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Old 01-29-2011, 09:15 AM   #1
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Fastening grab bar to tiled drywall with minimal clearance behind


I'm trying to find a fastener to attach a grab bar in my Mom's bathroom. The construction is 3/8" ceramic tile over 1/2" drywall.

The complication is that there's only 1/2" clearance between the drywall and the masonry wall behind. Plus I already drilled 7/16" holes for toggle bolts before realising that there wasn't enough clearance for the wings to open.

So, I'm hoping that there's a suitable fastener/plug that will work for this situation. The grab bar has 6 anchor points to spread the load. One option is to use tapcon screws and fasten into the masonry behind the the drywall but I'd rather avoid that if possible.

Any suggestions would be much appreciated. I don't want to be defeated by a grab bar

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Old 01-29-2011, 11:33 AM   #2
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Fastening grab bar to tiled drywall with minimal clearance behind


I've never used these fasteners but know of them. Research them and maybe they will meet your needs http://www.wingits.com/Fastening-Systems_c_7.html

Don't ever install a grab bar 99%. It's either installed correctly or it's not.

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Old 01-29-2011, 11:48 AM   #3
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Fastening grab bar to tiled drywall with minimal clearance behind


Grab bars are either installed into the wood stud framing, or in this case, use the masonry block wall to help secure it. Only securing to the drywall, will not make a secure method for it. Tapcons would be the best way to secure into the masonary.
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Old 01-29-2011, 04:52 PM   #4
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Fastening grab bar to tiled drywall with minimal clearance behind


Do not just fasten that bar to drywall.

It will not be safe. Anchor it to the block wall or whatever is behind it. Code for a hollow wall is to install horizontal lumber and lag it with a minimum screw length that escapes me currently.

You have probably seen in older public restrooms that were brought up to code with grab bars, they install an external piece of wood and secure it to the studs, and then mount the grab bar to that.


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Old 01-29-2011, 05:39 PM   #5
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Fastening grab bar to tiled drywall with minimal clearance behind


If you're saying there is a 1/2" space between the back of the drywall and the face of the masonry, then you need to find where the furring strips are. You'll still need to go thru and into the masonry with your tapcons as I wouldn't trust the furring strips. If you can't find furring strips, then you'll need to cut a hole, insert a block of plywood to fill the gap flush with the face of the drywall, then drill thru that into the masonry. Use caulk to seal the plywood block and the grab bar bracket. The grab bar bracket must overlap the block you put in there or you'll end up ruining your wall!
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