Shutter Maintenance: Rolldown Hurricane Shutters Explained

Rolldown hurricane shutters, also known as roll-up or rolling shutters, are protective barriers installed over windows and doors to safeguard properties from the destructive forces of hurricanes and other severe weather conditions. These shutters are typically made from high-quality aluminum or steel, designed to provide maximum strength and durability. This article provides an in-depth explanation of rolldown hurricane shutters, focusing on their maintenance to ensure optimal performance and longevity.

Understanding the importance of shutter maintenance is crucial for property owners living in hurricane-prone areas. Proper maintenance not only ensures the shutters’ effectiveness in protecting the property but also extends their lifespan, reducing the need for frequent replacements and saving on costs. This article will delve into the various aspects of shutter maintenance, from the basic components of rolldown shutters to the techniques and best practices for their upkeep.

Components of Rolldown Hurricane Shutters

Before delving into the maintenance procedures, it’s essential to understand the basic components that make up rolldown hurricane shutters. These shutters are composed of several parts, each playing a crucial role in their operation and overall functionality.

The primary components include the shutter curtain, the roller tube, the guide rails, and the motor or crank for manual shutters. The shutter curtain is the main protective barrier, made up of interlocking slats that roll up and down on the guide rails. The roller tube is where the shutter curtain is stored when not in use. The guide rails, on the other hand, guide the movement of the shutter curtain, ensuring it stays in place during operation.

Shutter Curtain

The shutter curtain is the most visible part of the rolldown hurricane shutter system. It is composed of several interlocking slats, typically made from high-strength aluminum or steel. The slats are designed to interlock tightly when the shutter is closed, forming a solid barrier against wind and debris.

The shutter curtain’s design and construction are critical to its effectiveness. The slats must be strong enough to withstand high wind pressures and impact from flying debris. They should also interlock tightly to prevent wind and water from penetrating through the gaps. Therefore, any signs of damage or wear on the slats should be addressed promptly to ensure the shutter’s effectiveness.

Roller Tube

The roller tube is a cylindrical component that houses the shutter curtain when it’s rolled up. It’s typically made from the same material as the shutter curtain to ensure durability and longevity. The roller tube is mounted above the window or door, either inside a box housing or exposed, depending on the shutter design.

The roller tube plays a crucial role in the operation of the rolldown shutter. It allows the shutter curtain to be rolled up smoothly and stored neatly when not in use. Any issues with the roller tube, such as jamming or difficulty in rolling, can affect the shutter’s operation and should be addressed promptly.

Maintenance Procedures for Rolldown Hurricane Shutters

Maintaining rolldown hurricane shutters involves several procedures, each targeting a specific component or aspect of the shutter system. These procedures aim to ensure the shutters remain in good working condition, ready to provide protection when needed.

Regular cleaning, lubrication, inspection for damage, and timely repairs are the main procedures involved in shutter maintenance. Each of these procedures requires specific techniques and precautions to ensure they are carried out effectively and safely.


Cleaning is a fundamental maintenance procedure for rolldown hurricane shutters. Over time, dirt, dust, and debris can accumulate on the shutter curtain and other components, potentially affecting their operation. Regular cleaning helps to remove these accumulations, ensuring the shutters operate smoothly and efficiently.

The cleaning process involves washing the shutter curtain, guide rails, and roller tube with a mild detergent and water. A soft brush can be used to scrub off stubborn dirt and grime. After cleaning, the shutters should be rinsed thoroughly and allowed to dry completely before being rolled up. It’s important to avoid abrasive cleaners or tools that could scratch or damage the shutter components.


Lubrication is another essential maintenance procedure for rolldown hurricane shutters. The shutter components, particularly the guide rails and roller tube, require regular lubrication to ensure smooth operation. Without proper lubrication, the shutters may become difficult to operate, or the components may wear out prematurely.

The lubrication process involves applying a suitable lubricant to the guide rails and roller tube. The lubricant should be applied sparingly and evenly, avoiding excess that could attract dirt and grime. It’s also important to use a lubricant that’s compatible with the shutter materials to avoid causing damage or corrosion.

Inspection and Repairs

Regular inspection and timely repairs are crucial aspects of shutter maintenance. Over time, the shutter components may suffer wear and tear or damage from the elements, affecting their functionality. Regular inspections can help to identify these issues early, allowing for timely repairs and preventing further damage.

Inspections should focus on the shutter curtain, guide rails, roller tube, and the motor or crank for manual shutters. Any signs of damage, such as cracks, bends, rust, or wear, should be noted and addressed promptly. Repairs should be carried out by a professional to ensure they are done correctly and safely.

Professional Maintenance Services

While some maintenance procedures can be carried out by the property owner, it’s often advisable to engage professional maintenance services for more complex tasks. Professionals have the necessary skills, experience, and equipment to carry out thorough inspections, perform repairs, and provide advice on proper shutter care.

Professional maintenance services can also provide regular maintenance schedules, ensuring the shutters are maintained consistently and effectively. This can be particularly beneficial for property owners who may not have the time or expertise to carry out regular maintenance themselves.


Proper maintenance of rolldown hurricane shutters is crucial for their effectiveness and longevity. By understanding the basic components of these shutters and carrying out regular maintenance procedures, property owners can ensure their shutters remain in good working condition, ready to provide protection when needed.

Whether carried out by the property owner or a professional service, regular maintenance can extend the lifespan of the shutters, reduce the need for replacements, and provide peace of mind knowing the property is well-protected against the destructive forces of hurricanes and other severe weather conditions.

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