Your Ultimate Guide to Choosing Window Blinds

When you have spent enormous amount of time and energy into renovating or building your perfect home, finishing touches become extremely important. One of the components that these final stages involve is that of picking out your perfect window coverings and blinds. Blinds are one of the most popular types of window covering as they are highly functional, versatile and can look pretty stylish too. Whether you opt for woven wood shades or the softer, more homely aesthetic of a fabric blind. You can’t deny that this type of window covering looks neat, clean and aesthetically pleasing in any window frame.

While blinds might be a bit difficult to clean, the benefits definitely outweigh the cleaning hassle. If you are looking to pimp your window treatment, blinds could be the easiest way to transform your home. However, not all blinds look the same, nor do they operate in the same way. You will need to know a little more about the different types of blinds if you want to go ahead and make that choice.

There are many different types of blinds out there, so you need to be sure which will suit your décor, and which one functionally works for your space. No doubt, it is a big decision, and big decisions come with lots of questions. This guide tackles most of the questions you could have in relation to choosing your perfect window blinds, the different types and most popular styles of window blinds.

We have tried to make this guide as comprehensive as possible to help you learn all about the different types of blinds, and make an informed buying decision. However, before using this guide, it is helpful to ask yourself a few questions and make a few considerations. For instance, what will be the primary purpose of your blinds? Will they be decorative or more blackout blinds to help keep sunlight out? Do you prefer a vertical blind or horizontal blinds? Do you require manual blinds or would motorized blinds be more suited to your needs?

Roller blinds

Types of roller blinds

  • Double roller blinds – two blinds fitted in a pair of dual brackets. One layer is a blockout blind, and the other is a sunscreen blind that allows you to see out.
  • Cassette blinds (also called theatre blinds) – are roller blinds with headboxes in place hiding and protecting the barrel and mechanism.
  • Blockout roller blind – also known as blackout blinds, are one of the most popular styles of indoor blinds due to the practical benefits of the blackout fabric.
  • Translucent / light filtering roller blinds – are not entirely see-through. Rather, they present a sort of opaque shade that allows light to filter through. This doesn't stop the right amount of light to come through and fill your room with natural sunlight.
  • Automated roller blinds – are installed with a small motor. This allows you to open or close the blinds via remote control or even automatically (you can program them for special events).

Can roller blinds be cut to size?

  • Roller Blinds can be cut to any size.
  • However, considerable must be given to the required drive mechanism depending on the width, height and angle of the blinds.

What is the maximum width for roller blinds?

  • There is no maximum width.
  • For blinds over 2200mm in width, a spring-assisted booster system is included to enable smooth operation of the blind.

What is the best material for roller blinds?

  • Roller blinds can be made from plain or textured block out fabrics, translucent fabric, light filtering fabric and sunscreen fabric.
  • The roller blind chains can be made using either moulded or stainless-steel chains. Or, using an automated either electric or battery, remote-controlled motor.

How much do roller blinds cost?

  • This depends on the type and size of the roller blind, and the level of difficulty of installation. This also depends on the supplier and quality of material and parts.
  • However, for example, block out roller blinds in white colour may costs around $80 for 800mm X 1200mm. To get an exact estimate, you need to get a quote from the blind installer or blinds supplier like Bunnings or Riva Blinds.

How do you install roller blinds?

  • Blinds suppliers like Bunnings or Riva Blinds would normally supply blinds with installation instructions, which means that you could DIY install if you are confident that you are able to follow the instructions.
  • Otherwise, it is recommended that you contact a blind installer to professionally install the roller blinds for you.
  • Either way, it is imperative to note that all installations must comply with relevant industry and government regulations, especially with regard to child safety.

How do you clean roller blinds?

  • Roller blinds can be cleaned with a soapy damp cloth.
  • If you are after an intense cleaning, a professional cleaner can be used.

How do you remove roller blinds?

  • If you have the original install instructions, you can DIY follow the instructions to uninstall the blinds, particularly if the blinds are simple enough for a DIY job, making sure that you do not damage the connection parts.
  • Otherwise, you need to call a blind installer, to make sure that you do not damage the connecting areas of your walls.

How long do roller blinds last?

  • This will depend on how long you look after your blinds.
  • If treated well, you should get at least ten years out of the blinds.
  • The warranty usually covers you for one to two years.

Pros of roller blinds

  • Very cost-effective option.
  • Very safe option.
  • The availability of double roller blinds means that they are very versatile in terms of how much light you want to let in.
  • Wide range of fabrics available to match your house décor.

Cons of roller blinds

  • Not as effective in insulation as some other types of blinds.
  • Only simple designs are available in comparison to some other types of window coverings.

