How to Install a Flat Screen Spline

Written by nathan mcginty
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How to Install a Flat Screen Spline
Install a screen to help keep animals and insects from your house. (lizard on screen image by Pix by Marti from

Window screens let you open your windows to let in a cool breeze while at the same time keeping crawling bugs and other unwanted pests outside. The screen in a frame is held in place by a thin strip of plastic called a screen spline. The spline holds the screen in a channel that goes all the way around the frame. A tool called a spline roller helps push the spline down into the channel. Spline comes in many shapes. Flat screen spline may take a little effort to install, but the process is similar to other spline types.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Screen frame
  • Screen material
  • Screen spline
  • Flat-bladed screwdriver
  • Spline roller
  • Scissors

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  1. 1

    Lay the screen on a flat surface with plenty of room, such as a table, workbench or concrete floor.

  2. 2

    Stretch the screen out over the frame and roughly trim it to size.

  3. 3

    Press the spline into one corner of the screen channel. Use the edge of a flat bladed screwdriver to ensure that the spline is inserted all the way into the channel.

  4. 4

    Insert the spline roller into the channel. Follow the channel with the roller, pressing the spline into the channel as you make your way around the screen. Use the flat-bladed screwdriver to press the spline into the corners if needed.

  5. 5

    Insert the pull handles in the channel at the bottom of the screen before rolling out the spline. Roll the spline over the handles to secure them in place.

  6. 6

    Trim off the end of the spine when you've finished.

Tips and warnings

  • Ensure that you have the right size spline roller for the job. If it's too large, it won't fit in the channel. Test by rolling the spline in the empty channel.

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