Adding shutters to your windows offers decorative appeal, but they can also help prevent damage from inclement weather. Some shutters are functional, meaning they open and close, while others are non-functional. Whether the shutters are functional or non-functional, measure the window's opening size to determine what size your shutters should be. Knowing the standard sizes for functional and non-functional models is critical when installing new shutters.
Plantation shutters feature slats with louvers, or rods, installed in the center of the slats. The louvers enable homeowners to rotate the slats, which allows air to enter the room. Plantation shutters have two panels for opening the shutters completely. The standard size for plantation shutters panels are 7 to 36 inches wide and 12 to 120 inches tall, depending on the size of the window frame. Accordion shutters fold by hinging two or more panels together. Most accordion shutters have two sets of panels for the right and left sides of the windows. To calculate an appropriate accordion shutter size, take into account the window's opening size and add 6 inches length and width to that measurement. Also, add 1 1/4 inches for each foot of the window's opening width.
Non-functioning shutters are usually exterior shutters and set on both sides of the window's opening. These types of shutters do not open or close and primarily serve as decorative pieces. When measuring a non-functioning shutter, make sure the width of the shutter is 25- to 33-percent of the window opening. For instance, install 5.75-inch to 8.5-inch shutters next to windows with widths of 18 inches or less. Two types of shutter designs that can be used as decorative, non-functioning shutters are panels and board and battens.
Hurricane shutters are designed to prevent winds from blowing debris and broken glass into your house. Homeowners bolt or screw these shutters to the exterior side of the window. Make sure the shutters are at least 6 inches longer and 6 inches wider than the window frame. Each side of the hurricane shutter overlaps the window frame by at least 3 inches. Some hurricane shutters provide UV protection from sunlight.
Homeowners have the opportunity to save money and work with their hands on do-it-yourself shutters. DIY shutter packages usually have a completed panel shutters, which need to fitted, finished and assembled by the homeowners. Some DIY shutter packages have shutters with louvers and slates. The standard size for DIY shutters is similar to functional indoor or outdoor shutters. Measure the width of window opening and divide by the measurement number of panels you want to install. Allow a 0.25-inch clearance between the panels for hinges and space for the shutter's panels to close. DIY shutter packages usually have hinges.
- Photo Credit Goodshoot/Goodshoot/Getty Images