Window Shutters FAQs

With such a variety of window shutters available, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed by the options and have a lot of questions to ask. Our team have experience in supplying window shutters for over forty years, so know how important it is that you get the correct window shutters for your home. With a variety of window shutters available in different colours and styles, we are confident that we can help you find what you are looking for.

To shed some light on your decision, we have listed some of the most frequently asked questions we receveive about our window shutters and hope our answers will help you.

Broadview Blinds design, manufacture and install window shutters in Bournemouth and Poole in Dorset and across Hampshire and Wiltshire. If you have any further enquiries, do not hesitate to contact us at 01202 679012.

Plantation shutters are louvred panels fixed either inside or outside windows and doors. They originated in America and the West Indies and date back to before the American Civil War.

These are panels that have no louvers. They were originally installed in reveal boxes in pre-Edwardian houses and were used a couple of times a year only, when the owners de-camped for the season. They were not designed to be opened and shut daily like our present designs and that is why so few remain today.

Shutters can be installed on virtually any window, French door or sliding patio doors. They can also be used effectively as room dividers fitted on tracks. If the window/door opens inwards they can always be mounted outside of the reveal. Bi-pass tracking allows for shutters to slide past each other and is used where there are overhangs preventing the panels from swinging out.

There is virtually no such thing as a window that is perfectly square and we have a range of shutter shapes available. If using battens, the side battens are 25mm thick and can be scribed to square off the window. You have about 20mm of leeway with these. If the window slants, the shutters will emphasise this as they are square and we do not advise trimming them lengthwise as when opened they will look very odd.

Frames are often used now and for reveal edge fixes and, outside fixing, are the best option. Inside reveal fixes are possible as long as the window is reasonably square. The new L frames we use are great and are scribable should that be necessary.

Our smallest panel width is 200mm and the widest is 750mm With larger louvre panels we do sometimes go wider, but void the warp warranty with your permission. Generally a window looks best with 4 panels, two opening as pairs either way. A 3 window bay, however, will usually have 2 panels on the smaller side windows and 4 in the centre. All panels will open away from the middle.

There are as many exceptions as there are norms. For instance, a long window with 3 panes of glass, i.e. 1800mm wide x 1000mm high, would have 6 panels – three folding either way, or if you are only going to open them to clean the windows you could easily have just 3 panels. The Americans never open the shutters, only the louvers, so they design with large panels.

A lot of the time you will have to consider where the panels are going to fold back to and if there is enough room for this to happen. This is also true where you are fitting inside the reveal next to the window and you will not want the shutters, when open, to protrude into the room too much.

We would not recommend hanging more than 3 panels from a single batten hinged together, unless they were not going to be opened apart from window cleaning and were resting on the sill or door-step. As the maximum recommended width of our panels is 750mm, you may say that this equates to 4500mm maximum width, but it would be asking a lot of the batten to hold panels of this width and weight without sagging at a later date. So quite a lot of common sense is needed to achieve a good installation. Openings over 2200mm generally need a top track. Even if not using a top track at this width, try to use a light panel such as Cedar wood or Basswood.

For partitioning or for large windows where tracking is needed at the top to suspend the panels, you will really need an even number of panels or they will look odd and not hang from the track properly. Ideally 8 panels or 12 panels for very large openings is best, although quite often it is wise to hang even 6 panels from tracking if they are quite large. With the heavier MDF shutter this is clearly an option to be considered. We do not charge for tracking, it comes in the square metre price for the opening.

In summary, the window will normally dictate the number of panels. If the window is split into two halves you would either have 2 or 4 panels and it follows that if it is three panes, then three or six panels will suffice. The vertical dividers of the windows are where the vertical stiles of the shutters should ideally be located.

There are a lot of other shutter products on the market that come with larger stiles (50mm in width), which have the distinct disadvantage of blocking out more light and require the use of wider panels that are particularly unsuited to UK properties. Broadview, however, offer a sleeker, minimalist design with a range of narrower stiles, reducing the amount of wood and maximising light filtration. All our stiles have a strengthening core inside to prevent warping, with a mortice and tenon joint between all rails and stiles.

To get an exact price, call us on 01202 679012 for a quick quote.

When making your louvre choice, consider the size of the window and the desired effect. Generally larger windows command a larger louvre size.

The larger the louvre the more light, but the less privacy.

In Europe we tend to generally choose smaller louvres such as 47mm or 64m and 89mm.

If you have Georgian style windows with small windowpanes then we would definitely advise using the largest louver possible or the windows can look very busy.

In America the spelling is louver and in the UK it is louvre. We use both to get as many hits from search engines as possible.

Shutters are easily cleaned using a feather duster, damp sponge/soft cloth or by running a vacuum cleaner over them. The finish shouldn’t need repainting for many years, indeed the MDF shutters are totally maintenance free and cannot be repainted anyway.

Shutters are custom manufactured to fit individual openings and are ready for installation in 8 to 10 weeks from the date of the order and receipt of the deposit.

Shutters have long been the window treatment of choice because they are incredibly functional and can provide great kerb appeal. They can come in a range of styles, colours and finishes, so are very versatile in appearance. Shutters with adjustable louvers offer so much more in terms of privacy, insulation, ventilation and light control than most other solutions. What’s more, they are low maintenance and unlike curtains won’t harbour dust – so good for allergy sufferers too!

Want to find out more? Download our brochure!

Based at our head office in Poole, Dorset, we have a 16,000 sq ft manufacturing plant where we produce specialist shading solutions, along with a premium showroom. For more information about Broadview and the sectors that we supply blinds and shading solutions to, contact our team today!

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