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Plantation shutters in a living room

Manufacturers are Becoming Safer With Their Window Treatments

February 04, 2019

As of December 2018, all newly manufactured stock window treatments should not use cords or have short, inaccessible pull cords. Sunburst embraces these regulations, as it comes after discussions between the Window Covering Manufacturers Association and the American National Standards Institute, and covers any pre-manufactured window coverings. And while the new safety standards don’t recall corded blinds or shades, some people in Minneapolis have used the regulations as a reason to go with a safer option.

Roman shades in a living room 

Why The New Window Treatment Safety Standards?

In the past few decades, corded window treatments have been included in the Top 5 Hidden Hazards In The Home by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Young children and infants can get intertwined in the cords, resulting in injury or strangulation, with a report finding that there were almost 17,000 window cord injuries during a fifteen-year period. External cord safety products, like cord cleats and wind-ups, tried to alleviate the hazard, but people did not utilize them as universally as expected.

What Do The New Requirements Cover?

Every stock (ready-made) window treatment sold in stores or online must now be cordless or have inaccessible cords. This includes over 80% of all window covering products sold in the United States and Canada. Custom-made window treatments don’t have the same constraints; however, cords can only hang down to 40% the length of the treatment and should default to a tilt rod instead of a tilt cord. These standards only affect window coverings manufactured after December 19, 2018, and current shades and blinds have not been recalled.

What Are Your Choices Regarding Cordless Window Treatments?

With the new regulations, people are now pursuing different cordless choices when purchasing or replacing their corded coverings. Luckily, there are many products that have no cords, such as:

  • Plantation Shutters: These fashionable treatments cover the window with thick louvers and usually open by a center tilt-rod. Shutters have been know as the longest-lasting window treatment and are made with either real wood or a faux wood composite that won’t warp, crack, splinter, or chip. Plantation shutters have never worked with a cord, so shutters have always been seen as a safer option.

Shutters in kitchen
  • Barn Door Window Treatments: Instead of opening up and down with a cord or tilt rod, barn door window treatments attach to a track above the window frame and slide apart sideways. You can open them a tad to bring in some light, or open them to the edge of the track to frame your window.

Minneapolis barn door shutters
  • Cord-free Shades and Blinds: Some window treatments have altered their designs so they can use internal cords that won’t pose a hazard. Other treatments employ motors, which raise and lower coverings by remotes or voice commands. Many shades simply raise or lower to their needed position by operating the bottom bar. These coverings are available in different colors, textures, and patterns, and are offered in a variety of semi-translucent options that offer the same ambiance of sheer draperies.

Blue dresser with shades above

Let Sunburst Help You Cut The Cord On Your Window Coverings

If you need to upgrade from corded hazards with a more child-friendly choice, your Minneapolis Sunburst representative can help. We can bring you many safe choices, and we can help you find one that works best for your rooms. Set up your free in-home consultation by calling 952-856-8130 now.