How to Remove Cellular Shades: A Step-by-Step Guide for a Seamless Transition

Cellular shades, also known as honeycomb shades, are a popular window treatment choice due to their energy-saving properties and sleek design. However, there may come a time when you need to remove them, whether it’s for cleaning, replacing, or redecorating purposes. If you’re unsure about how to remove cellular shades without causing any damage or frustration, fret not! In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the process step-by-step, ensuring a smooth and hassle-free experience.

Before we dive into the details, it’s essential to understand the structure of cellular shades. These innovative window coverings consist of two layers of fabric connected by honeycomb-shaped pockets. These pockets trap air, providing insulation and reducing energy consumption. They are designed to be lightweight and easy to operate, which also means they can be easily removed and reinstalled.

Gather the Necessary Tools

To start removing your cellular shades, it’s important to gather all the necessary tools beforehand. This will ensure that you have everything you need within reach, making the process quicker and more efficient. Here are the tools you will need:


A screwdriver is essential for removing any screws or fasteners that may be holding your cellular shades in place. Make sure to choose the appropriate size and type of screwdriver that matches the screws used in your window treatment.

Ladder or Stepladder

Depending on the height of your windows, you may need a ladder or stepladder to safely reach and remove the cellular shades. Ensure that the ladder is stable and secure before climbing on it to prevent any accidents.

Clean, Smooth Surface

Having a clean and smooth surface nearby will provide you with a designated area to place the shades after removing them. This will prevent any damage to the shades and make it easier for you to fold and store them later.

By having these tools ready, you’ll be prepared to tackle the removal process efficiently and without any interruptions.

Start with the Valance

The valance is the decorative cover located at the top of your cellular shades. It adds a finishing touch to the window treatment and can be easily removed to access the shades. Here’s how to remove the valance:

Lift the Valance

To begin, gently lift the valance from one end. Apply light pressure and avoid using excessive force to prevent any damage. Start from one side and gradually move towards the center of the window treatment.

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Slide the Valance

As you lift the valance, slide it towards the center of the window treatment. This will detach it from the brackets or clips that hold it in place. Take your time and ensure that it is completely separated from the brackets before continuing.

Lower the Valance

Once the valance is detached, carefully lower it down and set it aside. You can place it on the clean surface you prepared earlier to keep it safe and prevent any scratches or damage. Now that the valance is removed, you can proceed to the next step of removing the cellular shades.

Unsnap the Cellular Shades from the Brackets

Most cellular shades are held in place by brackets located at the top of the window frame. These brackets secure the shades and allow for smooth operation. To remove the shades from the brackets, follow these steps:

Locate the Plastic Tabs

Look for small plastic tabs on each side of the cellular shades. These tabs are designed to secure the shades in place within the brackets. Take a moment to locate them before proceeding with the removal process.

Squeeze the Tabs

Once you have located the plastic tabs, gently squeeze them together. This action will release the tabs from the brackets and allow you to lift the shades upwards. Take care not to apply too much pressure to avoid damaging the shades or the brackets.

Lift and Release

With the tabs squeezed, lift the cellular shades upwards. As you do this, the shades will detach from the brackets. Slide them out of the brackets carefully, ensuring that all tabs are fully released. Repeat this process for each bracket until the shades are completely free.

Remove the Bottom Rail

The bottom rail is the horizontal bar located at the bottom of the cellular shades. It provides stability and helps to keep the shades in place. Here’s how to remove the bottom rail:

Locate the Plugs

At each end of the bottom rail, you will find small plugs that hold it in place. These plugs may be made of plastic or another material. Take a moment to locate and identify these plugs before proceeding.

Remove the Plugs

Using a screwdriver, gently insert it into the holes of the plugs. Apply light pressure and carefully pry the plugs out. Take your time and avoid using excessive force to prevent any damage to the plugs or the bottom rail.

Slide Out the Bottom Rail

Once the plugs are removed, you can now slide out the bottom rail from the cellular shades. Gently pull the rail towards you, and it should easily detach from the shades. Be cautious not to bend or twist the rail as you remove it to maintain its shape and integrity.

Fold and Store the Cellular Shades

After removing the valance, unsnapping the shades from the brackets, and removing the bottom rail, it’s time to fold and store your cellular shades. Properly folding and storing the shades will ensure their longevity and make the reinstallation process easier. Follow these steps:

Accordion-Style Folding

Start by folding the cellular shades in an accordion-style. Begin at one end and fold the fabric over itself, creating pleats. Fold the fabric towards the center, making sure to keep it taut and smooth. Repeat this process until the entire shade is folded.

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Secure with a Rubber Band or String

To prevent the shades from unfolding during storage, secure them with a rubber band or a piece of string. Place the band or string around the folded shade, ensuring it is tight enough to hold the folds in place but not too tight to damage the fabric. This will keep the shades compact and ready for storage.

Place on a Clean Surface

Once the shades are properly folded and secured, place them on the clean surface you prepared earlier. This will protect them from dust, dirt, or any potential damage. Make sure the surface is smooth and free of any sharp objects that could snag or tear the fabric.

