How to Hang Exterior Window Shutters

Written by jonah morrissey
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How to Hang Exterior Window Shutters
Properly hung shutters add an elegant touch to a home's exterior. (wooden shutters image by Charles Taylor from

Wood shutters are installed with a hinge that slides onto a vertically oriented metal post called a pintle. Although many shutters are simply screwed to the exterior siding, a correctly installed shutter is hinged in the centre of the window casing. The shutter is held open by a tab called a shutter dog. Shutters can be closed using a handle called a shutter pull and latched with a wide variety of latches from simple to ornate. Exterior window shutters can be installed with basic tools and a weekend of labour.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • 2 shutters to fit a selected window
  • Tape measure
  • 4 strap hinges, with screws
  • Screw gun
  • 4 pintles
  • 2 shutter dogs
  • Latch set, with screws
  • 2 shutter pulls, with screws

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  1. 1

    Lay the shutters flat with the exterior side facing up on a work surface. Center the strap hinges on the top and bottom rails on the outside edges of the shutters. Arrange the hinges so there is a left and right shutter.

  2. 2

    Drive the provided screws through the holes in the hinges into the top and bottom rails.

  3. 3

    Fit the shutters on the side casing of the window so they are centred and match in the centre. Mark the hinge locations onto the casing with a pencil.

  4. 4

    Screw the pintles into the marked locations on the side casing. The hinge slides onto the pintle.

  5. 5

    Hang the hinges onto the pintles. Swing the shutters open so they rest against the exterior siding. Screw a shutter dog on the outside stiles of the shutters. Shutter dogs are typically positioned anywhere from 6 to 12 inches up from the bottom rail. Base the location on your personal preference based on the appearance. The shutter dog holds the shutters in place while open.

  6. 6

    Close the shutters. Center the latch set on the interior of the shutters where the side rails join together. Fasten the latch in place.

  7. 7

    Screw the shutter pulls on the centre side rails from the interior side. Position them at a convenient height within reach of the average person.

Tips and warnings

  • Select shutter hardware to match the existing hardware of your home's exterior such as door hardware and house numbers.
  • Wear eye protection when working with wood.

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