How Much Weight Can Drywall Hold?

It’s natural to want to add some shelves, wall art, or picture frames to a room, and your drywall shouldn’t be the reason that you can’t get creative with your wall space!

How Many Screws Do You Need Per Sheet Of Drywall

However, if you are planning to decorate your drywall, you will need to plan carefully to ensure that you don’t do any damage to the room. 

The amount of weight that a drywall can hold will depend on how you add the weight to the wall, as well as where on the wall it is added.

Application is key, and it can be the difference between your drywall failing to hold a light picture frame, and holding 100 pounds!

In this article, we have compiled an ultimate guide to adding weight to drywall, including information on how much weight drywall can hold. Let’s dive in! 

Putting A Nail In Your Drywall

Drywall can be quite brittle, and adding weight to single nails may not work. If you put a lone nail into a drywall, it will only hold a few pounds of weight. It may hold up a small picture frame temporarily, but it will not hold this long term. 

You may end up with the nail slipping out of the wall, or the drywall crumbling and dropping the nail.

Use Wall Studs

Instead of hanging your decorations directly on the drywall, you should aim to use a wall stud. These should be placed around 16 to 24 inches away from each other behind your drywall.

To find the wall stud, you can use a stud finder. You can also find these studs without a stud finder by tapping on the wall. Move along in a line and when you hear a solid sound, you have located the wall stud.

Once you have found the wall stud, the direction that you place the nail in the stud will determine the amount of weight that you can hang on the stud. 

For instance, if you use a large nail that is placed in the wall at a 45-degree angle, this will hold up to 20 pounds. 

If you use 4 screws in the wall, you may even be able to place a shelf on the drywall. This will hold up to 100 pounds if the nails are driven into a wall stud at the correct angle. 

You will need to ensure that you are using screws that can be driven 1 inch into the stud. This is the perfect depth, as any less won’t hold the weight, and any more will put the screw at risk of becoming damaged. 

Use Ceiling Joists 

If you are trying to attach something to your drywall ceiling, this is quite difficult. This is due to the pull of gravity, meaning that even ceiling joists cannot hold much weight. 

The average ceiling joist is usually 2×4 inches, and it will not be able to hold any more than 20 pounds of weight. This is the weight of a very small ceiling fan

If you use a bigger joist, you may be able to add a little more weight to the ceiling, but it will not add much more. Using a 2×8 joist may allow you to hang around 20 pounds of weight from the ceiling. 

Use Anchors And Toggle Bolts

If you want to add some extra weight to the wall, you can use anchors and toggle bolts. They will provide the screws with extra holding power. 

They do this by increasing the surface area that the screw can hold onto. To install these, you will need to install the toggle bolt or anchor first, and then put the screw in. 

You can purchase different types of anchors depending on the amount of weight that you want to hang on the wall. 

Selecting The Right Hardware 

How Many Screws Do You Need Per Sheet Of Drywall

To increase the weight that your drywall can hold, you can use the hardware listed above. You must choose the right hardware depending on what you need. Let’s take a look at the different types: 

Expansion Anchors 

Expansion anchors will allow your drywall to hold between 5 and 25 pounds. This will depend on the size of the anchor. 

They are not suitable for ceilings and are designed to add certain things to the wall. If you want the product to remain on the wall, it is a good idea to use a sturdier anchor than this.

Threaded Anchors 

Threaded anchors are thicker than expansion anchors, meaning they can hold more weight. They can usually hold between 25 and 75 pounds. 

You can’t use these anchors on ceilings. 

Sleeve Type Anchors 

You can put between 25 and 50 pounds on the walls with these anchors. You can use them on the ceiling, too, but only with very small items. 

It is important to get the right size anchor for the thickness of your drywall as if you purchase an oversized molly bolt, it will slide out of the wall.

Toggle Bolts

If you want to hang something fairly heavy on the wall, toggle bolts are for you. Metal toggles can hold up to 100 pounds of weight.

They are the best choice for you if you are looking to hang something from the ceiling, but, in this case, they can only hold around 30 pounds of weight. 

Final Thoughts 

So, there you have it! In this article, we have explored how much weight drywall can hold. We have also detailed the best ways for you to add things to your drywall, including some useful hardware to increase the amount of weight the drywall can hold.

After reading this article, you should be confident with the amount of weight your drywall can hold and the best way to hang things from the drywall. Let’s dive in! 

Luke Powell
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