How to build a wooden shutter

Written by mark morris
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How to build a wooden shutter
Wooden shutters add a decorative touch. (Window whit shutter. image by John Sandoy from

Wooden decorative shutters can add a touch of country charm to any home. Board and batten shutters are the easiest to build and install. Use treated lumber decking and 2-by-4-inch lumber or choose your favourite colour of composite decking to build a long-lasting shutter that never needs maintenance. No matter your choice of materials, if you can use a saw, make an accurate measurement and are handy with a drill, board and batten shutters won't present any challenges that you can't overcome.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Tape measure
  • Treated or composite 5/4-by-6-inch decking
  • Treated 2-by-4-inch lumber
  • Drill and bits
  • Treated decking screws
  • Paint or stain (optional)
  • Masonry anchors (optional)

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  1. 1

    Measure the window with a tape measure. Include any trim or mouldings. Measure height and width.

  2. 2

    Cut enough 5/4-by-6-inch decking pieces to cover the face of the window. Assume a window 30 inches high by 24 inches wide. Cut your pieces 4 inches longer than the height of the window, plus trim. These are your vertical shutter boards.

  3. 3

    Cut the 2-by-4 inch treated lumber according to how many pieces are on each side. You'll need the total width of the material, plus 2 inches between each piece. These are your horizontal battens.

  1. 1

    Place the vertical shutter pieces for one side of your window face down. Composite decking may have grain texture on one side and the other may be smooth. Place the face that you want seen down. Measure a 2-inch space between shutter boards

  2. 2

    Place a horizontal 2-by-4 brace 4 inches from the end of the vertical pieces. Drive 2-inch treated decking screws through the brace into the back of the decking. Place a second brace the same distance from the other end. Install a third brace, if needed, centred between the other two.

  3. 3

    Drill countersunk pilot holes through the verticals in at least four places. For masonry houses, use a 1/4-inch bit to drill pilot holes for concrete screws. For siding, use a 1/8-inch bit to drill pilot holes for treated deck screws.

  1. 1

    Mount the shutters on brick or other masonry by holding the shutter in place and drilling through the pilot holes into the face of the wall with a 3/16-inch rotary mason's bit to a depth of 1/8 inch to mark the hole for the anchors. Repeat in each pilot hole.

  2. 2

    Set the shutter aside and drill the marked holes to a depth of 1 inch. Blow the dust from the holes.

  3. 3

    Place the shutter over the holes and drive a 3½-inch tapcon-style concrete screw through the shutter into the wall in each pilot hole.

  4. 4

    Install the shutters to wood, vinyl or metal siding by driving a 3½-inch treated deck screw through the shutter in each pilot hole

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