Outdoor Shutters, also called louvres, help control sun and rain penetration into windows. They can be functional or just decorative. Decorative shutters may never need to be opened, while functional shutters often come with a screen that allows them to be used for ventilation.
Functional shutters can be opened and closed with a hinge or sliding mechanism. Hinged shutters are easier to open, but may jam if not properly maintained while sliding shutters do not have this problem.
Decorative shutters add beauty and value to the home, but they also add privacy and security to your windows. Most shutters are made of wood, but they can also be found in aluminium, vinyl, fibreglass and even plexiglass.
Best Shutters for Decks
Since there are different types of exterior shutters, it is best to know what style you need before actually purchasing them. At the same time, your location should be taken into consideration as well since some shutters are better for colder climates while others are better suited towards warmer weather.
One of the most important considerations when choosing exterior shutters is where they are being installed. While wooden exterior shutters are very popular due to their ability to be painted or stained in any colour, they are also more likely to warp or crack when exposed to weather elements so choose one that is rated for your specific climate.
Outdoor Shutters for a Warmer Climate
Aluminium shutters and vinyl exterior hinged panels are better suited to warmer climates due to the materials used in their construction. They are also more likely to last longer than the wooden louvre variant as they will not warp, crack or collect moisture underneath them. Installation is easier.
Outdoor Shutters Maintenance
When repairs and maintenance are required, they can easily be completed yourself as most of these products require very little in the way of tools or skillset. Depending on the type of exterior shutter you have, common repairs include replacing broken hardware or fixing warped sections.
Exterior shutters are generally very easy to install due to their lightweight construction and interlocking design which allows them to be installed in several hours by just one person. Installing can also be a very affordable project as many of the more expensive options use only basic tools and construction techniques.
Replacing broken hardware is a very common repair that you may need to perform sooner or later. This will require removing the old hardware from your shutters, sanding down any rust or corrosion, and then repainting the hardware so it matches the rest of your exterior shutters.
Replacing moulding is a more difficult repair as you will need to remove any fasteners from your moulding, cut the moulding to size if needed and then install it. Before cutting new moulding, make sure that you remove any paint or stain that may be on the surface in order to ensure a proper fit.
Painting of Outdoor Shutters
Exterior shutters, whether they are made from vinyl, aluminium or wood can be painted or stained to match your home. If painting your external shutters you will need to do so before installing them as this process will require removing them in order to paint the backside.
However, if you are staining exterior shutters then you can paint or stain before or after the installation as this process is much easier to do without removing the shutters. To paint exterior vinyl shutters, use high-quality exterior paint so your colour will last longer.
If repairing external aluminium shutters, you will need to sand down any rust or corrosion before painting them with an enamel primer and topcoat of aluminium paint. Before repairing any wood parts of your exterior wooden shutters, first, remove any old layers of paint that may be peeling before applying fresh coats of oil-based primer and varnish. Finish by sanding the surface evenly in order to ensure the next coat sticks properly.
Repairing and reinstalling is not difficult to do and can be done by just one person. However, if you are not confident in doing the repairs yourself then hiring a contractor might be worth considering as this would allow you to see your window exterior shutter repaired or replaced for even less money than you thought.
Having the proper exterior shutters provide your home with protection from both cold and hot weather elements while allowing natural light to filter through them during daytime hours. Before choosing an exterior shutter, consider how much work it will take to repair broken hardware and ensure that they will fit properly along with any other roofing or siding materials you may have around your home.
Type of Shutters Outdoor
There are different types of louvres or outdoor shutters, each with its own advantages and disadvantages.
These outdoor shutters open like a book and fold against the windowpane. The shutters outdoor do not need any additional hardware to work and can be easily opened by tilting them outwards. The major downside is the lack of security they offer since there is no lock and they can be lifted off or folded back. It’s considered a bad choice for outdoor decks.
These hang from above and swing outwards when you want to open them. The hinges are usually mounted outside of the window, so they don’t block light or interfere with curtains. These work great for big windows that need more ventilation than smaller ones. However, the hinges are exposed to the weather, so these shutters outdoor can get rusty with time.
This is a specialized shutter that fits into a 90-degree area in between two walls. They allow double exposure (inward and outward) which is good ventilation, but bad if one wants privacy. Casement-type louvres are often used for patios and bathrooms. They come with a handle, which makes them easy to open and close.
