You already know that taping windows provides no protection whatsoever from flying debris and just cracking windows actually increases your risk of a catastrophic roof failure.Now let's tackle the idea that only selected openings should be covered during a hurricane or severe weather.
Protect only the windows and doors facing the ocean.
Wind can come from any direction or angle and may change direction quickly. Tropical storms and hurricanes are large circular systems. As the eye of the storm passes your house, the winds may change direction up to 180 degrees, depending on your proximity to the eye. Protecting windows, entry doors, and garage doors with tested and approved shutters or impact-resistant windows is the best way to prevent damage from flying debris or wind pressure. If no system is in place, use 5/8” plywood as an emergency board-up measure, but be sure to use appropriate attachment methods or the plywood could become windborne debris and increase damage potential.
So you are probably thinking, “what’s with the bucket?” No, it’s not for sand castles, car washing, or rock collecting, but it might be the most important purchase you make before Independence Day hits. According to the National Council of Firework Safety you should keep a bucket of water handy to douse used sparklers or fireworks—make it a rule: all spent fireworks and sparklers in the bucket. I reckon that bucket might be used to put out any unwanted blazes, too. Keep sparklers away from the house and vehicles, and make sure children under the age of 12 do not handle sparklers. NEVER light a sparkler or firework indoors. For more safety tips and information on firework safety, check out the NCFS website. The 4th should be a day of celebration, so enjoy it, and stay safe!