I would like to put a wooden board on the concrete wall of my basement so that I can easily mount and dismount electronic equipment to the board with drywall screws without creating concrete dust.

My electrical main breaker panel board is mounted this way, but I can't tell how the wood is attached to the concrete.

Is chipboard ok in this application? I think it would help "hide" holes from removed screws better than plywood.

And how should I attach the board to the wall? Epoxy, concrete lags, nails fired from some sort of gunpowder powered tool?

Including electrical tags because I know that main breaker panels are mounted this way.

  • FYI, "chipboard" isn't really a thing. It's what laypeople call any of a loose class of things, such as OSB, particleboard, and MDF (fiberboard). It's better to use industry terms for clarity. – isherwood Feb 22 '18 at 13:58

Concrete screws are fine, but they don't have great pullout strength in concrete block. If properly installed in poured concrete they're quite strong.

If you happen to have a block wall I'd use an expanding anchor of some sort. Plastic plugs, togglers, and expanding sleeves would all be appropriate.

Finally, size and quantity are important. I wouldn't use 1-1/2" #8 screws to mount 3/4" plywood, for example. 2" x 3/16" would be more suitable, and with a quantity of at least 6, with more depending on your sheet size and load. Post more details in your question for a more specific recommendation.

I would use high-quality plywood (BC grade or better) of at least 5/8" thickness. Anything less won't hold enough of a screw's threads for any significant load. 3/4" plywood is ideal, and doubled would be excellent.

3/4" OSB would be ok, but it tends to release "strands" when screws are run in, resulting in a rougher surface. It is plenty strong, though, and is often more dimensionally stable than plywood.

Don't use particle board or MDF as moisture is likely to be present, if only in small amounts. Neither is great for holding screws anyway.

Moisture Management
If you have regular moisture on your wall, seal it first with a suitable paint-like coating, or apply 4 mil or heavier poly sheeting behind the board. This will reduce mold and rot.

  • I 100% agree expanding anchors have higher pullout strength and plywood is the preferred material with a moisture barrier if the wall is damp or an exterior wall.++ – Ed Beal Feb 22 '18 at 14:24
  • 1
    Lead anchors, a 2x4 on the flat top and bottom (optionally, a ful frame including the sides), and half or 3/4" ply for the face (on top of the 2x4s) so it's spaced 1-1/2" from the block wall, providing plenty of space for screws. – Ecnerwal Feb 22 '18 at 17:06
  • I also thought of standing the sheet off the wall. This allows for more flexibility of screw length and better grab. Regarding "lead" anchors... they're harder to come by. Most expanding sleeve anchors these days are tin or zinc or whatever, but they still work fairly well. – isherwood Feb 22 '18 at 17:10
  • Then Let's Just Say I've had a lot less metallic expanding anchor pullout/failure than I have with plastic, and let the metal be whatever they are selling these days. – Ecnerwal Feb 22 '18 at 17:27

Generally concrete screws (eg, Tapcon) into holes drilled with a masonry bit/hammer drill.

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