How to Repair Wooden Shutters


Wooden shutters add decorative detail to your home and protection for your windows. Over time, wooden shutters will require light repairs, as exposure to harsh weather can degrade the finish and cause damage. Regular maintenance and repair can prevent the necessity for complete replacement of your wooden shutters. Ideally, you should inspect the shutters on your home each spring to be sure to catch any small problems. Taking the time to repair and maintain your shutters will keep them in good working order.

Things You'll Need

  • Screw gun
  • Wire brush
  • Wood filler
  • Putty knife
  • Wood glue
  • Bar clamps
  • Sandpaper, various grits
  • Wood finish
  • Paintbrush
  • Unfasten the damaged wooden shutter from the exterior of your home. Operating shutters can be removed by lifting up on the shutter to remove the pin hinges from the slots. Unscrew nonoperating shutters with a screw gun.

  • Remove debris and loose paint from the shutter by rubbing a wire brush over the frame and louvers. Inspect the shutter for damage, including dented, chipped and cracked parts.

  • Fill any dented and chipped parts of the shutter with wood filler, spreading it evenly with a putty knife. Allow the filler to dry according to the label directions.

  • Spread any cracked or split pieces wide enough apart so you can apply wood glue to the damaged surfaces. Clamp the glued areas with bar clamps. Allow the glue to dry according to the manufacturer's recommendations before removing the clamps.

  • Sand the entire wooden shutter surface, using a progression of coarse, medium and fine sandpaper grits. Rub the sandpaper in the direction of the wood grain.

  • Apply paint or stain to the shutters with a paintbrush. Allow the finish to dry according to the label recommendations before reinstalling the shutters.

Tips & Warnings

  • Wear eye protection when repairing wooden shutters.

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  • Photo Credit Old window shutters image by Jim Mills from
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