Choosing a Mounting Style for Blinds or Shades

The very first step in purchasing or ordering any blind or shade product is to determine how it will be mounted so that you can take the proper measurements.

These items are either ordered to fit inside a window or opening or to be mounted outside on the casing, door, or wall. Inside mount or outside; do you really have a choice? In most cases you do but sometimes and with some brands of windows you do not. You may prefer one style or the other. You may not have a choice in the selection. Some window framing or manufacturing styles precludes the choice of inside mount. Some windows that appear to have plenty of room can not be installed as an inside mount. And conversely some windows that look like there's no way to inside mount can be done if you know what you are doing.

If you are purchasing a blind that uses a standard box bracket you may install a 2" blind anywhere that you can install a 1" blind. The 2" blind will project (extend) into the room more but it will work. The 2" brackets may be more visible when viewed from the side than a 1" bracket. As a general rule you need 3/4" of flat surface at the top and/or sides of the window to mount a standard box bracket. One inch or more is better.

You can always outside mount; but, this may create problems for you with other treatments that you have or add to the window later. Outside mount provides a clean look on multiple window units because all the slats are automatically tilted to the same degree on the multiple units. Some people prefer this method and look.

Inside the casing seems to be the most popular choice. It provides a clean look. It helps keep the blind out of harms way. Most people seem to think of it a "more custom look". Crank and awning windows quite often create a situation where there is no way to add or remove the window screen after an inside mount blind has been installed unless you remove the blind and brackets.

Anderson™ Windows in particular and a few other manufacturers sell a window that uses a cable and counterweight system that prevents the installation of a nail or screw with top 3 inches of the outside edge of the window. This precludes the use of any blind that utilizes a standard box bracket. These windows have a warning label attached but it is frequently removed by the builder or homeowner. If there are small cables at the left and right of the window investigate before you order your blinds or shades for inside mount.

This article or portions of this article were previously published in a significantly different form on two websites owned by the author, window-wizard.net and lexkyweb.com/windows. Those articles are no longer available at those locations. Copyright is renewed with this revised publication (01-31-2010).


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