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I have just installed a bathroom vanity that came with screws and anchors. However, I just screwed the screws directly into the drywall, which has 2x4 framing positioned exactly where the screws go. I did not use the anchors.

I understand it may be a good idea to do use anchors to make the screw holes more reusable in case of taking the vanity off and putting it back on for painting, for example. I was wondering if there are any other pros and cons for using anchors (e.g. code regulations). Should I take my directly screwed in screws out, widen the holes with a drill, set the anchors in and reinstall? I thought vanities and other forms of heavy load that gets hung come with screws with anchors because of the option to install into masonry, where you are more likely to do need anchors.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

If the screws are ONLY in to drywall, take it down immediately and reinstall the screws with the anchors. Drywall will not hold a screw all by itself. With an anchor, the anchor expands BEHIND the drywall, preventing pull-out.

If the screws are very long AND you got them in to the studs, you could be good. But it depends on the type of screws, the weight of the cabinet, and how deep in to the stud you got the screw. Too small a screw and it could pull out or shear off.

If the instructions don't talk about using the included screws to mount the cabinet to studs through drywall, then I wouldn't trust them. Go down to your local hardware store and get yourself some cabinetry screws. You probably want them to be at least 2 inches long so you get a good amount of thread in to the studs.

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like i said I just screwed the screws directly into the drywall, which has 2x4 framing positioned exactly where the screws go – amphibient May 17 '13 at 19:25
ok, but you didn't say how much of the screw you got in to the stud. – longneck May 17 '13 at 19:28
i think they were 2.5" screws. so plenty – amphibient May 17 '13 at 19:31
You'll be fine. – Chris Cudmore May 17 '13 at 19:48

The answer to the question should be a NO. If you anchored into a stud you are almost certainly creating a less secure connection (given that you are using common anchors). You would have to get something pretty fancy to hold better than the wood.

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Metal screw-in anchors (Buildx Stud Solver is one) can go into drywall OR a stud. I use them for 90% of my anchoring needs in the 0-50lb range – HerrBag Jun 13 '13 at 13:06

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