how to install a wooden screen door

two people looking at their wooden screen door from the driveway of their home
Tools Needed
1 Tape Measure
2 Screwdriver
3 Drill
4 Drill Bits
Materials Needed
1 Pencil
2 Paint or Stain
3 Paint Brush
4 Rags
Total Cost
$25-$50
Find a handyman
Estimated Time
2-3 Hours
Skill Level: Advanced
The total cost and duration may vary when hiring a handyman!

Project Overview

four different styles of wooden screen doors shown side by side

One method to help improve airflow through your home, especially on temperate spring or fall days, is to leave your doors open. But, most people want to keep a barrier between the outside world and the interior of their home, especially if they have small children or pets. A screen door can be a perfect solution, helping to let gentle breezes come through while keeping bugs out.

Installing a wooden screen door is actually pretty simple, and most homeowners can manage this project with tools they have on hand. Plus, premade screen doors and hardware kits aren’t particularly expensive, making this a cost-effective option to make your home more comfortable.

Step-By-Step Instructions

1

Measure And Purchase Your Door

front door of a house with a screen door

To make sure you purchase a properly size door, you want to measure the existing exterior door and the associated opening. Record the heights and widths, and take the information with you to help you buy the right door.

Once you have the measurements, you can head to the home improvement store and buy a door and the hardware kit. Often, you’ll want to buy a door that is just slightly smaller than the door frame to allow it to swing comfortably. Often, you’ll have multiple styles to choose from, allowing you to select options that reflect your personal style.

You may see finished and unfinished doors available. Finished doors will be painted or stained, and typically sealed, making them suitable for immediate installation. Unfinished doors may need to be painted or stained and sealed before you put it up.

2

Paint or Stain

person using a paintbrush to paint a door a dark brown color

If you choose an unfinished door, you’ll want to paint or stain it, and apply sealant (if necessary), before you hang it. For paint, you’ll want to apply one coat, let it dry, and then add a second coat. Take care to avoid runs and drips with each coat.

For stains and sealants, follow the directions on the package to achieve the desired result.

3

Mark Out the Hinges on Door

up close of a door hinge

Now that the door is ready, you’ll need to identify where the hinges need to be located on the door. Typically, you’ll want the hinges on the screen door to be on the same side of the door opening as the hinges for your exterior door. Determine which side of the door should be located towards the interior.

If you have two hinges in your kit, one will need to be located about 8 inches from the top of the door while the second should be placed about 10 inches from the bottom. If you have three hinges, you’ll place the top and bottom hinges 8 inches from each end and the third hinge in the center.

With the door on a flat surface, use the tape measure to help position the hinges, with the hinge itself pointed towards the exterior of the screen door. Then, using the pencil, mark the screw holes.

4

Drill Door Pilot Holes

person using a powerdrill to pilot holes in the door frame

After the positions of the screws have been marked, you can set the hinges aside. Use a drill with a slim drill bit to create a pilot hole for each screw. Drill to a depth no deeper than the length of the screws included in the kit.

Realign the hinges, with the hinged side pointing towards the exterior of the door, and attach the hinges using the provided screws. You may be able to add the screws using a traditional screwdriver or with a drill, if it proves difficult.

Keep rotating the screws clockwise until they are flush with the door. Repeat the process for each hinge.

5

Prepare the Door Frame

person using a powerdrill to drill pilot holes in the door frame

Once the hinges are attached to the door, you’ll need to mark the locations of the screw holes needed to connect the hinges to the door frame. First, get a ¼ inch thick spacer, such as a spare piece of wood, and use it to prop the bottom of the door while you align the screen door in the opening.

Carefully shift the screen door into the open position, making sure to maintain proper spacing, and mark the screw holes for each hinge. Take the door down and set it aside.

6

Attach the Door

person positioning a door slab in the doorway

Using the same drill bit and depth measurement as before, drill pilot holes for each screw location. After the pilot holes are handled, you can realign the hinges on the door frame. Then, using a screwdriver or drill to add the screws to each hinge.

