How to Add a Rain Fly for a Screen Tent

How to Add a Rain Fly for a Screen Tent
Screen tents are a common sight at campgrounds. Not only do they protect you from the sun and rain, they also give the camper a place of protection from flying bugs. When rainy weather does happen, it can become necessary to add a rain fly to the screen tent to give added protection. Making your own rain fly is relatively basic. Using a tarp covering will get the job done and create a drier environment inside the tent.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Tarp
  • Rope
  • Scissors
  • Stakes
  • Clips
Step 1
Select a tarp that is large enough to cover the screen tent's roof and drape down its sides or create a larger covered area. The larger the tarp, the more protection it will give by blocking rain from coming in from the sides.
Step 2
Unfold the tarp to its full size. Pull the tarp over the roof of the screen tent, allowing equal portions of it to hang off all four sides of the tent. Using an additional person will make this step easier.
Step 3
Measure the distance from the corner grommets of the tarp and the object you will be tying off too. If staking the tarp straight to the ground to cover the screened sides, measure the distance from the grommet to the ground. If tying off to a tree, measure from the grommet to the distance to the tree, allowing enough length of rope to wrap around the tree and tie off.
Step 4
Tie your lengths of rope securely to the tarp's corner grommets and then secure it in place by staking it snuggly into the ground, or tying the ropes tightly around trees or another object. Tie the tarp several inches lower than the tent's roof to allow water to run off the sides and not puddle.
Step 5
Clip the tarp to the side tent poles for a secure fit, if the tarp is covering the screened sides and staked into the ground. Use the clip approximately mid-way down the pole for a balanced fit.
Step 6
Clip the tarp to the screen tent's roof poles to keep it securely in place, when tying off to trees. Use a clip at all four corners of the tent, as well as one on the center front and back of the tent. This will keep the tarp from blowing around in the event of winds and possibly weakening the stability of the screen tent.

Tips & Warnings

Use tent poles to hold the tarp upright, if there are low spots that you desire to be higher.
You can also cover three sides of the screen tent and create a covered doorway. Pull the portion of the tarp hanging over the tent's doorway upwards and out. Place a tent pole under the center section to hold it up, tie ropes through the end grommets, and stake in place.

Article Written By Joyce Starr

Joyce Starr is a professional writer from Florida and owns a landscaping company and garden center. She has published articles about camping in Florida, lawn care and gardening and writes for a local gardening newsletter. She shares her love and knowledge of the outdoors and nature through her writing.

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