Q. We presently live in a home with wood siding and have a large number of wall planters, pictures, and ceramic pieces hanging from these walls. We will be moving to a home in the Southwest that is completely stucco. Could you please guide me in the right direction as to how we can hang these items on the outside of our new home? I do not believe that driving nails and large screws vicariously into the stucco is the right way to do this. The items are not real heavy. Bill, S. – Davis
A. We agree with your assessment that driving nails and screws here and there is not the answer. Most decorative wall hangings cannot be placed to coincide with stud layout. Therefore, since the items are not heavy, you’ll want free run of the walls.
Your best bet is to use expansion anchors. Expansion anchor come in all sizes and are rated by weight. Make sure to select an anchor which is large enough to carry the load.
Use an electric drill with a masonry bit to drill holes in the stucco at the location where the expansion anchor is to be installed. The packaging for most anchors will instruct you as to the size of the bit to be used. It is slightly smaller than the anchor.
Once the hole has been drilled, remove the spoils and pump a generous amount of clear silicone caulk into the hole. Place the expansion anchor directly into the silicone-filled hole. A couple of taps with a hammer will fully seat the anchor.
Finish the job by installing a screw which corresponds in size to the anchor. The deeper the screw is installed the more the anchor expands resulting in a more solid connection.