How to Properly Clean and Maintain Screen Doors Without Damaging Them
It is important to clean and maintain your screen doors and windows to keep them in good working condition.
Screen door mesh acts as a giant air filter & as air flows freely through the screen, it traps airborne contaminants onto the screen. Dirt and in particular salt will crystalise on the screen and immediately start to attack the powder coating on the screen. If you clean your screen doors regularly, it will remove these airborne contaminants and will keep your screens looking and performing their best.
The black powder coating on security screen mesh is the same process as paint on your car, but thicker (A cars paint is usually 95um thick whereas SecureView Eclipx is specified to 120um). Just like you need to wash your car the keep the paintwork looking its best, you also need to wash your security screens. If you were to leave your black car parked at the beach for six months and never washed it, you would quickly see the paintwork start to deteriorate (assuming there had been little rain) as it is attacked by the salt and in time the car will rust.
If you live within 200 metres of a surf beach, you will be very familiar with the harsh corrosive effects of the salt air, even on household appliances such as TVs, and you will know that you need to clean everything weekly of this salt build up. Likewise, if you own a boat you will know to wash your boat and trailer immediately after being in salt water.
In Australia, there is a definite trend of less rain and in tropical areas, less afternoon storms. In days of the past, regular rainfall would have naturally washed the screens. Without this natural effect you must keep your screens free of dirt and salt to maintain their condition.
How often should I clean my screen door?
Good question! It depends on where you live; different environments have different climates and conditions that might cause dirt, grime, and other pollutants to accumulate on your screen door more quickly. If you live in a rural area with no red dirt and away from the coast, then you’ll only need to clean and maintain your screen doors once every three to six months. As long as you’re not close to industrial or heavy urban activity, the flow of pollutants into the screen door should be minimal.
If, however, you live in an urban area, the air will carry more smog and pollutants that will be caught by the screen door. In these environments, you’ll want to give the screen a clean every two to three months. And, if you live in a harsher environment (such as being close to an industrial factory, a tropical environment, or within 15km of the coast), you’ll need to clean your doors every two to four weeks.
|Environmental Location Of Screens||Cleaning Frequency|
|Mild - More than 10km from a saltwater coastline*||Every 3 to 6 months|
|Moderate - Between 5km and 10kn from a saltwater coastline*||Every 2 to 3 months|
|Marine - Between 1km to 5 km from a saltwater coastline*||Every 2 to 4 weeks|
|Severe Marine - Between 500m to 1km from a saltwater coastline*||Every 1 to 2 weeks|
|Extreme - Under 500m from a Saltwater coastline* or up to 2km where the property is located on an escarpment and the prevailing wind will carry salt air up & through the landscape. Also, areas close to heavy industrial areas and in iron rich red dirt landscapes.||Weekly |
Its is important to note that not all screens will be suitable or warranted in extreme locations no matter how often you clean your screens. Please check your manufacturers warranty terms and conditions.
It is important to note that contaminants like bird droppings or bat droppings should be washed off your screens immediately as they are very acidic and will permanently damage the powder coating.
How to clean the screen door
STEP 1 – HOSE DOWN
Using mains water (not bore or tank water), hose the screens to wash salt, dirt and dust off. If using a water blaster it is best to use the car attachment or simply stand back with the nozzle at least a metre away so you do not strip the paint protection or powder-coating off the screen.
STEP 2 – WASH
Wash the screens with a soft cloth and regular car wash and wax
STEP 3 – FINAL HOSE DOWN
Hose down to rinse the car wash and wax cleaning product off the screen
You can purchase an anti-corrosion lubricant such as CommandeX Protect (Please note that CommandeX Protect is a new product that will not be available for purchase until October 2020) to extend the life of your screens. Pour the lubricant onto a soft cloth and wipe onto the inside and outside of the screen.
Do’s and Don’ts for maintaining your screens
- Be aware of your security screen warranty terms and conditions as most manufacturers require you to follow their specific cleaning and maintenance instructions
- Register your warranty with the manufacturer at the time of installation
- Use vinegar, lemon or harsh chemicals (such as cream cleansers, white spirits, dish-washing detergent) to clean your screens as it will damage the powder coating.
- Use a broom, vacuum cleaner brush or any other harsh brush to clean your screens as it may scratch the powder coating or scrub off the paint protection.
- Use bore water, tank water, or recycled water as it will just leave more contaminants on the screen. Typically bore water has high levels of iron and leave brown staining.