Plantation Shutters FAQs

Plantation Shutters

What Are Plantation Shutters?

Plantation shutters are shutters used to filter sunlight into, or out of, a room. These high-quality shutters are now in high demand as a design statement in the modern world. Shutters are preferred by both interior designers and people looking to add style and value to their home. Shutters are all fitted internally and can be made from high-quality materials.

They are available in a wide range of colors and designs to fit almost any internal color scheme, and will add elegance to a property. Any shape door or window can be fitted with shutters, whether it is a round, an angled or an arched window or door. The shutter sometimes does not cover a full window or door, as a partial covering can increase privacy and light and still add style to a building or room.

Why Are They Called Plantation Shutters?

Shutters are becoming narrower, and are generally found in homes that have their roots in the New England region of the country. The architectural style was introduced by the Spaniards who lived on large plantations in the early years of the nation, hence its name. Traditionally, they have larger blinds, but currently, the manufacturers are designing them in all shapes and sizes.

How Do Plantation Shutters Work?

The main advantages of installing interior plantation shutters are that they:

  • Promote the maximization of air flow in a room, and
  • Allow plenty of room for air and light.

People had to rely on plantation shutters in the past to keep their homes cool. Another important distinction of plantation shutters is that they are often placed on hinges, which allows them to open fully and to fold. They are also often custom-made to fit any size or window shape which adds to the functional, elegant value of your home. The shutters can be closed or angled to control the amount of light and privacy required, and they will not rattle or flutter. Hardwood plantation shutters are a very elegant solution that enhances any interior. It also acts as a security barrier.

How Long Do Plantation Shutters Last?

Plantation shutters are by far the most low-maintenance window covering available. However, the costs are dependent on the shutter manufacturer and the material of the shutters. It can be expected to last for 10-25 years.

Can You Open Windows Fitted With Plantation Shutters?

Yes. Shutters can swing in and out to close and open. Most windows will be covered by two panels that are opened by pulling them open independently. This is similar to opening double doors. Opening the shutters to get to the windows will depend on what type of mounting hardware is installed on the blinds.

Do Plantation Shutters Add Value To My Home?

Plantation shutters are one of the few window treatments that add actual value to your home. Hardwood plantation shutters are a firm favorite when it comes to window solutions and treatments as they are versatile, more affordable than most window treatment options, and also add instant value to the property. They are typically considered a fixed feature of the home as they are custom designed. And, as a result, they are generally the only window treatment that can be financed into the purchase of a property.

How To Clean Plantation Shutters:

Make sure to use the best cleaning method to keep your plantation shutters in good condition for many years to come.  Shutters that are located in your bathroom, kitchen, dining areas, and so on can easily accumulate grease, accidental food splatters, hairspray, dust, grime, and other forms of dirt. These locations need to be cleaned weekly to keep them looking as good as new.

Here are some good ways to clean your plantation shutters for all materials and finishes:

Timber Plantation Shutters

Clean timber shutters by using as little water as possible, and avoid any harsh cleaning materials:

  • Use a dusting cloth or brush, a vacuum, and a small brush that you can wet.
  • Run the vacuum with the brush over the shutters to remove as much dust as possible.
  • Use the soft dusting cloth to get in between each shutter, wet the soft cloth slightly with water, and gently scrub any particularly stubborn areas.
  • With another dry cloth, dry off all the areas that may have become wet to avoid damage to the surface of the shutters.

Polywood Shutters

Polywood is a synthetic material that can be cleaned by using harsher cleaning materials – if needed. Use the same dry method as used for timber shutters:

  • Vacuum to remove dust, then use your soft cloth with either a small amount of water or cleaning solution.
  • Focus on the spaces where the frame and the shutters meet and the sides of the shutters and any small spaces where dust can build up.

Exterior Plantation Shutters

Exterior shutters will probably need a bit more thorough cleaning than internal shutters:

  • A soapy cleaning product will be needed.
  • Use a hose or pressure washer to get all the loose dirt and material off the shutters.
  • Dish soap and water can work well for cleaning, but bleach could also be used to help remove stubborn mold or stains.
  • You can always test a patch on an easily hidden area first to make sure the shutter will not discolor.

How To Install Plantation Shutters – Interior Or Exterior

The best time to install shutters is when all the renovations are complete. Shutters can only be installed once the flooring has been completed and once the reveals have been plastered and painted. Installation companies use specialist tools to ensure that installation is carried out with minimal dust. A vacuum cleaner is used during the installation to clean up dust immediately.  The installation time is approximately between 1 and 3 hours per opening, and are conducted by professionals who are specifically trained to deal with not only the complexities of a shutter installation, but also to ensure high standards.

