How to re-screen & cat-proof window screens

Written by nathan mcginty
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How to re-screen & cat-proof window screens
Cat-proof your window screens to keep Fluffy safe. (cat face image by Viktor Korpan from

On a lovely spring day, it's wonderful to be able to open the window and let some air into your house. Cats love sitting in open windows and watching the world go by. A screened window is perfect for this: Bugs stay out, and your cat stays in. But cats are curious, and eventually they'll investigate this mesh separating them from the outside world. You can re-screen and cat-proof your window screens so that you don't have to worry about kitty taking an unauthorised adventure while you're enjoying the nice weather.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Strong window screen
  • Spline roller
  • Sharp knife

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  1. 1

    Purchase a heavy screen for your window suitable for being poked at by cat claws. The two best choices are aluminium screens and solar screens, which are made out of very heavy nylon fibres that help repel the sun. The heavy material also helps keep the screen safe from feline attention.

  2. 2

    Remove the screen from the window if it isn't already gone. Set it on a flat surface such as a nearby floor. Turn it so the part of the screen with the tabs faces toward you.

  3. 3

    Use a screwdriver or sharp awl to pry out the end of the plastic spline from the channel. A pair of needle-nose pliers is also helpful. Pull the spline from the channel around the entire screen. Remove the screen.

  4. 4

    Unroll the new screen and stretch it out over the frame. Trim it to size. It doesn't have to be exact.

  5. 5

    Starting in one corner of the screen, press it into the channel with the spline and the spline roller, a tool that looks like a pizza cutter. You can use the old spline or purchase a new one. Slowly work your way around the screen, pressing the spline into the channel with the spline roller.

  6. 6

    Trim off any excess screen with a sharp knife.

Tips and warnings

  • Use caution when cutting the screen with the knife.

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