Wooden blinds

Types of wooden blinds

  • The most common type of blinds that come in wood is Venetian blinds.
  • Plantation shutters are another window treatment that can also come in wood.
  • Although blind installers install these, they are not necessarily considered blinds and are commonly referred to as shutters.

Can wooden blinds be cut to size?

  • Yes, in terms of width. However, the available lengths of wooden Venetian slats are 50mm or 63mm.
  • What is the maximum width for wooden blinds?
  • The maximum width is 2700mm, beyond this the blinds can get too heavy.

What is the best wood for wooden blinds?

  • Lightweight wood is the best for wooden blinds.
  • The style that you want for your blinds will affect this choice.

How much do wooden blinds cost?

  • This will depend on the type and size of your blinds.
  • We recommend getting a quote from a blind installer or blinds supplier like Bunnings or Riva Blinds.

How to install wooden blinds?

  • Wooden blinds suppliers like Bunnings or Riva Blinds would normally supply blinds with installation instructions, which means that you could DIY install if you are confident that you are able to follow the instructions.
  • Otherwise, it is recommended that you contact a blind installer to professionally install the roller blinds for you.
  • Either way, it is imperative to note that all installations must comply with relevant industry and government regulations, especially with regard to child safety.

How to use wooden blinds?

  • Wooden blinds can be used as any other standard cord lift and tilt control blinds. 

Do wooden blinds block out light?

  • Yes, when they are completely closed.
  • Some light may come through the slats if they are not closed flush against each other.

Can you see through wooden blinds?

  • No, if they are closed, you can’t see through them.
  • If they are open, you will be able to see in between the slats.

How do you clean the dust off wooden blinds?

  • A duster or a damp cloth can be used to wipe the dust off your wooden blinds.

How do you remove slats from wooden blinds?

  • To remove a slat from the blinds, you need to take out all of the slats below the slat that you want to remove.
  • All holes within the slat must align with the holes in the slat above when replacing the slat. Call your blind installer if the problem persists.

How do you fix the wooden blinds string?

  • Depending on the issue with the string in your wooden blinds, a new string may be needed, and you may have to restring the entirety of the slats.
  • This can be a delicate and complicated process, so it may be best to call your blind installer for advice.

How do you oil wooden blinds?

  • Linseed oil can be used to oil your wooden blinds to keep them looking fresh. Mix a third of a cup of linseed oil, with a third of a cup of white vinegar, with a third of a cup of mineral turpentine.
  • Then dip a cloth in this solution and wipe the blinds. Wipe away any excess with a different dry cloth. Leave the wood to dry. After around two hours, your blinds will look brand new.

Can you paint wooden blinds?

  • Yes, but we would recommend you get the blinds in the colour you want, in the original installation. However, if you do paint your blinds, we recommended that you consult with your hardware store about the best type of paint.
  • Take your blinds apart and paint them slat by slat. Possibly do two to three coats and finish with a varnish or sealant. Then put the blinds back together and rehang. If you need help with the reinstall, contact your blind installer.

How long do wooden blinds last?

  • It depends on how well you look after your blinds, but they can last up to 10 years.
  • The warranty usually covers you for one to two years.

Pros of wooden blinds

  • Very stylish finish.
  • Good insulation compared to some other types of blinds.
  • Can block out a lot of light when fully closed.

Cons of wooden blinds

  • Some can be more expensive than other types of blinds.
  • Need to be cleaned more frequently, as dust can build up easily along all the slats.

Vertical blinds

Types of vertical blinds

  • A large range is available, from budget ranges to those made with high-quality designer fabrics.

Can vertical blinds be cut to size?

  • In terms of length, blinds can be adjusted.
  • However, in terms of width, the only options are 127mm or the classic 89mm.

What is the best material for vertical blinds?

  • This depends on a few factors. Including, how much light you want your vertical blinds to block out, and if you need the blinds to be waterproof or not. Waterproof vertical blinds are made from PVC.
  • Hypoallergenic materials that are suitable for those with hay fever and bad allergies are also available. It will also depend on the style and price range that you are after.

Can you get blackout vertical blinds?

  • Yes. Some fabrics can blackout light.
  • The blinds must be fully closed and tilted, so they are flush against each other.

How much do vertical blinds cost?

  • Vertical blinds are one of the most cost-effective types of blinds.
  • How much they cost will depend on the size and type of blind and the fabric that you select.
  • Your blind company can give you a quote to determine how much they will cost.

How to install vertical blinds?