Now that the door is up, you can add a simple door pull to each side. Place the door handle in the desired location and use a drill to secure it with the included screws. If your kit comes with a tension spring, you should have two hooks and a spring. Attach the hooks based on the manufacturer’s instructions, as the required placement may vary from kit to kit.

Conclusion

At this point, you are ready to enjoy your new wood screen door. Do keep in mind that, if your door doesn’t come with a tension spring, you may want to add a small locking mechanism to keep it in place when your exterior door is open. Otherwise, you’re all set.

How To Install A Wooden Screen Door

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  1. Cedar Contemporary Retractable Screen Door w/ 8 Years warranty Full Viewview
    Cedar Contemporary Retractable Screen Door w/ 8 Years warranty Full View
    Craftmax Screen Doors offer a practical and beautiful way to improve the exterior of your home. Now, with the new stay-open feature, your door is more convenient than ever – tap the button to keep the door open until you’re done bringing in the groceries, and then tap one more time to have it close slowly and safely. Multiple options are available, all with the same durable aluminum frame and wire mesh construction. Choose from interchangeable storm screen designs, including full view, retractable, and ventilating door types.All panels are tempered glass for durability and energy efficiency, and all insect screens are high-tension mesh for strength. Mesh and panel can be changed in seconds with an easy-to-complete changing process. All brackets and hinges are highest-quality aluminum for weather resistance and long life. Doors are available in all standard sizes and are 1.5 to 2 inches thick depending on type.
    Estimated Price: $99.00+
  2. Fir Traditional Hinged Screen Door w/ 4 Years warranty Full Viewview
    Fir Traditional Hinged Screen Door w/ 4 Years warranty Full View
    Craftmax Screen Doors offer a practical and beautiful way to improve the exterior of your home. Now, with the new stay-open feature, your door is more convenient than ever – tap the button to keep the door open until you’re done bringing in the groceries, and then tap one more time to have it close slowly and safely. Multiple options are available, all with the same durable aluminum frame and wire mesh construction. Choose from interchangeable storm screen designs, including full view, retractable, and ventilating door types.All panels are tempered glass for durability and energy efficiency, and all insect screens are high-tension mesh for strength. Mesh and panel can be changed in seconds with an easy-to-complete changing process. All brackets and hinges are highest-quality aluminum for weather resistance and long life. Doors are available in all standard sizes and are 1.5 to 2 inches thick depending on type.
    Estimated Price: $99.00+
  3. White Classic Sliding Screen Door w/ 3 Years warranty Full Viewview
    White Classic Sliding Screen Door w/ 3 Years warranty Full View
    Craftmax Screen Doors offer a practical and beautiful way to improve the exterior of your home. Now, with the new stay-open feature, your door is more convenient than ever – tap the button to keep the door open until you’re done bringing in the groceries, and then tap one more time to have it close slowly and safely. Multiple options are available, all with the same durable aluminum frame and wire mesh construction. Choose from interchangeable storm screen designs, including full view, retractable, and ventilating door types.All panels are tempered glass for durability and energy efficiency, and all insect screens are high-tension mesh for strength. Mesh and panel can be changed in seconds with an easy-to-complete changing process. All brackets and hinges are highest-quality aluminum for weather resistance and long life. Doors are available in all standard sizes and are 1.5 to 2 inches thick depending on type.
    Estimated Price: $99.00+
  4. Oak Traditional Sliding Screen Door w/ 3 Years warranty Full Viewview
    Oak Traditional Sliding Screen Door w/ 3 Years warranty Full View
    Craftmax Screen Doors offer a practical and beautiful way to improve the exterior of your home. Now, with the new stay-open feature, your door is more convenient than ever – tap the button to keep the door open until you’re done bringing in the groceries, and then tap one more time to have it close slowly and safely. Multiple options are available, all with the same durable aluminum frame and wire mesh construction. Choose from interchangeable storm screen designs, including full view, retractable, and ventilating door types.All panels are tempered glass for durability and energy efficiency, and all insect screens are high-tension mesh for strength. Mesh and panel can be changed in seconds with an easy-to-complete changing process. All brackets and hinges are highest-quality aluminum for weather resistance and long life. Doors are available in all standard sizes and are 1.5 to 2 inches thick depending on type.
