Replacement due to damage or for the purpose of redesigning out of necessity or innovation, the reason may vary, but having to replace the blinds is an inescapable task—something that we all have to face at one point or another. While the process can be a lot of fun, an opportunity to experiment and realize those unfulfilled design goals, it can also be quite a challenge. But it’s not just about what’s in vogue, the looks and the feels, you also need to consider the blinds’ practical applications, all the new innovations and technologies and the ways you can use the occasion to take your space’s style and comfort quotients to newer heights. Planning on changing your blinds in the near future? Read on for key considerations and tips on when and how to replace blinds.
Identifying When Your Window Blinds Need a Change
Window blinds are usually a long term thing investment – you select the right blinds, put them up, use them on day to day basis, but you rarely think of getting new ones unless there’s a big enough reason. You know they’re there and they will be there for long. At times, that knowledge makes you overlook functional, performance, even safety issues that can arise over time. While some of these can be fixed, others cannot. Here are a few signs you can look for to figure out if your window blinds need replacing.
The slats are damaged
One of the best ways to ascertain if the blinds need change is by looking at the slats. Have they started looking worn out or warped? This damage could be the result of either age or due to the elements. Prolonged exposure to the sun’s rays, water and humid conditions can disfigure the slats over time. While such damage is most common with faux wood blinds, slats made from other materials, even modern-day versions that come with UV protection can start to turn yellow. This discoloration is an obvious indicator the slats’ material has started to deteriorate – a sign you should think of replacing your window blinds.
The blinds don’t open or close seamlessly
The lift mechanism is your window blinds’ most important feature. Are your window blinds stuck? If they’re slow to open or close, don’t open or close at all, it could be time for a replacement. Some of these issues can be resolved without much effort and expense. But if you’ve had the same blinds for several years, your best option may be to change them.
Faulty tilt mechanism
If your wand tilt doesn’t effectively operate as it should and used to, the slats not moving to the proper spot or not at all moving, it’s time for a change. Another sign that your tilt mechanism has started to falter is when the gap in between the slats starts to get bigger than it initially used to be. In such cases, it’s advisable you change the blinds.
If there have been new additions to your family – either kids or pets, congratulations! The next thing in order is to ensure their safety. If your household blinds have visible cords, they can be a hazard to both pets and growing kids. The solution is to switch to safer cordless blinds and ensure your home is a safe place for your little ones even when they’re left unmonitored for a bit.
How to Replace Your Window Blinds
Just as your existing blinds have served you for a considerable duration, the replacement blinds are supposed to be a long term fixture in your household. This clearly warrants you to put due to time and consideration when deciding on and installing the replacement blinds. Here are five tips you’ll find useful when trying to figure out how to replace blinds.
Choosing the right replacement blinds
Once you’ve realized your blinds need replacing, you’re aware of the reason and what to look for in the replacement. If, for instance, your reason for the change has to do with safety issues, you know that the first feature you need to look for is cordless operation. If the need to change the blinds has arisen due to redesign or renovation, you’ll need to sit down and consider the overall design and color scheme of individual rooms to figure out the ideal material and color for the replacement blinds. Make sure you’ve looked into all the new design and functional innovations that might have come about since you last changed the blinds.
Taking the measurements
First step, decide how to install your new blinds – within your windows (inside mount) or attached to the wall, covering the window’s frame (outside mount). Inspect your window frame for depth. Are they deep enough to accommodate mounting brackets? If they are, the choice between inside and outside mount comes down to your personal preference. If the window frames are too shallow, outside mounting is the way ahead. Note that you need a sturdy trim or wall surface for outside mounting. While this means you can’t go with an inside mount if you’re looking to cover a standard door, outside mount is the perfect installation method for the job.
To measure the windows, use a measuring tape and record the widths of the lower, middle, as well as the top of the windows. Whichever comes out to be the narrowest is to be used to build your blinds. Next, record the height of your windows. If you’re planning to go with outside mounting, add to the windows’ recorded height and width to account for overlap, as well as your mounting surface.
Removing the old blinds
Once you have received your new blinds, it’s time to get down to the actual work. Fully draw up your existing blinds, making sure all the slats are positioned at the top. You might need a ladder or a table to reach the window’s top and a screwdriver to undo the screws. First off, remove the valances. Next, open the brackets and take off the blinds. Carefully remove all the hardware and place it at a safe distance. Clean the window frame to get it ready for the new blinds.
Installing the new blinds
You’ll need a measuring tape, a drill, a level and screws for this final step. Start by using the drill to attach the brackets to the intended spot on the inside/outside of the frame. Set the headrail in place and then attach the valance to it. If your blinds come with a wand, you’ll be required to secure the wand to the top.
Fixing any functional issues
Test your blinds to ensure they’re working well. They should open and close seamlessly, without any lags or interruptions. If the blinds appear to be hanging loosely, tightening the screws in the headrail will fix the issue. At times, you can end up with blinds that are a bit too long for your liking. Fixing this issue isn’t hard. Fully lower the blinds and cut away the extra slats. Make sure you’re not cutting the lift cord or the bottom rail in the process. Next, cut away the horizontal ladder’s strings and remove the bottom rail’s plugs. You’ll need to slide the rail upwards until there’s only about an inch separating it and the lowest slat. Twist and push the cords inside the rail before replacing the plugs.
Replacing your window blinds isn’t at all difficult. With a little care and with these tips in mind, you can install your new blinds and revamp your windows’ appearance in no time!