For best results, vertical blinds should be installed by a professional blind installer; however, to install vertical blinds yourself:

  • Measure your window or area where the blinds need to cover. Allow 50mm on either side of the window frame.
  • Purchase the blinds and brackets that are right for your window and will be the best fit. You can buy blinds from hardware stores.
  • Mount the bracket on the doorframe/window frame/architrave. Pre-drill the holes, and then screw into place. You will need a drill for this step. 
  • Place the track into the bracket, and then tighten it gently into place. Make sure the cleats are lined up, and then firmly tighten.
  • Hang the vertical blinds so that they hang around 10mm off the ground. If the blinds are too long, then fold over the top of the blind, and clip the hanger over the top. You can then trim the blind if there is excess below the hanger. Then place the hanger on the track and adjust to your liking.

How do you hang curtains over vertical blinds?

  • The best way to achieve a neat and high-quality finish for installing curtains over vertical blinds is to get a professional blind installer to help you.

How do you clean vertical blinds?

  • To clean dust, simply use a duster or a damp cloth. For more built-up grime, use a wet, soapy microfiber cloth. For spot cleaning, use an all-purpose spray and a dry cloth.

Can you wash vertical blinds in a washing machine?

  • Yes, but it must be on the gentlest setting, and on the cold water setting (no hotter than 30 degrees Celsius). Do not put them in the dryer. Lay them flat on a towel to dry.

How to remove vertical blinds?

  • To leave the best finish when replacing vertical blinds, removal should be done by a professional.
  • However, the process is similar to removing any other bracket or screw from the wall. A drill will be required.
  • Once the bracket has been removed, the remaining holes will be to be patched up and repainted.

How long do vertical blinds last?

  • Depending on the quality of the fabric you select, how well and how often you keep them clean, vertical blinds can last for up to 10 years.
  • However, the warranty usually covers one to two years.

How do you fix vertical blinds?

  • The best solution is to call your blind installer and ask for advice, and they can advise you depending on the issue.

How to repair broken vertical blind clip

  • In some cases, a paper clip and some tape can be used as a temporary fix.
  • Ultimately, you will need to replace the clip if it is cracked. Simply remove the blind from the clip, and replace it with a new clip, and then rehang in place.

How to repair vertical blinds chain

If you feel confused and unsure if you are capable of fixing the issue, please do not hesitate to contact a professional blind installer:

  • Remove the end cap from the blinds (this can be done by hand or with a screwdriver). 
  • Once you can see the inner mechanism, apply some greasing agent to the chain, to see if this aids in it sliding through smoothly. If the mechanism still isn’t running smoothly, there may be a different issue.
  • Inside the mechanism will be a long metal rod, with a metal washer and nut on the rod.
  • Tap on the rod, with a screwdriver. This will loosen the mechanism, as tightness of the push nut might be what is causing the blind to jam.
  • Replace the end cap and test.
  • If the test fails, call a repair person or your blind installer.

Where can I buy replacement slats for vertical blinds?

  • Most hardware stores, such as Bunnings, Home Timbre and Hardware or Mitre 10 sell replacement slats. Simply give the store near you a call to make sure that they stock the kind that you need. 

Pros of vertical blinds

  • One of the most cost-effective types of blinds.
  • Easy to control privacy and light.
  • Available in an extensive range of materials.

Cons of vertical blinds

  • Only fairly standard designs are available in comparison to other types of blinds
  • Can sometimes become misaligned and therefore, let slits of light in.

Roman blinds

How does a roman blind work?

  • Using a simple string mechanism, you raise the roman blind, it gathers in folds, one section after the other.
  • It can give the appearance of a soft pelmet of fabric across the top of the window.
  • Roman blinds can be fitted with the traditional lock system that you see in most blinds or a continuous chain operation.

Types of roman blinds

  • Plain roman blinds that distinguish between the folds with a seam. 
  • Roman blinds with wooden battens on the edge of each fold.

Are roman blinds old-fashioned?

  • No, they can be styled to look clean and modern. They often work very well in Hamptons style or Scandi minimalist style homes. They add a layer of sophistication.

Can roman blinds be cut to size?

  • They cannot necessarily be cut to size in the same way that vertical blinds can be, but they can be custom made.

What is the best material for roman blinds?

  • This will depend on the style that you are after if you need waterproof material, and how much lighting control you want.
  • There is a vast range of materials on offer for roman blinds, similar to the range available for roller blinds. 

How much do roman blinds cost?

  • Roman blinds are often in a higher price range than your roller or vertical blinds. To determine the exact cost, a quote is required from a blind supplier or blind installer, that will depend on the size of the blinds, the fabric you use, and the finish that you are after.

