cedar shutters · curb appeal · exterior shutters · hgtv · home exterior

Installing Wooden Shutters

Installing cedar or any wooden shutters is a relatively straightforward task that can be accomplished by one person. The tools that are needed include the following:DSC_0039

  • (1 or 2) 6 or 8’ step ladder (1st floor shutters)
  • (2) 6’+ extension ladder (2nd floor shutters)
  • Level
  • Drill
  • 3/16 wood drill bit
  • 5/32 masonry drlll bit
  • Phillips screw bit
  • Siding – 3” Exterior wood screws
  • Brick or Stone – Masonry anchors – 3/16 diameter x 2 ¼ length (Phillips head)
  • Shimming materials

The first step in installing a wooden shutter is to put the shutter in position and check dimensions. Once the fit has been confirmed, the attachment locations for the screws must be determined. At least two screws must be installed in each shutter (typically ~5” from top & bottom for board & batten style). For installations over siding (without plywood wall sheathing), the studs must be located and the measurement from the window or window opening edge to the center of the stud should be recorded. This distance should be transferred to the shutter and a 3/16 hole drilled in this location. For masonry applications, measure the distance to the center of the appropriate mortar joint. Mark this location on the shutter and drill a 3/16 hole through the shutter.


The most difficult part of installing shutters is holding them in place before they are attached to the wall. A good way to support the shutter is to lean a step ladder against the house so the ladder platform is even with the bottom of the window. For second floor windows, a 2×4 can be placed on top of the extension ladder to create a level base. Shimming materials of various thicknesses can help put the shutter in the correct position. For a siding install, align the shutter with the edge of the window and screw through the bottom pre-drilled hole. To install in brick or stone, use a 5/32 masonry drill bit to drill a 1 ¼” deep hole in the lower mortar joint. Remove the mortar dust from the hole. Screw a masonry anchor thru the shutter into mortar joint. Check with a level before repeating the process and fastening the top screw.

Touch up the screw heads with the appropriate paint or stain if desired.

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