Why Won’t My Anchors Go Into the Dry Wall?

Why won’t my anchors go into the drywall?

Your anchors won’t go into the drywall because of the improper anchor installation that won’t give your anchor the ability to stay or a wrong wall with either plastic or lathe in the way. A weak wall that can’t take in an anchor or a wrong hole size is another reason your anchors won’t go into the drywall.


anchor wont go into wall


Improper anchor installation

Anchors for drywall are simple to install, but it’s also incredibly simple to mess them up. The first thing that has to be done is to drill a hole for the anchor. It can’t be any bigger than that. The anchor will serve little to no purpose if it is too big.

On the other side, if it’s not big enough, there won’t be enough room for the drywall anchor to fit in. To continue along this line of thought, you should never make a hole the same size as the anchor you are using. Once there’s a mistake in your anchor installation, your anchor won’t go into the drywall.


Wrong wall/environment

Drywall anchors are intended to be used with drywall. They are made to incise into the material surrounding them and contribute significant strength to the walls. This gives the drywall the ability to hold big items, which it would not have otherwise if it were only by itself. Plaster and lathe come in a close second.

There is a chance that a plaster and lathe wall lies behind the drywall in your room. And if that’s the case, it can make the process of placing an anchor into drywall that much more difficult. Having to deal with something that stops anchors from going all the way in is an extremely irritating experience. Your anchor is digging in, but it meets resistance from the plaster between the lathes (wood).


A weak wall

If the section of the wall you are trying to insert the drywall anchor is really weak, then the anchor won’t be able to be inserted into the wall without the wall feeling like it’s about to come out.

In drywall, there are sometimes sections that can be weak and include holes, which makes it more difficult to attach items like drywall anchors and other similar components. You simply have to shift the spot a few inches to the right or left to get around the section of the drywall that isn’t as sturdy as the rest.


Wrong size of the hole

If the hole that you are trying to screw the drywall anchor into is too small, the drywall won’t be able to go in, and you will need to extend the hole. If the hole is large enough, the drywall can go in. You can manipulate the drill machine so that the drill bit presses against the walls of the hole while it is being created.

It is essential that the hole for the anchor not be excessively large or inadequate in size. For the anchor to properly secure itself into the surrounding material, there must be a sufficient amount of drywall. Because of this, it can maintain its strength.


Why do my anchors keep breaking?

The reason your anchors keep breaking is because there is a concrete foundation behind the drywall, or you are dealing with plastic and lath instead of drywall.


Concrete foundation behind

If you are dealing with a portion of the concrete wall, your anchors will keep breaking. Concrete is much more robust than drywall, which is why some houses use concrete and drywall for their wall construction.

You need to relocate to a different section of the wall that is drywall rather than concrete so that you can fix this problem. To identify whether or not your wall is made of concrete or drywall, you can perform a simple test by trying to push a basic push pin into your wall. The drywall is rather soft, and it is possible, in most cases, to drive a push pin into the wall by applying pressure with your thumb.


Plastic and lath instead of drywall

The walls of some homes are constructed using drywall in addition to lath and plaster, even though lath and plaster are considerably more durable than drywall. If you are working with lath and plaster instead of drywall in the wall section where you are attempting to install the anchor, your anchors will keep breaking.


Why do plastic anchors keep pulling out of the wall?

Your plastic anchors keep pulling out of the wall because the hole is too big for your anchor to stay or a wall material that isn’t stable enough to accommodate the plastic anchor. Hanging heavy objects on the wall is another reason your plastic anchors keep pulling out.


Big hole

The size of your holes may be too large. When the screw is installed, the anchor doesn’t extend to the point where it can take a bite out of the hole surrounding it. Remember that most plastic anchors are tapered, so you want to ensure that they fit as snugly as possible in the hole.

The hole is probably too big if you put too much force into it to get them in. Some plastic anchors feature a tiny lip (collar) at the end to prevent the anchor from slipping into the wall. This prevents the anchor from breaking through the wall’s surface. The diameter of the pilot hole you drill must be less than that of the collar. When the anchor is inserted into the hole, it won’t rest precisely flush with the wall because of the depth of the hole.


Unstable material

Another common issue is that the material you are inserting the anchor into isn’t sturdy enough to keep the anchor in place. This might be a challenge when installing an anchor. When dealing with older plaster, this can be an especially difficult issue.

After the anchor has been installed, the surrounding plaster is shattered due to the expansion of the anchor caused by the insertion of the screw. This results in the anchor becoming dislodged, as it was only being held in place by dust before this happened.


Too much load

There is a possibility that you are putting an excessive amount of weight on the anchors. Drywall and plaster aren’t designed to carry loads; therefore, if you put excessive weight on a single location, the anchor will get dislodged.


