Repair a Window Screen on the Cheap




About: A programmer ever since I laid my hands on a TRS-80 writing BASIC programs like mad-libs in 1990. Goes back to 1984 if you count my trance-like state induced by a PET computer. Now I get paid to do it. Wh...

In your home or apartment, you may have a window whose screen has a small hole in it. Here's a very quick and cheap way to prevent the bugs and tiny critters from gaining entry!

Step 1: Cut Some Transparent Tape

As a disclaimer, I've only done this with very small holes in a window screen. I'm not sure if it would work well for holes greater than 1"x1". That being said, gather your supplies:
  • transparent tape (scotch tape or packing tape) whose width is at least as wide as the hole
  • window screen removed from window for easy access
  • scissors

Use a pair of scissors to cut a neatly-trimmed square or rectangle of tape that is big enough to cover the hole on one side. Then cut a second piece exactly the same size.

Place one piece of tape over the hole in the screen and press firmly. Depending on whether the screening material is metal or fiberglass, the tape won't stick very well, but that's okay! We're not done yet.

Flip over the screen and apply the second piece of tape to the opposite side. Now press the two adhesive faces against each other at the location of the hole.

Pardon my craptastic GiMP illustration: the black lines representthe screen with a hole in it (the gap) and the blue lines represent the two pieces of tape "meeting" at the site of the hole.

The tape doesn't have to stick to the screen, just to itself.

Step 2: Bask in Your Success

Your screen is now repaired! It may not be pretty, but it's functional, and super-easy.



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    6 Discussions


    10 years ago on Introduction

    Not a bad idea, but I think it would look nicer and last longer if you took a needle and thread and basically made a little screen by stitching it over the hole.

    4 replies

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    Absolutely -- that's why I titled this instructable "... on the cheap". Yes, a proper repair will look better and last longer. That being said, this repair really just takes some tape and a couple of minutes, and I think it's the easiest possible solution (compared to the tedium of stitching, locating a swatch of screen). A good solution for renters (property repair is not your responsibility, but landlord won't fix it?).

    Dave KruschkeKozz

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Kozz's repair really fits in with the times we live in, especially young people who comprise "Renter Nation." And Kozz's solution would probably get a family through a West Nile Mosquito Virus season while allowing these people more time and energy to focus on all the other goings on in their lives. I think that Kozz's comment about the repair of rental property is very valid and relevant...


    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    Rather than making a screen by stitching over the hole try cutting the hole in the screen into a perfect rectangle then cutting a piece of replacement screen the same size as your rectangle and just sew the edges together. Superglue would probably also attach the patch to the rest of the screen.

    Dave Kruschkegregr

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    gregr and RyanPotter suggest a repair that goes back many, many years. But all this "stitching" makes this more than a five minute repair. Today's workers have less time and perhaps less patience for any kind of stitching (unless they are people who create Instructables).
    Moreover, if gregr cuts out a little rectangle of screen, gregr will notice that the border strands of this little screen patch can easily separate from this little rectangle. This is why the people of times past used an overlapping, but less attractive rectangle to give the stitching a more reliable grip.
    I have used superglue and it has many limitations. I can't imagine how super glue would succeed in holding gregr's "perfect rectangle" in place. However, I could imagine that one minute epoxy or five minute epoxy might make gregr's suggestion repair doable and effective...


    10 years ago on Introduction

    For larger holes just substitute with clear packing tape. I've used it to fix cracked windows too.