Most of the useful devices for hanging things on our walls were designed for drywall, not plaster. Everything from finding a stud in plaster walls to the type of fasteners you should use is different for the two types of walls. Like you, almost everyone wants to decorate their walls, so learning how to hang things on plaster walls is important. The learning is essential to make the decorating process simpler, and also to avoid costly damage.
Do you have a picture rail?
A picture rail has a wonderful purpose, and that is to protect your walls. It is installed to give you a place to hang things like art, mirrors, pictures, and anything else without putting holes in your plaster.
Picture rail works great for most decorations, but they are not suitable for hanging extremely heavy items. For something too heavy, it’s best to mount it in a more secure way to the wall.
Hanging without picture rail
If you don’t have a picture rail, it is completely fine. We still have some great ideas for hanging on plaster walls.
The first thing is to put away the hammer. Hammering nails into a plaster is a quick way to knock plaster loose from the lath that is supporting it. Damage may not be visible instantly, but as plaster comes loose from the lath, it will eventually begin to fall off the wall.
Screws are your ultimate option for hanging things on plaster walls without picture rail. For lighter items, screwing into the plaster with a 1 1/4” drywall screw can get the job done. For heavy items, you can opt screws with masonry anchors.
As heavier items need more support, we recommend screwing into a stud with a 2” screw. Stud finders work close to no on plaster, but you can find the studs using the magnet trick.
Should you have any questions about hanging things on plaster walls or dry walls, please feel free to call Lucas Craftsmanship at (713) 864-2510.