Buying Plantation Shutters for your new home …... let’s test your knowledge about shutters

With so many varieties of plantation shutters available in the market these days, right from the cheapest ones to the expensive ones there is a vast array out there to choose from. My personal experiences have been varied with one quoting a very cheap price for a PVC shutter while another quoted me much more in comparison. I noticed the same thing with Basswood. So how do I know the difference, how do I know which one to buy?

Knowing the difference between low-priced plantation shutters and the ones that seem expensive is a mark of a savvy shopper looking for the best product for their money. There are companies retailing extremely cheap shutters, so as a buyer, beware.

Most of us don’t really know much about shutters other than the colour and style of our desired plantation shutters. On a first look, they are similar in appearance with a top, a bottom, and blades that open and shut. But, that is where the similarity ends. Often, the variance in quality is huge. This can make it hard for the consumer to tell exactly what they have on their hands until the shutters are finally installed.

PVC Shutters - PVC, short for Polyvinyl Chloride, is a synthetic plastic polymer made from petroleum. A lot of the consumer items we buy today are only intended to last for a short period of time. This is the case with PVC plantation shutters sold at cheap prices. These less expensive shutters are known to use impurities and additives in the PVC that shorten the lifespan of the shutters. Within 4-5 years, the shutters start to drop which prevents the blades from opening and closing properly, and you are faced with a replacement cost.

On top of this there, there will be a depletion of colour, just like cheap outdoor furniture which turns from a white to a grey or cream colour with UV exposure. More concerning is the fact that the cheap paint used on cheap Plantation Shutters can have harmful Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC's) in the paint. When the plantation Shutter heats up in the window it may emit an odour or fumes which is harmful for your health and you definitely don’t want that!

Simply put, PVC is a toxic compound that is considered a pollutant to humans, animals and the environment. Over time PVC releases extremely hazardous and carcinogenic Dioxins which can affect the health of humans. PVC has also been known to trigger reactions to people with asthma or people who are sensitive to certain chemicals.

We live in the highest UV rated area in the world and sadly PVC shutters hate the UV, unless they are manufactured with the correct additives to ensure a long-lasting product.

Timber Shutters – Timber is a 100% natural organic material that is known for its strength and longevity. Timber is reusable, recyclable and best of all, biodegradable.

Timber shutters look beautiful in their natural state. Wood grains give the decor a nice classic warm feel.

In comparison to PVC, timber shutters require far less energy to produce and do not release any toxic chemicals into the air that we breathe. Adding timber shutters to your windows will greatly reduce your homes energy costs by adding a barrier of natural insulation.

Again, there are cheaper varieties and there are the expensive ones. Western Red Cedar or Basswood will cost you more as compared to MDF or composite wood made from glued sawdust or wood waster (e.g. ‘Craftwood’ , ‘Customcraft’) , laminated and jointed wood off cuts.

Bottom line: Don’t make the mistake of purchasing the first plantation shutters you see. Ask questions and ensure you are getting a quality product . Remember, what you pay for is what you get.

Ultimately, it’s up to you the consumer to determine your reason for purchasing a product, factoring in the type (different wood varieties, polymer, composite etc.), budget, and what you value more in terms of price versus quality. Good Plantation shutters are not cheap and I am sure you want them to last so be aware and make the right choice !

If you speak to Savvy Blinds & Shutters, we’ll let you compare the difference between our premium quality shutters and the cheap shutters that are flooding the market today. We will answer all your questions and ensure you are satisfied with the quality of the product and the product suits your requirements.