Chicago's Frequently Asked Questions About Shutters

For more than 26 years, we’ve heard every question about shutters you can imagine from our customers in Chicago. And we’ve collected the top ten of them here. Perhaps in these questions and answers you’ll find answers to questions of your own. If not, please don’t wait to contact Sunburst Shutters Chicago directly. We’re here to assist you and happy to do so.

Which Plantation Shutters Should I Use?

That hinges on how you want the shutters to relate to your home’s décor. Do you want a shutter that contrasts your wall paint color and has clean lines? Polywood® plantation shutters are ideal for you. Or are you looking to duplicate the wood in your home as closely as possible? Ovation® wood shutters are a better fit for you.
Plantation shutters are known for being energy efficient. And to get the greatest energy savings, our Polywood Shutter Insulation System is the only choice.

Why Are Shutters the Ideal Window Treatment?

For the budget-conscious, blinds are a temporary window treatment to cover your windows. They are susceptible to deteriorating over time with the strings snapping and the loops that hold the slats in place falling apart. And they’re not easy to clean.

Shades offer an array of colors and unique patterns, changing your window into artwork. By effortlessly pulling up the fabric of the shade, your full window is exposed and you can see out onto your Chicago neighborhood.

Draperies also are available in a wide variety of color, fabric, and patterns. They are a traditional choice for a window treatment. Installing thick panels between the drapes and the window provides you with light and temperature block-out capabilities. And unlike other window treatments, there’s no rush to clean draperies for five years.

If you’re looking for a window treatment that lasts beyond 10 years, saves you real dollars on your energy bills, and looks elegant on your windows, shutters are the choice for your home. Not only are shutters durable, but they’re also elegant and energy efficient. As a matter of fact, Polywood shutters insulate up to 70% better than an equivalent wood shutter. That’s energy savings you can’t get with any other window treatment.

Plantation shutters are unparalleled when it comes to control over privacy and light. And with their large louvers, Polywood plantation shutters give your house a clean contemporary feel whether they’re closed or open.

How Are Shutters Installed on My Windows?

An inappropriately installed window treatment can be difficult to open and can get damaged easily. We have an expert installation crew that comes to your home and installs your window treatment with great accuracy, double checking that each one operates perfectly – and doesn’t get damaged when opened and closed.

But before we get to installing your shutters, we bring shutter samples to your home so we can custom craft your window treatment together. Learn more about our free in-home consultation.

How Do I Move the Plantation Shutter Louvers?

Your plantation shutter slats – or louvers – can be moved without difficulty by pushing them up or down. Generally, a tilt rod mounted on the front of the shutters lets you adjust the louvers. If you would like to move the louvers with your hand, we propose buying shutters with hidden tilt-rods or rear-mounted tilt rods. This gives your shutters a clean, contemporary look.

How Do I Clean My Plantation Shutters?

Plantation shutters are simple to clean because they have large louvers and their tilt bars are either hidden or mounted on the rear. Just tilt them open and dust them like furniture – or wipe smudges with a wet cloth.

Should I Go Halfway Up My Window with Plantation Shutters?

A half shutter lets you have privacy on the bottom and leaves the top open for light and view. It’s called a café style shutter. But is it the ideal look for a plantation shutter?

Cafe Shutters Cafe Style Shutters With Divider

What it comes down to is style choice – whether you like the look of a half shutter or that of a plantation shutter with a divider rail.
A full length shutter with a divider rail “completes” your window, giving it a polished look – and allowing you to close the bottom louvers for privacy while leaving the top louvers open for light. At night, you are able to close the top louvers as well for privacy and security. That’s also helpful during the day when the sun is stopping you from watching TV. And don’t worry about forgoing any of your view. A 3.5" or 4.5" louver will almost disappear when opened flat and gives you a lot of room to look through.

How Do I Order Shutters from Sunburst Shutters Chicago?

Easy! Call us at 847-250-6544 or fill out the form below to schedule your free in-home consultation, and we’ll guide you from there. We come out to your home to measure the windows you want to add shutters to and bring samples of all of our shutter products and their available options. Once you’ve selected a shutter that matches your style, we can provide you with the most accurate shutter quote for your project. Schedule your in-home consultation today!

Will I be able to keep my old window trim when I install shutters?

Yes! There’s almost never a need to get rid of or do work on your old window trim when installing new plantation shutters. Natural Ovation wood shutters and patented Polywood shutters are available in an array of frame styles to fit naturally into your current window trim. If your windows have no trim, we offer frame styles to install right onto the drywall around your window to secure your gorgeous new shutters to your window opening.

Your installer will measure each of your individual windows during your free in-home consultation to make sure that your new shutters will fit gorgeously with your window trim.

Where are Sunburst Shutters products made?

Sunburst Shutters Chicago is proud to offer a range of window coverings made right here in the U.S.A. Polywood plantation shutters are not only America’s #1-selling shutter, but they’re 100% made in America. Not only does that result in a lower final price without unnecessary shipping and handling costs, it also gives you the benefit of knowing you’re choosing an all-American window treatment for your Chicago house.

And Polywood isn’t the only shutter that’s from the U.S.A. Our historic Reclaimed Wood shutters are constructed with lumber harvested from places across the country, from homespun Southern barn doors to sturdy Texas ranch fences and more.

Whats the difference between painted and stained shutters?

The primary differentiator between a shutter that’s stained or painted is the way the shutter material interacts with the color. Paint lays on top of the material it’s coloring, covering the surface. Stains on the other hand penetrate the shutter, becoming a part of the natural wood or faux wood material.

