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We live in a newly built home. My husband hung some Ikea shoe bins on the wall and mounted them in to the studs. I am going to paint the hallway and would like to remove the bins and hooks, patch the holes and have an even coat of paint from floor to ceiling. It is also worth nothing that I would like different bins and we won't need the hooks as we will soon be utilizing a closet for this purpose.

He instructed me to not remove the bins because doing so would damage the integrity of the studs and they wouldn't be as sturdy if we put the bins back on the wall in the same place. The same goes for the hooks. Is this true? Should I fill the holes with anything in particular to reinforce the stud, assuming I find different shoe bins and the mounting points won't be the same.

I cannot seem to find anything to substantiate this claim of holes compromising the studs online. It just seems highly unlikely to me, given they are very average screws, it wasn't like a gigantic bolt or anything.

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    It is possible that when removing the shoe bin you will peel paint from the wall so make sure to score around the shoe bins before removing or else you could end up with more patchwork than anticipated. Unless your husband used lag bolts such as homedepot.com/p/… then the stud should not be compromised. – MonkeyZeus Aug 27 at 13:38
  • @MonkeyZeus, your concern is valid but your suggestion isn't great. Scoring around the bin guarantees damage. I'd just work slowly and observe what happens, reacting as appropriate. There may be no damage. – isherwood Aug 27 at 18:08
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    To add to the good answers below, framing lumber is rough and full of natural and artificial holes already, including knots of up to an inch or more in diameter and even larger bores for plumbing, electrical, etc. A few screws added and removed here and there change exactly nothing about the integrity of the wood. – isherwood Aug 27 at 18:09
  • There will be no problem removing the screws. The Code allows for holes, notched, etc. – Lee Sam Aug 27 at 20:17
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    If you can do this to a joist, I think you're ok. – Mazura Aug 27 at 23:09
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As long as they are normal screws and you unscrew them they won't compromise the studs or their integrity. If you rip the screws out (with a hammer for example) that could compromise the studs.

If you plan on reusing the exact same holes there are things you can do to help future screws grip just as well by adding toothpicks to the holes, but otherwise you don't need to worry.

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    Thank you! Assuming I do not use the same holes, should I fill them with anything in particular before putting spackle over the hole? – Lauren Aug 26 at 14:11
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    screw holes...no – depperm Aug 26 at 14:13
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    Actually, even if you ripped the screws out with a claw hammer I would expect the studs to be fine. – Martin Bonner supports Monica Aug 28 at 10:29
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    In my experience, if you screw the same size screw back into wood it grips just fine - the screw will follow the same threads as before. In fact, when screwing brass screws into oak for fine woodwork, I was taught to drill a correctly sized pilot hole, screw a steel screw in first, and then replace it with the brass screw. (Brass screws can snap if you screw them directly into oak. You don't want to use steel screws long term because they will react with the tannin in the wood and cause stains ). – Martin Bonner supports Monica Aug 28 at 10:34
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I think your husband just wants the shoe bins to remain where they are and doesn't want to buy new ones.. LOL. Removing the screws will not damage the studs even if they were load bearing. Patch the holes with a vinyl spackle, sand lightly and you're good to go.

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