Can you reuse wall anchors?
To use a wall anchor, you need to drill a hole, push the anchor into the wall, and then turn a screw in it.
As the screw is driven deeper into the anchor, it permanently deforms the plastic. This makes us think that an anchor might not be able to be reused.
Many traditional anchors can reused as long as you test them first. You can do this by tightening a screw in the hole and tug at it. If the anchor holds onto the screw, that means it’s good to be reused.
There are several different types of wall anchors, and each one works differently.
But they all have a common purpose: to fight against gravity and keep items hanging from the wall.
Our tool experts believe that whether a wall anchor should be reused depends on the type of anchor.
Traditional anchors are not expensive and come in large quantities, so it never hurts to keep a few spare.
Sometimes, removing an anchor and reusing it is not worth the time and effort that goes into the process.
Our experts advise against reusing traditional anchors, even though they can be used.
Can You Reuse Wall Anchors?
The answer to this is “it depends.” Some anchors are designed for multiple uses, while others are one-time use only.
If you try to reuse a single-use anchor, you may weaken or cut the plastic that is supposed to secure the screw.
This can cause the anchor to give in and cause your hanging object to come crashing down to the floor.
Some anchors can be reused if they are removed and reinstalled correctly.
But to be on the safe side, it is best to spend a little extra on anchors that are marked “reusable” if you plan to move the anchor from one place to another.
Reusing Traditional Anchors
It is important to remember that traditional anchors are made of plastic, and screw threads cut through them and weaken them.
With every tightening and loosening of the screw, the anchor goes under wear and tear. Eventually, the anchor will become useless and not hold the screw in place.
One way to reuse traditional anchors for longer is to drill shallow holes. This will allow the screw to be removed easily without doing too much damage to the anchor.
To remove an anchor from the wall, loosen the screw to less than 50% of the anchor’s length. Then use a set of pliers to grab the screwhead and pull.
If the screw comes out without the anchor, you may need to tighten the screw a little further. If the anchor and screw don’t budge, you may need to loosen the screw a little.
For extra force, use the tip or cutter of the pliers to hold the screw near the head. Then use the wall as support to lever the screw and anchor out of the wall.
Try to pull the screw out as straight as you can so the anchor does not get damaged by the sides of the hole.
To reinstall, you might have to make a slightly larger hole. Insert the anchor with the screw into the hole, and tighten the screw.
Once you are at the required depth, check if the screw feels heavy to turn. If the screw is free, chances are your anchor has become damaged. You can also tug at the screw to check if it is secure.
Should You Reuse Traditional Anchors and Screws?
If you don’t have a screw that matches the anchor, we will strongly advise against attempting to pull the anchor out of the wall.
You will most likely damage the anchor, the wall, or both.
In most cases, the effort that you put in removing an anchor to be reused is not worth it. You risk causing more damage than the savings you will get by reusing the anchor.
But if you are out and need to hang up that decoration an hour before a dinner party at your home, reusing an anchor may be your best chance.
Remember to exercise caution when removing anchors so that you don’t damage the wall.
Reusable Wall Anchors
Once all your attempts to recover a used anchor have failed, it might be time to pay a visit to the local hardware store.
When purchasing anchors, look for those that are marked reusable. Also, pay attention to the specifications to understand the weight each of these anchors can support.
Trust us when we say that you will thank yourself for investing in some reusable or multi-use anchors because they will make things so much easier.
Reusable anchors comprise more robust materials that do not deform too much when screws are tightened and loosened.
This allows you to reuse the anchor multiple times and is easier to remove when installed into the walls.
To remove and reinstall these anchors, all you need is a screwdriver and a drill machine. You will not have to pull and tug with pliers to remove these anchors.
If you are into DIY work, which we assume you are since you are reading this, it is best to keep a few anchors spare in your toolbox.
You never know when you may need one, and running to the hardware store for a small part can often be a nuisance.
Should I Store Old Anchors?
If you have invested in new anchors, there is not much point in storing your old anchors. It is best to toss them in for recycling.
If you are an avid DIY enthusiast, you might be tempted to save some anchors for those “just in case” moments. We advise against this, but we will let you be the judge here.
We will let you decide if you want to keep old anchors in your toolbox or toss them.
Summing Up Reusing Wall Anchors
Wall anchors are able to be reused, but just make sure they aren’t too damaged first. Test them out with a new screw and if they hold it just fine, you’ll be all set!
There’s no harm in buying new wall anchors too – most all hardware stores have them available!