How to Repair a Screen in a Wood Frame

House screen door
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  • 01 of 07

    Repair a Screen in a Wooden Frame

    Replacing a screen in a wooden window screen frame or wooden screen door that uses staples to fasten the screen to the wood frame requires a special technique, but it's pretty easy to do if you know how. This tutorial will walk you through the steps involved in replacing a damaged screen in a wood frame fastened with staples. The technique works for windows and door screens about a half a door in height.

    If your wood window frame uses retaining spline instead of staples to fasten the screen to the wood frame, then use the technique for repairing an aluminum frame screen door.

    Tools and Materials Needed

    • Replacement screen material; mesh of 18" x 14" strand count or finer
    • 1x2 wooden blocks
    • Utility knife
    • 1x4 wooden wedges
    • Carpenter's square
    • Screwdriver and screws
    Continue to 2 of 7 below.
  • 02 of 07

    Carefully Remove Old Trim and Screen Material

    First, you need to remove the old screen material to get the wood frame bare. However before you can remove the screening, you'll need to remove the wood molding that conceals the staples fastening the screen to the frame.

    1. Using a flat blade screwdriver or wood chisel, carefully separate the trim molding from the wood frame on each side of the frame.
    2. Take care not to break the wood molding while lifting and separating the trim from the frame.
    3. Remove the old nails from the trim molding.
    4. Use the flat blade screwdriver to pry the staples up that fasten the screen material to the frame.
    Continue to 3 of 7 below.
  • 03 of 07

    Fasten Screen Anchor Block

    Screens being installed in wood frames need to be stretched very tight during installation so they are tight while being fastened down and you don't end up with a saggy screen.

    The "wedge" technique is what you will use to tighten the screen. It involves an anchor block and wedges that pull the screen taut. First, you need to make the wood anchor blocks:

    1. Cut two lengths of 1x2 about 4" wider than the wood frame.
    2. Screw one strip down 3" from the top edge of the wood frame. Leave off the second strip at this time.
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  • 04 of 07

    Make Tightening Wedges

    Next, you'll make a simple wedge to tighten the screening.

    1. Cut a strip of 1x4 wood the width of the anchor block.
    2. Cut the wood strip diagonally creating two wedge pieces.
    3. Position the wedges between the anchor block and the screen frame which should be about 3" from the anchor block.
    Continue to 5 of 7 below.
  • 05 of 07

    Insert Screen Material Into Frame and Blocks

    The next step involves cutting the screen material and anchoring it to the bottom of the wood frame and to the wood anchor block.

    • Cut the screen material 2" wider and 8" longer than the outside dimensions of the screen frame.
    • Staple one end of the screen material to the bottom of the wood frame.
    • With the screen frame about 3" away from the anchor block, place the other end of the screen material over the top of the frame and over the first wood anchor block.
    • Place the second wood anchor block on top of the screen material and the first anchor block, sandwiching the screen between the two anchor blocks.
    • Screw the two anchor blocks together holding the screen material firmly in place.
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  • 06 of 07

    Drive Wedges Together and Tighten Screening

    Now you must tighten the screen material over the frame.

    1. With the 1x4 wedges between the screen frame and the anchor blocks, tap the wedges together to force the screen frame and anchor block apart, thereby tightening the screen material.
    2. Tap wedges together until screen material is very taut.
    Continue to 7 of 7 below.
  • 07 of 07

    Fasten and Trim Screening

    With the screen tight, you now fasten the screen to the frame.

    1. Staple the screening to the frame every 2" all along the perimeter.
    2. Trim the excess screen material with a utility knife.
    3. Replace trim molding with small finishing nails or brads.
    4. To prevent rusting of the nails, countersink the nails and putty over them.