How to Replace Window Screen or Door Screen Easily (2023)

Inevitably when the spring weather hits, we start to prepare our outdoor areas for all the outdoor living we like to do. There are many things that often need to be fixed or refreshed after a long winter. One of those things is fixing or replacing window screens and door screens. This is something that homeowners will eventually come across. Screen doors and window screens can get damaged in many ways. Replacing an old screen is super easy and I want to show you how to do it in a couple easy steps.

Our screen door this spring was in dire need of a replacement, as you can see in the image below, I used tape as a bandaid for a couple days until my supplies arrived. Its not pretty but it worked temporarily.

How to Replace Window Screen or Door Screen Easily (1)

We use a large sliding screen door on our back french doors. We have two dogs and after a couple or years of use, the screen will need to be replaced. The screen can get sun rot, or torn easily. The good news is it can easily be replaced! Learning how to replace window screen is a valuable skill to know how to do. The material and tools only cost about 10 dollars which is a steal compared to purchasing new ones. This is a simple DIY project that you can tackle.

I have become an expert at replacing our old screens. There are many different options on the market including window screen replacement kits, which provide you all the tools and materials you need to replace a window or door screen. You can also purchase the items separate, so if you just need the screening material you can simple get that.

Here are some terms and elements of a screen door or window that you should be familiar with:

  • spline splineis the component used to holdscreeninscreenframe. Pairing the correctspline,screenand frame will ensure yourscreensgo in easily and remain in place for years to come.
  • spline roller or spline tool – A screen roller orsplineroller is a small handtoolused to press screen mesh into the edges of a window frame that is fluted on the inner edges, or to press in the retainersplinethat holds that mesh in place
  • screen material or screen fabric – The most commonmaterialsused for the mesh ofwindow screens are aluminum and fiberglass fabric. Aluminum is generally available in natural aluminum or in an applied black or charcoal color, which make the screeningless visible.
  • window screen frame– This is the frame that you will be installing the screen material. They are often made of aluminum or wood.
  • channel of the frame– This is the place that you will install the spline over the screen to secure the screen to the frame. You can also call it a spline groove.

The right tools and materials you will need to replace a window or door screen are:

I was able to get all the tools and materials I needed at my local hardware store.

I will be showing you to replace screen on a door today. Our patio screen door gets a lot of use during the summer months. This year it was in dire need of a replacement screen. It had small tears in the screen and needed new window screen spline. I have done this before and feel like this is a valuable skill to have.

When replacing your window or door screen make sure to take inventory of the condition of the rubber spline, the frame channels, and make sure that the frame is in good shape. If your screen frame is in good shape its is time to replace the old worn out screen.



1. First, you need to remove the old screen and spline. Find a flat surface where you can work on your screen. I laid my screen door directly on the ground where I could work on it.

(Video) Replacing a Window Screen 5-Steps

Removing the spline is simple. Locate the spline channel and with a narrow tool, grab hold of the spline and pull it out of the channel. I like to use a small flat-head screwdriver. Taking out the spline will release the window screening.

If you are replacing the screen on a screen door, you can remove the door handle as well. Mine comes off with a screw driver. The screen is sandwiched in between the handle.

2. Now its time to unroll the aluminum screening and lay it over the door or window. If it is a large piece of screen you can cut off the excess material now making sure to leave about 1-2 extra inches(this will also me removed at the end but you need a bit to work with. You can also wait until you have the new screen installed before cutting off the excess.

3. Once you have the screen laying flat over the frame, you will want to start installing the new spline

The method that I use is to work the top of the frame, then the bottom of the frame and then from the left to the right.

On the top, hold the spline above the channel and begin by pushing the spline into the corner with your hand to get it started. Make sure the screen is smooth and straight. Use your spline roller tool to roll and push the spline and screen into frame channel.

Stop and adjust the screen as needed to make sure that it is going in straight and without any wrinkles. At the end of the channel at the top, use your sharp utility knife to cut the spline just short of the corner.

Next, do the exact same thing to the bottom BUT you will need to make sure to hold the screen taut. This is where you create that tension on the screen that will give it a tight and smooth finish that you want. If you feel it is not tight enough, pull the spline out and do it again, pulling the screen down from the top to give it a nice tight fit.

Now, start on the sides. You can start on either side. Start at the corner and work the spline into the channel, making sure to use tension and pull the screen as you roll the spline into place. You will be able to tell if the screen is tight enough. If there are any ripples, you ca pull the spline out and try it again. When you reach the end, cut the spline and make sure to push the end of the spline into the channel using a screwdriver.

