, meaning there is no need to apply cumbersome plywood or storm shutters prior to a storm. Sparta provides all the window protection you need, at a price you can afford. The decision to upgrade to impact-resistant windows has never been easier.

Available in Single Hung, Horizontal Roller, Fixed, and Architectural styles, Sparta windows are constructed with strong aluminum frames. The window line can withstand a design pressure of up to +55/-65 pounds per square foot and offers powder coat paint, corrosion-resistant hardware, and standard stainless steel assembly screws. Sparta windows hold a Florida Product Approval, are ideal for both new construction and remodeling, and are easy to install.

Safety beyond hurricanes
Designed to stand up to hurricanes and tropical storms, Sparta impact-resistant windows are the smart choice for other safety reasons, too: they provide protection from potential intruders, significantly reduce outside noise, and prohibit 99% of ultraviolet rays from entering your home. When you choose Sparta, you’re not simply designing a house — you’re building a home.


Learn more about Sparta and find a dealer near you. 


CGI Products and Severe Weather Events

CGI Products and Severe Weather Events

As a long-standing Florida-based company operating in the building and remodeling industry, CGI is particularly sensitive to weather-related risks posed to residents of this state. The destruction of homes and businesses caused by hurricanes, as well as the disruption caused to the daily lives of the residents, affects all of Florida citizens. CGI products are tested and comply with current industry standards and code requirements for repelling and dispersing water under defined performance conditions. The impact-resistant glass used in CGI products is also tested to ensure that it will resist direct impacts from wind-borne debris and high design pressure caused by hurricane-force winds.

While these products perform as intended under specified conditions, windows and doors are not designed to be leak proof. As with other building components, the forces imposed on windows and doors by extraordinary events such as hurricanes can exceed their ability to keep out water and water infiltration around the frames may occur when exposed to these conditions.

Below are several common questions and answers regarding the performance of impact-resistant and non-impact-resistant windows and doors.

The Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS) recommends that if a structure sustains damages as a result of extreme weather conditions, the owner should file a claim with his or her insurance carrier to ensure proper handling.

The swift and innovative responses to previous weather events have resulted in significantly reduced catastrophic property damage and personal loss. This is a testament to all companies and individuals in the industry who work to improve the quality of building and public safety. We at CGI are proud to contribute to this public service and look forward to providing quality products that improve lives for many more years.

Frequently Asked Questions


Q: Are there window and door products that are “hurricane proof”?
A: Impact-resistant products are designed, tested and built to withstand certain conditions to provide reasonable storm protection; however, it is unsafe to consider any product “hurricane proof”.

Q: If something hits my impact-resistant glass, will it break?
A: If struck, the impact-resistant glass can break, but it is designed to remain in the frame. This prohibits wind, water or other debris from entering the structure and causing further – sometimes catastrophic – damage.

Q: Will windows and doors leak in a hurricane?
A: Not necessarily; however, wind speed, duration, direction, rain volume and other natural phenomena that accompany a storm all contribute to and increase the possibility of leaks.All of our products are tested and certified for water infiltration resistance and meet or exceed code requirements.


Q: Why does water leak through my product when I spray it with a garden hose or pressure washer?
A: Most operable windows and doors are designed to withstand up to a certain amount of water pressure, measure in pounds per square foot (psf) or pounds per square inch (psi). A typical garden hose sprays water at approximately 30-60 psi and a typical pressure washer sprays water at 1200+ psi. These pressures far exceed the water rating for operable windows and doors, which typically range between 7 psf and 13.5 psf (0.0486 psi and 0.0938 psi, respectively).

Q: Why does water get into the track of my Sliding Glass Door or windows during a minor rain storm? Is something wrong with my product?
A: It is normal for water to be present in the track of sliding glass door or windows during a storm, especially if it is a windy storm. These products are designed to capture water in the track and drain it to the exterior of the building through the “weep holes” located in the bottom of a door or window frame. Keeping these “weep holes” free of dirt and debris will allow the water to flow out freely and not to build in the track.

CGI Commercial Launches Architectural Products Website

(Miami, FL) – CGI Commercial has launched a comprehensive website to support expansion into the commercial market. Designed to educate and inspire architects, the new site may be found at

Divided into the two categories of windows and doors, segmented pages offer full features/benefits and technical information on Storefront Window Systems and Storefront Entry Doors.

