10.21.2014

Fixing a Broken Window Blind (a snapped string inside the top housing)



The night we moved into our current home, my parents had come from out of state to visit and see the house. My Mother wanted to help in some way so she took to cleaning the kitchen blinds.  They are white, wood blinds, and my Mom was going to wipe them all down with a bleach and soap solution as the house had been empty for two years and had accumulated a lot of dirt and dust.

I was not happy when one of the blinds strings snapped and the blind suddenly fell to one side and hung wonky.  It was just so disappointing to be in our new home for less than a day and already have something broken - and so obviously so!  The next day my Dad tried to 'fix' it.  He ended up tying the string under the top metal housing (where all the moving and working parts are - under the valence area) and although the string was tied and seemed to hold, the blind was hanging sideways and at an angle.   After they went home I raised the blind all the way up so I didn't have to look at it until I could buy a new blind.

Unfortunately, trips to our local retailers showed me the blinds in our kitchen/dining weren't bought off the rack, but were ordered.  And I was not going to special order a blind.  I thought I would just buy one that matched as 'close as possible', however I didn't like the price of the wooden blinds so I decided to 'put it off' a little longer.

Then a second kitchen blind broke.  I asked my husband to PLEASE fix it.  He didn't know how.  I said I didn't care.... figure something out.  He tried to 'tie' a knot in the strings at the top of the blind as well.  Not only did it look horrible, but it didn't hold and the blind broke again.

Finally one afternoon I wasn't busy with anything else so I took down the blinds myself to inspect them and figure out how to fix it.

I saw the problem; after a few years hanging in the window - in direct sun, with temperatures in the triple-digits, the heat 'bakes' the cheap plastic with high temperatures and it becomes brittle and snaps. 

The plastic parts surrounding the cords, the strings, the metal bar that twists inside to open and close your blinds; all supported and ran by cheap plastic.

I figured out a way to fix it... tried it... it worked.
Over the next 2 1/2 years we've had about 4 more blinds snap as they have aged and spent more seasons in the sun in the summer and the dry heat from the floor and ceiling registers in the winters.  No problem.  When they snap now, I don't fret and I certainly don't ask my husband to look at them (he says he still doesn't understand how I fix them... even after I've shown him!)

I DID ask about this at one of the big box hardware retailers while we were having a conversation about the blind valance clips (that also snap after a season or two - but the store only had packages of 3 (!?) and I was asking if they had a package of 10 (they don't but I found some on Amazon and linked at the bottom of this post).

The employee told me that window blinds are only made to last about two or three years.  Even the good quality blinds are made with plastic on the inside that is going to snap and break after a couple years - especially because the better quality blinds are wood or faux wood and are heavier than plastic so they are more likely to snap. 

 Well, enough background.  Here is what I did... and what I do.  The first blinds I fixed this way almost three years ago and they are still going strong.


Take down the blind from the metal supports.  Look inside the top, you can see 
where it broke - and more than likely there is dry plastic somewhere (or everywhere)
that broke or cracked.  Remove it.  There is nothing you can do with it.


More than likely your string snapped at the top where the plastic broke.
Take the two ends, make sure they are around the blind correctly
and lined up straight again.


Thread them back through the holes in the top of your blind.
This is where they came from when the plastic piece holding them inside snapped.


Once you've pulled them through the top, use a metal safety pin to 
attach the two strings to each other over the metal bar.




Each string has a piece of metal clamped on it.  Thread
your pin through the string below this point for more support.
Use one pin for both strings.  They are now both attached to the pin securely.


Note how the pin is now holding the strings, and is over the metal
bar - which, I've found 95% of the time I've been able to turn the blinds
to open and close at least some if not all - even after being repaired.
I've got one blind out of 6 that doesn't turn all the way 
open and closed but it does rotate some.


Now, pick your blind up by the metal on top and make sure your blind is hanging correctly.
Replace.  The repair is inside the metal, so no one can see it, and your blind looks
brand new - and more than likely works just fine as well.












You might also be interested in;
Hidden Valance clips for faux and real wood window blinds (10)
Achim Home Furnishings Luna 2-Inch Vinyl Blind, 35 by 64-Inch, Mahogany
Magne 40-Inch Vinyl Mini Blind with 1-Inch Slats and 25-Inch Width, 40-Inch Drop
Easy Lift, 36-inch by 64-inch, Trim-at-Home (fits windows 21-inches to 36-inches wide) Cordless Honeycomb Cellular Shade, Light Filtering, White










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