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I am trying to hang curtains and am using a medium weight wall plug which screws directly into the plaster. I live in an old Victorian mansion block, and every time I try and screw the plug into the wall, the plaster just crumbles around it and the plug falls out.

What am I doing wrong and what do I need to do to fix it securely?

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Are you sure it's plasterboard (which didn't come into widespread use until the middle of the 20th century) and not lath-and-plaster (much more likely for a Victorian-era house). Any idea how the walls are built, e.g. timber frame or masonry? – Niall C. Mar 3 '13 at 19:05

Stop using plugs in plaster.

These anchors are designed for drywall, and even then may not be useful for hanging curtain rods.

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If you're using an anchor where the drywall/plaster is weakened, the drywall/plaster will fail and the anchor will fall out. If you're using an anchor too close to the edge of a sheet/seam/cutout, the drywall/plaster will fail and the anchor will fall out.

All drywall anchors and plugs are meant to be used in the middle of an undamaged sheet of drywall. They are also not very good at handling varying loads, such as those caused by opening/closing curtains (not to mention little Johnny tugging at the drapes, and Felix the cat climbing the curtains).

Wood Frame

If it's a wood frame wall, aim for the studs or the header. Use appropriately sized screws, directly into framing members.


If it's a masonry wall, epoxy appropriate plugs into the masonry behind the plaster.

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