Window Shutters: A Complete Guide

For those who need a new window dressing, shutters make a great choice. Aside from being easy to maintain, stylish, and secure, shutters provide better control over light, noise, ventilation and greater thermal insulation. However, with so many websites offering a multitude of options for residential use, finding the best choice for your home is not as easy as it may seem. Always visit http://www.theshutterstore.com/shop/styles/cafe-style-shutters first. Here’s a detailed buying guide to help you make the best purchase.

Types

Shutters come in two major types. Both louvered (slatted) and solid (filled in) shutters can be installed as an interior or exterior dressing for windows. Although homeowners often choose to combine the two, it is wise to base your choice on the look and feel you aim to achieve and your functional needs. Because you can open and close the slats as and when required, louvered shutters allow you to control light and ventilation much better than the other window treatment options. Solid shutters are, on the other hand, more effective thermal insulators.

Styles

Shutters come in many different styles to suit various functions and different window shapes. The tier-on-tier, café style, and full height are a few of the most common designs. Assuming the full height design is self-explanatory, café style shutters cover the lower part only while tier-on-tier shutters involve two shutters, one mounted above the other, that work independently. Shutters are available in circular, hexagonal, octagonal, arched, and triangular formations among others to fit different window shapes.

Construction

The type of shutter will usually depend on the window size it’s designed to cover. While small-sized windows will rarely need more than a simple pair of shutters, one or several pairs of bi-fold or tri-fold shutters are often required for larger windows. Such shutters consist of two or three panels joined with hinges. For huge windows, you’ll need shutters made of multiple panels. Aside from extending and collapsing in concertina-like folds, this kind may feature a set of wheels for gliding along tracks. In most cases, the best shutters for conservatories will involve a combination of several different styles. This will, however, depend on the glass panels’ construction.

Materials

Since durability is a vital consideration, top quality shutters are usually made from hardwood. The most popular hardwood choices include cedar, mahogany and teak, mainly because these species are resistant to insect infestation and rot. However, composite shutters can be a little bit more advantageous in some cases. Because they provide added resistance to rotting, splitting, and twisting, composite shutters can benefit kitchens, bathrooms, and any other area exposed to lots of moisture. Composite shutters often comprise of an engineered wooden core, with a synthetic material such as epoxy used for lamination.

Finishes

You can have your shutters finished in several different ways based on the desired look and feel. Painted shutters are best for matching your color scheme while oils, stains and lacquers best suit a natural finish, one that allows the grain of the wood to show through. More importantly, finishing works great for extended life.