How to Measure for Vertical Blinds

How to Measure for Vertical Blinds

Vertical blinds are an excellent choice for large windows, especially those that are too large for traditional horizontal blinds. In this ultimate guide, we explain how to measure for vertical blinds—both inside and outside mount—and how to hang vertical blinds. We also explain how to choose the best vertical blinds for your budget and design needs.

Before You Begin to Measure for Vertical Blinds

  • Take all measurements to the nearest ⅛ inch.
  • When taking measurements, make a note of which dimension you’re measuring and always list the width before the height (W x H) in standard format.
  • If you are ordering vertical blinds for multiple windows, measure each one individually, even if they seem to be the same size.
  • Choose a steel tape measure to take the most accurate measurements

tape measure

How to Measure for Inside Mount Vertical Blinds

Inside mounting blinds refers to mounting them inside the window casing. Inside mounting blinds is the most popular mounting placement, as  it provides a clean, sleek look and allows secondary windows treatments, such as curtains, to be installed outside the window casing. However, inside mounting blinds may not always be possible if the window casing isn’t deep enough, and this is especially true for wider window treatments, such as vertical blinds. Here’s how to measure windows for blinds:

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  1. Measure the depth of your door or window and compare it to the mounting requirements for your chosen vertical blinds. If the window isn’t deep enough to support an inside mount for your chosen window treatment, you’ll need to outside mount it or choose another window treatment.
  2. Once you have confirmed your window can support an inside mount, measure the width of the window at three locations: top, middle, and bottom. Use the narrowest of these three measurements as the width of your window.
  3. Repeat this process to measure the height of your blinds at three locations: right, center, and left. Once again, use the shortest of these measurements as the height of your window.
  4. Submit the window measurements to the vendor for your order. Don’t preemptively take any deductions—the manufacturer will take care of these for you, so, if you take deductions on the front end, you could end up with vertical blinds that are too short or not wide enough.

How to Measure for Outside Mount Vertical Blinds

Measure for Outside Mount Vertical Blinds

Outside mounting vertical blinds may become necessary when the window depth isn’t great enough to accommodate the window treatment you’ve decided on. Outside mounting the blinds can also provide better light control and privacy because the blinds can overlap with the window, thereby providing greater coverage. Outside mounting vertical blinds may also make it easier to open and close them.

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  1. Measure the area above your window and compare it to the blind specifications to ensure that you have enough room for a flat mount above the window. If your window or door has trim that is wide enough, you might be able to mount the blinds directly into the wood trim. Otherwise, you will have to mount them to the wall above the trim.
  2. If your window has trim, measure the width of the window from one edge of trim to the other at three locations: top, middle, and bottom. If your window doesn’t have trim, take the three measure measurements and add 2-3 inches on each side to provide enough overlap, for a total of 4-6 extra inches. Use the narrowest of these three measurements as the width of your window.
  3. If your window sill protrudes at the bottom, measure from the sill to to three inches past the top of the window opening to leave enough room for mounting hardware. If the window sill doesn’t protrude, start measuring two inches below the sill, and then go three inches beyond the top of the window opening. If you’re measuring the height of a sliding glass door, measure from the floor to three inches beyond the top of the window opening.
  4. Once you’ve determined your starting and ending places, measure the height of your window at three locations: the left, center, and right of the frame. Select the shortest of the three measurements and use that as your height width measurement for the vertical blinds.
  5. Before you submit your measurements with your order, double check that they are correct. For outside mount blinds, the manufacturer will not take deductions, so what you order is what you get. Make sure those numbers are right before you hit the “place order” button.

vertical blind for the office room

How to Install Inside Mount Vertical Blinds

  1. Gather all your tools and unpack your blinds and mounting hardware. Carefully read all the instructions in case the blinds have special considerations you must take into account while mounting them.
  2. Your blinds likely came with a valance—i.e., wood or faux wood trim that clips onto the front of the bracket to hide the hardware. Set your bracket clips three inches from the left and right edges of the valance.
  3. Using the bracket clips as a guide, mark the starter holes for the screws with a pencil. Use a nail or a drill and drill bit to create pilot holes for the screws. Using the screwdriver or drill, fasten the brackets to the wall using the screws that were included in your mounting hardware kit.
  4. Set the headrail of the blinds into the brackets and rotate it until it snaps into place.
  5. Now it’s time to install the vanes or slats of the blinds. Open the blinds so the clips at the top are evenly spaced and rotate them so that they face you.
  6. Gently slide the vane into the clip until it clicks into place. Repeat this process for each vane.
  7. If your blinds came with a safety clip, mount that to the wall.
  8. Test your new vertical blinds to make sure they open, close, and rotate freely.

