You can hang a heavy mirror on a plasterboard wall! Read our ultimate guide on how to hang a mirror on a plasterboard wall and the correct fixings to use.
First consider, the type of plasterboard and whether it features wooden studs and dot and dab. Second, the correct fixings required to complete the job. Top tip: If you are concerned if a mirror will look to big or to small against your chosen wall. Using newspaper, cut out and stick together the overall size of your mirror. Then blue tac the newspaper cutout to the wall.
How to Hang a Mirror On a Plasterboard Wall?
Plasterboard wall types
- Plasterboard featuring stud work
- Plasterboard featuring bonding adhesive known as dot and dab
What is plasterboard?
Simply put plasterboard consists of two layers of lining paper holding a inner layer of plaster in place. The plaster, known as gypsum is a soft mineral. Dehydrated gypsum (or plaster) became known as plaster of Paris used in the art and the medical field. Upon addition of water, after some time plaster of Paris becomes regular gypsum (dehydrated) again, causing the material to set in ways that are useful for casting and construction. The word Gypsum comes from the Greek word when translated meaning ‘plaster’. Mainly used as a finish for internal walls and ceilings, and known in the construction world as drywall, or plasterboard.
Plasterboard was introduced to Britain around 1916. Although the British building industry was initially slow to adopt this new product, in 1927 sales gradually increased. A more modern factory was purchased and able to keep up with the demand. Today, plasterboard is mainly used for internal partition walls.
Plasterboard featuring stud work
Stud work is the supportive framework of a wall or partition. A stud wall comprises of a frame of timber (or metal) secured to the floor, ceiling and walls. The stud frame is then covered with plasterboard. Studs are the centre parts. Studs form walls and generally carry vertical lands such as a partition wall which separate spaces. We recommend using stud detector.
Plasterboard featuring dot and dabs
Dot and dab became prevalent in England in late 1970’s. It quickly became popular die to its low cost, fast installation, quicker drying time and ease of finish. Walls finished this way can be painted almost immediately. This form of wall can be used as both wooden and masonry walls and ceilings. The process involves plasterboard being directly attached to wood or masonry walls or ceilings using dots and dabs of adhesive.
What plasterboard wall fixings to use?
There are many types of plasterboard fixings on the market, for example, hallow wall anchors, spring toggles, self-drill spiral fixings and GripIt fixings. We will highlight two.
Self-drill plasterboard fixings
These are specifically created for plasterboard walls and feature an easy to install design. A deep outer thread is used to grip the plasterboard. Whilst short in length, it is ideal for the thickness of British plasterboard. Only a screwdriver is needed to install these spiral fixings. An easy option but with a weight limit of 14kg and not suitable for stud walls or dot and dab walls.
GripIt plasterboard fixings
18mm GripIt plasterboard fixings are designed to fix heavy items weighing up to 74kg onto plasterboard. Featuring wings on the back which will rotate out and distribute the weight across the wall. These fixings reduce the space needed in the wall cavity. The fixing can be adjusted to the thickness of the plasterboard and can be removed and reused. A 18mm flat head drill bit will create the required hole. A 18mm undercutting tool will create the recess if your plasterboard wall features a stud and dot and dab.
How to hang a mirror on a plasterboard wall?
Tools and Materials needed: Your required fixing, pencil, tape measure, spirit level, a screwdriver or a standard drill with the correct size drill bit.
IMPORTANT: Check for electric cables and pipes before you start. Never drill above or below light switches or plug sockets.
- With a pencil mark the on the wall place where you want the top and centre of your mirror to be. Do this by eye or measure it out.
- On the rear of the mirror, find the centre of your mirror and mark with a pencil.
- Measure the distance from the centre of the mirror, out to centre of the hollow ring on each strap hanger. Write this down.
- Measure from the top of the mirror frame down to the centre of the hollow ring on each strap hanger. (Measure each strap hanger as it may not be the same measurement.) Write this down.
- Transfer these measurements using your spirit level and tape measure on to the wall where you will hang the mirror.
- Double check that your marks on the wall line up with the strap hangers and that they are level.
- Depending on the wall fixings you are using, position and screw the spiral fixing on your wall fixing mark. The spiral fixings should be flush with the wall. If using GripIt fixings, with the 18mm flat head drill bit, drill the required holes. The above video will assist you. See below if your plasterboard wall features a stud or a dot and dab wall.
- Once you have the fixings in place, with help, hang your mirror with the strap hangers onto the fixings that you have fitted to the wall. Job done!
How to hang a mirror on a stud wall or dot and dab wall?
Once you know where your fixing is needed, drill a hole with your 18mm flat head drill bit. Attach the 18mm under cutting tool to your drill and insert into the pre-drilled hole. This tool will remove any obstacles for example wooden studs and extra plaster, that would prevent the wings on the back of the fixing from opening. Then position the GripIt fixing into the hole.
Purchase GripIt fixings and the required tools to hang your mirror on a plasterboard wall even if it features studs and dot and dab.