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How To Repair Replace Screen Door Screens

Updated on February 28, 2011


Hi!  I replaced a screen door screen for the first time in my life today. Fixing a screen door screen is not particularly hard to do.  Honestly, the shrub near your home is more mechanical than I am, so if I can install a screen, you can too!

I'll also apologize in advance for not taking pictures while I did the repair. I didn't think of writing this article until the next day (and could have kicked myself for not thinking of this sooner :-)

Please read on to learn how to replace screen door screens.

Before You Begin to Repair Replace Screen Door Screen

Go out and buy a screen door repair tool that I have pictured below.


Buy a screen that is able to overlap the door window at least a couple inches on each side.

Buy a spline (looks like a round, long gasket) that is equal to the diameter of the spline holding your screen in. See steps and pictures in rest of the article to see what I mean.

Have a utility knife handy

Have a pair of pliers handy

Screen Repair Tool

Step 1 Remove Screen Door

The first step you'll want to do is remove the screen door and lay it flat on the ground.  Lay it down on a firm flat surface.

Screen Spline

Screen Spline
Screen Spline

Find the Screen Spline

With the screen door laying on the ground, look for the screen spline. My great friend Jackie is pointing to the screen door gasket in the photo above. It looks like a long, round, dark, rubber string that runs along each side of the screen.

Remove The Screen Spline

Pull the screen spline out. This might not be easy. I took a utility knife and sliced the screen door spline lengthwise for a couple inches in one of the corners. From there I was able to take pliers, grab the end of the screen door spline and pull out.

Remove the Screen

Once you have pulled out the screen gasket, remove and discard the old screen.

Lay New Screen Over the Door

Take the new screen and lay it over the screen door. Lay it so that at least two inches extend beyond the screen door gasket groove.

Run Screen Installation Tool Through Groove

Roll the screen repair tool (pizza cutter looking tool) in two of the grooves so that the screen gets pushed into the grooves. Do this of course with the door still on the ground. Do only two sides for now. Do the groove along the top of the door then one of the sides.

Install The Spline

Start at the corner where the two grooves your just rolled out come together. Press the screen door spline into one of the grooves as close to the corner as possible. Then, continue to press the spline along the entire groove using the screen tool

Repeat this process for the other groove your pressed the screen into as well. Start the second spline at the corner that the first spline shares. Install/roll away from the first spline.

I am sorry to say that normally when you do this, you would have the door removed and laying on the ground. In this picture, the door is already installed. I forgot to take a picture when it was on the ground but still wanted to give you an idea of what the tool looks like against the spline. Do this step while the door is laying flat on the ground. The picture is inaccurate but it will give you an idea of how to start rolling close to the corner.

Pressing the Spline into The Door

Pressing the Spline into The Door
Pressing the Spline into The Door

Run Screen Installation Tool Through Other Two Grooves

Run the screen installation tool through the other two grooves. When you do this, always start the groove at the corner of one of the splines you already installed and work your way away from that spline along the long groove. This will help you to keep the screen tight. Repeat for the other groove.

Install Gasket in Final Two Grooves

Install the gasket along the long groove working away from the other spline Like above, use the screen tool grooved-side to work the spline into the groove.

Do same for the final groove.

Go Over Gasket Again and Reinstall Door

Before reinstalling the door, inspect the gasket once again to be sure it is firmly in the screen door groove.  If it isn't, go over the screen again with the screen door tool.


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    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 3 years ago

      I love the picture of the tool and remember seeing it in my father's tool chest, never having any idea what it was for. It brought back lots of nice memories of my Dad. Thanks for this very informative and well done hub. You make it look easy to fix a screen. Rated up, interesting, awesome, and interesting.

    • TurtleDog profile image

      TurtleDog 4 years ago

      Thanks Jeremy ! That was an inspiration for fixing a screen that was run through by a child .... quite literally.... a friend's son (a really great kid) tore right through the screen. Totally demolished it lol. Thanks for the comment

    • profile image

      Jeremy 4 years ago

      Thanks for the insight and how to my dog was running last night in the dark something startled him and he thought our cloth mesh screen door was open... He ran right right through it.... Took the whole corner out. I was rolling on the floor laughing. My dog having no idea what just happened was rolling on the floor with me, he thought it was time to play. The only one not laughing was my wife. XD

    • TurtleDog profile image

      TurtleDog 7 years ago

      Ha! Not hurt until I beat them! Only kidding. I couldn't kick my own butt. He's not my child but it was the first time I saw him really feel embarrassed for something he did. I felt bad for him. I told him we all do it even as grown ups. Seriously true I might add. Screens can be invisible and I've walked my nose right into it before.

    • 2besure profile image

      Pamela Lipscomb 7 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina

      LOL! I hop they didn't get hurt.

    • TurtleDog profile image

      TurtleDog 7 years ago

      Thanks 2besure for the comment. Yeah, being able to replace screens is essential for people with pets.

      Kids too I might add! I wrote this article not long after a nine year old ran straight through the screen at a house we were renting for vacation last summer.

      Thanks again!

    • 2besure profile image

      Pamela Lipscomb 7 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina

      This is great to know! I have two cats and when they can't get in, the screen takes a beating.