Decorating with mirrors is a speedy trick to make spaces to feel brighter and more bigger. In any case, hanging heavy wall mirrors can be scary. Both powerful and delicate, mirrors represent a challenge for drywall and plaster walls on account of their size and weight. Most new mirrors accompany mounting equipment, however choosing the best possible installation equipment (the bolts, screws, and anchors that fasten into the wall) requires cautious thought. Subsequent to deciding your wall type and choosing the correct supplies, utilize the following guidance on how to hang a heavy wall mirror safely so you can refresh the look of your room while protecting your decor and walls.

Preparation before Hanging a Heavy Mirror

Preparation

You’ll need to check a few things before you buy the hardware.

Step 1:

Determine what type of wall you have: drywall, plaster or masonry. To see if you have drywall or plaster, push a tack into the wall. If it goes in easily, it’s drywall. Make sure the hardware and anchors you purchase are compatible with your wall type.

Step 2:

A hanging mirror has to have a strong frame. If your new mirror already has hardware attached, it’s safe to hang. If you’re not sure about an old mirror, you can reinforce the frame with angle brackets.

Step 3:

Weigh the mirror — a bathroom scale works fine. Hardware weight limits are listed on the hardware packaging.

Step 4:

Pick a spot to hang the mirror. Locating it over a stud is helpful but not necessary with the right anchors. Always mark the center of the stud, and keep in mind utilities might be attached to it if the stud is near a light switch, outlet or faucet. 

Hanging the Mirror Using Cleats or Brackets

You can hang your mirror using brackets or cleats.

Hang a Mirror Using Hooks

Step 1:

Hold the mirror in place — close to eye level. Mark the wall near the center of the top edge with a pencil or painter’s tape.

Step 2:

On the back of the mirror you’ll probably see D-rings or a wire. You can hang rings or wire from two hooks on the wall.

Step 3:

To get the right space between the hooks, stick a long piece of tape on a level and mark the space between the D-rings.

Step 4:

Set the level aside. Lock one of the mounting hooks on the ring as it will be positioned on the wall. Measure from the mounting hole in the hook to the top of the mirror.

Step 5:

Transfer this distance to the wall, measuring down from the line you marked in Step 1.

Step 6:

Center your level on the wall and mark the location for the hook mounting holes.

Step 7:

If you’re in line with a stud, secure the hardware to it. If not, install a wall anchor and attach the hardware. If you have plaster walls, make sure the anchors are designed to hold in plaster. There are many types and sizes of drywall anchors as well as all-in-one screw and anchor products. Make sure you’re installing drywall anchors rated to support the weight of the items you’re hanging.

Step 8:

Add bumpers to the bottom of the mirror to prevent scratching the wall.

Step 9:

Gently hang the mirror on the hooks.

How to Hang a Heavy Mirror

Set yourself up for success with the right tools and accurate measurements. Then, collect the important details needed to pick the best installation hardware for hanging a mirror.

What You Need

Note: The tools you need will be dependent on which wall anchors you use.

  • Pencil
  • Level
  • Measuring tape
  • Painters tape
  • Stud finder or multifunction stud finder
  • Screwdriver
  • Drill
  • Hammer
  • Wall anchors
  • A helper to assist with lifting, measuring, and mounting the mirror

Step 1: Determine Mirror Weight and Mounting Hardware

Look for a mirror’s weight in the product specs or simply weigh the mirror on a bathroom scale. Most new purchases have mounting hardware included. Look for D-rings, wire, clips, or brackets (also called French cleats) attached to the back or included as part of the purchase. If your mirror does not have mounting hardware, you’ll first have to install it.

Step 2: Know Your Wall Type

Homes that are new builds or recently remodeled usually have drywall, while many older homes have plaster walls. If you’re unsure which type you have, try pressing a thumbtack into the wall. You’ll be able to easily push the tack into drywall but not into plaster. Masonry, such as brick, is another wall type you might encounter that will affect how you hang a mirror.

Step 3: Identify Studs and Potential Obstacles

Decide where you want to hang the mirror, marking the corners or edges with painters tape or a pencil. This will also help you visualize the mirror in the room. Then use a multi-function stud finder to locate any studs, pipes, or wires in the area. Studs can be helpful for hanging a heavy mirror, but be sure to avoid drilling through pipes or inserting a screw into live wires. For especially heavy mirrors, it’s best to secure at least one screw into a stud, so now is a good time to reconsider if the proposed spot will work.

Step 4: Make the Mirror Level

Not only does a crooked mirror look bad, but hanging a heavy mirror unevenly could apply pressure that causes the fasteners to fail, potentially resulting in a lot of broken glass and a big hole in the wall. Measurements are critical in making a mirror level. Start by measuring and marking the top of the mirror with painters tape, then use a level to make sure the line is straight. Mark the center on the painters tape, too, because you’ll need to reference this point while marking where to place screws and wall anchors. When transferring installation dimensions to the wall, it’s imperative to level the measurement between the mounting points as well.

How to Hang a Heavy Mirror on Different Types of Walls

Although it’s preferable to hang a heavy object from a stud in the wall, studs aren’t always exactly where you want them. Instead, use wall anchors to secure a heavy mirror. The weight of the mirror and the type of wall it hangs on are the key factors in selecting the right wall anchor. It’s good practice to choose a fastener that can hold more than the required weight. Most fastener packaging will tell you how much weight the product can hold, what type of wall it should be used on, and how to install it (including the drill bit size, if necessary).

D-rings, keyholes, and wire-mounted mirrors can all be hung on an anchored screw. Just remember to leave a quarter- or half-inch sticking out. Brackets, on the other hand, need to be in place before screws can be installed.