By Corey Philip // Aug 15, 2023

When you’re ready to make an investment into a screen enclosure, you need to sit down and consider all of your options. You may already be aware that there are different types of materials used for the screens. You may also already know that polyester is by far the strongest type of material used. But exactly how strong is polyester mesh?

Some people want just enough strength and durability out of their screen to last a few years before they move to a new home. Polyester mesh will definitely get the job done, but it may not be worth the investment for just a short-term benefit. The strength of polyester mesh is more beneficial for long-term investments.

  • 100% Stronger Than Fiberglass

    The standard material used in most screen enclosures is fiberglass. Polyester mesh is 100% stronger than fiberglass screens. The warp tensile strength of polyester mesh is about 112 pounds of force, the warp tear strength is about 31 pounds of force and the fill tear strength is about 27 pounds of force.

    And the all-important ball burst strength for polyester screens is about 190 pounds. In other words, polyester mesh can hold up to virtually anything when it’s brand new, and it’s durable enough to last more than 20 years.

  • Holding Up To Hurricane Winds

    One of the concerns living in Florida is a hurricane coming through. While the strongest hurricanes don’t pass through very often, all it takes is one to create some serious damage that can affect you for a long time. With the ratings mentioned previously, polyester mesh will hold up to some of the strongest hurricane winds, based on lab tests. Of course, the strength depends on the age, the intensity of the winds and the objects blown into the screen directly. But for the most part, you aren’t going a find a screen enclosure material stronger than polyester.

    • Strength After Years of Absorbing UV Rays

      The downfall of fiberglass screens is they don’t last very long. You’re lucky if you get 7 or 8 solid years out of them with no issues. One of the reasons for that is because of the intensity of the UV rays we get in Florida. After several years, the material starts breaking down and becoming brittle, leading to ultimately needing to be replaced.

      Polyester mesh includes UV protection properties to help it withstand these intense rays without altering the color or durability of the screen. After 10 years of use, the screen should be just about as strong as it was when you had it installed.

    • Simple Maintenance to Keep Strength Intact

      One of the best parts when considering the strength of polyester mesh is how simple it is to maintain the material to keep the strength intact. The mesh is made with a biocide designed to repel insects, and most importantly, prevent algae and mildew growth.

      After a few years, you can’t power wash a fiberglass screen because it becomes brittle over time. However, polyester screens can be power washed any time for as long as you own yours. Spraying it off occasionally is really all of the maintenance polyester screens need to remain strong and looking great.

    • Is Polyester Mesh Worth It?

      So it should be obvious by now that polyester mesh is the strongest type of material you can use for your screen enclosure. The question now is whether it’s worth paying the extra money for. The short answer is yes, but the popular answer is “it depends.”

      If you only plan on living in your current home for a few more years, then you probably don’t want to waste your money on polyester mesh. However, if you don’t plan on moving for the foreseeable future, then polyester mesh is the best choice you can make.

      The strength of the material can be determined and considered in the short-term and long-term. Fiberglass has great short-term strength, while polyester has both short-term and long-term strength. Just be sure to consider your options and think about where you plan to be in the near and distant future to help you determine whether polyester is a worthy investment.

    Corey Philip

    About the author

    Corey began working on screen enclosures as a teenager in 2004 after hurricane Charley devastated his home town of Punta Gorda. 7 years later, after holding positions from foreman, to sales, to project manager, while attending college at Florida Gulf Coast University, Corey and childhood friend Thomas Davis founded Gulf Coast Aluminum in 2011. With a focus on delivering an unparrelled level of service, the company has grown by leaps and bounds under their leadership. Today you’ll find Corey answering the phones In his free time Corey likes training for triathlons, running the trails at Ding Darling park on Sanibel Island, and of course, working on growing Gulf Coast Aluminum.