If you are installing plantation shutters yourself, there are some easy steps to take:

  1. Assemble the frame by tapping the key into pre-routed slots on the back of each frame.
  2. Center and level the frame on the inside of the window opening. Center and attach the strips to both sides of the opening. Make sure they are set so that the panels and frame are level, and that they are as close to the wall as possible.
  3. Once the frame is centered and leveled, screw the frame into the wall in three places through the pre-drilled holes. Ensure that the top of the frame is square and level.
  4. Attach the panels to the frame by inserting the hinge pins.
  5. Ensure there are no gaps, and test your shutters. When your shutters are even with no gaps, secure the frame using additional screws through the pre-drilled holes.
  6. Attach the button catch by placing the catch on the lip of the window frame, ½” from the inner edge of the stile. Screw the catch into the frame.
  7. Place the strike plate onto the catch and close the panel to determine the proper location for the strike plate. Mark where the button should be on the panel with a pencil. The button should be installed ½” from the inner edge of the stile.
  8. Remove from the catch and screw it into the panel.
Plantation Shutters

How To Measure For Plantation Shutters:

  1. Measure the width, from the outside of the window frame on the left to the outside of the window frame on the right, or from the left-side reveal to the right-side reveal.
  2. Measure the height from the sill to the ceiling or top of the reveal.
  3. If you are looking for café shutters, please give the height of the transom or horizontal divide in your window, rather than the full height of the window, and indicate this is what you are looking for.

How To Fix Plantation Shutters:

Having a broken louver is one of the most annoying problems you can have with your plantation shutters. It is not only an eyesore; it also lets in unwanted light.

Some solutions include:

  1. Calling a professional: They can replace or manufacture a new one and install it right in your home.  There is no need to remove the entire shutter and the process is fairly easy.
  2. Louvers can become dislodged from their position in the shutter, even though the louvers are not actually broken.  If the louver’s pin is still there, try using a flathead screwdriver or a razor blade to depress the pin while you slide the louver back into place.  If the louver pin is missing, call your shutter company.  An installer will most likely be able to replace the louver pins and repair the shutter at your home.
  3. Magnets are mounted inside the shutter frame to hold the shutter tightly in place when it is closed, but sometimes these can break.  Replacement magnets are available from stores for a small fee.  If you choose to install them yourself, all you need is a flathead screwdriver, and you should be able to unscrew the broken magnet and screw in the new one.
  4. When louvers won’t stay open, the problem can be fixed by adjusting the louver tension. Use a flathead screwdriver to turn the tension screws, which are located on both sides of the shutter panel.
  5. If the actual shutter panel is broken or if the frames of your shutters are broken or damaged, it is always better to call a professional plantation shutter company for assistance.

Are Plantation Shutters Energy Efficient?

Yes and no. When used properly, plantation shutters can be the most energy efficient window treatment. All shutter materials are energy efficient when the shutters are in the closed position. Some shutter materials are better insulators than others. The key is keeping the panels and louvers closed during the coldest or hottest times of the day. The air pocket that is formed between the window and the closed shutters makes a great insulator. However, when the shutter panel is opened or the louvers are in the open position, you lose the insulating factor of the air pocket. Solid synthetic faux wood, MDF, and PVC plastic shutters make the best insulators.

Keeping your shutters closed during the coldest and hottest times will help you see a decrease in your energy bills. Here are how shutters are energy saving:

  • They provide effective insulation, offering your home increased protection against heat loss during the winter and heat gain during the summer.
  • Honeycomb shades are designed with honeycomb-shaped pockets to enhance your home’s energy efficiency by keeping air from escaping or entering your home.
  • Hardwood shutters’ insulating design make indoor spaces cooler in summer and warmer in winter, keeping your room at an ideal temperature.
  • Window film deflects 99% of damaging UV rays, lessening heat gain and protecting your furniture against harmful UV damage.
  • Optional motorization options allow your blinds to become energy-efficient blinds, as they can be set on timers to maximize or minimize heat gain as needed.

Does Plantation Shutters Block Light In Day/Night?

The answer basically depends on the type of shutter or blinds. Shutters, since they’re actually solid, usually block out more light than blinds do. Since the horizontal slat is build to roll up in a fixture in the ceiling when they’re up, there can end up being small gaps between the slats when they’re down, which will let some light through, if not much.

There are blackout solutions that let light filter through to illuminate your space, then block off the sun with the shutter wherever and whenever you need. They make it easy to direct the light in your preferred direction or open up to enjoy your landscape, as well as get the privacy, view, and light you deserve.

Are Plantation Shutters Still In?

Yes. Plantation shutters are an attractive, though expensive, window treatment. Shutters have a clean look to them and are quite appealing in the modern era. In addition, many home buyers find shutters a plus when comparing potential homes, which can make your investment pay off in the long run.

What Is The Difference Between Plantation Shutters And Traditional Shutters?

  • Traditional Shutters
    The main design element in traditional shutters is the small, narrow louvers. This is the result of the small space between each slat. These shutters are more popular with smaller windows.
  • Plantation Shutters
    The biggest difference in plantation shutters is the much wider louver style.

