How to Install Blinds Like a Boss

Select Double Cell Light Filtering honeycomb shades in white
Honeycomb/cellular shades like these top down bottom up Select Double Cell Light Filtering Shades are some of the easiest window coverings to install yourself.

Do you have any idea how much it costs to have a professional put up your blinds for you? Not many of our followers had a clue either.

We did a quickie poll last week to get their best guess. $0-$10? $10-$25? $25-$50? $50-$100 per window?

Guess again. According to Fixr.com, which provides cost guides, comparisons, and cheatsheets for hundreds of remodeling, installation and repair projects, the national average is $620. (Gulp!) Granted, that cost can vary up or down depending on the number and type of window coverings and the size of your windows. (This estimate is based on hanging eight faux wood blinds on standard 27″ wide windows.) But you get the idea.

Paying someone to put up your blinds can get pretty expensive pretty quickly. And that’s above and beyond what you’ve already paid for the shades. So before you sign that check and open up your home to a perfect stranger, let’s think about this.

What’s keeping you from saving hundreds, even thousands or more by installing your custom window treatments yourself?

You don’t need a pro to do it, even if you’ve never held a hammer in your life. In fact, you don’t even need a hammer, so no worries about smashed fingers. Most window blinds and shades can be put up in 20-30 minutes — or less, once you get the first one installed — using just a screwdriver or drill. Nailed it!

Here’s how to become a pro in no time.

  • Check the mounting surface. It should be clean, smooth and dry. Most window coverings are mounted on drywall or in wood, and come complete with screws and any other necessary hardware. You may need additional fasteners, such as sink screws, if you’re hanging extra wide or heavy window coverings, or to attach your blinds on an aluminum or concrete surface, to ensure the brackets will hold them securely in place.
  • Read the instructions. If you’re more of a learn-by-doing (i.e., learn from your mistakes) kinda girl like me, it can be tempting to grab the drill and just start drilling. But reading through the directions before you try to hang your window treatment can save a lot of time. Carefully open the package your custom window coverings came in and check to be sure you received all the necessary pieces/parts before you start. Review the install guide, noting which directions you’ll follow (for inside or outside mount). More of a visual learner? Check our YouTube channel for a video on how to install your product.
  • Get everything you need together. Just like whipping up your favorite recipe, always good to gather all the ingredients you need together first. Ladder? Check. Pencil? Check. Drill? Check. Level? Check. Insurance card? (Just kidding!)
All you need is a drill, tape measure, pencil and level!
  • Mark where you want to place the brackets. Again, this will depend on whether you’re hanging your covering inside or over the window. Most standard size windows need only two brackets, usually spaced 2″-4″ in from each end of the headrail. For wider treatments, just space any extra brackets you need equidistant from the end brackets.
Mark the spot to hang your bracket.
  • Attach the brackets. Before drilling in the screws, it’s a good idea to pre-drill the holes to make it easier. This also gives you a little ‘wiggle room’ in case you need to make any last minute adjustments to make sure the brackets are straight and aligned.
Attach your brackets
  • Slide or snap the headrail onto the brackets. And voila! You’re done! Pull your shade up and down a few times or open and close the slats on your blinds to make sure everything is working O.K. before putting the tools away.
Snap or slide the headrail  onto the brackets

Oh, one last tip. If you’re not using cordless coverings, be sure to screw in a set of cord cleats next to the window to keep cords wound safely and tightly, up and out of the reach of children and pets.

That wasn’t so hard, was it? The hardest part is going to be deciding what to do with all the money you saved doing it yourself. Take a bow and treat yourself to something special. Maybe that lavish tropical vacation you’ve been dreaming of. Or those adorable designer shoes and matching bag that match absolutely nothing else (but, hey, they’re Gucci). Or maybe some more new blinds?

Save money and time by installing your blinds yourself!

You’re the pro; you decide!