Blinds and shutters are sometimes mistaken for each other, but they are very different products, although they have a similar function. Both have slats or louvres so light and air coming into a room can be controlled. Blinds are on the inside of a window and are used as an alternative to curtains. Shutters can also be used on the interior of a home but exterior shutters are also available. So, exterior shutters are very different to blinds, while interior shutters are in some ways similar. This article explores the similarities and differences between blinds and interior shutters.
Shutters are a part of the window they cover in a way that blinds are not. They are actually hinged onto the frame that goes around the window. This means that shutters can be completely removed from covering the window if this is required. When closed, most blinds designed for the home are opened using string which lifts the blinds above the window.
With blinds, individual slats are held together with string. As mentioned above, to alter the height of the blinds a separate, but attached, string is pulled. Shutters are swung in and out to close and open. Most windows will be covered by two shutters that are opened by pulling them open, one from each side. In some ways this is similar to opening double doors.
To open the slats of blinds a rod is used. This is twisted to open and close them. A similar mechanism opens and closes the louvres of window shutters. A difference is that with blinds the slats overlap slightly to they cannot keep 100% of the light out. This isnt the case with shutters so they keep the light out better.
Shutters are more durable than blinds. Blinds will typically last in good conditions for around five years, whereas shutters can last a lot longer than this. Many even come with a lifetime guarantee. The shutter louvres are much wider and thicker than on blinds.
Shutters are more expensive than blinds. They are, though, seen in some ways as an investment. They can even add value to a home as they are a permanent fixture, unlike blinds (and indeed curtains), which are removed when the inhabitants move home.
Blinds and shutters have many of the same advantages. They are both easy to maintain and clean. With both the amount of light and air coming through the window can be controlled. Shutters are more durable though and seen as being better looking. Whether or not someone chooses shutters instead of blinds depends on whether they believe the extra cost of the shutters is worth the added advantages.
Andrew Marshall (c)
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