8 Best Screen Tents to Keep the Bugs Away

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If you’ve spent any time outdoors, you know bugs can be a problem. In fact, they can ruin a trip. Yes, ants, spiders, and mosquitoes live outside. You can expect to encounter them when camping. But you don’t want bug bites to make you uncomfortable or keep you from enjoying the outdoors. Let’s look at why a screen tent is a great idea and eight of the best options.

Let’s dive in!

What Is a Screen Tent?

A screen tent is a tent that has mesh sides. It keeps bugs away while providing relief from the sun and wind. Some are also water-resistant. Lots of RVers turn these screen tents into workspaces or playrooms. Others use them to entertain friends while playing cards.

A screen tent setup in a campsite with an RV, truck, and USA flag flying next to it

What Are the Benefits of a Screen Tent?

Although some quality screen tents can be expensive, they’re worth the investment. They provide additional shade, which is vital in the summer. They also offer a safe space for younger children to play to keep them and their toys enclosed.

But the primary purpose of a screen tent is to keep bugs away. Getting eaten up with mosquito bites on a camping trip is not what anyone wants. You may have a hard time finding eco-friendly and effective bug repellents. Screen tents create spaces for everyone to enjoy the outdoors without sitting with a fly swatter or smelling the scent of a Citronella candle.

A woman putting on bug spray to keep the bugs away outside of her screen tent.

Screen Tent Buying Guide

When shopping for a screen tent, you should consider a few things. You don’t want to get the cheapest option because it might not hold up over several camping weekends. 

You also don’t necessarily want to get the most expensive option because it might not be necessary. However, beyond price and budget, you want to think about the material, ease of setup, and portability when choosing your screen tent.

Keep in Mind: Can Mosquitoes Spread COVID-19? Check out what experts want you to know before summer camping.

Material 

Some screen tents have water-resistant top fabrics, and others don’t. If you want a tent to withstand the weather, you’ll want to make sure your choice is water-resistant. Also, make sure it has high-quality and breathable mesh fabric. 

It won’t do you any good if you create an outdoor sauna and it’s not durable. Spend a few extra bucks if necessary to make sure you find a material that will hold up to being set up and torn down repeatedly.

Ease of Set-Up

Additionally, you’ll want a screen tent that’s easy to put up and take down. You may get frustrated if it takes ten minutes to set up. After setting up your trailer, you don’t want to turn around and have to put up something else. 

It would be great if it’s easy enough for teenagers to do. You may want to avoid one with many poles, ties, or complicated instructions. Watch a video of the setup process to decide if it’s what you want.

A man sitting in his screen tent.

Portability

Finally, when camping, everything you use needs to be portable. You may want chairs that easily fold up or an outdoor table that easily slides into the storage bay. Ensure you can easily store the screen tent you choose. 

Maybe it goes in the truck bed, trunk, or storage bay. But make sure it easily tears down and that you have a place to put it. When it’s time to head home, you don’t want the stress of dealing with a difficult-to-put-away screen tent.

8 Best Screen Tents to Keep the Bugs Away

Below are eight of the best screen tents on the market. They vary in size and price, but they all provide relief from the bugs. It’s reasonable to expect to deal with some insects when camping. But it’s certainly a more enjoyable experience when you can enjoy sitting outside without swatting away mosquitoes.

1. CLAM Quick-Set Escape Shelter

CLAM Corporation 9879 Quick-Set Escape Shelter, 140 x 140-Inch, Brown/Beige
  • ESCAPE MODEL SPECS: Lightweight, portable canopy designed to provide shelter against the elements; Set-up inner...
  • KEEP WATER & BUGS OUT: Taped roof panel resists water to keep you dry inside; A high-quality mesh screen and extra-wide...

One of the most expensive but best options for a screen tent is the CLAM. This is also one of the most popular choices among RVers. The inner dimensions measure 11.5 ft across and 7.5 ft at center height. 

It has a water-resistant top panel and a high-quality mesh screen with an extra-wide skirt that keeps the bugs out. It only takes about 45 seconds to set up, with no assembly required.

2. Coleman Instant Screenhouse

Coleman Screened Canopy Tent, 15 x 13 Shade Tent, Screened in Canopy Sun Shelter with Instant Setup
  • SUN PROTECTION: UVGuard material offers UPF 50 sun protection
  • INSTANT SETUP: In as fast as 1 minute

This Coleman screen tent provides UV Guard UPF 50+ sun protection, which is great during those hot summers. It has two doors at the front and the back to provide easy access. 

It easily sets up in 60 seconds to create a 10 ft x 10 ft space. This portable shelter protects from the wind, sun, and bugs and is a more affordable option than the CLAM listed above.

Keep in Mind: Sometimes those pesky bugs can make it inside your RV. Check out how to get rid of Asian lady beetles in your RV camper.