The last step is to finish the last side. This will give the entire screen a finished taut look and feel. Carefully pull the screen as you use your spline roller to push the spline into the channel. Be careful to not roll so hard that you cut or damage the screen. Do a small amount at t a time, stopping to make sure it is all straight and tight. Cut the spline and push it in the end once again. Ideally you want the spline to almost touch in the corners of the frame. You do not want them to overlap at all.

(Video) How to rescreen a window screen in 3 minutes

4. Before installing your screen, use your sharp utility knife or Xacto knife to trim excess screen material from the frame. This is easily done. Carefully run the knife along the channel groove and it will easily cut the window screen mesh away.

You now have a whole new screen! If your screen door has a handle, you can reinstall it at this time. After that it is time to install the screen door back into its channel on my french door. There are tension springs on the rollers on the top and bottom of our screen door. I insert the top of the screen door into the channel first and then use a butter knife to push the rollers up and over into the channel at the bottom.

And here is our screen door all ready for the summer months of use. I love how easy it is to replace the screens compared to many of the other big repair projects around the house, this one has got to be the easiest.

How to Replace Window Screen or Door Screen Easily (2)

The screen door frame has seen a lot of use but I am not ready to replace it just yet, so we will use it a couple more years until its just too far gone. For under 15 dollars though, I was able to refresh it and give it new life for a couple more years.

How to Replace Window Screen or Door Screen Easily (3)

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I reuse old spline?

You can reuse old spline as long as it is in good condition and is not sun rot or turned hard. You want the spline to be soft and stretchy.

Are there different sizes of spine?

Yes, there are different diameters of spline, which vary depending on the size of the channel in your frame. Make sure to take a sample of your old spline to the hardware store. I have bought some that was barely too small and the screen door did not hold up well. You need the spline to give a bit of resistance when being installed into the channel. You want a tight fit. This is what will hold that screen in the frame.

(Video) How to Replace a Window Screen - Easy!

Do I need a new frame?

You may need a new frame if the corners of the frame

are broken or separating or if the screen frame is damaged in any way. We have a couple dents in our screen door, but nothing we would consider replacing the door for.

Are the tools expensive?

No, they are very inexpensive tools, and you really only need the spline tool. The fiberglass screening is also inexpensive, as an entire screen for my door cost under 10 dollars.

Can you add a pet screen or dog door to a screen door?

Yes, I have seen special pet doors installed in screen doors. I have not used one but I really want to try one in my screen door.

What if my screen is loose and pulls out of the spline once installed?

This means that you have the wrong size spline. You most likely need a larger diameter spline. I got the wrong size once before and had this issue. Don’t be like me, double check and take a sample of your old spline to the store with you.

Make sure to follow me on Pinterest! I share so many great ideas daily.

(Video) How to Replace Window Screen on a Door

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How to Replace Window Screen or Door Screen Easily (4)

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Can you replace the screen in a door without removing the door? ›

Most screen doors are made from durable fiberglass material. However, your screen may get ripped or worn down over time. When this happens, you can easily replace the screen, rather than the entire door.

How do you properly remove a screen from a window? ›

Gently press the top corner of the screen into the frame to depress the hidden spring. Pull the screen tab on the opposite side. The top portion of the screen should pop out. Repeat these steps with the bottom portion of the window screen to remove the window from the bottom railing.

How much is a replacement screen for a window? ›

The cost to replace a movable window screen is $20 to $150 per screen. However, depending on the size and operation of your window screen, replacing a window screen that slides along a track typically costs $20 to $80 per screen for average sizes. Retractable window screens will cost you $50 to $125 each.

Can you replace screens from the inside? ›

Replacing a window screen from the inside is a common and straightforward process, especially for windows on a second-story level.

How do you replace a screen without a frame? ›

How To Install Window Screen Without A Frame
  1. Measure the dimensions of your window. ...
  2. Cut the metal strips and stick them to the opening of the window.
  3. Assemble the screen by attaching the corner pieces together.
  4. Assemble the plastic frame and cut the magnetic strips.
  5. Place the screen into the assembled frame.
7 Apr 2022

What holds window screen in place? ›

Spring Plunger

Spring plungers are sometimes called plunger bolts. The metal tab of a spring plunger extends into a groove or hole in the window frame to hold the screen in place.

What is the easiest way to remove a screen door? ›

How to Remove a Screen Door in Five Steps
  1. Unscrew the Screws at the Bottom of the Door. Now that your work area is clear, you can begin by locating the screws at the bottom of your screen door. ...
  2. Raise the Door Gently. ...
  3. Unscrew the Head Stop. ...
  4. Carefully Remove the Door.
6 Oct 2021

How do you remove a screen from a window without clips? ›

Removing a Sliding Window Screen

Gently press the top corner of the screen to depress the hidden spring. Now pull the screen tab on the opposite side and the upper portion of the screen will pop out. To remove the bottom of the screen, push the bottom corner into the frame to depress the other hidden spring.