The two color options have their own unique benefits. There are usually a larger number of color options for painted shutters. With stained shutters, the color won’t interfere with the natural wood grain, so you’re able to see the random grooves and bumps of the material without it being masked by a layer of paint.

For your in-home window design consultation, we’ll bring samples of our stain and paint options directly to your home so you can easily match and complement colors with your existing interior design.

How Long Does It Take To Install Shutters in Chicago?

The entire plantation shutter process, beginning with your initial consultation through putting your shutters in, will take around four to six weeks. The process takes this long because we strive to build shutters that are perfectly customized to every facet of your windows. To do that, we need to take precise measurements, utilize advanced software to design your shutters, assemble your custom shutters manually, and get them to your home for installation. Shutters made from real wood typically take longer than Polywood due to the extra steps needed to stain and treat the wood.

It will take a little time, but it’s absolutely worth the wait.

Do I need to send you my shutter measurements?

Sunburst Shutters Chicago offers a start to finish in-home shopping experience. So we send one of our reps to you to take precise measurements of your windows, walk you through your options, and give you an accurate quote. The design consultation is absolutely free. That’s the best way to start a shutter project. If you only want a rough estimate, you can submit the measurements of your windows either by phone or through our contact form.

Do I Need To Remove My Trim Before Putting In Shutters?

The answer will depend on your own taste. If you want to keep your trim in place, we’re able to build your shutters to match your current trim. If you prefer our shutter frames, then removing trim is fine—but it’s not a necessity. If you want to go without trim or replace your trim, your Sunburst installer can help you choose the best option to match the vision you have in mind for your windows.

Can I DIY Install Shutters?

If you’re an experienced DIYer, you’re probably familiar with some of the process involved in a shutter installation. However, DIY shutters can be a bit complicated for most Chicago homeowners. Our recommendation is to leave the installation to our certified and insured professionals, that way you won’t be at risk of damaging your shutters, windows, or any other part of your house.

What Are Sunbursts Most Popular Shutter Options?

Far and away our most in-demand shutter options are our classic white Polywood® faux wood plantation shutters, and Ovation® real wood shutters.

Beyond that, the most popular shutter configuration features includes a 3.5” louver, non-textured finish, with a Z-frame. If those words don’t mean anything to you, that’s ok. We’d be delighted to demonstrate what all that means in person. Set up your complimentary home consultation and we’ll help you figure out what will look best in your space.

Should I choose a smooth or textured finish for my shutters?

Shutters with a smooth finish tend to look more modern and suave, while shutters with a textured finish look a bit more historic. However the perks to each style of plantation shutter finish are a little deeper, and ultimately come down to your own style.

Smooth shutter finishTextured shutter finish

Perks of shutters with a smooth finish – A smooth finish to your shutters offer a clean, sleek, modern look. A smooth finish may be perfect for you if your home has few other wood textured surfaces or furniture. A smooth finish is easier to see when it needs dusting, compared to a textured finish. We usually recommend a smooth finish for faux wood shutters like Polywood.

Perks of a textured or wood grain finish for shutters – A textured finish on your shutters offers a more natural, wood-like look to your shutters. That’s awesome if you’re trying to bring the beauty of nature indoors, particularly if you want to complement the look of your hardwood floors. A wood grain on your shutter louvers will also make dust harder to see, which means you can wait a little longer between regular cleanings. A wood-grain finish looks especially great on real wood shutters in Chicago.

How many shutter panels do I need for each window?

For the most part, the larger the window, the more shutter panels you’ll need. The optimal design is to use a single panel for windows up to 26 in. wide, two panels for windows up to 50 in. wide, and four for windows up to 98 in. wide.

Single wide panels aren’t as room-friendly as two separate panels. Often, wide panel shutters won’t fit flush against the wall due to their size. Multiple small panels resolve that.

For those windows that you’ll want to open or shut regularly, you’re usually better suited with multi-panel shutters, since they’re easier to open and have more support from the frame when you do operate them.

How much will it cost to have my windows measured?

With Sunburst Shutters Chicago, any and all shutter measurements will be done by one of our installers for free as part of your in-home consultation. Even if your window is in a difficult to reach place in your house or has a unique shape, our shutter pros can get you an exact measurement so that your shutters will line up just right with the windows.

During your complimentary in-home consultation, your Sunburst Shutters rep can help you pick from our wide variety of Chicago plantation shutters, featuring choices for finish, stain colors, and custom mounts and frames.

So schedule your in-home consultation today by calling 847-250-6544 today.

Should you install shutters on a flush window/window without depth?

Sunburst can help you find the perfect shutter for your home, regardless of how small your frame. We will use an outside mount installation that connects to the trim or wall outside the window cavity . Your shutters will still have equivalent performance and energy efficiency, and will integrate superbly into your design scheme.

What if I have a broken shutter louver?

If the louver is separated and hanging from the frame, you could have a broken louver pin. To mend this you need to extract the pin from both the louver and the stile with a pair of needle-nose pliers or a utility knife. Once the damaged pin is removed, stick the new pin base into the same hole in the shutter stile, then slide the louver onto the pin. To acquire additional complementary louver pins, just call us at 847-250-6544.

How much do your shutters cost?

The cost of plantation shutters depends on the selected product line and window area. While we can offer you an estimate over the phone, complete costs are offered after our no cost in-person consultation. Call 847-250-6544 to schedule an appointment today.

How do you mend a broken shutter staple?

First, remove the snapped staple away from the louver with a tool like of needle-nose pliers. Then use some adhesive (like wood glue or epoxy) to spread all over the legs of a replacement staple. Thread the staple through the loop on the louver and guide its legs into the existing staple holes on the tilt rod. For new shutter staples, call us at 847-250-6544.