A Guide to Choosing the Correct Exterior Shutter Hardware
The beauty and functionality of exterior shutters can transform your home. But if you don’t choose the correct exterior shutter hardware, you won’t be able to open and close the shutters over your windows. You likely have the same style trim on all your windows, but even still, some of the measurements can be slightly different.
There are a number of shutter hinge types available, each of which offers a unique look and requires different installation techniques.
What are the Different Types of Exterior Shutter Hinges?
Exterior shutter hinges come in four main shapes and sizes:
Mortised (Edge Mounted)
These types can be further categorized into two groups of exterior shutter hinges: surface mounted and edge mounted.
Surface mounted shutter hinges are often installed on the back of the shutters and will likely be a straight strap, L strap, or plate shutter hardware. Surface hinges can mount onto your house with either a plate pintle or with a lag bolt pintle.
Edge mounted hinges, or mortise hinges, look like a door hinge because they’re placed on the exterior shutter closest to the window.
There are also faux hinges available for people who want to achieve the look of decorative shutter hinges without the hassle and cost of installing real exterior shutter hardware. If you don’t actually plan on opening and closing the shutters, decorative faux hinges might be the only hardware you want to install.
How Should My Shutters Close?
Before deciding on the best shutter hardware for your home, first you need to choose how you want the shutters to close over the windows. Exterior shutters can either be inside mounted (fitted within the window frame) or outside mounted (completely covering the window frame).
Inside Mounted Exterior Shutters
An inside mount is most common, especially in regions prone to high winds or storms. The inside mounts make the shutters less likely to be lifted by high winds.
With inside mounted exterior shutters, you need to know what the material is that will be around your closed shutters. If the window is framed in wood that offers the depth needed to hold your shutters, you can use surface mounted hinges or edge mounted hinges. If your home is brick, vinyl or stone, stick with surface mounted hinges.
Outside Mounted Exterior Shutters
You may opt for an outside mount with your exterior shutters if there isn’t enough depth for the shutters to sit within your window frame.
If you’re opting to use exterior shutters that will show no window frame when closed, using a surface mounted hinge is more effective. Most of these hinges will be strap or plate hinges.
How Do I Choose the Best Exterior Shutter Hardware?
If you’re still sitting there scratching your head wondering which type of hardware you need to install exterior shutters, simply follow these four steps:
1. Shutter position.
Find out if you have an inside mount or an outside mount using the example images above for reference.
2. Hinge type.
Inspect the material surrounding your window and use this chart to determine whether you need a surface mounted hinge or an edge mounted hinge:
|Closed Shutter Position||Window Opening Material||Recommended Hinge Type|
|Inside Mount||Wood||Surface or edge mounted|
|Inside Mount||Brick||Surface mounted|
|Inside Mount||Stone||Surface mounted|
|Inside Mount||Vinyl||Surface mounted|
|Inside Mount||Stucco or other veneer||Surface mounted|
|Outside Mount||Any||Surface mounted|
3. Pintle type.
Inspect the material where you will be installing the surface mounted hinges and use this chart to determine the type of pintle you will need to mount the exterior shutters:
|Material for Surface Mounted Hinge||Recommended Pintle Type|
|Wood (flat)||Plate pintle|
|Wood (non-flat)||Lag bolt pintle|
|Brick||Lag bolt pintle|
|Stone||Lag bolt pintle|
|Vinyl||Lag bolt pintle|
|Stucco or other veneer||Lag bolt pintle|
4. Mounting method.
Finally, choose a hinge shape that matches the look you’re going for while also making sure it meets your requirements determined by steps 2 and 3. If you plan to mount the hinge pintle directly to the surface of the wood trim or wood frame around your window, you can use a plate pintle. However, if you have to mount the hinge pintle to brick or stone, you’ll want to use a lag bolt pintle.
Quality exterior shutter hardware is one of those small details that can give a home major curb appeal. While your home’s appearance and functionality may motivate you to add exterior shutters to your house, you also have to know which shutter hardware is best suited for your home’s material.
Our extensive selection of exterior shutter hardware lets you DIY customize your shutter design for both function AND decoration! Our durable, corrosion resistant stainless steel hinges are perfect for coastal areas.
Whether you’ve just purchased or built a new screen door, or perhaps it’s just time for an upgrade to the screen door hardware, installing a hardware kit to your door can be done easily (even if you aren’t a pro). With a few simple tools – measuring tape, screwdriver, and a power drill – you should have your new screen door hardware kit installed.