How to fix your anchors, so they go into the wall?

You can fix your anchors so they can go into the wall by installing a stronger wall anchor, anchoring with molly bolts, and replacing damaged wall anchors.

Install a stronger wall anchor

It is a good idea to estimate the weight the anchors will need to support before you replace the weak ones with newer, stronger ones. Toggle bolts can support the maximum weight, followed by molly bolts. However, both of these types of bolts are almost permanent. If all you are doing is installing a towel rack, a plastic screw-in anchor will be much simpler to set up and take down. Here are the steps to install a stronger wall anchor.

  1. Using a Phillips screwdriver, you just insert it into the void that was left behind by the previous anchor that had been there.
  2. To successfully install the sleeve for a molly or toggle bolt, you might need to use a drill to enlarge the hole.
  3. When you drive the bolt that will keep your mounting in place, its wings extend and press on the back of the drywall.


Anchor with Molly Bolts

When it comes to molly bolts, also known as “hollow wall anchors,” you often have the option of going with either pointed or unpointed molly bolts. To use the anchors with blunt tips and no points, you will need to drill a pilot hole into the drywall.

You don’t need to drill a pilot hole for pointed tip designs; instead, you may merely tap them into place with a hammer. Here are the steps to install with molly bolts.

  1. Make a mark at the location where you want to hang things.
  2. Drill a pilot hole if the instructions call for it. Check the packaging instructions to determine the pilot hole’s correct size.
  3. After the molly has been inserted, the bolt that is located in the sleeve should be tightened. Consequently, the legs will extend outward and hold the opposite side of the drywall.
  4. After the molly bolt has been sufficiently tightened, you should reverse the screw so that it comes out of the sleeve and hang directly from the screw’s head.


Replace damaged anchor

A damaged wall anchor may be the cause of your item that is drooping on your wall. The wall anchor may have been installed incorrectly during the initial installation due to faulty sizing. Wall anchors give a supported place for a nail or screw in drywall, allowing you to hang large things without causing damage to the wall’s structure.

To repair wall anchors that have been damaged, you will need to install a new wall anchor while simultaneously covering the broken anchor with patching material.


  1. Take the picture frame or other item from the wall and set it somewhere else. Use pliers or a screwdriver to remove the nail or screw sticking from the wall anchor.
  2. Take note of the wall anchor that is embedded in the wall. Most wall anchors will feature some kind of collar that extends outward and across the wall’s surface. Using needle-nose pliers, get a firm grip on the edge of the collar.
  3. Using the needle-nose pliers, wiggle and bend the collar until it comes apart from its attachment. The collar on most wall anchors is made of metal or plastic; the bending motion ought to cause the collar to yield reasonably rapidly. A collar should not be left on the anchor when you are completed.
  4. Insert a nail into the opening provided by the wall anchor. Put some light pressure on as you drive the nail into the anchor. The anchor is expected to slip and end up inside the wall cavity.
  5. Using a putty knife, apply patching compound to the exposed hole in the surface. Applying even pressure around the hole in the compound will help you get a surface consistent with the wall. Give it some time to dry.
  6. Choose a location for the new anchor a few inches away from the mended surface. It isn’t a good idea to install the new anchor directly next to the patched region since it will prevent the new anchor from making a strong connection within the drywall.
  7. Utilizing an electric drill, create a hole in the wall. To ensure a proper fit, the diameter of the hole should be just a hair smaller than the diameter of the wall anchor you intend to use.
  8. After drilling a hole in the wall, insert a wall anchor into the hole. Employing caution, drive the anchor into the wall with the hammer until the collar is level with the surface of the drywall.
  9. Install a screw into the anchor by using a screwdriver to secure it. You can now hang your frame or other wall object using the screw and wall anchor setup.


How to stop anchors from spinning?

You can stop anchors from spinning by replacing them with the right anchor size, using super glue on the thread, or forcing it to enter.

Here are steps to stop your anchors from spinning.