    Estimated Price: $99.00+
  5. Cherry Rustic Retractable Screen Door w/ 6 Years warranty High Viewview
    Cherry Rustic Retractable Screen Door w/ 6 Years warranty High View
    Craftmax Screen Doors offer a practical and beautiful way to improve the exterior of your home. Now, with the new stay-open feature, your door is more convenient than ever – tap the button to keep the door open until you’re done bringing in the groceries, and then tap one more time to have it close slowly and safely. Multiple options are available, all with the same durable aluminum frame and wire mesh construction. Choose from interchangeable storm screen designs, including full view, retractable, and ventilating door types.All panels are tempered glass for durability and energy efficiency, and all insect screens are high-tension mesh for strength. Mesh and panel can be changed in seconds with an easy-to-complete changing process. All brackets and hinges are highest-quality aluminum for weather resistance and long life. Doors are available in all standard sizes and are 1.5 to 2 inches thick depending on type.
    Estimated Price: $99.00+
  6. Mahogany Rustic Hinged Screen Door w/ 4 Years warranty Full Viewview
    Mahogany Rustic Hinged Screen Door w/ 4 Years warranty Full View
    Craftmax Screen Doors offer a practical and beautiful way to improve the exterior of your home. Now, with the new stay-open feature, your door is more convenient than ever – tap the button to keep the door open until you’re done bringing in the groceries, and then tap one more time to have it close slowly and safely. Multiple options are available, all with the same durable aluminum frame and wire mesh construction. Choose from interchangeable storm screen designs, including full view, retractable, and ventilating door types.All panels are tempered glass for durability and energy efficiency, and all insect screens are high-tension mesh for strength. Mesh and panel can be changed in seconds with an easy-to-complete changing process. All brackets and hinges are highest-quality aluminum for weather resistance and long life. Doors are available in all standard sizes and are 1.5 to 2 inches thick depending on type.
    Estimated Price: $99.00+
  7. we’ve got all the answers...
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  8. White Contemporary Sliding Screen Door w/ 3 Years warranty High Viewview
    White Contemporary Sliding Screen Door w/ 3 Years warranty High View
    Craftmax Screen Doors offer a practical and beautiful way to improve the exterior of your home. Now, with the new stay-open feature, your door is more convenient than ever – tap the button to keep the door open until you’re done bringing in the groceries, and then tap one more time to have it close slowly and safely. Multiple options are available, all with the same durable aluminum frame and wire mesh construction. Choose from interchangeable storm screen designs, including full view, retractable, and ventilating door types.All panels are tempered glass for durability and energy efficiency, and all insect screens are high-tension mesh for strength. Mesh and panel can be changed in seconds with an easy-to-complete changing process. All brackets and hinges are highest-quality aluminum for weather resistance and long life. Doors are available in all standard sizes and are 1.5 to 2 inches thick depending on type.
    Estimated Price: $99.00+
  9. Cedar Rustic Sliding Screen Door w/ 5 Years warranty Mid Viewview
    Cedar Rustic Sliding Screen Door w/ 5 Years warranty Mid View
    Craftmax Screen Doors offer a practical and beautiful way to improve the exterior of your home. Now, with the new stay-open feature, your door is more convenient than ever – tap the button to keep the door open until you’re done bringing in the groceries, and then tap one more time to have it close slowly and safely. Multiple options are available, all with the same durable aluminum frame and wire mesh construction. Choose from interchangeable storm screen designs, including full view, retractable, and ventilating door types.All panels are tempered glass for durability and energy efficiency, and all insect screens are high-tension mesh for strength. Mesh and panel can be changed in seconds with an easy-to-complete changing process. All brackets and hinges are highest-quality aluminum for weather resistance and long life. Doors are available in all standard sizes and are 1.5 to 2 inches thick depending on type.
