I'm trying to replace a ceiling mounted wireless access point and I've hit a snag. The old one was mounted inside the drywall, instead of over top of it. The new one comes with a mounting bracket, but the screw holes for the bracket don't quite clear the hole from the old one.

Anyone have any ideas for how I might solve this? I'm thinking worst case is I just patch the hole and shift the new one over a bit, but I'd like to avoid patching if possible.

Hole from previous installation

Screw holes from bracket don't quite clear edges

  • Dry wall tape to the edge and some crafty paint work - is quick and cheap - putting a rectangular piece of scrap dry wall with a hole for the wire will work better. – Ken May 9 '17 at 2:06
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    You can see the hole with the mounting flange but when the device cover is in place is it still visible? – Ed Beal May 9 '17 at 2:29
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    Yeah I'm confused. Anything I've ever seen like that (access points, smoke detectors) hooks on to the outside of the flange and completely covers it. It almost looks like in this case the flange could have one screw right into the junction box, and the rest put in with drywall anchors, and when the AP is on it would still completely cover the box. @awiseman perhaps you could post another picture with the AP held in place and show us how the box is still visible? – gregmac May 9 '17 at 14:12

Well, I'm pretty new to all this, so I think I just was over-thinking it. After messing with it more, I found that I could shift the new bracket a bit off of the hole and mount with drywall screws and the AP still covered most of the hole once it was mounted.

Thanks for the suggestions folks!


You can purchase a piece of scrap drywall from your local hardware store - they might even give it to you free for that matter.

  • Make a rectangular piece the same size as your box.
  • Drill the hole for your wire.
  • Install rectangular dry wall piece over the box, patch nicely.
  • Sand and paint if need be.

When I do this I usually run a screw (or three) part way into my drywall scrap piece - so I can hold it in position in either manually or in the case where I have 3 screws with string / wire to keep it where I want it - when patching a wall.


Buy some sticky back vinyl sheets Like this or similar

Cut it to be large enough to cover the home and be larger than but match the shape of the new fitting and sandwidge it in between.

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