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Stop Drilling And Nailing Blindly In Drywall And Studs!

This article is for informational purposes. Always seek the advice of qualified professionals.

When you move to a new house, what’s the first thing that comes into your mind? It must be how to decorate the whole house properly, right?

But don’t ruin your wall with the intention to make it look beautiful.

So, how do you stop drilling and nailing blindly in drywall and studs?

First, you need to select where you should drill or nail. Studs are the best place to drill and nail. And you should definitely escape pipes and wires. To do that, find out where those studs, pipes, and wires are. Take good preparation before drilling and nailing and drilling to the masking tape. 

Now, let’s find out how you are going to do it!

What Can be Hit if You Drill or Nail Blindly?

Drilling or nailing blindly can be really bad and risky if you do it in a disorganized way. Drilling and nailing should be on purpose and must be done in perfect places. 

Otherwise, that can affect and hamper your wall aesthetics. 

Start by examining what is actually within your wall. There are three key components:

Studs – the purpose of studs is to be struck.

Electrical Wires – electrical wires are dangerous to strike.

Pipes – these are really difficult to strike.

Studs

You can hang heavy objects from studs if your home contains wooden studs. Which are found in the majority of residential buildings. Steel studs are steadily becoming more frequent in high rises.

Many times, you really want to strike studs since they are made of wood. There can be different purposes for making studs in the wall.

Given the soft nature of wood, odds are that a stud will be encountered. If your drill easily penetrates something behind drywall. 

When you take out the drill bit, you’ll probably have struck a stud. If you find sawdust adhered to the bit.

(Side note: If you remove your drill bit and notice plastic, it’s more probable that you struck a pipe. Not the best situation, that. Turn off your home’s electricity and water by going outside. Read on after that.)

Searching for other studs in each direction will help you confirm if you hit a stud. The typical spacing between studs is 16′′ or 24′′. Chances are you have discovered a stud if you discover anything similar at either of those distances.

Electrical Wires

The good news is that, for a few reasons, electrical cables are really quite difficult to strike. First off, they are under electrical code. Cables that pass through studs must have metal plates in front of them.

Metal plates are difficult to drill through. So give up if you run across something that your drill won’t go through. 

Wood and drywall should readily bite into your drill. If it doesn’t, take it as a sign that you need to halt drilling.

Consequently, metal plates are typically used to safeguard electrical cables that pass through studs. This obviously depends on your home builder or electrician obeying the rules. And it is more likely in modern builds.

Second, electrical lines are wired with a little “give”. So that if you need to reposition them or draw them out farther in the future. You may have some extra cable to work with.

As a result, your drill will probably only brush past a piece of loose electrical wire. Rather than really cutting it.

Nevertheless, it’s not impossible to hit an electrical line in spite of these factors. If it does, you will be informed. You’ll experience a painful shock and most likely feel a bit uneasy. (it won’t likely kill you, but you’ll feel it.)

Pipes

It’s not good to hit electrical lines. A true emergency occurs when you hit a pipe.

A house’s deadliest enemy is water. Wood? When exposed to water, rots. Drywall? Begins to mold. 

Flooring or carpet? Every single building material is known to man. Water obliterates them.

Therefore, it’s terrible to hit a pipe. Are there any copper, PVC, or more recent flexible plastic pipes here?

It’s far more difficult to drill through one of these than the others. You’re in good condition if you have copper pipes. 

It will take a lot of force to really drill a hole in a pipe. Even though you can undoubtedly strike it.

Once more, cease drilling if you encounter resistance. Your best line of defense when drilling into walls is resistance.

On the other hand, PVC and flexible plastic pipes are far more typical in recent residences. They are unfortunately also simpler to bore through. 

Until you remove the drill bit and see plastic. You might not even be aware that you have done it (and maybe a lot of water.)

Note: Water may not always be visible. If you bump against a drain pipe, you might not notice something. There can be a small piece of plastic until three months later.

It happens when the entire home begins to smell like sewage.

Let’s Find How to Drill and Nail Organized in Drywall and Stud

I know it seems horrible to hit a pipe. But it’s actually rather simple to avoid slamming into objects in walls.

For more than 6 years, I’ve been drilling into my walls. I’ve never struck anything (other than an intentional stud.) This is what I typically do:

Step 1: Check Visually for Any Potential Obstructions

Naturally, you can’t peek inside the wall itself. You wouldn’t have us here if you could. However, if you take a careful look around your house. 

