Stuff You'll Need
For small repairs
- Large sewing needle
- Clear fishing line
For medium to large repairs
- Utility knife
- Replacement screen material
- Adhesive rated for use with your screen material
- Flat-head screwdriver
- Screen spline roller or putty knife
- Screen spline (if necessary)
If damage is more than an inch on a metal screen, you'll want to make a patch. Remove the screen from the window and place it on a flat surface. Use a sharp utility knife to cut out a clean square where the damage is.
From the replacement screening, cut a patch that's slightly larger than the damange portion. Unravel the edges and bend the strands through the existing screen until they're interwoven. Glue the border with the adhesive.
For large holes or tears that are longer than a few inches in fiberglass mesh-type screening, you'll want to replace the whole piece of screen fabric.
Lay the screen on a flat work surface. Use the flat-head screwdriver to pry up the spline that runs around the perimeter of the frame, holding the fabric in place. Remove the old spline and the screen fabric.
Note: You'll need a piece of screen that's larger than the size of the frame, because the excess is trimmed to fit. While you're at the store, also buy a spline roller and new spline material that will fit the groove of your screen (you can use the old spline if it's not damaged). You could also use a putty knife instead of a spline roller so you don't need to buy a new tool.
Lay the new screen over the frame, making sure you have a couple inches of overlap on all four sides. Starting on the top edge, place the spline into the groove and press it in place with the spline roller or putty knife, letting the excess hang over. Check to make sure the screen material is not crooked.
Once the top is secure, stretch the screen fabric taut and secure it along the bottom. Then secure each side. Trim off the excess material with the utility knife.
For more home improvement tips and tricks, purchase Joanne Liebeler's Do It Herself
From "Joanne Liebeler's Do It Herself, Sunset Books