Viable Alternative to Conventional Shades
You know all about those versatile Roman shades, functional and classy cellular shades, the pretty roller shades, super-efficient solar shades and the all-time elegant draperies. These adorn your beautiful windows, increase the aesthetic appeal of your homes and protect you from the harsh rays of the sun and prying eyes of your neighbors. While there is little doubt the efficiency and versatility of these window coverings, they often present us with nagging concerns.
If you have ever tried cleaning mini-blinds or those pretty little shades you must realize that maintaining and cleaning them is often a tough ask. The grease, stains and dust always keep you on your toes. Some of them are corded which poses safety concerns of your little ones and the pets. So, could there be some alternatives that would serve similar purpose minus some of the hassles of normal shades and blinds.
Built-in Blinds for Windows
Built-in blinds for windows and doors are an interesting and practical variant of our everyday blinds and shades. These blinds do not hang externally; rather they are sandwiched between two panels of glass on a door or a window. These glasses are sealed tightly which prevents air from getting through. This means that your blinds are safe from dust, fingerprints, dirt, grease and stains that threaten our separately hung shades and blinds. They are less messy and without all those trappings that you have to deal with when it comes to window dressings.
Built-in Blinds for Patio Doors
Patio doors are either hinged or sliding and built-in blinds work beautifully with both.
Hinged doors: Hinged patio doors swing open and for these doors built-in binds are the best. Externally hung conventional shades are not ideal for these doors because they will collide with the doors every time you open them unless you use them with hold down brackets.
Sliding doors: Sliding patio doors work well if you do not have much space for doors to swing open. Built-in blinds work well for these doors as well as exterior window blinds can make it difficult to slide open the doors.
Benefits of Built-in Blinds for Windows
Low Maintenance Blinds
The biggest argument in favor of built-in blinds is that they are low maintenance. With the blinds placed between the glass pane, they are safely out of the way of dust and allergens that mercilessly attack traditional and conventional blinds and shades. They are well sealed. This is undoubtedly a huge plus point for homeowners who shudder at the thought of spending long tedious hours cleaning and washing.
Safe for Kids and Pets
Though we now have cordless shades and blinds, some of them come with cords that pose a risk for toddlers and pets. There is always a danger of them getting strangled in these cords. The built-in blinds have internal cord devices which are controlled using a sliding switch. There are no strings or dangling cords. It also gives the windows a neat clean look.
Less Exposed to Wear, Tear and Damage
The conventional shades and blinds being exposed to air, humidity and moisture for a prolonged period suffer from routine wear and tear. Moreover with kids and pets in the house, there is always the danger of these shades getting damaged or broken. Given the amount of money that is invested in these window treatments, replacing them on a regular basis is also not economical. Built-in blinds are safe and less vulnerable to these external onslaughts which normal shades are subject to everyday.
Increases Curb Appeal
Built-in windows are also visually appealing. They are a great way to increase curb appeal of your home because they present a uniform look from outside. They lend a crisp, clean and no-nonsense look to the interiors and you can select blinds to blend with your home décor.
Disadvantages of Built-in Blinds
Built-in blinds have been in the market for close to a decade but they have not gained the kind of popularity its manufacturers may have expected. This may be attributed to its high pricing. They are any day far more expensive than conventional shades. Thus irrespective of their apparent benefits, homeowners are not too excited with shelling out more money. In case of any damage, the blinds need to be replaced which means the glasses have to remove. The cost is exorbitantly high.
When it comes to selecting conventional shades you are spoilt for choice. There is a wide array of designs, patterns, textures, materials and fabrics to choose from and you get the perfect pair for your lovely windows. Built-in blinds are very limited. Due to the slider, not all styles are supported. If you have differently-shaped windows, you may not find built-in blinds to dress them.
Compromised Window Insulation
Windows with built-in blinds may lack insulation. Sometimes manufacturers forego adding argon which provides insulation in windows with built-in blinds to preserve the integrity of the window treatments. This compromises insulation and lowers the window’s R-value which is a measure of its insulation. This may be avoided if the windows come with triple glass panes.
Built-in windows have a number of positive features which make it a viable alternative to normal shades and blinds. While you may not want to dress all your windows with these built-in blinds because of lack of options and cost, you can certainly use it for rooms which are prone to dust collection, grease or stains. This will mean low maintenance for your shades and ease of cleaning. Use a combination of window treatments in your house for optimal results and satisfaction.