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How to Clean and Restore Vinyl Shutters

Housekeeping Tips

Family Room Window Shutters

How to Clean and Restore Vinyl Shutters

If you’ve just installed gorgeous, new vinyl shutters, chances are you want to keep them looking good. While the task of cleaning your shutters on a regular basis may seem daunting, taking care of vinyl shutters is actually fairly simple. This is because the low-maintenance material is water-resistant and doesn’t peel when exposed to sunlight. All you really need to do to keep your vinyl shutters nice is conduct a short cleaning process each week to keep the dust and debris off. To help you out, we’ve provided a step-by-step process for cleaning your shutters without leaving spots. Use the steps in the guide below on a consistent basis to keep your shutters looking new!

How to Clean Vinyl Shutters

You may be wondering, what is the best way to clean vinyl shutters? Cleaning vinyl shutters is an easy task you can do in just a few minutes with simple cleaning solutions you may already have in your house. There’s no need to buy a specific vinyl shutter cleaner. Using mild cleansers will help keep your shutters clean while preventing any damage from harsh or abrasive solutions. Mild dish soap, a plant-based cleanser (like castile soap), and baking soda are all gentle cleaning agents to use on your vinyl shutters. Follow these simple steps for making your own vinyl shutter cleaner:

  1. To get started, fill a pail with ½ gallon of distilled water and add in a few drops of mild dish soap. Once you’ve got the cleaning mixture ready, dip a soft cloth in the pale then wring it out. Run the cloth against both sides of each shutter slat, starting at the top and working your way down. Keep rinsing the cloth in the bucket as you go to make sure that you’re not spreading dust and debris from slat to slat.
  2. After you’ve cleaned each slat, fill a clean bucket with ½ gallon of distilled water only. Dip a new cloth into the water then ring it out. Once again, run the cloth against each side of each slat, working your way down as you go. This will remove any dish soap residue, leaving a clean and smooth surface.
  3. Now that each of slat has been cleaned and rinsed, it’s time to dry them. Find a clean, dry cloth and repeat the process of wiping down each slat.

Performing this process on each of your shutters once a week will help you keep them looking as good as new. Other than frequent cleaning, your vinyl shutters won’t require much other maintenance or repair as they are built with a solid structure and from a durable material. This means that the need to repair shutter components is rare as vinyl shutters won’t yellow, chip, peel or snap easily.

Cleaning Products to Avoid

If you find some stubborn stains or marks on your shutters, you may need a stronger all-purpose household cleaner. With any household cleaner, make sure to dilute it appropriately in water according to the directions on the bottle and do a small test spot before cleaning the entire shutter with the solution. When cleaning vinyl shutters, avoid using bleach and any other harsh chemical cleaners as they may damage the material and finish of the shutters. 

Restoring Faded or Old Vinyl Shutters

If you’ve had your vinyl shutters for years, you may notice they don’t look as good as new anymore. Like anything in a house, the elements can take a toll on shutters. Though built to last, after years of frequent use, they could appear faded or worn. But how did this happen, and what is the best way to restore vinyl shutters? 

First, let’s talk about what happens to vinyl shutters when they start to fade. Oxidation is primarily to blame for any aging that occurs to shutters. It happens to any material exposed to the sun for long periods of time. The finish of the shutters can appear dull, dry, and even filmy. How long this takes to happen to your shutters depends on where you live; hot and sunny climates mean sun damage happens faster. However, in cooler, more temperate climates, you’re likely to get years more use out of your vinyl shutters before they begin to age.  

Products to Use to Restore Vinyl Shutters

Many homeowners may wonder if the shutters that have oxidation need to be replaced or if they can do something to make them look new again. If you’re wondering what you can do to make your shutters look new again, here are a few suggestions on how you can restore vinyl shutters and get them back to normal.

  • If your shutters have experienced light oxidation, it is possible to restore them to a near-new condition. Simply use one of the vinyl restoration products available on the market. It’s best to follow the directions on the packaging, but most products simply require spraying the product on and wiping it off. To help your shutters last for many more years, look for products that provide additional protection from UV rays. These simple vinyl restoration products are easy to use and convenient. 
  • Heavily oxidized shutters will appear very faded and have a gritty, pitted surface. In this case, it may be best to replace the shutters. Using vinyl restoration products may help to improve their look slightly, but not enough to have them looking like new again. 

What Not to Use on Aging Shutters

Avoid using any products not specifically designed for vinyl restoration when restoring your shutters. That’s because faded and aging vinyl shutters tend to be more fragile and prone to damage than new shutters. The wrong product could actually make the damage worse.

While there may be many tips and suggestions on how to paint vinyl shutters to make them look new again, we do not recommend this method. Painting vinyl shutters is time-intensive, labor-intensive, and the results can be short-lived. If you find that restoration products aren’t making the shutters appear as new as you’d like, it’s better and cheaper to get them replaced. 

How to Prevent Vinyl Shutters from Aging and Fading

A little routine care and maintenance go a long way in preventing your vinyl shutters from aging and fading. First, make sure to clean your shutters regularly. Over time, dirt and grime can wear out the shutters, leaving them with a dull finish. Cleaning your shutters two to four times a month is a great place to start. 

Secondly, treat the shutters with a vinyl restoration product with UV protection on a regular basis. Treating the shutters will proactively prevent any unnecessary damage from the sun and help keep their colors looking bright. We recommend treating your shutters at least once a year.

Lastly, take time to choose the correct shutters when you purchase. Look for vinyl shutters that are UV stabilized and offer molded-through color. Purchasing high-quality shutters like those we sell at Stanfield Shutter will help your investment stand the test of time. 

Trust Stanfield Shutter for All Your Shutter Needs

For more information regarding vinyl shutter care or to find a new set to install in another room of your home, feel free to give Stanfield Shutter a call at 801-467-8823. One of our customer service representatives will be happy to assist you.

If you find that your vinyl shutters are beyond restoration, you may be interested in installing new ones. Learn more about our vinyl shutters, or take a peek around our gallery for inspiration ideas. When you’re ready to have us install new shutters for you, contact us today for a free quote.

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