What Makes Wooden Exterior Shutters Superior

Published: April 11, 2022



It can be an overwhelming task when it comes to choosing new exterior shutters for your home. There are many things to consider; such as the material the shutters will be made of, what type of shutter you want to put on your home and whether or not the shutters will be functional. We here at Estate Millwork think wooden exterior shutters are far superior to other types of shutters on the market and we will provide our reasonings below.

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Fixed or Operable

While this can mean one of two things when it comes to wood shutters, we will start with will you use your shutters purely as a decorative addition around your windows or will they be functional. Functional shutters have the ability to open and close, meaning you can pull them together over your windows to protect them from any outside threats such as inclimate weather or even sunlight if you work night shift and sleep during the day. Otherwise a stationary shutter would simply be affixed to your home's exterior around the window and not require things like hinges, stays or a locking mechanism.

The other type of fixed or operable would pertain to louvered shutters. Fixed louvers are exactly what they sound like, these louvers are set at a desired angle between the left and right stiles and do not move. Operable louvers on the other hand have the ability to move up and down, these are beneficial in cases where you would want to close your shutters during warm summer months to limit the sun's ability to reach the interior of your home but still allow the cool air to pass through.

Durability and Maintenance

While you can go to your local big box store and pick up a set of thin vinyl shutters for relatively cheap, they likely won’t last as long or offer the same beauty a set of wooden shutters would. These vinyl shutters are flimsy and susceptible to fading after exposure to the sun and breaking or blowing off your home if a strong wind blows through. Exterior wooden shutters on the other hand will stand up to the outside elements with the proper care to maintain their protective finish. Wood shutters whether they are fixed to the home's exterior or mounted using hinges are less likely to blow off due to the strength of both the wood and the hardware used to mount the shutters.

When it comes to wooden shutters not all woods are the same. For example you don’t want to use a softwood like pine because this will rot and deteriorate in a couple years, and when choosing from hardwoods you want a wood that is more naturally resistant to things like bugs and rot. When it comes to exterior wooden shutters some good hardwoods to choose from are cedar, teak, cypress and mahogany. Estate Millwork offers Spanish Cedar which is an excellent cost effective hardwood for exterior wood shutters, Cedar woods are naturally resistant to rot and have a beautiful grain pattern and color, a simple clear coat finish on this hardwood will give you years of beauty and use from your shutters. As with any finish a clear coat will likely need reapplied after several years of sun exposure.

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Many Different Styles

When it comes to choosing shutters for your home there are many styles to choose from and can drastically change the overall appearance of your home. If you have a Victorian style home you will want to stick with louvered shutters or a paneled shutter to keep with the style of your home. When it comes to colonial and federal style homes traditionally you want to use paneled shutters on the first floor and louvered shutters on the second, but if you desire uniformity throughout louvered shutters are recommended for both stories.

Cape Cod homes use a more modern farmhouse look with either a board and batten style shutter or the ever popular louvered shutter with horns or tails. The ranch and split-level ranch style homes that became popular in the United States throughout the 20th century are typically known for their modernism; these homes have a low profile and minimal exterior decoration to keep with the informal American lifestyle. Many ranch homes don’t have shutters, but if you are looking to add shutters almost all styles of shutters are viable options here. Let’s not forget the coastal or beach home, these homes usually use a very specific type of shutter that is hinged from the top rather than the sides, this shutter is the Bermuda/Bahama shutter. The Bahama shutter is used to protect your home from the harsh summer sun while still allowing a cool breeze to pass through, these shutters can also be used in times of tropical storms to help prevent flying debris from crashing through your windows and into your home.

No matter the shutter style you are looking for, we can custom build it for your home. Using our state of the art shutter designer you can customize your shutters to fit you and your home. If there is an option you are looking for that you don’t see in the designer, contact our sales team and let us know what you are looking for.






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