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How Do I Choose the Best Privacy Screen?

Autumn Rivers
Autumn Rivers

A privacy screen can shield the inside or outside of a home from prying eyes while also adding to the decor. One of the first details to consider when purchasing privacy screens is the size you need, which likely will depend on both your intentions for the screen and the space you have available. You also may want to consider the materials from which you can choose, because this will affect the durability and appearance of the screen. In addition, you may want to consider whether you want a plain privacy screen or one that complements the rest of the decor.

One of the main things to think about is how large your privacy screen should be. If your goal is to shield your entire yard from neighbors, you might want to browse large screens — fences and tall shrubs are among the largest. On the other hand, you will probably only need a relatively small privacy screen if you just want an additional decoration for your yard or if you plan to place it in a small room. The space you have available may restrict your options when it comes to size, so you may want to measure the area you wish to shield before you buy a privacy screen. This way, you can save time and money by avoiding purchasing a product that will not fit in the space you have.

Fences can serve as privacy screens.
Fences can serve as privacy screens.

Another detail to consider is the type of material you should use for your privacy screen. Among the most durable materials is metal, which tends to be heavy and hard to bend, allowing it to last several years. A more unique choice is weathered steel, which is a durable option that is covered in rust for a charming look. This material is often best inside, because the rust will drip and create stains when it gets wet, but you may put it outside if you do not mind a few rust stains on your concrete, or if you have grass or dirt to catch the rust. If you plan to move the screen occasionally, you may prefer a lightweight material such as plastic or fiberboard.

The privacy screen you choose should complement its surroundings. For example, if your home has an exotic theme, consider a decorative screen covered with images of Asian plants; a screen painted with palm trees might go best in an area with tropical decorations. Plastic privacy screens tend to come in a wide range of colors and designs, but you may be able to find metal and fiberboard screens in different shades, too. If you cannot find the color or decoration you want, you may be able to pay for it to be customized or you can paint it yourself.

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    • Fences can serve as privacy screens.
      By: Johanna Goodyear
      Fences can serve as privacy screens.