Frog Repeller
( Or how I installed a screen to keep pebbles and frogs out of my radiators)

Last update:  5/21/2015  Return to Insight home page



Introduction

I hope you weren't expecting some exotic device to keep frogs out of your swimming pool.  :-)

I always put a piece of house screen in front of my car radiators to keep trash out of the radiator fins. The Insight presented somewhat of a problem because there isn't much room in front of the radiator to actually put a framework in to attach the screen to. After poking around for awhile I came up with an easy way of doing it.



Parts required

I decided to use a fiberglass type house screen instead of my normal aluminum screening.  After examining the area in front of the radiators (A/C condenser and engine cooling radiator) I found a way to mount a  27-1/2" long by 1/8" diameter stainless steel thin walled tube between the left and right brackets behind the grill near the top of the radiator.  I attached some house screen to the tube which hangs down in front of the radiators which is as the actual frog repeller.

The tube was part of a diskcone radio antenna that was destroyed during a hurricane years ago (I have a very extensive junk box.).  The ends of the various tubes had small rubber like eye protector tips on them.

After taking measurements I cut a piece of fiberglass screen 27" wide by 18" high.  I folded about 1" of the 27" length of screen over the rod, temporarily clamped it in place with clothes pins and used a length of thin plastic fishing line and a carpet needle to sew the folded part of the screen together.  The rod is used as a miniature curtain hanger.  Nothing to rust in the rain with these parts.



How to actually get  the screen tube mounted

Now comes the tricky part.  How do you get a 27-1/2" long tube into the steel mounting brackets that are spaced ~26" apart with parts of the bodywork in the way?

After removing the A/C condenser cover on the left side (when facing the engine from the front of the car) I held the tube/screen assembly over the opening in front of the radiators and stuffed most of the screen down in front of the radiators.  After smoothing the screen out I lowered the tube with the screen at a 45 angle down into the area between the brackets until I was able to place the upper end of the tube into one of the brackets.  Be careful and don't scratch your paint when placing the tube.  If there is room put one rubber cover over that end of the tube.  If you don't have rubber tips that fit try a short piece of heat shrink.  The cover or heat shrink is to keep the tube from moving left or right after it is in place and either damaging the paint or allowing the tube to fall out of the bracket.

After you get one end of the tube in place, raise the other end of the tube up and by moving the tube left and right slightly you will be able to get the free end of the tube into the correct area of the other bracket.  Next smooth out the screen and stuff the lower end of it below and behind the top of the bumper.   Even though the bottom of the screen is loose it has no tendency to move out of place.  I also placed a smaller piece of screen at the top of the radiator so all the fins are protected.

On the following pictures you will see a running explanation of where to place the tube. Also notice the rubber like tips that I placed over the ends of the tube after each end was in place.




To see an enlarged view of the pictures, click on a picture or right click and select "View Image".
Left side of rod

Left side of the tube in place in the bracket.  There is another part of the bracket under the tube that holds it up into the position shown.  

Spread the screen as far to the left and right as you can while placing the tube in the brackets.
Right side of rod

Right side of the tube in place in the bracket.  You can see how close the bodywork is to the end of the tube.  If you can't find a rubber tip for the tube try using some heat shrink tubing.  Either rod end covering will keep the tube from moving out from under the bracket and falling down.


Rod under A/C cover

Not shown is tucking the bottom of the hanging screen behind and inside the front bumper.  

The next task is to replace the A/C condenser cover while keeping the screen rod under the front edge of the cover.

You can also see the screening above the stainless tube and towards the right side of the picture which is explained below the picture to the right.
Screen on top of radiator

Since the Insight has an upper air intake as part of the hood we need to also cover the top of the radiator that is above the tube we just placed in the brackets.

I just cut a small rectangular piece of screen that stretches from the A/C cover to the right side of the engine radiator. It is tucked into what ever spaces I could find and the top is trimmed so it fits around the radiator cap and the aluminum bracket to the right of the cap.




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