Clean the Window Frame

Now that the cellular shades are safely stored away, it’s a good time to clean the window frame. Removing the shades provides easy access to the window area, allowing you to clean any accumulated dust, dirt, or debris. Here’s how to clean the window frame:

Use a Damp Cloth

Start by using a damp cloth to wipe down the window frame. Make sure the cloth is clean and damp, but not wet. Gently wipe the surface, removing any dust or dirt that may have collected. Pay attention to the corners and edges where dirt tends to accumulate.

Mild Cleaning Solution

If there are stubborn stains or grime on the window frame, you can use a mild cleaning solution. Mix a small amount of dish soap or window cleaner with water to create a gentle cleaning solution. Dampen the cloth with the solution, and carefully wipe the affected areas. Avoid using excessive force or harsh chemicals that could damage the window frame or surrounding surfaces.

Dry the Window Frame

After cleaning, use a dry cloth or towel to remove any excess moisture from the window frame. This will prevent water spots or streaks from forming and help maintain the integrity of the frame. Ensure that the window frame is completely dry before proceeding with any reinstallation or redecorating.

Prepare for Reinstallation

If you plan to reinstall your cellular shades after cleaning or for any other reason, it’s essential to prepare for the process. Inspecting the brackets, cords, and mechanisms will ensure that everything is in good working condition. Follow these steps to prepare for the reinstallation:

Inspect the Brackets

Check the brackets attached to the window frame and ensure that they are securely in place. Look for any signs of damage or wear that may affect their functionality. If you notice any loose or broken brackets, it’s important to replace them before reinstalling the cellular shades.

Examine the Cords and Mechanisms

Inspect the cords and mechanisms of the cellular shades to ensure they are in good working condition. Check for any frayed cords, tangled strings, or damaged mechanisms that may impede the smooth operation of the shades. If you notice any issues, it’s best to repair or replace these components before reinstallation.

Make Necessary Replacements

If you identified any damaged brackets, cords, or mechanisms during the inspection, it’s crucial to replace them before proceeding with the reinstallation. This will ensure the proper functioning and longevity of yourcellular shades. Contact the manufacturer or a reputable window treatment professional to obtain the necessary replacement parts and ensure a seamless reinstallation process.

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Reinstall the Cellular Shades

Now that you have completed the necessary preparations, it’s time to reinstall your cellular shades. Follow these steps to ensure a successful reinstallation:

Attach the Bottom Rail

Start by sliding the bottom rail back into place. Line it up with the brackets and gently push it in until it clicks or snaps into position. Ensure that the rail is securely attached and evenly aligned within the brackets.

Insert the Cellular Shade into the Brackets

Take the folded cellular shades and carefully insert them into the brackets. Align the plastic tabs on the sides of the shades with the corresponding slots in the brackets. Slide the shades up, applying gentle pressure until they click or snap into place. Ensure that all tabs engage properly and securely within the brackets.

Reattach the Valance

Once the shades are securely in place, it’s time to reattach the valance. Slide it into the brackets, starting from one side and moving towards the center. Make sure the valance is properly aligned and fits snugly within the brackets. Gently lower it down until it is securely attached.

Test and Adjust

After reinstalling the cellular shades, it’s important to test them to ensure they are operating smoothly. Follow these steps to test and make any necessary adjustments:

Raise and Lower the Shades

Using the operating mechanism, raise and lower the cellular shades several times. Observe their movement and listen for any unusual sounds. The shades should move smoothly and without any obstructions or resistance.

Check for Proper Alignment

While the shades are in the lowered position, check for proper alignment. Ensure that the shades are level and evenly positioned within the window frame. Adjust the position if necessary by gently nudging the shades until they are aligned correctly.

Inspect the Cords and Mechanisms

Examine the cords and mechanisms of the cellular shades to ensure they are functioning properly. Check for any tangles, snags, or signs of wear. Operate the cords and mechanisms to ensure smooth and effortless movement.

Make Necessary Adjustments

If you notice any issues during the testing process, such as misalignment or difficulty in movement, make the necessary adjustments. This may involve repositioning the shades, untangling cords, or lubricating the mechanisms. Take your time to ensure that the shades are operating optimally.


In conclusion, removing cellular shades doesn’t have to be a daunting task. By following this detailed and comprehensive step-by-step guide, you can confidently remove your cellular shades without any hassle or damage. Remember to gather the necessary tools, start with the valance, unsnap the shades from the brackets, remove the bottom rail, fold and store the shades, clean the window frame, prepare for reinstallation, reinstall the shades, and test and adjust for smooth operation.

Properly removing your cellular shades allows you to clean, replace, or redecorate with ease. It also ensures that you can reinstall them seamlessly, maintaining their functionality and aesthetic appeal. By understanding the structure of cellular shades and following the recommended techniques, you can confidently remove and reinstall them like a true expert.

Remember, if you encounter any difficulties or are unsure about any steps in the process, consult the manufacturer or seek assistance from a professional. They can provide guidance and support to ensure a successful removal and reinstallation of your cellular shades.

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