I have a few ceiling registers which are not flush with the ceiling since the duct has loosened over time. What's the best way to get them flush with the ceiling? I thought about driving several sheet metal screws into them but they would go into drywall which has only so much holding strength. Is there a better method? Thanks

4 Answers 4


Drill a hole on either side of the register. Mark the holes on the ceiling with a pencil, drill and install a drywall anchor in each location. Secure the register with screws into the anchor.

Some people paint the ceiling and the register so it blends in better (and covers the screw heads).

  • I didn't have much luck. The metal tab of the vent doesn't overlap the drywall by enough to hold a drywall screw. What I need is a clip of sorts that would push the vent up from the drywall.
    – Andrew
    Commented Feb 21, 2012 at 4:56
  • You could always glue it.
    – Steven
    Commented Feb 21, 2012 at 13:12
  • A contractor I had doing some other work simply put a 2x2 strip on top of the drywall and screwed into that. But it was only possible since we already had a hole in ceiling for a dryer vent.
    – Andrew
    Commented Apr 7, 2012 at 15:51

I cut thin strips of cardboard (small enough to fit in screw hole) and poked them in the holes. Screws tightened nicely. All you are trying to do is give the screw something to hold to. Don't overfill or pack the hole.

  • Hello, and welcome to Home Improvement. Thanks for the answer; keep 'em coming! Commented Dec 19, 2018 at 18:29

I found some more registers that the previous homeowner completed stripped the screws on. I put a glob of JB weld on the problematic hole, completely covering it. Came back the next day and drilled a small hole through it and carefully screwed in the register. I was skeptical but it held very well and tight! On another register I drilled another hole into the sheet metal to solve the same problem. BTW, I highly recommend a socket and not screwdriver for removing/tightning.


I had this problem as well, I installed a couple of 'leaf springs' on a plastic register and it stays in place very well. Here's a link to a video I made for it.


The Wright Handyman

  • 2
    Hello, and welcome to Home Improvement. Whilst this may theoretically answer the question, it would be preferable to include the essential parts of the answer here, and provide the link for reference.] And, you should probably take our tour so you'll know how best to contribute here. Commented Mar 18, 2020 at 19:32

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