How To Choose The Right Privacy Screen In 5 Easy Steps

metal privacy screenDecorative screening has a rich history that spans back to around 600AD in ancient China. However it wasn’t until the 1950’s and 60’s that Australia saw a revival in residential and commercial privacy screening. Today we’re also enjoying yet another revival with an influx of both traditional and contemporary designs using a variety of materials. If you’re looking to pimp up your indoor or outdoor space with a dividing screen what should you be looking for? Let’s take a closer look.

Be clear about use

The first step it to be clear about the type of job you want your privacy screen to do. Is it for visual privacy or is it supposed to stop noise too? Do you want it to screen the view or block it completely?

Be clear about design

Are you looking to buy an ‘off the shelf’ privacy screen or are you looking for a bespoke hand crafted design? If it’s the latter you need to consider the type of decorative design you want. Is it going to double as a sculptural piece? If so, you’ll want something that not only looks great but can still carry out the job it’s supposed to do.

Understand your materials

Today the options for materials and styling are many and varied. Materials can include the following:


Medium Density Fibreboard is relatively cheap and can be laser cut quickly making it an affordable option. It’s also lightweight and can be mounted easily. The downsides are that it’s really for indoor use only.

Plastics and acrylics

contemporary designers love to work with plastics and acrylics because it’s cheap, easy to mould, and can come in a wide variety of vibrant colours to give your home that modern funky twist. On the downside it can fade, , or warp if placed outside.

Weathered steel

This product is intentionally altered to give a weathered antique look and creates a gorgeous natural look. Also known as ‘CorTen’ and ‘Rusted Steel’ it can be used both inside and outdoors. This product looks particularly fabulous when set against the backdrop of an ornamental pond. One thing to watch out for however is that the rust will cause staining if used outdoors and allowed to drip onto a clean area like decking or terracing, so make sure that the area you set it against won’t harmed by rust staining.


Finally privacy screening can be made from just about any other type of metal. From smooth mild steel to patterned steel, from copper to powder-coated aluminium. All of these are strong and durable and can be laser cut with intricate designs.

Consider screen maintenance

Some screens need more care and maintenance than others. For example MDF screening can absorb water and warp if placed in a steam rich environment such as a kitchen or bathroom. On the contrary, powder coated or weathered steel is designed for it’s longevity with little or no maintenance needed.


If you’re after economy, then you might want to choose MDF. However if you’re after something that’s going to last, then stainless steel or aluminium installations are the best, however they’re also the most expensive. Therefore weigh up the pros and cons before you decide.

If you’d like a bespoke privacy screen to give your home or garden that real wow factor then why not come and talk to Metro Steel. We been providing steel fabrication services for residents and businesses of Brisbane and the Gold Coast for many years and our skilled team have the ability to turn your ideas into a reality. Contact us on 07 3204 1000 for a free no obligation quote or visit our website and fill in your details for an immediate quote.