How much does it cost to replace a mesh on a screen door? ›

Mesh screen

Screen door mesh costs approximately $0.25per square foot for fiberglass to $7.50per square foot for solar screen fabric. If you have a tighter weave, the cost could go up to $9 per square foot. The mesh material and tightness of the weave impact the price the most.

What tool do you use to cut a screen? ›

Take a snapshot to copy words or images from all or part of your PC screen.

Are all window screens removable? ›

Keep in mind, the removal of every window screen is not the same. For each style of window, the screen is removed in a specific way. Don't worry, though. All window screens, regardless the style of your window, are pretty simple to take out and place back in.

Is it cheaper to repair or replace window screens? ›

Answers to commonly asked questions

Repairing a screen is more affordable than replacement, averaging between $65 and $150 for service. If you need multiple screens repaired, it's usually the most cost effective to have them done all at once, as rates often fall between $20 and $30 per window.

Do window screens come in standard sizes? ›

The standard sizes for prefab mesh screens are 18” x 14”, 18” x 18”, and 20” x 20”, but there are hundreds of different pre-cut “standard” sizes to choose from, depending on the manufacturer.

Does Ace Hardware make screens? ›

Measure your broken window, or bring it into one of our shops and we can fix the window by installing a new mesh screen. If the frame has also been damaged we can make a new screen that fits in the existing window. We can repair or make replacement mesh screens for all window and door sizes.

How long does it take to install a window screen? ›

The average installation time for each screen type are: Retractable patio screen installation: 2 hours. Retractable door screen installation: 1-1.5 hours. Retractable window screen installation: 45 minutes-1 hour.

Is it worth replacing a screen? ›

In most cases, an affordable screen repair can extend your device's life by several months (or even years, in some cases).

Is it worth it to replace screen? ›

No matter who your manufacturer is, buying a new phone is much more expensive than repairing your phone. If you have a broken screen or damage, it is probably best to just repair the phone. You don't have to spend hundreds of dollars on a new phone.

How much does a new window screen cost? ›

The cost to replace a movable window screen is $20 to $150 per screen. However, depending on the size and operation of your window screen, replacing a window screen that slides along a track typically costs $20 to $80 per screen for average sizes. Retractable window screens will cost you $50 to $125 each.

How much does it cost to install a new screen? ›

Window Screen Costs
ItemUnit CostCost
Framed screens: purchased assembled; aluminum frame and screen; cost per window.$15.33$30.65
+ Labor Cost$5.43$10.86
Total Cost$20.76$41.51

Are window screens standard sizes? ›

Window screens frames are avaliable in three different sizes 5/16", 3/8" or 7/16", this is an industry standard.

How long does a screen change take? ›

Approximately two hours. The entire mobile screen only needs to be replaced if the damage on the touch screen has affected the inner mobile screen.

Do I need to replace the screen or just the glass? ›

If your phone or tablet's glass is shattered there will be cracks or chips on the screen itself. If it is just the glass that is damaged, the device may still function and you may be able to use it normally. If this is the case, it is likely that only the glass needs to be replaced.

How often should screens be replaced? ›

Over time, screens for windows can become brittle and rust. This also lowers the integrity of your windows and your property's curb appeal. There may not be a set lifespan for window screens but it is recommended that you replace them every 10 years.

How much does it cost to fix a whole screen? ›

The cost of phone screen repair ranges from $50 to $600, with an average price of $200. Repairing your phone screen directly through the manufacturer, like Apple or Samsung, may cost more than a third party.

Why are screen replacements so expensive? ›

The screen itself is one of the most expensive components in the phone, and the time and expertise needed to remove a damaged screen puts the repair costs up.

How do I remove a screen? ›

Open the window all the way. Grab the tabs on the screen and pull them both toward you and toward the center of the screen. Some screens have pins or latches, whichever yours has make sure to disengage it before attempting to remove the screen. Tilt or pivot the screen so it is easier to remove from the frame.

Does a bigger screen make a difference? ›

Bigger monitors come with increasing resolutions and some features that can help you maximize this benefit. For example, a 27-inch 1440p screen has an advantage of 70% more space than a typical 1920 x 1080 model with an increase in sharpness and level of detail.


1. Replace A Door Screen - Ace Hardware
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2. how to replace the screen on a screen door
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3. How to Rescreen a Screen Door - How To Re-screen - How To Screen
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4. How to Build a Window Screen | Repair and Replace
(AMRE Supply)
5. Pro Tip Re screening
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6. How to Repair a Window Screen - Ace Hardware
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