These work well with smaller windows, as they keep drafts from getting through the open window. They usually close flat against the glass pane or frame to provide privacy, but can also be tilted to allow airflow when opened all the way. Most hinges are mounted on top of the shutter which causes a blockage in light if it is closed completely, but allows more ventilation when open. Thi type of louvre shutters hinging works best for short spans of windows that don’t require a large variety of opening or closing configurations.
This type uses rollers at each edge you can slide them from one side to the other. Adjustable screens provide good ventilation when opened, but they do not give you a good range of privacy or control. Screens can be removed or closed when privacy is required. Sliding shutters work best in long spans of windows that need a wide range of ventilation choices.
This type allows in lots of light and air, but provides only 30% coverage because it’s mounted on the outside at an angle to deflect rainwater away from the windowpane. This type works great for bathroom skylights or anywhere else where more sunlight is desired than sun protection is needed, such as outdoor living.
Vertical Sliding Shutter
These types of louvre shutters are often called “roller shades”. They are easy to open and close and don’t require much space. They are often motorized for easy use, but can also be operated by hand. Vertical sliding is practical and works well in combination with other types of outdoor shutters. The vertical sliding frame iss especially suitable for large spans of windows but may be difficult to match with the space decor because most feature only white fabric.
Outdoor Aluminium Shutters
Aluminium shutters are the best option if you are looking for durability for shutters outdoor. Aluminium shutters are strong, sturdy and can withstand all kinds of weather. The exclusive range includes aluminium shutters, folding wooden shutters, sliding window aluminium shutters, etc. The aluminium shutters can be opened and closed using a hand crank or motor. The outdoor aluminium shutter is available in a variety of finishes and colours. Outdoor aluminium shutters are not just modern but are also easy to open, close and maintain. Aluminium louvre shutters give you extra security against burglary, noise pollution or storm damage. Outdoor aluminium shutter systems require little maintenance and will stay in good condition for many years if maintained well.
Plantation shutters are the best option if you want your outdoor shutter to last long. They can be easily installed in the outdoor area and they offer protection from all kinds of weather. Plantation shutters are available in a wide variety of range with different styles like plantation, colonial, contemporary etc.
Wood Exterior Shutters
Wood exterior shutters come with a factory applied finish or one you apply yourself that will fit best with the outdoor living area. These finishes include paint or stain that is designed to protect the wood from weathering. Some people choose to leave them unfinished, which requires more maintenance than applying a suitable outdoor finish.
If you choose to apply an exterior paint or stain, buy one that is designed for outdoor use and outdoor use only. Be sure to follow the manufacturers recommendations exactly when using these products for an outdoor area. Some of them require several days between coats while others do not recommend using them on doors and windows for outdoor living so check first before buying.
Painting Wood Outdoor Shutters
For exterior windows, choose a paint that is 100% acrylic latex for best results. This type of paint comes in a variety of colours and has the added benefit of being washable so you won’t need to keep applying new coats every year or two. Of course, you will still need to sand old layers of paint prior to re-painting your shutters.
Exterior wood can also be stained to protect it, but this is an entirely different process than painting the shutters. Different types of stains will give your shutters varying degrees of protection and colour, while others will leave them looking like new. Know that some stains are not designed for outdoor use and you should avoid using these on your shutters.
Normally the type of stain you apply to your shutters will be based on personal preference, but there are also other factors to consider such as climate and exposure to the sun. If you live in a sunny area, then choosing a darker stain that blocks out the suns UV rays is better for your shutters. On the other hand, if you live in a colder climate then choosing a lighter stain or even bare wood is better as it will allow the sun to penetrate into the warmer interior of your home.
Problems with Exterior Wood Shutters
Exterior shutters can also warp and crack due to exposure to weather elements. This usually happens on the bottom edge of the shutter and is due to water seeping under the shutter itself. The bottom edge of your shutters should be sealed with caulk or another waterproofing product before installation to avoid this problem, but if your shutters already have this problem you can repair it yourself using exterior wood filler products designed specifically for exterior use.
Make sure you clean and dry all surfaces before applying any products and allow them time to completely dry and cure according to manufacturer instructions. You may even need to repaint or stain your shutters after repairing them depending on the colour match required.
Once installed, exterior wood shutters require regular maintenance such as sanding old layers of paint or stain from the surface in order to new ones. This will not only lengthen the life of your shutters, but it will also ensure that new coats are applied evenly.
Exterior shutters can be made from a variety of materials including wood, aluminium and vinyl. While all of these shutters will protect your windows they do have their differences in terms of maintenance requirements. Many people prefer wooden exterior shutters due to the wide range of colours available as well as the ability to paint or stain them to suit any home decorating style.