Types of Window Screens

Looking at the Different Types of Window Screens

Window screens are also called insect screens. They’re used to cover the opening of a window. Their main purpose is to protect against insects and flying debris. However, some also protect against harmful rays, unwanted light, and even inclement weather.

A screen stretches across the inside of a wood or metal frame. Screens for residential homes are usually made of aluminum, fiberglass, metal wire, nylon, or polyester. Industrial screens are usually made of galvanized steel or stainless steel. Less common materials are brass and copper.

There are several types of window screens. The one you choose will depend on your climate, the construction of your current windows, and cost. The main types of window screens include the following:

  • Solar screens are a common choice for homes and buildings in shadeless areas. They block out 80 to 90 percent of heat from the sun. Depending on the color, they can also block out unwanted light. Common light-blocking colors are black, brown, light brown, and gray.

Solar screens are more expensive than standard screens, but the cost savings on energy bills will make up for it. Prices for solar screens vary by manufacturer, size, and material. Prices typically start at $7.50 per square foot plus installation.

  • Security screens look like standard insect screens, but they’re much stronger. The frame is made of stainless steel or heavy gauge aluminum. The screen is usually stainless steel. They are resistant to thrown rocks, bottles, bricks, and repeated body blows. The frame is virtually pry-proof, and they’re easy to clean.

Prices for security screens vary greatly by manufacturer, material, size, and style. You can purchase a security window screen for as little as $50 or as much as $250.

  • Adjustable window screens adjust to fit many types of windows, but they’re commonly used for double hung windows. The frame is made of wood, aluminum, fiberglass, or other material. They fit snugly on the inside of the window frame and slide from side to side to adjust to size. They don’t require installation, so they’re cheaper than other types of screens.

Depending on the size, manufacturer, and material, adjustable window screens cost as little as $25 up to $100 or more.

  • Retractable window screens are like shades. They roll down when you need them and up when you don’t. They’re custom made to fit all types of windows and it takes only a few minutes to install them. Because these screens remain down only when needed, they outlast other screens by a few years.

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