How to Make a Push Bar for a Screen Door
A push bar for a wooden screen door absorbs the impact of constant pushing and pulling, providing a handle for gripping. Having a sturdy handle reduces the chance of pushing through or distorting the delicate screen material. Push bars are longer than push handles, and generally run horizontally across the center section of the screen door or vertically up the side panel. A quick trip to the hardware store should provide the materials for a durable, attractive wooden screen door push bar.
Decide whether to mount the push bar horizontally or vertically. Measure the total length of the space on the wooden panel of the screen door. Plan on a push bar that measures anywhere from 20 to 28 inches to provide enough leverage to open and close the doors. For example, choose to make a push bar that is 22 inches and mounts horizontally.
Make three marks on the wooden panel of the screen door with a pencil, at the left, center and right.
Measure and cut the dowel to match the measurement. For example, if you desire a 22-inch push bar, cut the dowel to 22 inches.
Sand and paint the dowel and dowel end caps in the color you desire. Stain them if the wood parts of your door are a natural color. Allow the dowel and dowel end caps to dry completely, about two hours.
Screw in the outside screw eyes 1 inch inside the locations you marked on the wooden panel. For example, where you made marks for 22 inches, screw the left screw eye in 1 inch left from the left mark. Screw the right screw eye 1 inch to the right of the right mark. Screw the center screw eye exactly on the mark. This leaves room for the dowel to protrude past the screw eyes to accept the dowel end caps.
Apply wood glue to the inside of one of the dowel end caps. Insert one end of the dowel and allow it to dry for about 30 minutes.
Insert the dowel through the screw eyes horizontally. Push the dowel end cap until it rests snugly against the screw eye.
Apply wood glue inside the other dowel end cap and press it onto the uncapped end of the dowel. Press it tightly so both dowel end caps rest against the screw eyes, and the dowel cannot move back and forth. Allow it to dry for 30 minutes.
- Mounting a vertical push bar follows the same steps as a horizontal one; just measure up and down, align the screw eyes horizontally and insert the capped dowel from the top down.
Jenna Marie has been editing and writing professionally since 1993. Her editing background includes newspapers, magazines and books, and her articles have appeared in print and on websites such as Life123 and AccessNurses. She specializes in writing about parenting, frugal living, real estate, travel and food. Her nonfiction book was published in 2008. She earned a Bachelor of Science in journalism from Utah State University.
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