3. Coleman Screened Canopy Tent with Instant Setup

Coleman Back Home Screened Canopy Tent with Instant Setup, Screenhouse Outdoor Canopy and Sun Shade with 1 Minute Set Up
  • Portable screened shelter offers protection from the sun, wind, and bugs
  • Sets up in 3 minutes in just 3 steps

Another great Coleman option is this canopy tent. This canopy tent measures 12 ft x 10 ft for more room and costs a bit more than the one above. 

It has a longer setup process which involves a few steps but only takes around three minutes. Like the previous Coleman screen tent, this option features two doors in front and back and a UV Guard UPF  50+ sun protection.

4. Gazelle Tents Easy Pop-Up Camping Gazebo

Gazelle Tents™, G6 6-Sided Portable Gazebo, Easy Pop-Up Hub Screen Tent, Waterproof, UV Resistant, 8-Person & Table, Desert Sand, 86" x 124" x 124", GG601DS
  • Provide a comfortable space for enjoying all the benefits of the great outdoors with none of the drawbacks
  • Spacious 6-sided gazebo with a quick pop-up design with bugproof mesh windows

This eight-person gazebo tent measures 124 in x 124 in and has six sides to provide ample outdoor space without bugs. The Oxford-weave shell has 200MM waterproof and UV-resistant fabric. 

Even though it’s a large tent with multiple sides, this Gazelle tent quickly sets up in about 60 seconds. This is a great option for folks wanting to seat several adults plus a table inside the screen tent.

5. CLAM Quick-Set Venture Portable Screen Tent

CLAM Quick-Set Venture 9 x 9 Foot Portable Pop-Up Outdoor Camping Gazebo Screen Tent 5 Sided Canopy Shelter with Ground Stakes and Carry Bag, Green
  • VENTURE MODEL SPECS: Lightweight, portable 5-sided canopy designed to provide shelter against the elements; Set-up inner...
  • KEEP WATER & BUGS OUT: Taped roof panel resists water to keep you dry inside; High-quality mesh screen and extra-wide...

This smaller CLAM screen tent measures 9 ft x 9 ft. This is a great option for travelers who don’t need a lot of space but still want the quality of a CLAM shell. It’s also lighter than other options at only 30 lbs. 

The inner dimensions measure 9 ft across and 6.8 ft at the center height. It’s smaller than the previous CLAM tent but still big enough to provide an enclosed space for several adults.

6. Ozark Trail Instant Screenhouse

Ozark Trail Instant Screenhouse 10 Ft X 10 Ft Model 30008
  • Easy 60 second setup
  • Heavy duty mesh keeps the bugs away

Another cheaper option on this list is this Ozark Trail screen tent. This instant screen house features two doors for easy access, like the Coleman tents. Set up takes about 60 seconds. 

With this one, you don’t get any bells and whistles, but you still get the mesh screen to keep out the bugs. And with a 7 ft height, you won’t have to hunch over when you step inside.

7. Wenzel Magnetic Screen House for Camping

Wenzel Magnetic Screen House, Magnetic Screen Shelter for Camping, Travel, Picnics, Tailgating, and More
  • LET’S GO CAMPING: Make the Wenzel Magnetic Screen House an essential part of your summer picnics and parties! Cool off...
  • SPECS: Tent Floor: 11 FT x 9 FT, Inside Area: 99 SQ FT, Peak Height: 90 inches, Packed Weight: 17 lbs 7 oz, Packed Size:...

One of the largest and only rectangular options on this list is this Wenzel screen tent. It’s also one of the lightest at less than 20 lbs. This tent can fit over a picnic table at 11 ft x 9 ft. 

Magnetic strips make going in and out easy with your hands full. Wenzel offers a 10-year warranty, so reach out to their customer service team if you have any problems.

8. Alvantor Screen House Camping Tent

Alvantor Screen House Room Camping Tent Outdoor Canopy Dining Gazebo Pop Up Sun Shade Hexagon Shelter Mesh Walls Not Waterproof 10'x10' Beige Patent
  • ☀Highlight: design patented Lightest Pop Up Screen Room for 4-6 adults is only 15 lbs, 1/3 weight of similar items,...
  • ☀Spacious space & ventilation: Alvantor Breezy Hexagonal Screen house is 10'x10'x7', ...

Finally, this Alvantor screen tent offers an entirely different look than the previous options. It’s the number one bestseller in camping screen houses on Amazon. It comes in four different sizes and ranges from $120 for a 6 ft x 6 ft tent to $400 for a 15 ft x 15 ft tent. 

These screen tents pop up automatically and require no assembly. The one entrance door zips closed. However, they’re not water-resistant, but the top fabric offers UPF 50+ UV protection.

A screen tent setup at a campsite

Bug-Free Camping Has Never Been Easier

Bugs can ruin a camping trip. It’s normal to have to deal with a few ants and mosquitos. But when your campsite starts to feel overrun with critters, you may find it time to purchase a screen tent. 

They vary in size and price, so there’s one for every type of camper. Protect yourself, your family, and your friends from mosquito bites. Get a screen tent and become the campsite everyone wants to go to. 

Have you looked at screen tents before? What features do you want to make sure are included in your purchase?

Last update on 2022-10-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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