  1. If the head of a nonexpanding anchor hasn’t been entirely pushed behind the drywall, it is possible to remove it from the wall by using the tail of a hammer or similar tool with a gripping surface, such as tweezers. You can pry the anchor head away from the wall by using the blade of a utility knife, the flat end of a screwdriver, or a putty knife. First, you will need to use a utility knife to create a tiny space between the anchor head and the drywall.
  2. It is possible that the anchor will need to be pushed in and the hole patched rather than being removed from the wall. This will be the case if it has previously been positioned fully behind the edge of the drywall. You can reset the anchor by applying pressure with a screwdriver and moving it in the other direction. This can be done by tapping the end of the screwdriver. You can also use a hammer to tap the end of a screwdriver or another comparable metal instrument and force the anchor below the edge.
  3. You may need to drill a wider hole in the drywall to entirely remove the rotating anchor if it’s become caught halfway inside and outside the drywall or if it needs to be removed for any other reason. To provide space for the removal, you should use a drill bit larger than the existing hole. After the anchor has been located, you can remove it with a pair of tweezers or pliers, and the hole can be fixed, painted, or covered with anything else.
  4. After the anchor has been properly removed, use some joint compound and a putty knife to fill the hole left in the wall. A joint compound that may be used for various purposes works best for smaller holes. After giving it a smooth finish with the edge of a putty knife, you should wait for it to dry. To get a flawless finish, apply a second layer of compound that has been thinned with a little water once the first layer is dry.


On occasion, the length of the anchor isn’t good enough, and it cannot completely penetrate the wall. By cutting off the end of the anchor with dykes, the anchor can embed itself and be flush with the wall. If the anchor continues to rotate, apply superglue to the threads and the portion of the anchor that is embedded in the wall. During the time that you are installing the screw, this will prevent the anchor from spinning.


How to fix screws that keep spinning in the anchor?

You can fix screws that keep spinning in the anchor by replacing the screw with the right size, replacing the anchor with toggle bolts, and patching damaged drywall.


Replacing with the right screw

You won’t be able to accomplish this task unless you have prior knowledge regarding the kind of material the anchor will be screwed into, the approximate weight of the item that will be hung, and the angle of the anchor (as in the case of a ceiling). Follow these tips while replacing your screw.

  1. Anything that weighs less than 20 pounds can be mounted on a plaster wall using a plastic expansion anchor. You should secure anything greater than 20 pounds with a molly bolt.
  2. When working with drywall, a threaded anchor screw should be used for anything that weighs less than 20 pounds. Anything weighing more than should have a molly bolt installed to secure it. You should avoid hanging anything that weighs more than a few pounds on drywall ceilings, such as a smoke detector. This isn’t a good idea.
  3. Walls made of concrete, brick, and mortar, or a combination of the three, need expansion anchors. Always avoid installing anchors in the spaces between the seams of brick or concrete. Anchors should never be inserted in the grout; they should only be installed in the brick or stone. The stability and condition of the wall itself will serve as the primary factors in determining the maximum load that the anchor is capable of supporting (e.g., old brick and mortar walls that are in poor condition tend to be brittle and can crumble; this directly impacts how much weight an anchor can support).


Replacing anchors with toggle bolts

If wall anchors have broken, become loose, or been pulled out of the drywall, it is time to replace them with a stronger fastener. Toggle bolts are a fantastic alternative to consider. They can support up to 50 pounds (22 kilograms), which is twice as much as a wall anchor can hold, and they do so without ripping away drywall. Because of their bigger size, toggle bolts are frequently the ideal hardware choice for repairing holes in walls when the wall anchors have become dislodged.

  1. Use toggle bolts if your anchors won’t stop spinning.
  2. Wall anchors can only support up to 25 pounds (11 kilograms), whereas toggle bolts can support up to 50 pounds (22 kilos) (11 kilos).
  3. After the wings of the toggle bolt have expanded and braced themselves against the backside of the drywall, you can insert the toggle bolt into the hole.
  4. If the hole in the drywall is too large for the toggle bolt to stay securely in place, then the hole will need to be patched.


Patching damaged Drywall

It is time to repair your drywall if the anchors or bolts cannot fit snugly into the drywall because it is too damaged. To do so:

  1. Remove a chunk of the drywall measuring between four and eight inches (ten to twenty centimeters) in height from the space that lies between two wall studs.
  2. Remove a quarter of an inch of drywall from both ends of the hole to expose one-half of the stud on each end.
  3. To bridge the gap between the studs, cut a length of 2×4 to the appropriate length.
  4. Make use of screws to secure the piece of 2×4 to the studs on either side. Attach the 2×4 so that it is level with the front of the studs before you secure it (the side closest to the drywall).
  5. It will be necessary to cut a piece of drywall to suit the opening, which is now backed by a 2×4.
  6. When attaching the new piece of drywall to the studs that are already in place, as well as the new piece of 2×4, use drywall screws.
  7. Repair any holes in the drywall and paint it.
  8. Drive screws directly into the new 2×4 behind the wall studs so that you can use them for hanging reasons in the future.


You may ensure that the repair will last by removing the damaged area of the drywall and then replacing it with a brand-new piece of drywall. In addition, the piece that will be fixed will be supported by a wooden 2 by 4. Because of this, it won’t be difficult for you to hang things on this section of your wall.