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Build Custom Window Screens

You don’t need to call the local handyman to get custom window screens built.

In keeping with the theme of Home Repair Tutor this project is well worth your time and only takes 15 minutes, even if you’re not particularly handy.

Plus only a few cheap tools are necessary to get this job done.

Here are the supplies you’ll need for a white aluminum screen:

The total cost could be $36.49 if you need to buy all of the toolsThe actual cost of just the screen supplies is $15.10, which isn’t bad at all.

The screen frame kit is from Home Depot and can make a 48-inch by 48-inch frame. But if your frame is smaller like mine (or bigger)  you can customize it by cutting the frame rails to size with a hacksaw.

The tutorial I’m sharing today shows me making a brown window screen but the steps are exactly the same for a white version.

I’ll share how to build a custom window screen frame and add the fiberglass mesh.

Let’s get started and before you know it you’ll have a new custom window screen in 15 minutes flat.


Build the Custom Window Screen Frame (Step 1)

If you have an old screen measure its width and height.

In my case, I needed to make a screen frame from scratch. The total width of the new screen needed to be 30 1/8 inches and the total height needed to be 27 3/4 inches.

My video will walk you through this part of the project but there is a picture tutorial as well. I got lucky while filming the video because it was a nice sunny day here in Pittsburgh 🙂

You’ll need to subtract 1 1/2 inches off your width & height measurements to accommodate the width of the screen frame corners that help connect the frame together. Once you have these new measurements you can use the hacksaw and miter box to cut the aluminum screen frames.

Custom Window Screens-Cut the frame sides to size

With the four aluminum sides of the frame cut, you can now join them together with the frame corners. But before you do this make sure to have the recess in the frame where the rubber spline goes facing up toward you.

This will help you construct the frame properly and eliminate unnecessary frustration that may lead to curse words, fist-pumping at the sky, etc.

Custom Window Screens-Join all four frame sides together with the frame corners

Add Fiberglass Screen to the Frame (Step 2)

Once you know how to replace one fiberglass mesh screen you’ll be looking to do it for all your window frames or sliding screen door.

Here’s the video that shows you this process.

Layout the screen frame on an even, flat surface.

Custom Window Screens-Lay out the screen frame on an even, flat surface

Lay the fiberglass screen over the frame so that it is 2 inches wider on all sides.

Custom Window Screens-Lay the fiberglass screen over the frame

Place the spline (the rubber tubing) on top of the screen where the recess is located. Embed the spline into the recess with the spline tool (it looks like a pizza cutter).

Custom Window Screens-Embed the fiberglass screen into the frame

Use the utility knife to trim the excess screen. Hold your knife at a 45-degree angle to the screen frame and cut away the excess fiberglass mesh.

Custom Screen Frames-Cut away the excess fiberglass mesh

Go back over the spline one more time with the spline tool and you’re done. WooHoo!!

Custom Window Screens-Go back over the spline one more time with the spline tool and you're done

What’s Next

You can do this project at any time during the year and chances are high you’ll do it better than someone at the hardware store.

Our other tutorial shows how to install custom window screens in old window frames.

If you’re doing a bathroom remodel and need help, join one of our online courses – they’ll make your bathroom renovation much easier!

Let me know if you have any questions and I’ll do my best to help.



Screen Repair Kits, Window Screens