How to mount Ikea Hovet mirror
August 18, 2019 5:49 PM   Subscribe

I need some advice about how to mount this large mirror in drywall, or who in the Seattle area I should have do it for me.

The included mounting instructions leave a bit to be desired. I'm not sure about how to do it, or if I should just pay someone else, and if so who.

As far as my level of handiness: I have a drill and have managed to mount curtains several times without issue, so I'm familiar with installing drywall anchors, but this is heavier than things I've done before. The product is listed as 42 lbs and I want to mount it horizontally, flush against the wall, so the two mounting points would be about 77" apart. Based on my examination with a stud finder, I can't put screws for both sides in a stud, but am unsure whether I should put one side in a stud, or have both sides use a drywall-only anchor so they're of similar strength.

Here's a picture of what the mirror has to hang on. As you can see, the width of the notch the screw head goes into is about 6/16". Also, there's only about 4/16" border outside that, so anything I put in the wall to hang it from can't stick out too much or it will be visible.

If there's a mounting option that seems relatively straightforward, that would be great. If this seems challenging, who in the Seattle area would you recommend for a job like this?
posted by Cogito to Home & Garden (10 answers total)
Making the anchor points’ strength match won’t help anything. A stud on one side would be great, but otherwise I’d use these anchors.
posted by jon1270 at 6:12 PM on August 18, 2019 [1 favorite]

You can put one side in a stud and one side in an anchor, you don't have to match the strengths as long as each one is stronger than half the total weight. Or if it's easier to locate, two 50-lb drywall anchors would be more than sufficient. We have hung framed pictures weighing more than 40 lbs in drywall and it has never been a problem. Home Depot sells a kind of drywall anchor that is easy to install and sits flush against the wall - I think it's called E-Z-Anchor.
posted by muddgirl at 6:12 PM on August 18, 2019 [2 favorites]

Go to the hardware store and poke around the vast selection of anchors, toggles, and fancy hanging hardware until you find something that a) is rated for 50+ lbs and b) you feel confident you can execute the instructions on the back. There should be a ton of options. Don’t forget a level and ruler - this kind of job is unforgiving since the second anchor has to be perfectly level with the first, no wiggle room. I usually install one anchor, hang the thing, level it, mark both corners, take it down, then carefully measure the corner vs. screw location before installing the other anchor.
posted by pocams at 6:20 PM on August 18, 2019 [2 favorites]

If your IKEA is local and easy to get to, get their handy pack of hanging stuff for ten bucks. Bunch of drywall anchors, zip ties, and the like.

42 pounds isn't really much for drywall to handle in shear; you shouldn't worry about getting into a stud on either side. For peace of mind, get the anchors mentioned above, or some sort of plastic anchor from the big box store that is made for approximately the same diameter screw that came with your mirror. IKEA is usually pretty good about their hardware not being shit, and the screws that came with it should mount best to the slots on the back of the unit.
posted by notsnot at 6:58 PM on August 18, 2019

The anchors that jon1270 recommends are great drywall anchors, but unless they're snugged up tight they just act as sleeves in the hole through the drywall, and the design of the keyhole mounts on the back of that mirror frame mean that the anchors never will get snugged up tight.

For an almost pure shear load like your mirror, I'd use self-drilling plastic screw anchors. These carve a thread into the drywall plaster itself in order to mount the anchor body; the mounting screw for the mirror cuts independently into the centre of the anchor body and it doesn't need to be tight to secure the anchor.

Even the entry-level versions of these are rated for 10kg each, so two of them should be fine for your 19kg mirror. I'm not so fond of them for shelf brackets or anything else with much outward pull on the wall because they do rip out more easily than anchors that spread some kind of lock over the back of the plasterboard instead of cutting into it, but for shear loads they're fine.
posted by flabdablet at 4:45 AM on August 19, 2019 [1 favorite]

Another approach that would allow you to use jon1270's nice McMaster-Carr removable screw anchors: fit the anchors to the wall and tighten the screw so that the spreader at the back of the anchor opens out and pulls up against the back of the drywall as it's designed to do.

Now remove the screws and wind a thin 10-24 nut onto each one, almost all the way up to the head.

Now you can replace the screws and tighten the nuts against the wall anchors to clamp them properly into place and still have the screw heads stick out far enough to let you slip the mirror frame's keyhole slots over them.

This should get you a stronger and neater mount than you will achieve with plastic screw-in anchors.
posted by flabdablet at 9:05 AM on August 19, 2019 [3 favorites]

I don't trust the plastic screw anchors anymore. Too many jobs where there was plastic breakage or mis-alignment. I like the suggestion to use moly screw anchors and the ideas to improve their clamp to the wall.
posted by homesickness at 1:01 PM on August 19, 2019

There are plastic "anchors" and there are plastic anchors :-)

Overkill for a mirror though, and wide enough to be visible behind that thin frame.
posted by flabdablet at 9:06 PM on August 20, 2019

The EZ Anchor that muddgirl suggested worked great! Didn't even need a drill. For future reference, these are the ones I got, so even drilling into a stud worked fine (though isn't required).
posted by Cogito at 1:14 PM on October 6, 2019

Yep. Those work the same as the plastic screw-in ones, except that the plastic ones won't cope with accidentally hitting studs.

For future reference, the main thing to avoid when using that type of anchor is overtightening them as you initially screw them into the plaster. They rely on spreading load via the wide spiral groove they cut in as you install them, and to make that work you need to maintain the integrity of the plaster around that cut thread. If you overtighten them you end up with an anchor stuck into a little cylinder of cracked and crumbled plaster and then they fall out super easily.
posted by flabdablet at 10:12 PM on October 7, 2019

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