How To: Replace a Window Screen
Replacing a damaged window screen is a simple, low-cost project that even a novice DIYer can do successfully.
The screens on your windows are there for a purpose. If they get a snag, a tear or a hole, they lose their effectiveness of keeping insects out. Don’t despair. You can change the screening easily—and with little cost for materials and tools—by following these basic instructions.
MATERIALS AND TOOLS Available on Amazon
– Spline (plastic cording)
– Rolling spline tool (often packaged with spline cording)
– Nail punch
– Small flathead screwdriver
– Small clamps (or tape)
– Utility knife
STEP 1: Remove the old screen.
The screen is held in place with a plastic cord (spline) that runs in a channel around the perimeter of the metal frame. Use a small flat-head screwdriver, nail punch, or sharp object to lift the spline out of the channel. Remove the old screen and discard it along with the old plastic cording. If the frame is dirty, now would be a good time to wash it down.
STEP 2: Size the new material.
Place the metal frame on a flat surface and roll out a length of screening material to cover the entire frame. Leave a 2” border around the perimeter and cut the screen to size.
STEP 3: Position the new screen.
Lay the newly sized screening material over the frame, making sure that the material overlaps the metal on all four sides. (Note: since the screening material was rolled, consider placing it with the curved side down. It will make it easier to work with.) Pull the screening taut and tape or clamp to the top and bottom of the frame.
STEP 4. Insert the new spline.
Starting at one side and working your way around the perimeter of the frame, use the convex wheel of the rolling tool to push the screen into the channel of the frame. Be sure to keep the material taut as you work your way around, then use the concave side of the same tool to insert the plastic spline. Once you have installed the spline, trim the excess material with a utility knife and install your new replacement screen in the window.