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The Home Depot

How to Install a Wall Mounted Bookshelf

Pro Referral > Home Guides > Handyman > How to Install a Wall Mounted Bookshelf
How to Install a Wall Mounted Bookshelf

Space is at a premium in most homes. Attics and basements are meant for long term storage of things you will not need for a long time. Closets and drawers are for keeping clothes, and cupboards are for crockery and all kinds of other things. But what about books? Every home has them, although the number may vary (some people do not read that much). And books need to be cared for so they don’t become dirty, torn, or are resting in an environment that is prone to mildew.


A bookcase is one way of doing this, but bookcases are expensive and take up valuable floor space. Wall mounted book shelves not only save on space, they keep the books at a convenient height from where it is easy to locate the book you want without having to bend down to see what is in the bottom level of a book case.

  1. 1.Wall Mounted Book Shelf Options

    Wall mounted book shelves are an inexpensive and elegant way to keep a home tidy and organized.

    There are two ways you can go about putting up book shelves on the wall. The first way is to use shelf standards which are long rectangular shaped bracket of metal that are fixed vertically to the walls. The brackets have slots which will accept the projection from a base piece of the shelf support. These shelves may be easily adjusted as and when required for height and the gap between the shelves if more than one is fitted. For books, using a twin-track standard, which means fixing two brackets on the wall, is advisable because books are heavy and the additional support is required.


    The other option is to use a simple fixed shelf or shelves that are screwed in the wall. Once fitted these cannot be adjusted. If you are looking for manufacturers or seller of wall mounted book shelves in your area, you will find the information you need online. Talking to these professionals will help you to examine all your shelving options. Make a few phone calls, compare about 4 of them, and make your choice.

  3. 2.Installing the Shelf

    The first thing to be done is to decide on the number of shelves you need and whether you want adjustable or fixed ones. Once that is done identify the exact locations on the wall where you want the shelf mounted. Now comes the actual installation.


    • Most interior walls in a home are drywalls. Check to find where the studs are because these are the most secure spots to secure the shelf which will have to carry the weight of books. If you can adjust your shelf location to match the studs, that’s great.


    • If there are no studs where you want to mount the book shelf, and you have to mount it to a hollow wall, you will need to use mounting anchors or special bolts to hold the shelf and its weight. There are various bolt and anchor options, each designed of a different weight range. Use the system that will secure a weight that is about 20% more than you think you will need. A hardware store will be able to help you find what you require.


    • Mark the location where the first standard is to be fitted. Drill a hole in the wall and fasten the top hole tightening the screw about 3/4ths of the way.


    • Use a carpenter’s level to ensure that the standard is plum and then insert a pencil through each of the remaining mounting holes to mark where the remaining holes are to be drilled.


    • Drill the rest of the holes as marked, position the standard and fit and tighten all the screws.


    • Place a shelf support bracket near the top of the standard. Hole the second standard where it is to be fitted and place another support bracket in the matching slot. Place a piece of shelving between the support brackets and put the carpenter’s level to ensure that the shelf is leveled. A second pair of hands can make this part of the job easier.


    • Once you have the shelf level, mark the location of the drill hole for the second standard the same way as the first one and complete the drilling and mounting.


    • Now all you need to do is fit the support brackets into the standards and then install the shelf or shelves on top of the supports.

  4. 3.Wall Mounted Shelves are Inexpensive and Easy to Install

    Wall shelves are an affordable, quick, attractive solution to you book storage problems. Anyone with even a little DIY experience can install them in no time at all and be satisfied with the result. Make sure you stain the shelves before you place them on the brackets (of course after you know the shelves are the right size).

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