A tornado is one of the most destructive natural disasters, which may quickly and extensively damage a large area. The Enhanced Fujita Scale (EF Scale), which considers the possible damage and the expected wind speed, is used to gauge a tornado’s intensity. 

The destructive potential of a tornado is not just based on its magnitude, though. A larger tornado with lesser winds may not produce as much damage as a smaller tornado with stronger winds. A tornado with wind speeds of EF2 or higher might destroy a house.

This article will discuss the maximum tornado size that can demolish the property and how to shield your house from damage.

Understanding The EF-Scale

Tornado intensity is measured using the Enhanced Fujita Scale (EF Scale). The National Weather Service (NWS), in conjunction with wind engineers and social scientists, developed it in 2007. The scale has five different values, with EF0 being the lowest and EF5 being the highest.

The descriptions of each EF Scale level are as follows:

  • EF0 – Wind gusts between 65 and 85 mph (105 and 137 km/h): Minor property damage, such as broken tree branches and cracked roofs.
  • EF1 – Wind blow between 86 to 110 mph (138 and 177 km/h): Moderate property damage, including damaged windows and doors and partial roof removal.
  • EF2 – Wind blow between 111 and 135 mph (178 and 217 km/h): Severe damage, including the collapse of walls and roofs.
  • EF3 – Wind gusts between 136 and 165 mph (218 and 266 km/h): Significant damage, including the destruction of building walls and roofs.
  • EF4 – Wind gusts between 166 and 200 mph (267 and 322 km/h): Terrible destruction, including the collapse of sturdy buildings.
  • EF5 – Wind gusts over 200 mph (322 km/h): Extremely severe damage, including total building destruction.

What Size Tornado Can Destroy A House?

The damage a tornado can produce is not always based on its magnitude. The EF Scale measures a tornado’s wind speed, determining its strength. However, because larger tornadoes have a wider path of destruction, the amount of damage a tornado can produce can vary depending on its size.

Normally, homes can sustain considerable damage from tornadoes with an EF2 or higher rating. 

An EF3 tornado can cause catastrophic damage, including removing roofs and walls, whereas an EF2 tornado can significantly damage a house’s roof and walls. Tornadoes with an EF4 or EF5 rating have the potential to produce immense and terrible damage, including destruction of buildings.

Watch this video of a tornado destroying the house:

Tornado destroys house

Protecting Your Home From Tornado Damage

You can take several precautions to safeguard your house from tornado damage. Here are a few pieces of advice:

  1. Pay Attention To Weather Alerts

Staying current on the most recent weather conditions and forecasts is critical. It’s essential to have a dependable method of getting weather notifications because tornadoes can strike suddenly and without warning. 

If you want to get the most recent information regarding severe weather in your area, think about buying a weather radio. 

In addition, many smartphone apps include weather alerts that can inform you of tornadoes and other severe weather events. These alerts must be configured for you to receive notifications as soon as feasible. 

By remaining informed about severe weather conditions, you may take the essential precautions to safeguard yourself and your property from a tornado’s devastating impact.

  1. Plan Ahead

The difference between staying safe and experiencing harm or even death during a tornado can be made by having a strategy on what to do. Find a safe location in your house where you and your family can cover during a tornado. 

It should ideally be a room inside your home, away from windows and exterior walls, on the lowest level. 

Determine a safe location on a lower floor or in a designated shelter area if you reside in an apartment or high-rise building. Ensure that everyone in your home knows this safe location and understands how to get there quickly. A strategy for what to do if you are not at home when a tornado strikes is equally essential.

  1. Reinforce Your Home

A tornado damage risk can be effectively decreased by strengthening your property. Impact-resistant windows and doors can aid in preventing the entry of debris and the resulting damage to your home. 

By strengthening your roof with hurricane straps or clips, you can lower the chance that it will be lifted off during a tornado and keep it firmly fastened to the walls of your house. Additionally, consider adding more framing or bracing to your home’s walls to strengthen them and make them more wind-resistant. 

Another way to stop your house from being lifted or moved during a tornado is to secure it to the ground. It entails fastening metal cables or straps to your home’s structure and anchoring them to the foundation.

By strengthening it in these ways, you can make your home more resilient to a tornado’s destructive force and lower the likelihood of damage or destruction.

  1. Secure Loose Items

High-speed winds during a tornado can cause even seemingly harmless objects to become lethal projectiles. 

Patio furniture, barbecues, and garbage cans are examples of loose objects that can be picked up and flung into the air, seriously damaging your property or even endangering people’s lives. 

Securing these goods or bringing them inside before a tornado strikes is essential to lessen the danger of damage or injury. It can involve keeping patio furniture and outdoor gear in a safe space, such as a garage or shed, or securing them with straps or weights. 


Homes can sustain serious damage from tornadoes, ranging from slight disruption to total devastation. According to the EF Scale, which rates a tornado’s intensity, EF2 or greater tornadoes can seriously harm a house. 

Pay attention to weather alerts, plan and fortify your home and certain unsecured objects, think about a safe room, and have a disaster kit to safeguard your property against tornado damage. 

Following these precautions, you can protect your home from harm and ensure your family’s safety during a storm.