Concrete screws are the easy way to anchor objects to concrete. This article shows you how to drill a holes in concrete or masonry and then how to choose and install concrete screws.
Remember to wear eye and ear protection when drilling concrete!
In this article, you will find information about:
There are several ways to attach a screw to concrete. You can use an actual concrete screw that screws directly into a hole you have drilled in the concrete or you can use a metal or plastic anchor that is inserted into a drilled hole and then a regular screw is screwed into the anchor. Both systems work well. Try the concrete screw first and if it does not grab in the hole you can make the hole larger and insert a plastic or metal expansion shield and install a regular screw.
Length of Screw: Try to get the concrete screw to go at least an inch into the concrete. If you are attaching something heavy to concrete, like a handrail, you will need to install the concrete screw farther into the concrete.
Diameter of The Screw: The diameter of concrete screws gets larger as the screw gets longer.
Tapcon Concrete Screws "Blue Screws": The brand name of the blue concrete screws is Tapcon. These screws come in two diameters and two head types. Many of the larger packs come with a masonry drill bit. If you plan on drilling alot of holed you will want to use a rotary hammer drill bit instead of the one sold with the Tapcons. These are the screw and driver sizes provided by Tapcon.
The bit to use with each size of Tapcon® are:
The drivers to use with the different head style Tapcons are:
Metal Expansion Anchors: Metal expansion anchors or shields are inserted into a hole in the concrete and then a screw is driven into the shield. The insert expands and presses against the concrete which creates holding power. Metal expansion shields work well for heavier screw applications.
Plastic Expansion Anchors: Plastic expansion anchors work just like the metal expansion anchors. The work well for lighter duty applications like hanging window shutters on the brick exterior of a home.
Use a permenant marker to put a dot or x on the spot where the hole will be drilled.
Drill the hole for the concrete screw at least 1/4" deeper than the depth the screw will enter the concrete to allow space for any concrete dust in the bottom of the hole. Find the depth of the concrete screw by:
The result if this is your desired depth. Either set the depth gauge on the drill to this depth or use masking tape wrapped around the drill bit to mark the depth.
step 4 Drill The Hole
Use a hammer drill to drill into the concrete or masonry surface. A hammer drill is a drill that rotates like a normal drill and it hammers the concrete at the same time. The hammering breaks up the concrete or masonry and the rotation removes the concrete dust.
For more information on drilling in concrete or masonry read the article How To Drill Concrete.
step 5 Attach The Concrete Screw
Tapcon Screws: When using Tapcon concrete screws it is best to use a drill with the proper driver head for your screws, either phillips head or 1/4" or 5/16" socket. It is important to maintain a fair amount of pressure on the head of the screw so the bit does not slip, this is especially true when using phillips head screws.
Regular Screws In Plastic Expansion Anchors: If you are driving a wood screw into a plastic anchor you can use a phillips head screw driver if you wish but a drill with a phillips driver works best.
Regular Screws In Metal Expansion Anchors: Metal expansion anchors will allow larger screws like lag screws with a hex head. Determine the size of the screw head and either set up your drill or use a wrench to drive the screw into the anchor.