    Estimated Price: $99.00+
  10. Cherry Contemporary Retractable Screen Door w/ 7 Years warranty Full Viewview
    Cherry Contemporary Retractable Screen Door w/ 7 Years warranty Full View
    Craftmax Screen Doors offer a practical and beautiful way to improve the exterior of your home. Now, with the new stay-open feature, your door is more convenient than ever – tap the button to keep the door open until you’re done bringing in the groceries, and then tap one more time to have it close slowly and safely. Multiple options are available, all with the same durable aluminum frame and wire mesh construction. Choose from interchangeable storm screen designs, including full view, retractable, and ventilating door types.All panels are tempered glass for durability and energy efficiency, and all insect screens are high-tension mesh for strength. Mesh and panel can be changed in seconds with an easy-to-complete changing process. All brackets and hinges are highest-quality aluminum for weather resistance and long life. Doors are available in all standard sizes and are 1.5 to 2 inches thick depending on type.
    Estimated Price: $99.00+
  11. Mahogany Contemporary Hinged Screen Door w/ 8 Years warranty Full Viewview
    Mahogany Contemporary Hinged Screen Door w/ 8 Years warranty Full View
    Craftmax Screen Doors offer a practical and beautiful way to improve the exterior of your home. Now, with the new stay-open feature, your door is more convenient than ever – tap the button to keep the door open until you’re done bringing in the groceries, and then tap one more time to have it close slowly and safely. Multiple options are available, all with the same durable aluminum frame and wire mesh construction. Choose from interchangeable storm screen designs, including full view, retractable, and ventilating door types.All panels are tempered glass for durability and energy efficiency, and all insect screens are high-tension mesh for strength. Mesh and panel can be changed in seconds with an easy-to-complete changing process. All brackets and hinges are highest-quality aluminum for weather resistance and long life. Doors are available in all standard sizes and are 1.5 to 2 inches thick depending on type.
    Estimated Price: $99.00+
  12. Cedar Classic Sliding Screen Door w/ 10 Years warranty High Viewview
    Cedar Classic Sliding Screen Door w/ 10 Years warranty High View
    Craftmax Screen Doors offer a practical and beautiful way to improve the exterior of your home. Now, with the new stay-open feature, your door is more convenient than ever – tap the button to keep the door open until you’re done bringing in the groceries, and then tap one more time to have it close slowly and safely. Multiple options are available, all with the same durable aluminum frame and wire mesh construction. Choose from interchangeable storm screen designs, including full view, retractable, and ventilating door types.All panels are tempered glass for durability and energy efficiency, and all insect screens are high-tension mesh for strength. Mesh and panel can be changed in seconds with an easy-to-complete changing process. All brackets and hinges are highest-quality aluminum for weather resistance and long life. Doors are available in all standard sizes and are 1.5 to 2 inches thick depending on type.
    Estimated Price: $99.00+
  13. White Traditional Sliding Screen Door w/ 5 Years warranty High Viewview
    White Traditional Sliding Screen Door w/ 5 Years warranty High View
    Craftmax Screen Doors offer a practical and beautiful way to improve the exterior of your home. Now, with the new stay-open feature, your door is more convenient than ever – tap the button to keep the door open until you’re done bringing in the groceries, and then tap one more time to have it close slowly and safely. Multiple options are available, all with the same durable aluminum frame and wire mesh construction. Choose from interchangeable storm screen designs, including full view, retractable, and ventilating door types.All panels are tempered glass for durability and energy efficiency, and all insect screens are high-tension mesh for strength. Mesh and panel can be changed in seconds with an easy-to-complete changing process. All brackets and hinges are highest-quality aluminum for weather resistance and long life. Doors are available in all standard sizes and are 1.5 to 2 inches thick depending on type.
    Estimated Price: $99.00+
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Questions And Answers

