How to Attach a Baby Gate If There Is No Wall Stud

Updated July 20, 2017

The easiest way to use a baby gate in a location without a wall stud is to choose a pressure-mounted gate. This type of gate does not require wall studs because it attaches to the wall with pressure rather than hardware. Pressure-mounted gates can only be used between two solid parallel surfaces between rooms or at the bottom of stairs. Only a hardware-mounted gate can be used at the top of stairs. A gate installation kit allows you to install a hardware-mounted gate in a location without a wall stud. This kit contains all the materials needed to safely attach the gate to a hollow wall.

Position the board included in the gate installation kit vertically along the wall in the place where you want to mount the gate. Use a level to make sure the board is vertical. The lower part of the board must be flush against the wall baseboard.

Drill a pilot hole through the board into the baseboard about 1/2 inch from the bottom of the board.

Drive the 1-1/2 inch screw from the kit through the board and into the baseboard using the bottom pilot hole, but do not tighten.

Place the included wood spacer between the top of the board and the wall to make the board parallel with the wall.

Drill a pilot hole through both the board and the wood spacer about 1/2 inch from the top of the board.

Mark the wall at the spot where the upper pilot hole meets the wall.

Drill a 1/2-inch hole in the wall at the marked spot.

Screw the kit's 3-1/2 inch bolt through the pilot holes in the board and wood spacer. Thread the metal butterfly onto the end of the bolt and pull the wings back toward the head of the bolt.

Insert the butterfly into the hole in the wall and let the wings open to hold the butterfly against the inside of the wall.

Tighten the top bolt and the bottom screw to secure the board to the wall.

Follow the gate's installation instructions to attach the gate to the board.


Read the gate's installation instructions before you begin, and make sure you install the mounting kit in such a way that the bolt and screw will not interfere with the gate's hardware. Choose a gate certified by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association. A gate-mounting kit also can be used to mount a gate on a wooden or wrought-iron banister.


Never use a pressure-mounted gate at the top of stairs. Do not rely on a gate to take the place of adult supervision.

Things You'll Need

  • Baby gate
  • Gate mounting kit
  • Level
  • Drill
  • Screwdriver
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About the Author

Andrea Klooster has been writing and producing personal history and documentary videos since 1999, while also working as a freelance reporter and photographer with many contributions to the Advance Newspapers of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Klooster has a Master of Information and Library Studies from the University of Michigan.