Folding Window Shutters: How Many Panels?

How to Choose The Right Shutters For Your Windows

Shutters are the interior designer’s window treatment of choice. They have helped keep homes warm and well insulated for centuries, and offer many practical and aesthetic advantages over other window coverings. However, there’s a bit of an art to choosing the right folding window shutters if you wish to ensure a tidy finish.

Whether you’re looking to install your own shutters or would simply like to know a bit more before you get an installer involved, this article will help you choose the right folding window shutters for your home.

Types of Window Shutter

Track mounted shuttersThe number of ‘folds’ refers to the number of shutter panels on each side of the window, connected by hinges, as opposed to the total number of panels on each window.

So those with a single fold / two panels are referred to as bi-fold or bi-folding window shutters, while those with two folds / three panels are known as tri-fold or tri-folding shutters. You can also get shutters made up of multiple panels, which glide along tracks on a set of wheels (pictured).

Choosing the Right Number of Shutter Panels Per Window

Single-panel shutters are best for smaller windows and those of an awkward shape. In these cases, folding shutters can have the adverse effect of making the windows look smaller and more cluttered.

Window T-postsFor medium and large windows, bi-fold and tri-fold shutters are usually best. Where there are sets of two or three windows as is often the case in a bay, the shutters can be fitted onto the t-post (see example) to give a uniform effect.

Multiple-panel shutters with tracking systems are ideal for patio doors, large windows over 2200mm wide and long sections in conservatories.

Other Tips for Choosing Folding Window Shutters

  • Tier-on-tier folding window shuttersIf you want to let in more light whilst maintaining a good level of privacy, choose tier-on-tier or café shutters so that the top half of the window can be left uncovered.
  • Match the vertical shutter stiles to the window mullions (sections between the panels) to give a neat, symmetrical effect. So if the window is split into two halves, two or four panels should be used. If it’s split into thirds, use three or six shutter panels. This is especially important for café-style and tier-on-tier shutters, as any asymmetry will be more noticeable.
  • Make sure there is enough space for the shutters to fold back into. Those on tracking systems do not fold back, so bear in mind that they will protrude into the room. However, the panels are usually narrower so this shouldn’t be a big problem.
  • Don’t get too preoccupied with the idea of opening the shutters and folding them away. Most people keep them in position most of the time, adjusting the louvers to admit light during the day.
  • Choose made-to-measure window shutters for a perfect fit. For the best results, arrange for a shutter expert to visit your home. They will have created folding window shutters for hundreds if not thousands of homes before, so you can be absolutely confident of getting it right.

At Shutter Design, we offer free, no obligation visits and consultations, where we will discuss your requirements with you, take measurements and provide free designs and quotations for your new folding window shutters. Call us today on 01423 359230 or browse our website for more information on our service.

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