Retractable screens are a vast improvement over fixed screens. Not only can you open them to keep them out of the way for window cleaning, you can also use them in areas like a kitchen pass-through window. These screens do require a bit more care than standard fixed screens to ensure they remain in good repair and fully operational. The following tips can help.
Tip #1: Retract them in poor weather
Wind, hail, and ice buildup are the most common dangers to a retractable screen. Fortunately, these are some of the easiest dangers to avoid. As part of your fall home maintenance, make sure you retract all the screens on your windows so that they can't get damaged. It's also a good idea to retract screens if you know that a storm is coming. If you will be gone for any length of time, retract screens just to be safe.
Tip #2: Choose the right screen
If you have pets or young children, even with proper care the screen may be more likely to become damaged. There are a few ways to avoid this. First and foremost, have line-of-sight stickers installed on the screen at your child's eye level so they don't accidentally walk through the screen. If you are concerned that damage may still occur, you can either invest in a lower screen guard or upgrade the screen material to a steel screening that is more likely to withstand damage. A steel screen is a better choice if you don't want a plate in place, since a plate will cause a visual blockage.
Tip #3: Keep things clean
Cleaning your screens helps prolong their life. Wash the screens in spring and fall with a soft sponge and soapy water. Alternatively, remove them from their housing and spray them out with a hose – don't use a pressure washer, as this can damage the screens. The tracks can also get dirty, which can damage the frames. You can vacuum out the tracks with a shop vacuum, or brush it out with a broom and then scrub them out by hand. If screens do become damaged, they can be patched by a professional. By washing the screens annually, you can find damage early when it is still easily repairable.
For more help, contact a retractable screen and awning company in your area. They can help you maintain your screens so they last a long time.