Clicking through to Storefront Window Systems, architects are presented with complete information on glass and glazing options (including external wet glaze), design pressures, and robust sizing of CGI Commercial products.

The Storefront Entry Doors page offers glass specifications and design pressure information, single- and double-door features, and complete specs on the 3-point locking system.

Downloadable brochures are available for all window and door offerings.

            Rounding out the offerings: a gallery of inspirational project photography showcasing the use of CGI Commercial Architectural Products in retail, residential, lodging, restaurant, and other miscellaneous projects.

            “A brand-new website focusing solely on CGI Commercial directly supports the company’s expansion into this market,” said Daryl Hendricks, Senior Vice President of Operations for CGI. “We continue to always look to the future of the industry and the next generation of products, and the CGI Commercial brand is a reflection of this effort as we continue to grow our market reach and better serve our customers.”

“Walk on Water” Event Expands Statewide for 2016

If you know CGI, you know we’re very involved and very supportive of our Florida architecture community. It’s an honor to be deeply involved with AIA Florida … but we wanted to take it a step further this year.

For the last three years, CGI has sponsored the “Walk on Water” competition put on by the Dept. of Architecture at Florida International University, and we’ve watched interest and participation grow each year. The value of supporting a program like this is the ROI for the students: This event allowed students to both design and build their project, which equals real-world, hands-on experience. That’s invaluable. walkonwater first prize

New for 2016: The 2016 “Walk on Water” event welcomed, for the first time, competition teams from across the state (Palm Beach State and the University of Florida, to be specific). Sponsor funding assisted these schools with both their materials and their travel expenses.  

“Walk on Water” is an amazing event: FIU students in the Materials & Methods of Construction Class taught by FIU Architecture Professor Jaime Canaves were issued a challenge by their teacher: Successfully construct shoes that will allow the student to walk across a campus lake – with minimum water contact. Entrants can compete individually, or as a team.

The event, a favorite campus tradition, is about more than just making the grade in Canaves’ class; the first place winner of each of the two races received a $1,000 cash prize, thanks to CGI’s sponsorship. The event is in its 27th year. 

So what’s next? Who knows … maybe we’ll help FIU take this event national in 2017! 

Know your windows

Hurricanes are unforgiving forces of nature. These storms can release as much energy as an atom bomb over a very short period of time. One area where many homes are susceptible to damage is the windows. Hurricanes can pick up debris and hurl them through non-impact resistant windows with ease. Nobody wants to be trapped in their home while a hurricane flings razor-sharp broken glass windows throughout their house. It would be much more preferable to have the safety and security that CGI Windows provide.
But before you can pick the perfect CGI window for your home, you need to know some basic terms.

CCasementasement windows swing open like a car door. This type of window offers your home superb ventilation; without the hassle of cumbersome rails that other windows rely upon.   





Fixed windows are just like they sound, windows that are fixed to the wall and can’t pivot. This variety of window is great for living, dining, and master bedrooms. A fixed window can offer a wide open look at the brilliant scenery and allow a lot of beautiful light into your home.

designer fixed window is simply a more upscale version of a fixed window. These pieces deliver luxurious aesthetic pleasure to any room and pair well with almost any sort of interior design.  

single hung window can open and close without taking up any unnecessary space in your home.  SingleHung







Horizontal rolling windows are like sliding glass doors. They feature a sliding mechanism whichHRW is a real eye-catcher. This unique design allows you to quickly access hanging plants or just let a breeze in.


CGI was formed in 1992 after Hurricane Andrew demolished parts of the Bahamas, Louisiana, and Southern Florida. The category-five Hurricane Andrew carved its most destructive pathway through Southern Florida, where one-hundred and eight-thousand homes were damaged. Thousands and thousands of windows were broken. This caused many dangerous situations! Luckily if you had an impact-resistant window, you were much safer than you might have been. CGI is the industry leader and creates products that stand up to the most intense storms.

Homeowners always face the threat of unpredictable weather patterns and severe storms. It would be wise to invest in CGI Windows, a quality company that has provided the most durable windows for over two decades to well-known structures such as, Fairchild Botanical Gardens, Fisher Island, and WaterColours in Grand Cayman.
If you live in an area that experiences hurricanes it only makes sense to purchase windows that look great and can protect you if the worst happens. Partner with the industry expert and purchase CGI windows.