How do you install roman blinds?

  • To have a high-quality finish on roman blinds, it is recommended letting a professional do the install job for you. Often roman blinds need to be custom made.
  • Therefore, a blind installer should be the ones to set them up, to make sure that they are sitting in exactly the right spot and will run smoothly.

How do you measure for roman blinds?

  • To measure for a roman blind, you can use a measuring tape to measure the height and the width of the window or door. You usually want your blinds to sit 10mm off the seal or floor, and be about 50mm wider than the edges of the window or door.
  • If you are not confident that you can do the job right, a professional blind installer can measure and provide a quote.

Can roman blinds be fitted outside the recess?

  • Yes. They can be fitted either inside or outside the recess.

How to clean roman blinds?

  • The best way to keep your roman blinds clean is to use a vacuum cleaner with an attachment specialised for fabric/upholstery. Brush the fabric in a downward motion using this attachment.
  • If your blind gets a stain, then you may need a steaming machine. Do not put roman blinds in the washing machine. If you do not have a vacuum or steamer, you may need to have a professional cleaner come in who does have this kind of equipment.

How to remove roman blinds?

  • To remove roman blinds, follow the uninstallation instructions. Otherwise, consult with your blind installation company, to make sure that you can remove them without causing damage to the surrounding wall/architrave area.
  • To remove the fabric panel, gently push the headrail backwards, and this will release the back of the headrail from the bracket that holds it to the wall. Then, gently tilt the back of the headrail downwards.
  • From here, gently pull the fabric panel forward off the bracket. Try to keep the roman blind flat, and do not bend it, to avoid the fabric creasing.

How long do roman blinds last?

  • Depending on how well you look after your roman blinds and the quality of fabric you choose, roman blinds can last for as long as ten years. The warranty coverage of blinds is usually one to two years.

How to fix roman blinds?

  • Depending on the issue, you may need to get advice from your blind installer and communicate the problem you identified with the blind, and from there you can figure out a fix.

Pros of roman blinds

  • Provide excellent insulation. 
  • Very stylish makes a statement.
  • Very safe option.

Cons of roman blinds

  • Generally, slightly more expensive than some other blind types.
  • No option of dual roller to control the amount of light your blinds let in. 
  • Not as straightforward to clean as other blinds. 

Venetian blinds

Types of Venetian blinds

  • Aluminium Venetian blinds (great for wet areas).
  • Timber Venetian blinds.

How to release a Venetian blind?

  • To release a Venetian blind, pull the cord towards the centre of the blind.

Can Venetian blinds be cut to size?

  • Since Venetian blinds come in mostly timber or aluminium, it is not recommended that you try to cut them down to size yourself, unless you have the proper equipment to do so.
  • However, hardware stores such as Bunnings can cut your blinds to size, in some cases. Alternatively, blind installers can install custom made blinds to avoid this situation.

What is the maximum width for Venetian blinds?

  • Timber slats come in two widths, including 50mm and 63mm. In terms of the aluminium, the standard width is 50mm.
  • Usually, the entire blinds will be at a maximum of 2400mm; otherwise, it can become challenging to use the mechanism.

Which Venetian blinds are best?

  • This depends on your needs.
  • For wet areas, aluminium Venetian blinds are the best.
  • For living areas, or bedroom areas, or any carpeted areas, timber slats are slightly more appealing in terms of the look, and the warm feel. 

How much do Venetian blinds cost?

  • Depending on the size of the blind, the type of blind and some other factors, your blind installer will give you a quote on how much your Venetian blinds will cost.
  • Venetian blinds can be purchased at places like Bunnings for around $100, depending on the quality and size that you are after.

How to install Venetian blinds?

  • Venetian blinds can be installed using your personal power tools. This would include measuring the space, screwing in the bracket with a drill, placing the headrail in the bracket and adjusting the string/chain to make sure that it runs smoothly.
  • However, for the optimum fit-out, you should go for a professional blind installer, to make sure that you can make the most of your space. 

How to clean Venetian blinds?

  • Venetian blinds can be cleaned with a damp cloth, or for further built-up grime, with a sponge and warm soapy water.
  • For dusting the blinds, use a soft duster, at least once a week, to avoid the build-up of dust. 

How to remove Venetian blinds?

  • Venetian blinds can be removed by taking the headrail of blinds out of the bracket and unscrewing the bracket. To remove one single slat, you will have to slip out all the slats below the one you have your eye on.
  • To do this, unfasten the bottom of the blinds and gently slip the slats off. This can be a tricky process, so a handyman or your local blind installer may be needed.

How long do Venetian blinds last?

