I was backpacking out in the warm summer in northwest Arkansas just relaxing in my tent till I noticed two mosquitoes buzzing around inside like little helicopters. They did not last long, but to my surprise the micro bug mesh screen on my tent had been widened from brush leaving me vulnerable. In this article I am going to teach you how to repair tent mesh so you can keep the bugs out.
- Supplies needed for how to repair tent mesh that has been damaged.
- Methods for repairing the tent mesh
- How to take care, store, and maintain your tent when not in use
Assess the Tent Mesh Damage
To start, you need to first identify the damage on the tent. Did the tent also tear or get ripped, is it a seam, or is it just the mesh? When looking at mesh damage you are looking for any holes, puncture, or rips across the mesh. Sometimes, the mesh starts coming apart at the seam, which can be a real bummer. But that can also be taken care of as well.
Gather Supplies for a Tent Mesh Repair
The nice thing about most tent mesh repairs is that you really will not need that much equipment to make the necessary repairs. At the top of the list, you will need mesh repair patches and possibly a sewing kit and seam sealer depending on if the seams holding the mesh got damaged.
Mesh Repair Patches
Mesh repair patches are the star players for how to repair tent mesh. These are tailored for tent repairs and can mend anything from minuscule to substantial holes.
For repairing the mesh, I really like to personally use Gear Aid Mesh Patches. They are basically a one sides adhesive patch with a mesh like material on the other side of the patch. Which makes them perfect for fixing little or large holes and tears in tent mesh.
Sewing kits can be extremely helpful but you have to teach yourself basic sewing techniques in order for it to be useful. For tent mesh repair, sewing is not necessarily required and only useful in certain circumstances. For example, sewing a seam near the mesh that came undone.
If the seam becomes loose near the mesh, then having a needle, Tex-40 thread, and scissors can be really helpful to make the repair. Following up with use of a seam sealer like Gear Aid Seam Grip +WP or Aquaseal +FD.
When choosing a needle, a #4 needle is a great choice for most gear repairs. Really the big thing is to just find a sewing needle with a decent sized eyelet to make threading easier. For my kit I started with Gear Aid’s Sewing Kit and it works fine.
Steps for How to Repair Tent Mesh
Now we have discussed the supplies you will need. It’s time to tackle the main task mending those torn holes in your tent mesh. Thankfully repairing mesh is not a terribly difficulty repair to do.
For a quick fix, duct tape can save the day. It’s a temporary fix, but it can keep bugs out and hold the hole together until you can properly repair it. However, for a more permanent solution, you should consider using a mesh specific patch.
Snagged mesh is one of the less serious injuries that can happen to your tent mesh. This usually happens when tree branches or brush rub up against the tent mesh.
To fix snagged mesh first:
- Try to rub and work the mesh strands close together again.
- If the damage is worse and rubbing and working the mesh is not working, then use a mesh patch.
Repairing Holes and Tears
Holes, puncture, and tears are common issues that can happen to tent mesh. Good thing is that repairing tent mesh is fairly easy to fix.
Here are the correct steps for how to repair tent mesh:
- Trim up any fray ends to make the area clean
- Remove the patch from the package
- Center the patch over the hole.
- Peel off the backing from the repair mesh patch.
- Align the patch properly and press it down really well.
- Next, repeat the steps on the other side to sandwich the patches together
- Try to let it sit for about a day before packing up the tent so it sticks properly.
Stitching a patch onto the mesh over a small hole helps distribute the tension when the tent is set up, which prevents the repaired area from tearing again under strain.
How to Repair Seams Holding the Mesh
Sometimes seam damage can happen near the mesh causing the mesh to become loose and tear away. For how to fix a tent tear by sewing and seam sealing follow these steps:
- Start by cleaning the area around the seam separation with some rubbing alcohol. This ensures a clean a clean surface to work with.
- Allow some time to let the alcohol dry completely.
- If you need to trim up some loose ends do this as well before sewing the area
- First, thread in your thread through the eyelet of the needle I recommend at least doubling up the thread for a more durable repair.
- A good rule of thumb is to use a length of thread about 2 -3 times the length of the repair. Measure this out and then create a knot at the tail of your thread.
- As for the stitch pattern, we are going to use a basic running stitch to join the two separated fabrics together. This technique involves bringing the needle up through the fabric and back down similar to like a dolphin or salmon jumping out of a body of water and back into the water.
- When you get to the end to tie it off, slide your needle through the fabric, loop the thread around the needle. Place your finger on the needle as you slide it through to create the knot.
Preventing Future Tent Mesh Damage
As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure, isn’t it? The same principle applies to your tent mesh.
Here are some tips for protecting your tent mesh:
- Find places to set up your tent away from brush
- Ensure your tent is completely dry before packing it away
- Pack your tent in a cool and dark place
Preparation is key when it comes to camping, so knowing what to do and having the right tools for mesh repair can save you a lot of trouble in the future.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you fix a ripped mesh in a tent?
For how to repair tent mesh that has been ripped. The easy fix is to use Gear Aid Mesh patches on both sides of the tear, let it cure overnight, and then pack the tent back.
Can you repair tent fabric?
Yes, you can repair tent fabric by using repair tape or a repair patch to cover the damaged area and applying seam sealer around the edges for extra reinforcement. If you have spare patches of tent fabric, you can also use those to fix the holes.
How do I fix my mesh net?
You can fix your mesh by using a repair patch or by sewing the seams if they have separated. It’s a simple fix and should do the trick.
What kind of patches should I use to fix tent mesh?
You should use peel and stick adhesive patches like Gear Aid’s Mesh Patches to fix tent mesh and make sure to apply them on a flat surface for the best results.
What kind of thread should I use to sew up the seams near tent mesh?
You should use nylon thread like Tex-40 to sew up a big hole in tent mesh. It’s strong and durable, perfect for a long-lasting repair.
So, there you have it, your comprehensive guide for how to repair tent mesh. From understanding the different types of tent mesh damage, to the essential tools for mesh repair, how to fix mesh tears, and prevention tips.
Remember, every repair you make extends the life of your gear and keeps you out on the trails. If you have any other questions in regard to how to repair tent mesh let us know.