How do you measure a screen door for replacement?

Measure for the height by measuring from the sill to the exterior rim underside, at the top of your door. For the width, measure at the bottom, center, and top. Write the measurements down and use the shortest measurement. It is always best to measure twice to ensure accuracy.

How do you remove a sliding screen door?

In order to remove the sliding screen door, you will need a screwdriver. Look at the top of the door and remove the cartridge screws. Once you have removed this you should be able to lift the door off of the track and remove it for cleaning or maintenance.

What is the best material for a screen door?

Screen fabrics today take on a new role in allowing for minimization of UV fading and heat gain. The most common materials used today are vinyl and aluminum-coated fiberglass. The vinyl coating, however, outsells the aluminum by as much as three to one, due to it being half the cost.

How do you clean the mesh on a screen door?

First, use a hose to wet the screen. Then, use a soft cloth dipped in a cleaning solution of your choice. Now, wipe down screens on each side until all the grime and dirt has been removed. Be sure that you are gentle as to not damage the screen.

Are there different size mesh for screen doors?

There are many different sizes. There will be some standard sizes that you can buy. These are 30, 32, and 36 inches. The standard door height is 80 inches. However, if you can get a custom size if your needed size does not fit into the standard sizes.

Why do we use screen doors?

Screen doors are used for a variety of reasons. They keep insects and pests out. They also allow fresh air to breeze throughout your home. Screen doors allow for a beautiful view outdoors as well.

How do you measure a screen door?

To measure a screen door, you start by measuring the existing width of your door. Then, measure the existing height of the door. After that, measure the door’s flat molding on both sides and on top of the door.

How do you determine the swing of a screen door?

If the door hinges are placed on the right side, you should get a right swing door. When your door is open, put your back facing the jamb. Is the doorknob near your left hand? If so, it is a left swing door and vice versa.

Do screen doors come already assembled?

This would vary based on where you get your screen door and how much you are paying for it. However, yes, there are some pre-hung screen doors that you can get.

how do you change the way the screen door opens?

First, you will take all the hardware off from the door. Then, you take the door off from its frame. You will then reassemble the hardware on the other side of the door and reinstall the door.

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INTERESTING RESOURCES

front door screen door

Front Screen Doors

When you think about the doors that protect your home from the outside, one of the doors you might have or want on your home is one of the front screen doors. In the summer, you can open your main door and let the fresh air in through the screen. If you are one that like the smell of freshly cut grass, having the door open will let that aroma waft through your house. When the temperatures get a little colder, you can have an added storm door or storm glass added to still see outdoors, while keeping your home warm as well. Just that little extra sunshine will brighten your winter day. There are many options to choose from when thinking about the front screen doors. If you take these things into consideration, you will have a better idea on deciding which type of the front screen doors you would like to have on your home. Looking at all of your options while remembering your budget will help you make the investment in your home that comes with installing a nice front screen door. read more

Door Glass

cheap screen door

Door Colors and Finishes

retractable screen door

Storm Screen Door Types

Screen Door For Front Door
screen door with dog door

Screen Door With Dog Door

If you have a pet that you allow to go out and come in on its own, you’re going to want a screen door with a dog door. Screen doors with dog doors built in allow you the fresh air of a screen door with the convenience of a pet door. They’re no more difficult to install than a standard screen door. Which one you choose will depend on a few different variables, including the size of your pet and expected use. There are pros and cons to each installation type, so you’ll need to evaluate which is better for your needs. read more

Making the Mount

screen door with doggy door

Measure for Measure

door going through screen door

Outside In

screen door with dog door built in
 metal screen doors

Metal Screen Doors

When you think of a metal screen door, you might think of the classic metal screen door, which is often made from aluminum. Looking at Grandma’s house with the screen door on it, just remember she needed to have it so the air could flow through it, but you don’t have to have that old-fashioned door on your home. However, aluminum screen doors are far from the only game in town. Whichever one you choose depends on what you’re looking for in a metal screen door. If you’re considering a metal screen door, one of the reasons behind your choice is likely security. Each metal door material has its own pros and cons, so you’ll need to decide what’s important to you. In addition, as with all door choices, another major factor in making a decision is how much maintenance the door will need and  if you can handle that. Another factor, of course, is the amount of your budget and want to invest. That might be a bigger factor for you than security, so be sure to evaluate your needs thoroughly. read more

Securing the Premises

 metal screen door

Weathering the Water

 aluminum screen doors

Done in the Sun

 steel screen door
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