We interrupt this winter to bring you 80 degree temperatures!
Oh my goodness! For you doubters; here in Virginia, we are having May-like weather in February. Global warming, indeed! I turned off the heat, put on some shorts, sat out on the deck and made sun tea.
With unexpected weather this nice, I flung open all the windows to let the breezes flow through and air out the house. As I raised the windows.... ugh. I discovered dirty, torn and damaged screens- another job added to my to-do list!
The dirty part will have to wait until Spring. Fortunately, I had been to my local Restore recently and found some screening material that I picked up for only $4! And, since I had to repair a sliding screen door several years ago, I had a splining tool on hand- Yay!
Re-screening is a fairly easy project so I decided to take time out of my kitchen renovation to complete this task- if I leave it 'til later, the seasons will change and then there will be bugs coming through those torn screens.
So. Gather your tools and select an area to work in that is large enough to lay the screen frame flat while you work on it- I worked out on the deck since the weather was so nice! You'l need screening material, spline tool, scissors and a sharp-edged tool. Remove the screens that need to be repaired and set them aside.
The instructions for replacing a screen are on the replacement screen package and are easy to follow. Read them through once... here we go!
Carefully remove the old spline from the screen to be replaced-the spline is the rubber strip that sits in a channel on the back of the screen. The spline is what keeps the screening material tight in the channel and keeping bugs out. You may need to purchase new spline if it breaks or isn't in good shape. I used the tip of a pair of scissors to lift the end of the spline us and then slowly pulled the old spline out-it is still in good shape and I'll reuse it.
Next, remove the old screen. Lay the new screening material over the frame, allowing 1-2" overage. I had several frames that needed repairing- be sure to use your material wisely to get as many frames covered as possible (waste not, want not!).
Starting in one corner, press the screen and spline into the channel. Lay the spline on the new screen, along the path of the channel. Using the spline tool (use the wheel that is concave on its edge), roll it along the spline, pressing it and the screen into the channel until you get to the next corner. Check that the screen and spline are completely in the channel, roll the tool along any area that are not to ensure good adhesion.
The spline tool cannot reach into the corners so I used a flathead screwdriver tip to gently press the spline and screen into the corners.
Use the same technique along the remaining three
sides. You'll want to stretch the screening material ever-so-slightly as you roll but don't pull it tight! As the spline and screen is rolled into the channel, it will make the screen taut. If you find that the screen is saggy, pull out the spline and screen and re-roll, pulling the screen a bit more as you roll it back in.
When all four sides are complete, check the tautness of the screen and for any warp in the frame- a warp indicates that the screen may be too taut. A warped frame may not completely fit your screen opening , creating gaps that bugs can get through.
Cut any extra spline at the corner.
VERY carefully cut the excess screening material from the frame using a sharp edged tool- don't cut your new screen!
Ta da! Reset your screens into the window frame and enjoy the lovely breeze... bug-free! *Sigh*
The weather will change tomorrow and the windows will be closed again but when warmer weather returns, I will be ready to enjoy it without worrying about my window screens!