  • Venetian blinds tend to be very durable, due to the material that they are made from; they are hard to stain and easy to clean.
  • Therefore, as long as you are careful with your blinds, in operating and cleaning them, they can last for as long as ten years.

Pros of Venetian blinds

  • Easy to clean. 
  • Very safe option. 
  • Very affordable option.
  • A waterproof option is available. 

Cons of Venetian blinds

  • Some say that the string mechanism can be confusing, and hard to use, but once you get the hang of it doesn’t cause any problems.
  • Not as many options, in terms of materials and fabrics, as other types of blinds.

Blackout blinds

Types of blackout blinds

  • Block out roller blinds using the cassette system are the most effective for blocking out light.
  • It all depends on the fabric – Venetian, roman, roller or vertical can technically be block out blinds.

Which blackout blinds are best?

  • Blackout roller blind using the cassette system are normally recommended. This system is optimal, as it provides a headbox that creates a completely enclosed cassette, at the top of the window frame.
  • This stops any light that may come through the top of the blind. The cassette system is made of an extruded aluminium. The window is fitted with channels down the sides of the windows. The blind runs from the headbox, down snuggly fitted into the channels.
  • Therefore, there are absolutely no gaps for light to slip through. These blinds are perfect for a bedroom or a nursery. The systems can also be motorised to be operated with a remote, for extra ease.

How much do blackout blinds cost?

  • Depending on the type of blackout blind, the quality of the fabric, the size, and other factors, your blind installer will give you a quote. The prices of the various options will vary a lot.
  • Of course, if you choose to motorise your blackout blinds, this may make the installation more expensive.

How do you install blackout blinds?

  • In order to install the blackout blinds, like the roller blinds using the cassette system, experience is imperative as alignment needs to be perfect. Therefore, if you are not confident with your DIY skills, it is recommended that you contact an experienced blinds installer.

How to clean blackout blinds?

  • Depending on the fabric that you have chosen, you can clean your blackout blinds with a wet, soapy cloth. For stains use all-purpose spray and a cloth.
  • For simple dusting, use a damp microfibre cloth, or an upholstery attachment on your vacuum cleaner.

How long do blackout blinds last?

  • Depending on how well you look after blinds, they may last for up to ten years. If they are battery operated motorised blinds, these may need to be replaced at least once a year.
  • The warranty coverage usually lasts one to two years.

Pros of blackout blinds

  • The obvious pro is light control – you can completely block out all light, which is crucial for some in the bedroom, in theatre rooms or in a nursery.
  • Very safe option. 
  • Easy to clean.

Cons of blackout blinds

  • These types of blinds can be slightly more expensive than others, especially the electric remote control options.
  • No ‘in-between’ option when it comes to light unless you install a dual roller system.

Day and night blinds

How do day and night blinds work?

  • Two blinds are fitted into a pair of dual brackets. On the inside layer, a blockout blind is fitted for privacy. On the outside layer, a sunscreen blind is fitted, which allows a view of the outside whilst blocking out up to 95% of the UV rays and 85% of heat.
  • Therefore, at night-time, you may close both layers for privacy and then open in the daytime, you may just have the sunscreen blind down, to allow natural light and a nice view.

Types of day and night blinds

  • Day and night blinds are also known as double roller blinds or dual blinds.

Can day and night blinds be cut to size?

  • Day and night blinds need to be custom made if a window/door is not a standard size. Otherwise, standard sizes can be bought at hardware stores. TDay and night blinds cannot be cut to size once installed. 

What is the maximum width for day and night blinds?

  • The maximum width is similar to that of roller blinds. The max-width of the blind is 2200mm. If you want to exceed this, we need to include a ‘booster’ system; otherwise, the blind will be too heavy.

Are day and night blinds any good?

  • Yes. They are incredibly useful, especially in areas with hot summers, we can still enjoy our great views, but keep out the heat and sun, and maintain privacy when we need it.

How much do day and night blinds cost?

  • This will depend on the material you select, the size of the blind, if you want them automated, and other factors.
  • To determine the exact price, get a quote from your blinds installer.

How to install day and night blinds?

  • To install day and night blinds, like other types of blinds, experienced hands are required as the brackets and mechanism must be installed properly, and can sometimes be confusing, within the dual system.
  • As such, if you are not 100% confident with your DIY skills, contact a blinds installer.

How to clean day and night blinds?

  • Day and night blinds can be cleaned with a damp cloth, and just wiped down. Alternatively, they can be spot cleaned with some all-purpose cleaner and a dry cloth.
  • It is also probably a good idea to give them a quick dust once a week. To maintain the blinds, it’s a good idea to grease the chain mechanism every few months.

