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How to Measure a Window for Blinds

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Window Types

There are a wide variety of window types available, and knowing which ones you have, or want, can help when it comes to fitting them with blinds. Two of the most common types are single pane and double glazed.

Single pane windows are framed in a variety of materials, with wood and aluminium being the most popular. Single pane window styles are defined by how they open (sliding or hinged) and whether they are made from a single large pane of glass or several smaller pieces divided by strips of wood called grilles.

Double glazed windows are increasing in popularity and are the norm in new build homes. Although the name implies a double coat of glaze, they are in fact comprised of two panes of glass separated by a divider. The space between the two panes is filled with a still layer of air or gas and sealed. This provides several advantages.

Double glazed windows act as added insulation, keeping a house cooler in summer and warmer in winter – reducing heating and cooling costs. They are also harder to break than traditional single pane windows. The insulation they provide also reduces outside noise. It is also harder for condensation to collect on the inside of double glazed windows, which lessens the chance of mould forming.

Windows can be added to a structure in two ways: flush or recessed. Flush windows sit flat in the wall with no space around them. Recessed windows are set a few inches, or more, into the structure, creating an alcove around the window. Whichever type of window you have, you will need to take measurements in order to fit them with blinds. Although it may seem daunting, it’s actually quite easy and straightforward. Read on to find out how.


You will need a tape measure, stool or step ladder and a pencil and paper. Use a metal tape measure if possible, because they remain rigid and require just one person to do the measurements.

Method (flush windows/outside of recess)

Decide how far you want the blinds to extend above the window and to either side. Experts recommend blinds to be hung 1 ½ -3 inches above the window and drop 2-4 inches below the bottom. The blinds should also extend 2-4 inches out beyond each side.

Once you’ve decided on the placement, measure the desired width at three points: top, centre and bottom. This will account for any variations in the structure. Record your measurements with the pencil and paper.

  • Measure the desired height at three points, left, centre and right. Record measurements.
  • Measure again to ensure accuracy. If there are differing measurements, go with the smallest one.

Method (inside of recess)

  • Look out for anything that might obstruct the blinds, such as handles that may protrude.
  • Measure the inside width of the recess wall-to-wall in three places: top, centre and bottom.
  • Measure the inside height of the recess top to bottom in three places: left, centre and right.
  • Measure again to ensure accuracy. If there are differing measurements, go with the smallest one.

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