Blinds vs. Shutters

Window Treatments 101


blinds and shutters

Both blinds and shutters have many number of things in common, particularly if you go with wood or faux wood blinds. Both of these window treatments allow homeowners the option of blocking out light entirely, letting in a little bit of light, or a lot of it by raising and lowering the slats. They are also both a nice alternative to curvy, old-school draperies with a sleeker, more linear, modern look. Let’s take a more in-depth look at both of these in a blinds vs. shutters comparison.

Pros and Cons of Window Blinds

Let us first weigh the positive aspects of window blinds:

  • Installation of blinds is, for many, easier than installing shutters.
  • The materials in which blinds are available far exceed those in which shutters are available. Blinds come in wood, faux wood (which can, by the way, be stained to match already existing interior wood colors), plastic, and aluminum.
  • With blinds, you can have a view of the outdoors that is unimpeded due to the fact that, when raised all the way open, blinds fit nicely into just a few inches at the top of your window.
  • Generally, blinds are less expensive than shutters, although the installation of both will increase the value of your home.

Do blinds have a downside? Everything does, so let’s take a look at some of the less desirable aspects of blinds on their own and as they compare to shutters:

  • Window treatments in classical homes with traditional large windows are frequently better off with drapery made from heavy fabric.
  • Cleaning can be an issue. With drapes, you take them down, you wash them, you hang them back up – or something along those lines. With blinds (and shutters) you have to wipe down each slat individually. Particularly with shutters, the corners can be difficult to get into.
  • Blinds sometimes take a little extra care to keep the drawstrings untangled and functional.

Pros and Cons of Shutters

Just as there are both positive and negative aspects of blinds, so it goes with shutters. Here are a few of the positive aspects:

  • In the case of extreme weather conditions such as humidity, heat, or direct sun, shutters tend to outperform blinds.
  • Shutters tend to last longer than blinds, particularly if those blinds are frequently raised, lowered, and overused in general.
  • Shutters are considered to be a more permanent part of your home, frequently matching the wood of the window frame itself. And in some cases, the cost of shutters can even be financed into the purchase price.
  • The use of shutters can increase energy efficiency.
  • Depending on your preference and the circumstances, you may prefer to have your shutters installed on the outside of your home. This is not an option with blinds.

But not everything is rosy with shutters as is evidenced by these few cons of using shutters in your home:

  • Second only to high-end draperies, shutters are the most expensive window treatment available.
  • Because installation is more difficult than with blinds, the cost of insulation will also be higher.
  • In most cases, they let in less light and at least partially obscure the view.

Earlier, the fact that the installation of shutters or blinds increase the value of your home was referred to. Be sure that if this is your goal, take into consideration what kind of blinds you will be installing. Aluminum blinds tend to have less value than blinds made from other materials, even though they may fit your lifestyle better.