How to remove day and night blinds?

  • To fully remove your day night blinds, it’s recommended that you contact either a handyman or your blind installer, that is if you are not confident with your DIY Skills, to properly remove the brackets, as the entire mechanism can be quite heavy.
  • However, in a similar fashion to the roller blinds, they can ultimately be unscrewed at the bracket, with power tools, and the remaining holes, patched up. How long do day and night blinds last?

How long do day and night blinds last?

  • Depending on how well you look after your blinds, up to 10 years.
  • The warranty on your blinds should cover one to two years.

Pros of day and night blinds

  • Great control of light and privacy.
  • Very safe option.
  • Available in a wide variety of fabric options.

Cons of day and night blinds

  • Larger surface area of blinds to clean/look after.
  • More complicated install than simple roller blinds.

Plantation shutters

Types of plantation shutters

  • Plantation shutters can come in a large range of colours, with many types of framing and opening options.
  • Three different louvre sizes are available.
  • Different panel configurations are available – including hinges, sliding and bi-folding plantation shutters.

Are plantation shutters in style?

  • Yes.
  • Plantation shutters have seen a resurgence in popularity in interior design trends.
  • They definitely suit the Hamptons/beach house style that is in vogue especially in coastal areas.

Can plantation shutters be cut to size?

  • No.
  • They come in three different louvre (window frame) sizes.
  • However, if you are willing to spend more money, they can be custom made.

How wide can plantation shutters be?

  • The size of the shutter blades often come in 64mm, 89mm and 114mm options.
  • In most cases, the maximum width of the shutters spans 1200mm.

Do plantation shutters keep out heat?

  • Yes, and they also keep heat in, in the winter months.
  • They are incredibly energy efficient.

Are plantation shutters blackout?

  • No.
  • Some light may slip through between the shutter blades.

How much do plantation shutters cost?

  • This will depend on the size, type and material that you choose for your plantation shutters. Of course, plantation shutters are more expensive than some other types of blinds, for example, a simple roller blind.

How do you install plantation shutters?

  • A professional blind installation company needs to install the plantation shutters, and they must be fully integrated into an existing structure, to get a beautiful finish.

Can you put plantation shutters on sliding doors?

  • Yes.
  • Usually, bi-fold shutters are the best option in this case.

How do you clean plantation shutters?

  • You should dust your shutters at least once a week, and otherwise wipe them down with a damp cloth.
  • When adjusting the blinds, make sure to move the shutters from near the centre of all the slats.

How to remove plantation shutters?

  • To remove plantation shutters, you need to contact your professional blind installation company as the blinds need to be detached from the surrounding structure.

How long do plantation shutters last?

  • If you look after your plantation shutters, they can last for over ten years.
  • The warranty for your plantation shutters should cover one to two years.

Pros of plantation shutters

  • Very safe option – no hanging strings/chains etc.
  • Very stylish – make a statement in your home with your style.
  • Easy to clean and maintain.

Cons of plantation shutters

  • Slightly more expensive than other blind options. 
  • Not necessarily able to block out all light.
  • Less versatile than some other blind options.

Electric blinds

How do electric blinds work?

  • Electric blinds work by using a small motor, to turn the mechanism in the same way that would happen if you were pulling the chain. You can get blinds automated that go vertically and horizontally.
  • They can be hooked up to the electricity of your house or installed with battery power. They can be controlled using a small tablet or remote, or a panel fixed to the wall.

Types of electric blinds

  • Internal blinds – technically, all types of blinds that are raised on a blind shaft can be motorised.
  • External blinds – such as roller shutters or patio blinds.

How much do electric blinds cost?

  • This will depend on the type of blind, the material and other factors that your blind installation company will quote you on.
  • Overall, electric blinds will be more expensive than non-electric blinds.

How to install electric blinds?

  • A professional blind company needs to install electric blinds.
  • An electrician is also required as the blinds are supplied from the mains power.

How to charge electric blinds?

  • Some electric blinds need to be charged. All you need to do to charge the blinds is plug in the charger as recommended by the manufacturer.
  • Other blinds may be connected straight into the wall or have battery-operated motors.

How to clean electric blinds?

  • It will depend on the type of blind. Whichever type of blind you select, follow the cleaning instructions for that blind, also found in this article.
  • For instance, look under the cleaning advice in the roller blind heading. Take care to avoid getting water into the electric mechanism.

How to remove electric blinds?

  • To remove electric blinds, you need to contact a handyman or a blind installation company. Its recommended trying to unclip the blind shaft like you can do with normal roller blinds, as it may be fused to the motor. This will depend on the type of blind.

