Plantation Shutters 101: Everything You Need to Know

Plantation shutters are an elegant, practical addition to modern Australian homes, featuring a classic design that never goes out of style. Plantation shutters aren’t just timeless — they provide a range of must-have features, including improved lighting, better insulation and more privacy to enhance your home.

A properly installed set of plantation shutters can last for years with minimal maintenance. Made with sturdy, reliable materials like timber wood or Fusion Plus, plantation shutters are known for their long-term durability. Because of this stellar reputation, indoor and outdoor plantation shutters can increase your home’s value.

Plus, they’re easy to clean — a huge time saver for anyone trying to cut down on chores.

So, what are plantation shutters? What do you need to know before making the leap and installing these shutters? Keep reading to find out.

KEY:

What are plantation shutters?​

Plantation shutters are louvred window coverings popularised in the 18th century. The name “plantation shutters” comes from their original use on large cotton and tobacco farms (or “plantations”) in the American South. Their larger slats improved indoor airflow and became essential for beating the heat in summer.

So, what are plantation blinds made from?

Plantation shutters are traditionally made from timber, but new materials like Fusion Plus have become popular thanks to their improved insulation and moisture resistance.

Plantation shutters feature adjustable louvres larger than traditional shutters, allowing more light and air to enter your space. When installed, plantation shutters are fitted to the window frame, creating a tight seal when closed. This gives you more control over the light and air entering your home, a huge bonus for breezy coastal areas like Newcastle.

Do plantation shutters block out light?

Plantation shutters are a great way to improve light control in your home. When closed, the shutters create a tighter barrier than traditional shutters and blinds, blocking more light from entering the room. Because of this, plantation shutters provide complete privacy when installed — perfect for homes in busy or central locations. So, do plantation shutters block out the light? Yes! — but not completely. Plantation shutters aren’t a complete blockout solution, as a small amount of light will still bleed through the blades when they’re shut. If you want to block any light from entering your space, we recommend installing motorised roller shutters. These shutters completely block all light while reducing noise pollution and increasing insulation, perfect for night shift workers or anyone sleeping at odd hours. Another great option is installing blockout fabric curtains in front of your plantation shutters. The blockout fabric reduces light exposure and would be an effective light-blocking solution when combined with plantation shutters.
bedroom window with shutters

Do plantation shutters block out heat?

One of the main draws of plantation shutters is the extra insulation they add to your home, as the added light control also reduces the amount of sunlight entering your home. Plantation shutters are attached to the inside or outside of your window frame and, when closed, create a tight seal that blocks air from getting through. This is great for keeping cool air from fans or air conditioners circulating indoors. On the other hand, plantation shutters are fantastic for keeping warm air in and cold air out in winter. Open your slats to let the sun in on cold winter mornings, or keep them sealed shut while curling up around the fire. This makes plantation shutters a great all-rounder for temperature control, whatever the weather.
Sunroom shutters

What are some other benefits of plantation shutters?

Plantation shutters have stayed popular for hundreds of years by providing many benefits that enhance your home and make your life easier. So, what are plantation shutters’ best features, and how can they improve your home?

  • They keep costs down. Plantation shutters are more energy-efficient than standard shutters because of their improved light and air control. This means your air conditioners, heaters and fans won’t have to work as hard to keep the temperature just right, saving you money and keeping your energy emissions down.
  • They reduce noise. Timber and Fusion Plus plantation shutters form a barrier when closed that can reduce the amount of outside noise that enters your home compared to standard shutters. If noise reduction is your number one concern, roller door shutters are the right choice for you — they create a stronger barrier against outdoor noise, great for light sleepers.
  • They’re easy to clean. Because of the larger gaps between each louvre, plantation shutters are easy to clean. Simply run a clean cloth or feather duster between each shutter to remove dust or dirt, and gently wipe with water for stains and spills.
  • They’re customisable. One of the best features of plantation shutters is their customisability. Each shutter can be made with different-sized louvres to create wider gaps between each slat when opened. Smaller louvres are perfect for adding a colonial look to your home, while larger louvres give you a better outdoor view.

These benefits have made plantation shutters a desirable feature in modern homes that can impress renters and prospective buyers. In fact, because of their stylish appearance and durability, plantation shutters can even increase your property’s value during home appraisals!

plantation shutters in window

Are there different types of plantation shutters?

Yes! Different materials are used to make several types of plantation shutters, with the most popular choices being timber plantation shutters and Fusion Plus shutters. Timber plantation shutters have a classic, elegant look and feel that has stayed in style for decades. Shutters made with durable hardwood are resistant to warping and feature a fine-grain texture that can be stained in various custom finishes. Fusion Plus is a carbon and glass composite that combines the timeless appearance of timber shutters with the added benefits of moisture resistance and flame retardance. Fusion Plus plantation shutters also provide up to 70% more insulation than timber shutters, making them the ideal choice for improving your home’s energy efficiency. While both materials have pros and cons, we recommend Fusion Plus because of its added benefits and superior long-term performance. Take a look at our comparison between Fusion Plus and timber shutters below.
shutters infographic

Do plantation shutters improve energy efficiency?

Plantation shutters are known for their energy efficiency. Creating an air pocket between the shutters and the window gives you extra-effective insulation; however, keeping the panels and louvres closed during extreme weather conditions is important to maximise energy efficiency.

Fusion Plus shutters are a top choice for energy efficiency. Made from durable faux wod, they resist damage from moisture, heat, pests, and UV rays while offering a contemporary look and excellent insulation.

With plantation shutters, you can enjoy a more comfortable home and save money on your energy bills. You can significantly decrease your energy consumption by keeping the shutters closed during extreme weather conditions; some homeowners have reported that their energy savings from using plantation shutters have paid for the shutters themselves within seven years!

Bathroom shutters

Install a set of stylish, practical plantation shutters with Blinds-N-Shutters

So, are plantation shutters good for your home?

Depending on your needs, plantation shutters are a stylish, practical choice with many practical benefits. While roller shutters are better for light control and noise reduction, plantation shutters feature a classic, elegant appearance that suits most modern decors.

At Blinds-N-Shutters, we’ve provided quality blind, shutter, and awning installations across Newcastle, Maitland, and the Hunter Valley with over 80 years of combined experience. Plus, we provide dedicated after-care services to ensure your shutters are perfectly installed.

Speak to one of our expert specialists today, and we’ll find the perfect shutter for your needs — we’ll even bring our mobile showroom straight to your door, so you can find the exact style of shutter to add the perfect finishing touch to your home!