You can probably predict where a pipe or electrical wire will be. What to look for includes the following:

  • What is behind your wall, exactly? There is most likely a pipe in that wall if there is a sink or shower.
  • What is above or below the wall you have? You could be underneath a bathroom where a pipe runs up the wall.
  • Is there a light switch or an electrical outlet nearby? Typically at the same level in the wall, wires go to those objects. Instead, try drilling above or below that level.
  • Is your wall on the inside or outside? Pipes are typically seen on inside walls if you live in a cold climate. Since it is simpler to prevent them from freezing that way.

These objects should be seen when you sand your drywalls.

Step 2: Drilling or Nailing Preparation

There are two key things you should do before you start once you’ve chosen your area. And you are confident you won’t strike anything significant.

Find the water shutoff for your house first. Make certain you can use it. merely in case. A similar thing applies to electricity.

Next, take a little piece of masking tape and attach it to the end of your drill bit. Approximately 5/8″ from the tip. You can stop drilling there using this information. 1/2′′ drywall should be no problem for 5/8′′.

Drilling far into the wall is necessary to hit electrical cables and pipelines. You won’t strike anything significant if you don’t drill through the drywall.

Your measuring tool is masking tape. Stop drilling when you reach the edge of the masking tape.

Step 3: Drill to the Mark on Your Masking Tape

Drill gradually up to your tape-masked mark. If not, you are probably near enough to be able to poke the drill bit through with your hand. This should just about get you through the drywall.

Drilling should stop at the masking tape mark. Don’t damage your drywalls otherwise, you may need to fix those drywalls again.

Currently, there is a cute small hole in the wall. You can insert a little drill bit into the hole to verify that it is in fact a stud in the wall. And not a pipe if you need to drill into one.

It’s also important to reiterate that you should stop drilling if you bore deeper than 5/8″ into the wall. For whatever reason and encountered resistance. The best indicator that something horrible is about to happen is resistance.

Now let me suggest to you some good quality drilling machines for your convenience:

Drilling Machines
VEVOR Hammer Drill, 1050WCheck Current Price
DEWALT 20V Max Cordless DrillCheck Current Price
BLACK+DECKER 20V Max Drill & Home Tool KitCheck Current Price

These are some really good quality drills you can get on the market. You may also get good deals on these sometimes.

Step 4: Devices to find What’s Behind the Wall

There are different types of devices you can find in the market which help to find a stud. Like,  Franklin Stud Finder but this can only indicate studs. 

Also, there are some other devices like Zircon Stud / Metal / AC Finder. These kinds of products will help you to find studs, metal, and wire. But there is a problem.

These products will only work if the stud, metal, and wire are close to the drywall. If those are even a bit further than the dry wall then the device won’t work properly. 

So, what is the savior? Endoscope Wireless Camera With Light is the best option you have got. You just need to download the app on your smartphone and you can control it from the app. 

To make the camera useful you just need to make a hole in the drywall. And put the camera in it. The wire is flexible enough to operate all around.

This endoscope camera will help you to see anything and everything behind the drywall. As it has to light with it. 

This is how you can stop yourself from drilling or nailing blindly in drywalls or studs. And don’t forget to fill all the holes you’ve made on your drywall previously.

FAQs

How do you tell if you’re drilling into a stud?

Make a fist and use your knuckles to strike the wall. You may occasionally hear a hollow sound. There will be more “solid” sounding regions.

You have struck a stud when you hear the “solid” sound. The distance between studs is between 16 and 24 inches. Something negative occurs.

Can I screw it directly into drywall?

NO, a screw will not stay in the drywall when inserted directly. To safely hang a large, hefty painting, you will need to utilize some sort of picture hanging gear. Without an anchor, a screw through drywall alone won’t hold in the drywall permanently. Sooner or later, it will just draw itself back out again.

Can I hammer a nail into a stud?

Yes, studs are simple to create using nails. The 2-by-4 or 2-by-6 planks that make up a house’s framework are called studs. They serve as the basis of almost every house. At the top and bottom, horizontal planks are fastened with studs. Sometimes with the use of a hammer and nails.

Conclusion

Hope you have a clear idea of how you stop drilling and nailing blindly in drywall and studs. Please check properly on the walls and take necessary precautions before starting drilling or nailing. 

If there are any more queries drop them in the comment section. I’ll try to get back to them as soon as possible.

See you soon!