How to Use Molly and Toggle Bolts

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How to Use Molly and Toggle Bolts. Hanging a picture might seem like an easy task. But sometimes it takes more than a hammer and a nail. Hanging objects over a stud is probably best, but not always an option. Wall anchors, like molly bolts and toggle bolts, can make hanging objects easier. They can also help prevent damage to your walls. Read on to learn how to use molly and toggle bolts.

Things You'll Need

  • Molly Bolts
  • Screwdriver (flat-tip or Phillips head)
  • Hammer or rubber mallet
  • Toggle bolts

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Molly Bolts

Use the largest molly bolt that can be used in your situation. The larger the molly bolt, the stronger it is.

Drill a hole in the wall that is the same diameter as the molly bolt. Some molly bolts have a pointed tip that allows you to just push them into the wall, or hammer them in. However, it is recommended that you pre-drill a hole for these as well.

Push the molly bolt into the hole. The head should be flush with the drywall. You can use a hammer or rubber mallet to drive it in if necessary.

Turn the screw clockwise until you feel a lot of resistance and the top of the molly bolt is tight against the wall. While you are turning the screw, the back of the molly bolt is flattening itself against the back of the wall.

Remove the screw.

Hang your object by placing the screw through it and then screwing it back into the molly bolt.

Toggle Bolts

Drill a hole for the toggle bolt. It should be large enough to accommodate the size of the toggle.

Separate the toggle and the screw.

Attach the screw to the object you are hanging by, for example, pushing push it through a hole or holding it under a wire.

Attach the toggle to the screw.

Twist the toggle far enough up the screw so the toggle won't turn sideways. This should prevent the toggle from opening improperly.

Hold the object to be hung against the wall in its desired location. Push the toggle through your pre-drilled hole.

Pull back on the screw once you hear or feel the toggle pop open.

Tighten the screw.

Tips & Warnings

  • Pointed-tip molly bolts are great for hanging objects on drywall. Flat-tip molly bolts work well on plaster walls. You can also find molly bolts small enough to use with hollow doors.
  • The largest molly bolts can hold up to 50 pounds.
  • Molly bolts can be removed from the wall and re-used, unlike toggle bolts.
  • Molly bolts are hard to remove. Instead of removing them, you can hide them in the wall by tapping them with a screwdriver until they are beneath the surface of the wall. Then spackle and paint over the resulting hole.
  • Toggle bolts cannot be reused. The screw can be removed from the wall, but the toggle will drop and most likely you won't get it back.
  • The diameter of the screw determines the strength of the toggle bolt-the longer the screw, the stronger the toggle bolt. The length of the screw determines how thick of a surface you can hang your object on.
  • Toggle bolts are very strong, and are great for hanging objects from the ceiling.
  • Do not over-tighten a molly bolt. This could break the bolt or damage your wall.
  • Do not over-tighten the screw. Doing so could cause the toggle bolt to break. Or worse, it could damage the wall.
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