Welcome to Southern Comfort!

Hi, I'm Elizabeth and I invite you to grab a glass of sweet tea and join me as I (along with my husband, John) renovate our love nest. We're both born and raised in the south and love to share with you some of our favorite recipes, stories and our life. We hope you'll come back often!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Shutter Loks and Finished Project

Hey everyone! I'm so sorry for my absence, but I'm here to go through the rest of the front porch project with you and hopefully help some people with their shutter issues.

Let me start at the beginning of the shutter debacle. We knew we wanted to re-paint the shutters on the house from the blue that was before. After a lot of thought, we decided on black. Simple, classic and a people-pleaser. Our shutters are vinyl, so after some research, we went with Rustoleum spray paint to get the job done. The painting process was a breeze, but getting the shutters off the house, and put back on was a bit of a struggle.

Vinyl shutters are attached to the house using Shutter Loks. Basically plastic screws that aren't meant to be removed. They go in, but not out. And since spraypaint, well, sprays, there was no option to keep them on the house to paint. Awesomesauce.
 Shutter Lok image:

So what's the first thing I do? Panic. Errr.. Google. This was one of the only times in my life where Google actually let me down. There were literally no articles about Shutter Loks and how to install them. Plenty of websites selling them, but that didn't help me getting them off. Next idea; call Dad. Since he worked in the construction business for many, many years, if Dad didn't know, we were going to have to wing it. And, being a control freak I am, I don't like winging. Rollercoasters, yes, winging, not so much. I don't like the unknown with projects. Too many possibilities of getting stuck with problems and unexpected expenses.
 So we were still stuck with this

So what did Dad have to say? Something I wasn't expecting. "You have to cut them off". Do whaaaat?! apparently, they go in just fine, stay on just fine, but have to be cut off your house. Shoot. No re-using them, I suppose. Ummkay. So, John ran to the shed, grabbed the hack saw and away he went. They're very soft plastic, so it only took a few passes per screw.

Which left us with nubs. This was becoming a very long, drawn out project of many steps. Someone with no patience, who thought this was going to be a quick, pull off the shutters, paint them, and replace kind-of-deal was not a happy camper. But onward and upward we went. stupid shutters. Ok, so now onto the nubs.

To get them out we tried vice-grips. No dice. These things are a beeotch to get out. At least if you don't know what you're doing. Which we clearly didn't. We ended up having to get creative and put a medium size drill bit on the trusty drill and dig them out. Piece. by. piece. It was a long evening. A long, sweaty, tugging and pulling evening. There may have been curses. I won't tell. But here's what some looked like after we mutilated them. Cute right? Thought so.

Finally, we were on to the painting, which, thankfully went by really quick, and I won't go into detail. Just imagine sawhorses set up in the back yard,  John spraying and me keeping Maggie out of the way. John is a much better spraypainter than I am, so I let him have at it. I'll gladly sit on the sidelines with Mags.

Putting the shutters back up was pretty easy too. Just purchase your Shutter Loks AHEAD of time. They're difficult to find. I spent 1/2 a day on the phone with hardware stores all around town to find some. We thought we were going to have to order them online, but luckily Home Depot had some in stock from a bulk order. They're pretty cheap too, I think I paid $6 bucks a pack/12. Just hammer them in the holes and you're done.

After some satin nickel spray paint to the door harware, changing the doorbell to black and some touch-ups to some places around the porch the project was done. We LOVE it. And because we all love a before and after, here goes:

And here's more for your viewing pleasure :)

We love driving into the driveway and seeing our handywork staring back at us. And the neighbors like the change too. :-) We couldn't be happier.

Now I need to get to the side/back doors and make everything match. Ah, the work around here is never done :)

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