The furnishings and finishings that you choose to add to your home are almost single-handedly what provide its character, warmth, and design. With a little insight and home improvement know how you can drastically change the look of your home by simply changing a single element. One element that makes a big statement on the exterior of you home and also offers a wide range of options is shutters. From functional to fanciful, the different types of shutters available can add to the design and efficiency of your home.
Also known as plantation shutters, louvers are consistently the most common type of shutters. One of the most functional styles, louvers feature mobile slats that rotate open and closed to facilitate an optimal level of light in a home. In addition, louver shutters offer optimal ventilation when used in conjunction with other window treatments. Offering extensive options, these shutters are available in vinyl, composite wood, and fiberglass varieties.
Classic Panel Shutters
Another fairly traditional design is the classic panel shutter. Featuring two varieties itself, the classic panel style is available in a two or three rectangle variety. The traditional two rectangle design features a large rectangle on the top and bottom of the shutter, while the three panel design features a large panel on the top and bottom and a narrower one in the center dividing the two larger pieces. Being a solid piece, this type of shutter is more ideal as a design piece. Nonetheless, this type of shutter is effective for filtering nighttime light, as they are often left open during the day and closed for privacy at night.
Raised Panel Shutters
A variation on the more traditional classic panel, the raised panel design offers a slightly more customized look. Featuring the same rectangular design as the classic panel, raised panel shutters offer a textured panel that is above the inset of the panel itself. This type of shutter offers a more dramatic, dignified look compared to a regular style and can often be personalized to fit the style and design of individual homes.
Board and Batten Shutters
A slightly more rustic look, board and batten shutters offer a design that heralds the early frontier style. Typically available with two to five vertical boards, these shutters also normally feature a crossing or joining board in a number of different arrangements—two horizontal at top and bottom, three horizontal, or two horizontal and one diagonal. Adding another option to this style, arch top board and batten shutters are also available and can be sized to fit any number of windows. Much like the classic louvers, these shutters are most widely available in fiberglass, vinyl, and wood composite makes.
Bahama Style Shutters
A particularly good option for the Florida locale, Bahama style shutters are actually dual purpose. These shutters are designed to serve as storm shutters in addition to functioning as shade provision. Featuring the most unique design in contrast to the other styles, Bahama shutters actually hinge at the top of the window rather than the side. This design element also means that only one shutter is required for each window compared to the typical two; however, each individual shutter is much wider with this design. To offer varied positioning like other shutters, the Bahama style is furnished with side arms that are adjustable to reach different opening and closing angles.
Considerations for Choosing Shutters
While selecting a style that you like is the most important consideration when choosing new shutters, you should keep a couple of other things in mind to make sure you choose the best fit. Size is likely the most important factor when choosing shutters. Any shutter should be constructed so that it could feasibly be closed to protect the window from storms or shade the inside from the sun (even if it will never be closed). As a general rule of thumb, shutters should measure exactly one-half the width of the window and the exact length of the window itself. In addition, shutters should be mounted on the side window trim rather than against the outside edge. Additional design factors include the actual style and period of your home as well as color and composition.
No matter how many windows you are looking to refinish with shutters and other window treatments, the task of measuring, selecting, and mounting shutters can be somewhat daunting. The professionals at Tampa Exteriors have extensive experience with all types of shutter designs (as well as all other exterior renovations) and will offer you timely and qualified service. If you are considering an exterior reno, call Tampa Exteriors today at (813) 659-5426.