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Shutters: Types, Advantages, and Disadvantages

For centuries, shutters have been used as decorations by windows on the facades of houses, mansions, and tenement houses. They provide protection against high sun exposure in summer, or against cold and rainfall. In recent years, they have also performed another function – they are an additional barrier against the possibility of burglary. In this article, we will try to present the advantages and disadvantages of this solution.

Types of shutters

The use of shutters improves the appearance of the house and the comfort of its use and also minimizes heat loss in the building.

Shutters “support” the thermal parameters of windows.

Traditional shutters were mounted as wooden, with fittings and hinges.

They were almost always openable shutters lined on the wall, or partially folded.

They were usually used in homes with classic, traditional architecture.

Then they were forgotten for years, and rarely used and replaced by modern roller shutters or external blinds.

The shutter has experienced their renaissance again when in construction there was a fashion for houses in the manor, castle, or simple country, rustic style.

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In addition to the basic material, which is wood, the following are also used for their assembly:

  • reinforced wood,
  • wood-based panels,
  • vinyl panels in a steel frame.

However, this solution is not always suitable for all types of architecture, especially for modern or ultra-modern houses.

In the case of modern architecture, investors usually decide to install modern external roller shutters.

Another solution is the use of sliding shutters, which are increasingly visible on modern facades of single-family houses.

It is an interesting variant, slowly entering the construction market.

Until recently, such shutters had to be ordered on request, based on prepared sketches or the designer’s drawings, and the entire investment generated considerable expenses.

Currently, there are more and more companies specializing in this topic.

Sliding shutters

In modern homes, the ultra-modern with a simple, even crude, or even architecture, work best shutters sliding on rollers in a steel frame.

You can choose among shutters with a full or openwork filling, made of impregnated or exotic wood, wood-based or vinyl panels, or made of perforated metal sheets.

Often used boards of various thicknesses and width, laid and screwed horizontally, vertically, or diagonally.

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They can be mounted butt-joint or at any distance, creating a selected pattern of openwork – in horizontal or vertical stripes, or in a straight or diagonal checkered pattern.

If we decide to fill shutters with a perforated sheet, we will be able to grind patterns and colors.

A unique solution, although still quite expensive, maybe the variant of the filling made of safety glass, opal glass, or even patterned or stained glass, or even stained glass.

Installation of shutters

Roller sliding shutters are mounted on solid and strong steel frames, which are welded from steel angles.

The easiest way to order frames is from a locksmith, presenting sketches with the dimensions and spacing of window or door openings for installation.

The spaces between the openings can be plastered, painted, or also filled with fixed frames, referring to the style of the selected shutters.

Cladding can also be used here, which will decorate the remaining elements of the facade, be it wood, ceramic, or stone cladding.

An important assembly element for the shutters is rails and brackets, which are necessary for fixing the shutters and for their free movement.

The rail is prepared in a locksmith shop and it must be blinded on both sides so that the shutters do not fall out.

It is made of rectangular angles, which also have a gap of several millimeters at the bottom, which will act as a guide for the frame.

The rail is installed by means of special brackets or mounting anchors mounted in the structural part of the external wall, to which a previously prepared rail should be welded.

The optimal weight of the frame, together with the filling, will not allow the shutter to move freely. In addition, you can also install special handles or hooks so that the shutter is protected against wind and blocked against unwanted spontaneous movement.

You can also screw in special latches or anti-burglary locks from the inside for greater safety.

Shutters can be opened manually, or by automatic control, integrated with the internal controller, or a set of separate drivers for individual openings, and in the case of houses with an intelligent installation system, by the main system controller.

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The filling of the frame can be made according to the discretion and needs but in accordance with the style and finishes used on the facades of the house.

The shutter frames should be protected against corrosion, by painting with special anti-corrosion agents, or by powder coating, in any color according to the available color palettes.

The frames can also be made of stainless steel, but this solution will definitely be much more expensive.

At the frame, the upper bracket is attached to the load-bearing wall and is prepared from two flat bars welded together.

The lower bracket can be made of a part of the T-bar, along with special pins, where the frame will move between them. The pins are covered with rubber or special plastic covers.

This solution will additionally protect the sliding frames against wiping off their protective layer. Part of the T-bar should be welded to the flat bar, which in turn is also screwed to the load-bearing wall.

It is important to properly fix the brackets and to optimally arrange the supports for the rail, and they must not be screwed to non-load-bearing layers of the wall.

Rollers that allow the shutters to move are mounted to the frame on a similar system, used for sliding doors or entrance gates.

They are screwed to a flat bar, which should be previously welded to the shutter frame.

Shutters made in this way, or similar, can be safely used both by windows and balcony or terrace doors.

Another article on this blog that may interest you:

Maintenance and cleaning tips for aluminum shutter systems