Outdoor or external window shutters
Energy saving window treatments that both absorb heat and insulate heat
Outdoor or external window shutters are both effective at reducing heat gain and heat loss.
If fitted and sealed tightly, these energy saving window coverings can help lower both home cooling and heating bills.
External window shutters are one of the most time tested energy saving window treatments.
However these days there perceived as merely decorative or even ornamental.
In fact many newly built homes have outdoor window shutters that are non operable. These shutters are usually made of fiberglass and simply screwed or bolted into the homes siding or brick exterior.
This is quite unfortunate because operable exterior window shutters, when used periodically, are one the most effective thermal window coverings.
Outdoor window shutters and home decor
External window shutters are a more permanent or long term window treatment. In fact most models are designed to last over 20 years. These shutters are essentially long term furnishings for your home windows.
Manufactures offer many decorative designs, colors and finishes to complement and even enhance just about any home decor.
Types of external window shutters There are essentially three types of exterior window shutters; solid, louvered and sometimes a combination of both solid and louvered.
Solid external shutters
Solid shutters usually are made up of wooden panels that if installed tightly against the outer window trim will provide an effective seal between the window pane and the shutter when closed.
Some solid window shutters have vapor barriers or vapor diffusion retarders to reduce potentially harmful moisture build up on the exterior glass surface. Louvered outdoor shutters
Like with interior or inside window shutters louvered shutters have slats, or openings. Louvered shutters are very effective at reducing solar heat gain, but they provide less insulation than solid shutters during the fall and winter months.
Louvered window shutters are designed for those who are willing to exchange some home energy savings, not to mention privacy, for a partial outward view when the shutter is completely closed.
Installing outdoor window shutters requires mounting or hardware pieces such as shutter dogs, hinges and pintles. These hardware pieces must be symmetrically installed along the exterior window trim first.
Many outdoor window shutters, especially solid models, are designed for relatively easy do it yourself installation. Fully assembled panels require no extra trimming, and many manufactures offer fully assembled shutters complete with all the necessary mounting hardware.
Installation on hard to reach and second floor windows should be done by professionals. It's important to note that all exterior shutter applications should take into account future water drainage along the outer window trim.