Composite Shutters vs. Wood Shutters: The Ultimate Guide for Homeowners in 2024

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Selecting window coverings that suit both interior and exterior designs is paramount for interior and exterior aesthetics. Composite shutters and wood shutters each have unique qualities that appeal to different homeowners; this comprehensive guide can help you weigh their respective advantages when making a decision between composite or wood shutters.

Understanding Composite Shutters vs. Wood Shutters

Hunter Douglas composite shutters installed on a window

Composite Shutters

Composite shutters are composed of a combination of wood by-products and PVC or vinyl materials, designed for enhanced moisture, warping, and cracking resistance in humid climates or high-traffic areas. Their engineering makes them a great choice for high-traffic areas as well as high humidity.

Hunter Douglas Harwood Shutters

Wood Shutters

Wood shutters are traditionally crafted from natural woods like basswood, oak, or cedar. They offer warmth, elegance, and timeless appeal. Many homeowners favor their natural grain, rich textures, and ability to be custom stained or painted to match any architectural style.

Key Features and Comparisons

Durability and Maintenance

  • Composite Shutters: These shutters are highly durable, resisting warping, cracking, and fading. Their low-maintenance nature means they only require occasional dusting or light cleaning.
  • Wood Shutters: While durable, wood shutters are more susceptible to moisture and extreme weather. To maintain structural integrity, they need more maintenance measures, such as regular re-painting and re-staining.

Cost and Return on Investment

  • Composite Shutters: Composite shutters are generally more affordable than wood shutters and provide a great return on investment due to their longevity and low maintenance.
  • Wood Shutters: Wood shutters tend to be more expensive upfront but can add significant value to your home due to their classic look and high-quality finish.

Energy Efficiency and Insulation

  • Composite Shutters: These shutters provide excellent insulation properties that help regulate indoor temperatures while cutting energy costs. Furthermore, their tight seal ensures no drafts enter the interior–limiting energy waste.
  • Wood Shutters: Wood also provides good insulation, but over time, gaps may form due to wood expansion or contraction.

Curb Appeal and Aesthetics

  • Composite Shutters: Composite shutters can mimic natural wood and are available in a wide range of finishes. They can look vibrant for as long as their material composition resists discoloration.
  • Wood Shutters: Natural wood offers a luxurious appearance. They are highly customizable and can be stained or painted to match any of the interior aesthetics.

Frequently Asked Questions on Composite and Wood Shutters

1. Do composite shutters look as good as wood shutters?

Yes, composite shutters are designed to replicate the look of wood shutters closely. There are finishes available for composite shutters that highly resemble wood’s natural grains.

Composite shutters are generally moisture and weather-resistant. They are perfect to install in areas prone to humidity and harsh weather conditions.

Composite shutters typically have a longer lifespan due to their resistance to cracking, fading, and warping. Wood shutters can last for decades, but may require regular maintenance to keep them in good condition.

Key Takeaways

  • Composite shutters offer high durability, low maintenance costs, and excellent insulation at an economical price point.
  • Wood shutters offer a classic, authentic appearance with increased customization options and require more maintenance than their synthetic counterparts.
  • Both options offer unique aesthetic and functional benefits, with composite shutters often being the better option for homeowners seeking long-term value and durability.

Matching Your Shutter Choice with Your Home Priorities

When deciding between composite and wood shutters, consider your local climate, maintenance preferences, and budget. Composite shutters often offer the best balance between aesthetics and practicality. Put your best foot forward with Window Expressions and look for expert advice on what shutter type will be perfect for any dedicated space!

Gary Wells

Owner of Window Expressions, Annapolis' premier custom window treatment specialist. With years of of experience in the industry, Gary takes pride in his keen eye for design and his ability to transform clients' visions into reality. He finds joy in leading a local, family-owned business committed to putting the "custom" in customer service.

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