How to Install a Screw Eye Into a Plaster Wall

Written by sal marco
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How to Install a Screw Eye Into a Plaster Wall
Hang pictures securely on plaster walls (Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images)

Homeowners and decorators install screw eye hooks in walls to hang pictures and other decorations on walls. A screw eye hook resembles a traditional screw at one end and loops over at the other end to form a circle. Slipping picture hangers, wire or string through the circle, known as the eye, allows you to hang items securely. Some plaster is set over wood and some is set over masonry making it necessary to employ careful planning and techniques to avoid cracking the plaster and having a secure screw eye hook.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Stud finder
  • Tape measure
  • Masking tape
  • Power drill
  • Carbide-tipped drill bit
  • Plastic wall anchor
  • Lightweight mallet
  • Glue syringe
  • Fast-setting epoxy
  • Lead masonry anchor

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Instructions

    On Wall Studs

  1. 1

    Locate the wall stud with a stud finder.

  2. 2

    Measure and mark the location of the screw eye hook. Place a piece of masking tape over the mark and draw the location mark on the masking tape.

  3. 3

    Insert a carbide-tipped drill bit, in an equal size to a plastic wall anchor, into a power drill. Align the drill bit with the mark and drill through the wall into the stud slowly.

  4. 4

    Remove the tape. Insert a plastic wall anchor into the hole and gently tap it in place with your hand or a lightweight mallet.

  5. 5

    Position the tip of the screw eye hook into the plastic anchor hole and twist the screw eye hook to the right to tighten it.

    Without Wall Studs

  1. 1

    Measure and mark the wall for the location of the screw eye hook. Place masking tape over the mark and draw the location mark on the masking tape.

  2. 2

    Equip a power drill with a carbide-tipped drill bit that is equal in size to the screw end of the hook. Drill through the location mark slowly until you penetrate the wall.

  3. 3

    Load a glue syringe with fast-setting epoxy. Depress the plunger of the glue syringe to fill the hole.

  4. 4

    Screw the hook into the wall halfway. Squeeze more epoxy around the hole as you tighten the screw.

    With a Masonry Substrate

  1. 1

    Measure and mark the wall for the screw eye hook placement. Cover the mark with masking tape and redraw the mark on the masking tape.

  2. 2

    Insert a carbide-tipped drill bit, equal in size to a lead masonry anchor, into a power drill. Drill through the plaster in the masonry behind the plaster.

  3. 3

    Place the anchor into the hole and twist the screw eye hook into the lead anchor. Tap the anchor into the hole if necessary with a mallet.

Tips and warnings

  • To determine the substrate behind the plaster, drill a hole in an inconspicuous area and look. Tapping on the wall can also help determine the substrate. A hollow sound typically indicates plaster and lath. A dense sound usually indicates a masonry substrate.
  • Masking tape helps to prevent crumbling plaster edges while drilling.
  • Wear a dust mask and eye protection when drilling through plaster walls.
  • Do not hang heavy items on screw eye hooks set in epoxy; they will not hold.

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