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Long-lived window covering

How long should window coverings last? 

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Unless they are damaged from the sun’s rays, the truth is, with proper care, your window coverings will outlast your longing to look at them. Their age and older stylings are why we donate or re-sell them, but their long-lived value also means you can shop for new window treatments guilt-free.

Many variables contribute to how long curtains, blinds, drapery, and shutters last. Their longevity or steady decline depends on:

  • The ability of the mechanisms to repeat their functions.
  • The sun’s impact; window coverings that face south or west will experience the worst of the sun’s damage.
  • The material used to create them; different materials react differently to the sun’s heat and ultraviolet (UV) rays.
  • Humidity level within the room; man-made pressed woods will expand.
  • The material and quality that is put into its manufacture.
  • The upkeep and general treatment during home use.
  • Your wish to retain older corded window treatments. 

What are the signs it’s time to replace window blinds and other window coverings? 

  • The up/down mechanism is not working: It may be worth looking at replacing these mechanisms, although, unless you’re a do-it-yourself (DIY) handy person, it’s likely the labour costs make a new blind purchase the better choice. 
  • The shutter or blind tilt mechanism is not working: It may be worth looking at replacing these mechanisms, although, unless you’re a do-it-yourself (DIY) handy person, it’s likely the labour costs make a new shutter or blind purchase the better choice. 
  • Exposure to the sun’s heat and UV rays has discoloured drapes or blind materials or made them brittle: Plastic becomes brittle over time, wood has the potential to warp, fabrics without UV linings decay, and these are all natural results of time, use, and sun exposure. All this wear and tear detracts from the drapery or blinds’ visual optimum and may be the perfect excuse to consider a room refresh or at least window covering replacements. 

How many years a blind’s mechanisms or gears will repeat its movements is based on: 

  • How carefully and at which angle it is pulled. 
  • The quality of a blind’s operative parts. 

The mechanics of a blind or shade aren’t hard to understand. Still, the metal or plastic operative parts, gears, must be attached and/or inserted into other elements on the window covering. When we pull a cord from an angle that goes against its proper
range of movement, the parts are subjected to tension and strain that causes them to fail before their time. 

Almost all blinds manufacturers use the same hardware parts that allow open/close movement: High-end window-covering companies use high-quality operative parts, providing a better customer guarantee in return for these higher-priced window coverings.

Motorization may mean longer life for the operative parts of window coverings:

Motorization ensures a smoother functionality of these open/close mechanisms: Not all of us are accustomed to motorization or how it fits with the term automation, so we’ve written an article that explains these terms, ‘Are Automated and Motorized Shades Different?’

Covers Designer’s Edge may be able to change your corded window coverings and drapery to a motorized function. The cost will vary depending on the type and age of the shades/drapery. It is generally not practical to motorize older shades. Contact us here or find a location closest to you; we are window coverings and motorization experts.

Can you DIY or repair vertical blind mechanisms and gears or fix a cord tilt mechanism?

Yes, you can find replacement parts and repair guides online for every kind of part you need. If your particular window covering is still bringing you joy, and you have the time and inclination to undertake your own repair, it may be the solution you’re looking for. 

Can you recycle older blinds, or what should you do with them?

Window coverings have long-lived value; this ensures they can be reused by others. 

If it’s past the time of enjoying your window coverings and you have decided to replace them, there are people eager to purchase and community outlets that readily accept them as a donation. Recycling vinyl and painted wood is not accepted in Ontario (and elsewhere), so aluminum blinds are the only kind of material you can recycle. You’ll need to cut off any cords and dismantle the header from the metal amalgam.

Covers Designer’s Edge provides warranties on all products, including standard warranties for moving parts mechanisms. See our list of parts warranties.

We have been 100% Canadian-owned window covering experts since 1987.