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Installing Blinds

By HHR Staff ~ Colbyt

This article applies to all 1-2" wood, faux or metal blinds whether they are custom ordered or ready-made product. Most of it is applicable to pleated, woven and soft shades.

The first thing to do, especially in the case of ready-mades is to determine if the correct size has been purchased. They are 100% returnable if you haven't ripped open the packaging. The actual physical width measurement of a ready made blind is 1/2" less than the size stated on the package. A 32" blind measures 31 1/2". You will need to determine if the blinds are to be installed inside, outside or above the opening of the window.

Inside the frame mounting
For standard box brackets there isn't much to write about. You attach the brackets with two screws in each bracket. There is less chance of splitting the wood if you are able to run one screw to the side and one screw up. Place the left bracket on the left and the right one on the right. If they aren't labeled, the hinge swings upward. The blinds sold until about 1960 were the opposite. And you don't even want to know about the early 1900 and reproduction stuff.

Some blinds need a center support and depending on where the "ladders" of the blind are located you place the center support in the center or off center to cord lift side. The center support will interfere with the blind operation if it comes into contact with the ladder.

For some of the newer style, concealed brackets it is important to at least look at the installation instruction pictures to determine the correct placement. It does vary by fabricator and there is no way a generic article like this can address the specific requirements of any given brand.

Outside the frame mounting
There are two different styles of outside, on the frame mounting. One is full casing to casing width. All of the visible casing covered. And the other is where the brackets are mounted on the surface of the wood usually leaving the same amount of casing exposed on the two sides and the top. A quick measurement will allow you to determine where they need to be mounted.

In the case of full casing to casing width blinds, it is sometimes necessary to allow the box brackets to extend slightly past the casing on each side. Once again, the chances of splitting the wood are greatly reduced if you place one screw into the top trim piece and one screw into the side trim piece for each bracket.

Mounting on the wall above a window or door
A third method of mounting is to mount the blind on the wall above the casing. This is quite common when sliding glass doors are used. The directions are the same as for mounting full casing to casing width with the following exceptions:
Most likely you will need longer screws or hollow wall anchors.
A shim of wood or plastic designed for the purpose to even the wall and woodwork.
You will have to determine the height from the floor to mount the brackets.

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