How long do electric blinds last?

  • Electric blinds can last for as long as ten years if they are looked after appropriately.
  • Batteries that control the remote or blind motor may need to be changed every one to two years.
  • The warranty should give one to two years of coverage.

Do I need to service electric blinds?

  • Unless a problem arises, you shouldn’t necessarily need to service the blinds.
  • However, if a problem does arise, make sure that whoever comes to fix it is a professional with experience with these sorts of mechanisms. If the blinds are still under warranty, be sure to engage a service agent of the manufacturer to avoid voiding your warranty.

Pros of electric blinds

  • Very easy to use and control.
  • Very safe option – no chains or dangling parts that could be a hazard (although all professionally installed blinds should be child-safe).
  • Available in lots of fabric options.
  • Very high-tech option – adds value and improves the functionality of your house.

Cons of electric blinds

  • More expensive to fix issues with the blinds.
  • Installation may be more expensive.

Conservatory blinds

Types of conservatory blinds

  • Conservatory blinds are essentially any blind system that helps to shade your conservatory or large glass-covered indoor-outdoor space.
  • These may be in the form of awnings, fabric roller systems, or outdoor roller shutters.

How much do conservatory blinds cost?

  • This will depend on the type of blinds, the material and size of the conservatory blind that you select. Your blind installation company can give you a quote and provide an exact rundown of the costs.

How to install conservatory blinds?

  • Often, conservatory blinds need to be installed into the existing structure, and some need to be put in difficult areas to install, for example, across the glass roof.
  • Therefore, we recommend that you employ the assistance of a professional company.

How to clean conservatory blinds?

  • This will depend on the type of blinds, whichever type of blind you select, follow the manufacturer’s cleaning instructions. It is recommended that you dust your blinds at least once a week and maintain the mechanism regularly. If it is a chain, keep it greased, etc.

How to remove conservatory blinds?

  • For the removal of conservatory blinds, it is recommended that you contact your blind installation company and talk to them about the best way to remove the blinds, without damaging the surrounding structure/walls.

How long do conservatory blinds last?

  • Conservatory blinds, due to their exposure to the direct sunlight, may need to be replaced more regularly than other types of blinds. Therefore, depending on how well you look after the blinds, where they are located, and the environment that you live in, you may need to replace them every five or so years.
  • Your warranty should cover one to two years.

Pros of conservatory blinds

  • Protect your furniture from harsh direct sunlight.
  • Make your conservatory space a lot more liveable, especially in summer. 
  • Very safe option.
  • Wide variety of styles available.

Cons of conservatory blinds

  • Often if they are up high, they can be more difficult to clean. 
  • Perhaps more expensive solutions, in comparison to regular window blind types.

Skylight blinds

Types of skylight blinds

  • Roller shutter that sits on the outside of the skylight and is controlled remotely. 
  • A cassette or roller blind that sits on the inside of the skylight.

How much do skylight blinds cost?

  • This will depend on the type of skylight blind you choose. However, an outdoor roller shutter that is motorised is going to cost more than a simple ‘pull-across’ cassette blind on the inside of the skylight. Your blind installation company with give you an exact quote, depending on your preference.

How do you install skylight blinds?

  • Your skylight blind may need to be installed from the outside, which means going on the roof. You should not attempt this yourself for safety reasons. It is recommended that you leave the installation to professionals.

How do you open skylight blinds?

  • It depends on the type of blind. These days, many are opting for remote-controlled blinds, as they are much easier to control. However, in some cases, such as cassette blinds that sit on the inside of the skylight, a thin pole may be used to hook the blind and pull the blind closed.

How to clean skylight blinds?

  • Professional cleaners that can access your roof safely may be needed to clean outdoor roller shutters over the top of your skylight. Indoor blinds for your skylight can be dusted, with a longer device, such as a cobweb brush.

How to remove skylight blinds?

  • To remove your skylight blinds, it is recommended that you contact a professional blind installer so as not to damage the surrounding structure and to ensure that the job is done safely.

How long do skylight blinds last?

  • Similarly, to conservatory blinds, if the indoor skylight blinds are exposed to a lot of direct sunlight, they may become faded and need to be replaced.
  • But if looked after correctly, outdoor roller shutters should last for as long as ten years. The mechanisms that control the blinds may need to be serviced every couple of years or so or when issues arise. Servicing should be done by a professional blind installation company.

Pros of skylight blinds

  • Complete control of light in your home.
  • Protect your furniture and carpets from direct sunlight.
  • Help keep heat in, in the winter months, and the sun out in the summertime.
  • Very safe option.

