Posted on: 28 April 2017Share
Roller shutters outside your home's windows can help protect them from storms and from someone trying to break in; these can also be installed over a balcony, for security purposes and for when you need a bit of extra shade or sound insulation when enjoying that space. Note a few words and terms to learn when considering the option of roller shutters for your home so you know you get the right type and style, and are happy with those shutters for years to come.
Note that roller shutters are sometimes casually referred to as hurricane shutters, but to actually protect your home's windows from high winds and flying debris, you need shutters that are hurricane rated. This would refer to shutters that pass legal requirements for being strong enough and thick enough to protect your home from such potential damage; look for a hurricane rating and not just "hurricane shutters" when shopping, if you need this added protection.
Accordion style shutters
Accordion style shutters open from side to side rather than rolling up and down. These may be the best choice for a rounded balcony, where flat shutters may allow for gaps around those curves. They're also good for shade and noise insulation when you want to close those shutters along one side rather than pulling them down from the top of the balcony ceiling. Accordion style shutters can still be made of thick and heavy aluminium or a lightweight vinyl, and can also be rated to withstand hurricanes and storms.
Not all shutters will actually protect your home from a fire, as lightweight vinyl may easily melt. Ensure you choose shutters with what is called a bushfire rating if you're concerned about the risk of any type of fire in your area.
When you buy motorized roller shutters, you want to consider the override system. This can be a crank, or it can simply mean an internal spring system that allows you to manually slide the shutters open. Your choice of override system is especially important for shutters installed outside a room where you need egress in case of an emergency, such as a bedroom. Note if you would be able to easily open these shutters by hand; a crank might be too small and cumbersome for a child or someone with arthritis to manage. A lightweight shutter that you simply push up and out of the way can be the better option in those cases.