Exterior storm shutters are installed on hinges and can be open and closed, depending on impending storm conditions. Also called hurricane shutters, they can protect your home's windows from imploding in a storm. Storm shutters can be made from a myriad of materials, such as plywood, pine, oak, cedar or cypress. The average do-it-yourself homeowner can build and install storm shutters in two to three days, depending on the number of windows.
Build your storm shutters from most any type of materials you choose. If you want your shutters to be permanently attached to your home, consider building them from cedar, cypress or oak. These woods are rot-resistant and can be fashioned into beautiful decorative shutters.
Plywood can also be used as a quick resource for storm shutters, and, with extra effort, can be constructed into long-lasting shutters that are somewhat decorative.
You may also use tin or galvanised metal that is attached to a wooden frame; however, this possibility will be heavy and less decorative.
Construct wooden shutters using oak, cedar or cypress. Use 2-by-8 boards that are no more than 1 inch thick. Once you have determined the height and width of the window, cut the board lengths, stack several boards side by side, and tie them together using cross pieces and wood screws. Build two shutters per window. Using two separate shutters will keep the weight down on the shutters. Building one large shutter will increase the weight and make opening and closing the shutter more difficult.
Stain or paint the shutters with an exterior paint or stain. The finish will preserve your work longer.
Attach the shutters to the windows using hinges and latches. The latches will help prevent the shutters from opening and closing in the wind.
Build a frame for your plywood shutters using treated 2-by-2 strips. Use treated plywood for the shutters, and attach the plywood to the frame using 2-inch galvanised wood screws. Just as with the other wood shutters, attach the plywood shutters to the windows using hinges. Prime and paint the shutters.