Cons of skylight blinds

  • Can be more challenging to clean, if situated up high.
  • Can be expensive in terms of installation depending on the placement of the skylight.

Frequently Asked Questions about Blinds

Below are answers to common questions about blinds.

When were window blinds invented?

  • They may have been around a little while longer than you thought they were. Window blinds can be traced all the way back to ancient Egyptian and Chinese cultures. The first versions of window blinds would have been made by stringing reeds and bamboo together.
  • The Persians brought the blinds to Venice, where they became extremely popular, hence the “Venetian” blind. And, the rest is history.
  • An Englishman named Edward Bevan received the first patent for the Venetian Blind in 1769. Constructed with thin strips of wood, the blinds were held in a wooden frame for support. They were introduced to the states in 1841 when John Hampson from New Orleans, upgraded the features, allowing the slats to be adjustable.

How long do window blinds last?

  • Believe it or not, their longevity isn’t necessarily based on what you spend. More expensive blinds will usually be made with better quality materials and can last longer than cheaper window blinds.
  • But, how long they last really depends on how well you take care of them. If they’re dusted and cleaned regularly, with an occasional professional cleaning, they can last 10 years or longer.

Can window blinds be repaired?

  • Almost anything can be fixed, including window blinds. There are usually extra slats that come with the blinds in case one breaks. It’s a little tricky, but they can be weaved back into place. There are also professional services that repair window blinds.

Can used window blinds be recycled? 

  • While they can be recycled, it might not be as simple as tossing them into your recycling bin. Most blinds are constructed of a few different materials. And, each can have a different recycling method. You should always check with your local recycling company to find out.
  • If everything is made out of aluminum, you should be fine to include them with your normal recycling. Otherwise, you can take the different materials apart and recycle them appropriately. It may take a little more effort, but think about all of the good that you are doing by recycling.

Can used window blinds be sold? 

  • It seems that there is a market for everything. And window blinds can definitely be sold as long as they are still in good condition. The only challenge is finding someone with the same window sizes.
  • Garage sales, flea markets, and thrift stores are where you will commonly find used window blinds. There are even online avenues, including social media sites, where individuals can buy and sell almost anything.

Are blinds expensive?

  • They can be.
  • But they don’t have to be. If you are on a tight budget, you can find basic window blinds either online or at your local big-box retailer for only a few dollars each. Blinds with different styles and colors will be a little more expensive.
  • Or, you can make them a home improvement investment by having them professionally designed.

Can blinds be cut to size?

  • You’ll usually be able to find window blinds that are exactly the width of the window that you are covering, but not always. And, depending on the type of blind you have, the length may not be an issue. But, both the width and length of blinds can be cut to fit the exact size of your window.

Can blinds be washed? 

  • Not only can they be, but they will need it just as much as any other surface of your home. Depending on the material that the blinds are made of, there are different cleaning methods. You can also find some nifty cleaning tools to help. And, you can always call in a professional for a deep clean.

Do blinds help keep a room cool?

  • Window blinds are a great way to help control the temperature. In the summertime, you can keep them closed on windows where the sun is beating down. It helps keep the room from heating up and keeps the cold air feeling nice and cool.
  • They’ll also help control the heat in the winter as well. Keep them opened to let the sunshine in, adding heat to the room. Keeping them closed will also help with drafty windows.

Can window blinds be painted?

  • Yes, they can. There are even some newer, trendy painting techniques that can even make a bold statement on your window blinds. Painting old blinds has become increasingly popular as more and more people are trying to find ways to help our environment by reusing and recycling.
  • You can use your DIY skills or hire a pro to paint your blinds. You are only limited by your own imagination.

What are continuous cord loop blinds?

  • Continuous cord loop blinds differ slightly from other types of roller blinds – as they operate using a pulley system. In this type of blind, a continuous cord loop lift returns back to the headrail.

What are panel track blinds?

  • Panel track blinds travel along a track which can be mounted inside or outside of the window or door frame, or on the ceiling. They can be customized to be horizontal blinds, or vertical – depending on how and where the track is mounted.

What is the best blind for the bedroom?

  • The most popular styles of blinds for the bedroom include roman shades, blackout blinds, woven shade blinds, and wooden Venetian blinds. However, most types of blinds will do well in the bedroom.

Disclaimer

Information provided in the text above is general in nature and does not consider your specific window coverings and blinds needs and requirements. The information is not professional advice and should not be treated as such. You must not rely on the information in the text above as an alternative to professional advice. If you have specific questions relating to this subject, we strongly recommend that you seek independent professional window coverings and blinds advice.