What Kind of Screen Is Best to Enclose a Porch?

On a warm summer's evening, relaxing on the porch with a cold drink is one of life's great pleasures. However, mosquitoes and other pests can quickly get in the way of your pleasure. Several types of screening are suitable for porches, depending on your needs and the demands of your climate.

Aluminum Screen

Some screening includes substances that prevent fading.

Sturdy aluminum screening is available in three colors, black, bright silver and charcoal, each with their own benefits. Described by Fine Home Building as "the least visible to the eye," aluminum screening allows you to still take in the view, in part due to its special, glare-reducing finish. For the best visibility though, black-colored aluminum screening is the top choice, though the light color of silver meshes well with a variety of paint colors.

Copper and Bronze Screens

For those living near the ocean, porch screens made of copper or bronze are ideal for standing up to corrosion caused by salty sea air. However, the color of copper changes over time, eventually taking on a blue tint that darkens to black, according to This Old House. Eventually, bronze screen, made from a mix of zinc and copper will darken, but it doesn't turn a different color entirely and is also stronger than that made of pure copper.

Vinyl-Coated Polyester

Vinyl-coated polyester screen is a safe choice for animal lovers, as it resists damage from the sharp claws of dogs and cats. At the same time, vinyl-coated polyester provides excellent visibility and is insect-proof as well. Available in gray and black, vinyl-coated polyester can also be placed along the bottom of a screened porch in combination with fiberglass screening above it. This way, the bottom is safe for pets, and the upper portion provides the benefits of fiberglass.

Fiberglass Screen

Protect your porch with fiberglass screen, which is ultra-tough and requires little in the way of care and maintenance. Made from glass yarn and covered in a layer of protective vinyl, fiberglass screen retains its color and appearance for years and doesn't corrode, scratch or shrink. It is also stain resistant and non-combustible, making it a fire-safe choice. Fiberglass screen is available in a selection of colors and weaves, making it easy to find a type suited to your needs.

About the Author

Hallie Engel is a food and lifestyle writer whose work has appeared in several international publications. She served as a restaurant critic for "Time Out Abu Dhabi" and "Time Out Amsterdam" and has also written about food culture in the United Arab Emirates for "M Magazine." She holds a bachelor's degree in communications and film studies from University of Amsterdam.