Problem screens

Has anyone ever had screen tear from rolling the screen into the groove?

I did a whole house worth of screens that were fiberglass and I replaced with aluminum, and had to redo a bunch because the screen would tear. It was like the groove was smaller that the roller.

Is this because I used a different material? I have found that the fiberglass screen is easier to work with however most people want aluminum.

Any tips or tricks on how to avoid this would be greatly appreciated.


I’m sure Kate’s husband will have an answer for you.

In case you don’t know who Kate is, she is Carter and Luke’s mom.

Man, What a help. Thanks.

Has any one had this problem?


There are many different size rollers. It is quite possible you are using one too large for the groove in the screen frame. When you roll the spline in make sure you have the roller parallel to the frame. If you twist or angle the roller any way there is more chance of tearing the screen material. And go slow. I find if I rush too much I tear screen. Also check if the frame is straight.

Another thing could be that the spline you are using is too large for the groove.

Fiberglass is for sure easier to work with. I do not like working with aluminum screen material and only re-screen with it if a customer insists (which is very, very rare).

I haven’t found that people want aluminum more than fiberglass, in fact I have noticed people don’t even know the difference or what they even have in their windows. Why do you think you have found that people like aluminum over fiberglass?

Hope I helped a bit,

Kate’s Husband

I have two rollers one small one from hd and a larger one with bearings from an online source. I was using the small one. How many do you use?

If anything I had it angled to the outside edge after 3 or so redos, but no matter what I did the screen just kept tearing.

I use a peg board jig for this.

If replacing fiberglass with aluminum screen would you need to use a smaller diameter spline?

I think I might have done this myself.

You did, Thanks

I too only try to work with fiberglass. If they have pets or kids and they require anything stronger then I use ‘pet screen’ (claims to be 7 times stronger) and charge a lot more.

I will definitely do this in the future.

Thanks guys!

My main roller is the wood handle type with metal rollers. I also have an all plastic constructed tool but have yet to use it. It may be gentler with aluminum.

I try to keep the tool straight. Even with fiberglass I have cut the mesh because it was on an angle.

Got a pic of this? I’m thinking of constructing a portable jig but need ideas. Thanks in advance.

I believe the general rule is, “the thicker the mesh, the smaller the spline.”

A pic of that Jig will be great, and if is possible to make it portable even better.

I bought mine from this place. It seamed like a good idea but I rarely use it, I usually just use the roles of holes to make sure the frame is square. I will use it to straighten out frames with minor bends in them.

Thanks for the info BV

I saw this yesterday while searching the web for screen jigs. Some places sell the same jig for twice as much as the link you posted.

So far I’ve been doing screens on site minus any kind of jig system. (I really haven’t done a lot of screens to date) I’m sure with a lot of frames and especially smaller ones it would take more time to set up the rig than to do without. If ever I feel the need to have one I’ll probably make my own.