breaking spline

by Jim
(Bancroft Ontario)

We are trying to replace the screens in two patio doors.
The spline will not come out of the groove. We tried to remove it with a small screwdriver and then an exacto knife but it will not budge.
It just crumbles into little pieces but we can't lift it out.
Could we pour something on it to dissolve it? Acetone? Varsol?
What would you suggest?

Hi Jim;

Yes I have had lots of screens to fix with brittle spline and I use a utility knife. I cut through a 2 foot length along the spline groove and then dig it out with a sharp awl.

Sometimes I have to go over the the same area 2 or 3 times to cut through and I still need to use the awl to dig out the broken pieces.

A good strong utility knife with fresh sharp blades is important because you need to press hard. I use a heavy duty Stanley model. Its available in any Home Depot or Lowes.

No easy way I am afraid. I suppose you could find a chemical that eats through vinyl but it might leave a big mess.

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