Vertical blinds work well on large windows and sliding doors, but they can be a pain if they open to the wrong side. Switching the way your vertical blinds open can be a relatively straightforward process if you have blinds with an easily removable headrail. If you still have your instructions, refer to them for removal and installation instructions specific to your model for easier switching.
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How Vertical Blinds Work
Blinds come in two styles: vertical and horizontal. While horizontal blinds are often used on normal-sized windows, they don't work as well on larger windows or doors. Vertical blinds use wider, longer slats that hang vertically from a headrail. Just like horizontal blinds, vertical blinds work by rotating to open the blinds to varying degrees or sliding along the headrail to open the blinds completely.
The headrail features a track where each individual blind vane, or the piece that holds the slat, fits into place. Most vertical blinds have a wand, which you use to slide the blinds open or closed along the track.
The stack position refers to where the blind slats go when you open them. Split stack vertical blinds open from the center and stack on both the right and left sides of the window. Side stack blinds push all slats to one side of the window. Left stack vertical blinds move the slats so they stack on the left side, and right stack vertical blinds stack the slats on the right side.
Why Change the Stacking Position?
If you already have vertical blinds installed, you can easily tell if they open to the right or left. For optimal functionality, you want the vertical blinds to stack to the side opposite of where your door or sliding window opens. If your door handle on a sliding door is on the left side, having the blinds open and stack to the right side is ideal. This way you can move them out of the way and open the door or window easily. If your vertical blinds currently stack to the side where your door or window opens, changing the stack position can make them easier to use.
Changing the Opening Direction
To switch your vertical blinds so they open on the right side instead of the left, you'll need to take them down and rotate them horizontally by 180 degrees. You're essentially rotating the blinds so the front is now on the back side. To change the blinds:
- Open the vertical blinds completely so they're stacked to one side.
- Remove the valance, which is a cover on the front of the headrail that hides the moving parts of the blinds. Most valances are held in place by simple clips, so you just need to pull gently to remove the cover.
- Pull the bottom of the headrail out of the retaining clips. This should detach them from the window frame, but pull carefully to avoid breaking the clips.
- Rotate the blinds 180 degrees, so you switch the side that was facing the front to face the back.
- Slide the top part of the headrail back into the retaining clips. You usually need to push the top in first and then rotate it down to snap the bottom edge into the clips.
- Replace the valance by snapping it back in place. Test the vertical blinds to make sure they slide smoothly and work correctly.
Shelley Frost combines her love of DIY and writing in her freelance career. She has first-hand experience with tiling, painting, refinishing hardwood floors, installing lighting, roofing and many other home improvement projects. She keeps her DIY skills fresh with regular projects around the house and extensive writing work on the topic.