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Price Guide to Window Screens

In many climates, having the option of a breeze through the home can be a wonderful thing, and it can serve as a way to cool and refresh the space. However, when open doors are a privacy or insect concern, screens over the windows are the best option. Before determining whether window screens are ideal for a certain structure, homeowners can use this cost guide to learn about the pros and cons of window screens, the various types of materials used in screen construction, what is important to know about installation and what additional factors will influence the total cost of the project.

The Costs

  • Average Minimum Cost of Window Screens: $13 for a single screen and frame

  • Average Maximum Cost of Window Screens: $200 for a single screen and frame

Advantages of Window Screens

For most people, the number one advantage of having window screens is the option of allowing a breeze into the home. This is also a way to save on energy costs as it can replace the function of an air conditioner in some climates. Window screens also give residents a level of privacy, let the beauty of the outdoors inside the home and prevent bugs, birds, insects and rodents from coming into the home. 

Disadvantages of Window Screens

While window screens can be a wonderful addition to the home, they are not perfect. There are some drawbacks to window screens, and they should not be glossed over. Cost is a primary concern as the price of window screens can be expensive. Windows screens can also obscure a beautiful view from inside the home, and they are not effective against intruders. In areas where security is an issue, screens on windows may not be the best choice for a homeowner. While some window screens can be clawed or destroyed by pets, there are some varieties of window screen that are resistant to pets, but these tend to cost more upfront for the buyer.

Aluminum Window Screens

Window screens made from aluminum are one of the most popular materials on the market, and they are also typically one of the cheapest. Readily available in rolls as well as already built into frames to fit a window, aluminum window screens are very strong and durable, and they can last for upwards of a decade in the right climate. The size of the holes, or aluminum mesh, can vary among manufacturers, but in most cases, it will be suitable for screening out all but the very smallest flying insects. Aluminum window screens won't sag, which is common among other materials, and they are typically sealed with a finish to prevent rusting. Drawbacks to aluminum include a more difficult installation process, especially if the homeowner is replacing the screen within an existing window frame.

Fiberglass Window Screens

Along with aluminum, fiberglass is one of the most popular material choices for window screens. It is commonly available to purchase in a number of roll sizes and shapes, and it comes in colors like grey, black and white. Fiberglass is very affordable, which makes it a top pick for anyone on a budget. This material won't crease or wrinkle over time, and it is very simple to install. However, fiberglass window screens are not usually pet-proof. Cat claws or overeager dogs can rip holes through the screens, and this can lead to insects and debris getting inside or even a pet finding its way outside.

Pet-Resistant Window Screens

For those who want the look and flexibility of fiberglass window screens without the risk of pets tampering with them, pet-resistant window screens are readily available as an alternative. Made from an elastic material that stretches rather than snapping, pet-resistant screens are more expensive for windows, but they can provide pet owners and parents of small children peace of mind about leaving windows open in the home.

Bronze Window Screens

Also called copper window screens, this material is typically made up of a combination of copper and zinc, and it’s named more for its color than its makeup. Bronze window screens start out a bright gold hue, but they fade and darken quickly to become a more natural fit in the home. The upsides of bronze window screens include its incredible strength and durability as well as its resistance to corrosion and denting. However, this material is one of the most expensive options on the market, and it is not as commonly available for sale in stores and may require a special or custom purchase.

Factors Affecting the Total Price of Window Screens

Along with what material gets used in the construction of a window screen, there is a variety of different factors that can influence the total price. Size is one of the biggest determining factors when it comes to price, and so is shape. Larger screens cost more money to purchase and install, and any window that needs an unusual screen design may be more expensive as well. Customized windows that require screens will be perhaps the most costly option possible as screen makers will need to create specialty frames that fit the unique window shape. Other factors that can play a role in the total price of a window screen include the following:

  • Thickness and strength of the material

  • Size of the mesh holes, with smaller holes being more expensive

  • Quality and material of the screen frame

  • Screens designed especially to keep smaller insects out

  • The addition of a solar coating to reduce heat in the home

What to Know About Repairing and Replacing Window Screens

Before investing in window screens, homeowners should know more about what is necessary. When buying new screens for existing windows, it will be important to buy frames already fit with screen material. If there are holes in existing screens, however, it may be simpler and less expensive to remove the frame and simply replace or repair the screen material itself. Hiring a professional to deal with screen repair, replacement or installation tends to be upwards of $35 per hour, but many will require several hours of work as a set minimum.

Last updated on Jul 7, 2014

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