I am a newbie. I want to remove Cadet Heater wall can and patch up the drywall but it appears that the wall can is secured by 4 round flat screws on the side. I tried pliers but it's small and round so there is nothing to grab onto. What tool can I use to remove this stubborn wall can?

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  • I'm not the least bit familiar with that heater, but from the photo they look like machined rivets. Do they turn somewhat freely, but never seem to be unscrewing from the hole?
    – bigbull15
    Jan 19 '16 at 5:34
  • no and no, it's a small space. They are nailed, tightly, to the stud it seems
    – Motoko
    Jan 19 '16 at 18:44

It is more than likely that those are large nails into the framing lumber to the side of the heater housing.

There would be a number of ways to remove those.

  1. Use a Dremel tool with a cutoff wheel to cut the head off the nail. Then you can use a nail set or punch to drive the remaining body of the nail further into the side stud to allow the housing to be removed.

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  1. Use a pry bar that has a nail puller slot. Pound that in under the nail head to get it to start coming out. It may be necessary to use a hammer and pound the metal near the nail head toward the side to free up just a little space under the nail head to let the pry bar get a bite.

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  1. A small to medium cold chisel and a sledge hammer can be used to chop the head off the nail. It is possible that the cold chisel may start to draw the nail out just enough that you could then remove it with the pry bar.

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I am not promoting any particular brand of tools here. Just ones I've had good luck with working on this type of problem.

  • I think I will go with option 2. Will buy the tools after work.
    – Motoko
    Jan 19 '16 at 18:45
  • @Motoko - Good luck.
    – Michael Karas
    Jan 19 '16 at 20:56

Looks like that wall can is attached with nails instead of screws. A pry bar will be your best bet to remove it. Hope that helps! Let us know if you have any more questions.


I am happy to report back that after 1 hour (part of it is because I am a newbie), I was able to remove these 8 nails. Tools used: flat head screwdriver, hammer and a 9-inch pry bar. The wall cans are only 14 inches wide. Hammer and screwdriver to create the gap and pry bar goes in to finish the job (only figured that out after I was done with 3 nails).

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