Fly screens vs. security screens - a practical guide


Making sure your home is a secure and peaceful environment is high on the priority list for many Australians. That’s why security screen doors and windows are a great option if you want to protect your family but also have a clear view of what’s happening outside.

But if you’re deciding between installing a fly screen or a security screen, there are key factors and differences that you should be aware of (including durability, price and security) before making your purchase.

Once you’ve read through this guide and considered the features, benefits and key difference between fly screens and security doors, you should be well equipped to decide which option will be best for your home. You’ll also know what to look for and expect when choosing or upgrading your security screen solution.

Material differences

Fly Screens

As their name would suggest, fly screens have one main job — to protect you from flies and insects. They’re usually fixed to your doorframe by a fly screen installer or a ‘handyman’ but some homeowners opt to DIY and install or replace their fly screens themselves. However, because fly screens can be easily broken, and have a habit of corroding quickly if made from poor materials, this is better suited to smaller windows or as a temporary solution.

Mosquito netStandard fly screens are made of aluminium and mesh. The mesh is typically made from fiberglass but can also be made from the polyester mesh (coated with PVC) or midge mesh (which has a tighter weave) providing special protection from midge flies, also known as sand flies.

Depending on where in Australia you live, flies and insects can either be a minor annoyance or a regular and disruptive part of life. Homes near open water or in a warmer climate experience more flies and mosquitoes, so having some sort of protection against them is necessary. Also, if someone in your family has a serious bee or wasp sting allergy, effective fly screens are even more essential.

In addition, certain parts of Australia are affected by mosquito-borne diseases such as Ross River virus and Dengue. Historically, These have been common only in Northern Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia but we have now seen a spread to other regions such as Victoria and ACT. These dangers highlights that fly screens or security screens are crucial to the safety – and health – of your family.

Security Screens

Not all security screens are created equal. That’s why it’s important to know which solution will suit your family and your home best. Here, we’ll focus on quality Amplimesh® screens that are tested against a host of strict Australian standards, to ensure that your security screen doors or windows can’t be easily penetrated by would-be intruders.

A quality security screen is built with more than just flies in mind. It will feature high quality mesh that’s designed to encourage ventilation throughout your home while providing a high level of security from human as well as insect intruders.

Unlike fly screens that are made from more basic materials, security screens from the Amplimesh® range either feature high tensile 316 marine grade stainless steel, which is woven into a fine mesh, or specially perforated 5052 marine grade aluminium sheeting. Each security screen is assembled using a patented process which retains the structural integrity of the mesh panel.

Finally, the quality materials used in your security screens have the added value of being easy to clean and maintain. With proper care, your security screens should keep looking just as good as the day they were installed, even after years of use.

Security benefits

Fly screens, while somewhat useful, are not security screens and are not regulated by security standards. If security is a major factor for you, installing security screens and security doors throughout your home (rather than fly screens) will provide a higher level of security and more peace of mind.

Depending on its quality and appearance, a fly screen could act as a deterrent to potential intruders and burglars. Despite this, particularly savvy intruders might recognise that your fly screen is easily removed or broken, making way for them to enter your home.

On the other hand, Amplimesh® screens are tested rigorously against impact and knife shear attacks, protecting your home against the most dedicated burglars.

Lastly, when it comes to mechanical security, Amplimesh® screens are superior to fly screens due to their easy-to-use and highly secure three-point lock systems. The easy lock-and-go mechanism is simple enough for anyone in the family to use and gives you extra control over your home security without the fuss of multiple keys or complicated lock systems.

Durability benefits

Security benefitsWhen comparing the durability and longevity of security screens against fly screens, fly screens fall short.

Amplimesh® screens using SupaScreen® 316 marine grade steel mesh or IntrudaGuard 5052 marine grade aluminium are purpose-built to stand up against even the most challenging and corrosive environments, including areas where sea salt spray and harsh weather conditions are a factor. An added benefit to the high-quality materials used in good security screens is that they come with a WERS rating for UV protection and energy efficiency. This is a key difference between security screens and fly screens, as often fly screens need to be replaced due to sun damage, turning the fly screens an unsightly silvery-grey colour.

Fly screens are susceptible to cuts, holes and indentations from kids running into them, pets clawing or biting and everyday impacts. Over time you could even find that due to wear and tear, your fly screens are no longer performing their basic task of keeping insects out.

Luckily, when it comes to Amplimesh® security screen windows and doors, you’re completely covered by an Australia wide 10-year warranty, so you can enjoy your screens’ effectiveness and durability for years to come.

Price comparison

The difference in cost between fly screens and security screens is a reflection of the key benefits and differences already mentioned. Fly screens tend to cost less than a quality security screens (which you can expect to pay double in price for) because they are made from cheaper materials that aren’t so heavily regulated. That means that they just don’t meet the same strict Australian standards and are not suited to protecting your home.

While it may cost you more, your security screen door or window is worth the superior level of protection. Plus, you won’t have to spend extra time and money installing replacement screens thanks to a higher level of quality and longevity. You may also receive a deduction in your home insurance premium for making your property safer.

It’s your choice

If you want the best security, durability, insect-protection, ventilation and overall design for your family and home, a security screen product from the trusted Amplimesh® range is perfect for you. You’ll sleep soundly knowing that your home is fitted with the some of the best Australian-tested screen solutions on the market.

To find the security screen product that best suits your home, browse the Amplimesh® range online or give give us a call today. One of our experts will be happy to speak about your security screen options and arrange a free measure and quote.