Vertical Blinds

How to Install Inside Mount Vertical Blinds

  1. Measure from where you want the bottom of your blinds to hang to where the headrails of the blinds will sit. Lightly mark this height with a pencil.
  2. Center the headrail above the window or door on that mark. Measure in three inches from each end of the headrail and make a mark of that as well.
  3. Use a nail or a drill and drill bit to create pilot holes for the screws. Using the screwdriver or drill, fasten the brackets to the wall using the screws that were included in your mounting hardware kit.
  4. Set the headrail of the blinds into the brackets and rotate it until it snaps into place.
  5. Now it’s time to install the vanes or slats of the blinds. Open the blinds so the clips at the top are evenly spaced and rotate them so that they face you.
  6. Gently slide the vane into the clip until it clicks into place. Repeat this process for each vane.
  7. If your blinds came with a safety clip, mount that to the wall.
  8. Test your new vertical blinds to make sure they open, close, and rotate freely.

What Is the Standard Size for Vertical Blinds?

You can buy vertical blinds off the shelf at your local hardware store in a limited range of preset sizes. The standard height is 72 inches, or 6 feet, which may not be long enough for all sliding glass doors, as these are usually a standard 80 inches tall. As for the width, vertical blinds are available in widths anywhere from 24 to 72 inches out of the box. 

If these preset dimensions don’t work for your windows, you’ll need to order custom vertical blinds from a vendor, such as Factory Direct Blinds. Getting custom vertical blinds ensures that your new window treatments will fit your windows or doors perfectly and provide enough coverage for privacy and light control.

Types of Vertical Blinds

Types of Vertical Blinds

While you may think of vertical blinds as a single type of window treatment, there are actually several different types of vertical blinds that you can choose from. The ones you need to know about are:

  • PVC Vertical Blinds: The more popular type of vertical blinds, PVC vertical blinds feature vanes made of durable polyvinyl chloride. The vinyl is easy to clean and relatively inexpensive to make, which is why PVC vertical blinds are usually the cheapest out of all the types on this list. Due to their affordability and durability, PVC vertical blinds are a popular choice for rentals and other spaces that get a lot of hard use.
  • Fabric Vertical Blinds: If you want a more upscale look, you might want to consider fabric vertical blinds. Fabric blinds are available in a wide variety of colors and can be matched to other fabric window treatments in the space, such as curtains, roller shades, and roman shades. Like other fabric window treatments, fabric vertical blinds can be a bit harder to clean since the fabric may catch dust and other debris.
  • Faux Wood Vertical Blinds: If all the other blinds in your home are wood or faux wood blinds, you might want to get faux wood vertical blinds to match. Faux wood blinds are made from a mixture of wood fiber and PVC. They look very similar to real wood but offer better durability and moisture resistance, making this material an ideal choice for blinds that get moved around a lot, such as vertical blinds.

When to Select Vertical Blinds

Vertical blinds are designed to efficiently cover large windows that are very tall, very wide, or both. Vertical blinds are a good choice when you need to be able to push the blinds completely to the side to allow for clear passage, as in the case of a sliding door. If you have a very wide window, it makes it very difficult or very expensive to get horizontal blinds that completely cover the entire expanse, which is why many people prefer vertical blinds for larger windows. 

When to Select Vertical Blinds

However, vertical blinds cannot offer as much privacy or light control, due to their wider slats that let in more light when they are open. Because the vanes of vertical blinds aren’t attached to anything at the bottom, you must be careful that they don’t bump into anything—or else, there might be a gap in the vanes that allows people to see into your home.

How to Choose Vertical Blinds

When selecting vertical blinds for your home, you’ll need to weigh various factors as you make your decision. Here are some things to keep in mind as you shop for vertical blinds:

  • Price: If you’re looking for affordable shades, keep in mind that some types of vertical blinds may be more expensive than others. As you play around with the different options listed below, be sure to keep a record of how it changes the price so you can make the most accurate comparison possible.
  • Material: Do you want PVC, fabric, or faux wood vertical blinds? You’ll need to decide between the three types of vertical blinds we outlined above, as each presents its own pros and cons.
  • Control style: Vertical blinds are operated with either a wand or a cord and chain combination. Cord and chain operations should come with a safety lock that screws to the wall to keep the chain out of reach of children and pets.
  • Stack: Stack refers to where the vanes will be pushed when you fully open the vertical blinds. The most popular stacks are right stack and left stack, where the vanes are pushed all to one side; these are an especially good choice for sliding doors. You can also get center open blinds, where half the vanes are pushed to the right and half to the left. Finally, you can get center stack blinds, where vanes from both ends are pushed to the center.

If you need help deciding which vertical blinds to get, be sure to take advantage of our free samples and get them sent directly to your home free of charge. That way, you can decide on the perfect blinds for your home at no extra cost to you.


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