This is a question about a specific solution for a problem that's been asked before. The best solution is u-channels that the blinds' hem bar can travel up and down within. This solution can be seen online, but not in any DIY way. A few window treatment companies offer this kind of solution with purchase of their blinds, installed by a local contractor/professional. Examples:





A few DIY solutions exist that are essentially L-channels (rather than U-channels) like this which I may eventually go with, but I'd much rather find a good u-channel solution.

The only DIY solution with a U-channel that I've found is this one from Sweden.

I just find it hard to believe that this fairly simple solution is only available from a vendor in Sweden (who won't ship internationally, I asked).

Does anyone have any ideas of a simple plastic (or metal, but plastic would be easier/preferable) u-channel that could work like the Sweden solution above, and is available in the USA? They would need to be about 1/2 inch wide, by about 1 inch deep.

The closest I've found is a u-channel from McMaster-Carr, but it's only 1/2 inch deep which probably would not be sufficient.

3 Answers 3


I used vinyl J-channel (siding) for a project recently - it comes in 12.5ft lengths, with matte or wood-grain finish, and in several different colors (can also be painted).

With some creative trimming, drilling and mounting this may work for your scenario also. The common type I used has a 3/4" front lip, 1-1/16" deep and 1-3/4" back wall with slots.

  • Thanks! Got a link to that J-channel product?
    – Kieran
    Jan 21, 2021 at 2:13
  • 1
    @Kieran a simple search for "vinyl siding j-channel" should get you all the links you could ever want. And, since it will be used inside, you could probably buy it in white then get some spray paint to paint it to match the walls or curtains, as you prefer.
    – FreeMan
    Jan 21, 2021 at 13:14
  • @FreeMan thanks, that worked! Found several potential solutions.
    – Kieran
    Jan 21, 2021 at 22:37
  • 1
    I'm glad you found it, @Kieran. If you'll take the tour, you'll note that the proper way of saying "thanks" is to click the up-vote arrow for any and all answers that you found helpful, and to click the check-mark next to the answer that helped you the most.
    – FreeMan
    Jan 22, 2021 at 11:53
  • @Kieran did you find a product that works? I checked my Lowe's and home Depot. It looks close but has holes for nails lowes.com/pd/…
    – sthomps
    Mar 9 at 15:09

I might try some angle L in plastic or aluminum. I looked on line and there were lots of options I did see 1 MFG that had a few colors. I searched with the term “plastic angle L” the aluminum did show up also.

  • Thanks! Yes there are lots of L shapes for this, but U-shape works better for light-blocking.
    – Kieran
    Jan 21, 2021 at 2:13

I think you could also make some with L-channel or C- or U-channel aluminum and "white pile weatherstripping" (or another color as desired). That is the fuzzy stuff you see that helps block the light. I only saw the adhesive type instead of what slips in a groove, but I think it would work. And it would allow various types of material to make the bracket/light guard.

You might be able to use PVC trim in rectangle cuts. Bonus it is PVC so you could run it through a table saw and make a groove/L cut out, and it won't react to moisture like wood trim might.

Not a very satisfying answer, but Alibaba has some things I've found for sale that were not available in standard retail stores. Or the prices from mainstream retail was a HUGE markup. If you have a few windows that may be an option. They are really hard to search for. I've seen them called:

  • U shaped light blocker blackout blids with tracks side track for blind blackout tracks side blocker for blinds for window
  • APVCSC Side Channel 1.9mm PVC for roller blinds zebra blinds curtain window
  • roller blind side tracks
  • Light Blockers for Sides of Blinds, Window Blinds Side Blocking Tracks Light Blocker Light Gap Blockers for Blinds
  • Blackout Strip PVC Black Color 3M Strip Sides Light Blockers For Blinds

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