What Is The Best Wood For Plantation Shutters?

Pine is a wood that is best used for many different products from building homes to the furnishings in them. It is very soft and there are many grades of pine to choose from. The best wood in the opinion of many is basswood.

Will Shutters Work For Windows That Are In Different Shapes?

Yes. Shutters, like certain types of blinds, are made of horizontal or vertical slats of wood that are controlled by a rod affixed to the front of the shutter themselves. Each individual slat can, therefore, be tailored so that they taper appropriately to fit the arch or circular shape of your windows. Custom designers and installers will work with customers who have different shapes windows and/or doors. Throughout the entire process of getting the perfect plantation shutters to fit, they’ll work on custom-made designs.

Can I Install Plantation Shutters On Sliding Doors?

Yes. You can beautifully enhance patio doors without hurting the operation of the door. It is important to consider all of the variables such as size, material, and which type of shutters will fit best, as choosing shutters for sliding glass doors is a bit more complicated than choosing for regular windows. Track options for shutters are the perfect fit. These look like custom installed plantation shutters, but glide easily along the track, without the need to install extra guides in the floor. Plantation shutters provide privacy, block light, and add a beautiful, sophisticated look to your sliding door. Some tips to consider:

  • Before selecting shutters for your sliding glass doors, do consider how much space you have available.
  • Consider energy efficiency when buying new shutters, as air can pass through large glass doors and insulated shutters can save you lots of money on heating and cooling bills.
  • Choose from wood or synthetic material that can be stained or painted with a variety of colors to match the existing décor. You can even get ones specially made for uniquely shaped doors and windows.
  • Go with custom plantation shutters to ensure everything measures up correctly.
  • Choose a high-quality shutter that is likely to cost less in the long run.

Why Are Plantation Shutters So Expensive?

Plantation Shutters are labor intensive. Labor costs are dependent on factors such as the contractor’s workload, remoteness of the location, environment, and the contractor’s overhead. Get at least three estimates before you decide on a Plantation Shutter Company for your installation.   A quality plantation shutter is made by using high-quality materials and paint. While all of this will ensure the best and lasting plantation installation, it will also increase the cost.

How Wide Can Plantation Shutters Be?

The width can only be made in a single shutter. Wooden shutters can be made in a width up to 1.047 mm with 89 mm louvers. If you need two or more panels that will bi-fold together, the maximum guaranteed width for any shutter is 550 mm per panel. For wooden shutters, this width increases to 660 mm per panel.

  • Standard
    Standard shutters can be made with a maximum of 2 panels bi-folding together.
  • Standard Plus, Elite, Basswood, And Cedar
    All of these materials are light in weight, so are able to be made with up to 4 panels bi-folding each side of your window, so a maximum of 8 panels. The total width of the 3 or 4 shutters must be less than 1.320 mm.
  • Very Wide Openings
    If you have a window that is wider than 2.640 mm, and you would still like internal window shutters, there are options to make this possible. For instance, you can always track mount for wide windows.

Can You Automate Plantation Shutters?

Yes, there is an approach which consists of a stepper motor connected to a lead screw that pushes/pulls a clip attached to a single blade. The positive aspect of the lead screw/stepper arrangement is that the movement can be slow and controlled, and reduces the amount of torque required to drive a stiff set of blades.

How Much Does It Cost To Install Plantation Shutters?

The costs of installing plantation shutters depend primarily on the size and on the window treatment installation and material. With the rapid change in technology, plantation shutters are not only made of wood but also vinyl. Wooden shutters are made out of hardwood, natural woods, and composite woods.  Factors affecting cost include:

  • The Type Of Materials Used:
    California hardwood plantation shutters are among some of the most common types of shutters, and they are usually made of oak or poplar. These are often more pricey. High-end faux wood shutters can cost as much as the wooden shutters. The cost of wooden plantation shutters also varies according to the size of the window. It will vary from $55 to $330 for painted wood. Faux materials are on the lower side starting from $45 to $270.
  • Size:
    It is obvious that the bigger the size of hurricane shutters, the higher the cost. The price variation will depend on the homeowners’ requirements.
  • Installation:
    The installation process is easy and homeowners can do it. Doing it yourself will go a long way to preserve money. The homeowner should buy the necessary tools to install the shutters. The cost of installation by a contractor will vary depending on the specific contractor. Basically, the cost of installation will range from $45 to $350.
  • Energy saving:
    Plantation shutters are a good addition because they can save on energy. The louvers allow homeowners to regulate the amount of heat and light that goes into the house. The beauty and energy savings are worth buying plantation shutters.

California hardwood plantation shutters are considered some of the finest shutters in the world due to their superior design and the undeniable quality of workmanship that goes into their creation. Hardwood plantation shutters are a firm favorite when it comes to window solutions and treatments, as they are versatile, more affordable than most window treatment options, and also add instant value to the property. For more answers to your FAQs about plantation shutters, contact us today.

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