How to Screen in My Porch

Sitting out on your deck is an enjoyable way to relax after a long day, but the insects drive you indoors.

Screens keep insiects from bothering porch occupants during summer relaxation.Screens keep insiects from bothering porch occupants during summer relaxation.
Screening in your existing porch is a solution to this problem. You gain extra living space yet still take pleasure in the outdoors. This is accomplished with a little effort by the home do-it-yourselfer possessing the proper skills, knowledge and tools.

Measure the distances between posts on your existing porch to determine the size of the screen framework needed. If necessary, attach more posts using 4-by-4-lumber to fill in large gaps between existing posts.

Create frameworks for the screens using 2-by-2-lumber. Use a router to make a groove on the outside of the framework. This will accommodate the spline rubber used to attach the screen to the framework. Paint or stain the framework to match the porch.

Stretch screen mesh around the framework. Choose mesh appropriate to the type of insects that are common to your region. Mesh size is determined by the number of holes per square inch. Common screen mesh is 18 by 14; however, 20 by 20 will ensure that even the smallest of pests is kept at bay.

Apply the spline rubber into the groove around the perimeter of the framework to secure the screen in place. Pull taut and trim excess mesh.

Attach the finished framework to the porch posts using 3-inch exterior deck screws.

Things You Will Need

  • 4-by-4-inch posts
  • 2-by-2-inch lumber
  • Router
  • Screen mesh
  • Spline rubber
  • Utility knife
  • 3-inch deck screws

Tip

  • An alternative to building your own framework is to purchase a screen frame kit. These kits come in a variety of sizes and are available at home improvement stores.

About the Author

Keith Allen, a 1979 graduate of Valley City State College, has worked at a variety of jobs including computer operator, medical clinic manager, radio talk show host and potato sorter. For over five years he has worked as a newspaper reporter and historic researcher. His works have appeared in regional newspapers in North Dakota and in "North Dakota Horizons" and "Cowboys and Indians" magazines.