How to Drill Into a Wood Stud

Quick answer
Drill a 1″ or smaller pilot hole into the stud from the outside. Drill straight in while applying strong pressure.

Making holes in wood studs

The majority of this article was written with wood studs in mind, so if you’ve read this far, you can probably skip this section as it will be a little repetitive. When I think of studs, I always think of wood, even though metal studs are becoming more and more popular, especially in commercial builds.

Yes, you can drill into wood studs. If the stud is exposed, simply insert a decent wood bit into your drill. A wood bit often has a brad point in the middle to prevent it from bouncing off the user and flutes that are fanned out 180 degrees to swiftly remove material from the bit.

Mark the desired drilling location, don your safety glasses, push firmly, and begin drilling immediately.

Use a stud finder or a tape measure to locate your stud if, as is customary, it is concealed behind a wall. Studs are normally spaced 16 inches apart, beginning at one end of the wall or the other.

Use the smallest amount necessary to cut through the wall’s construction and roughly an inch into the stud. Mark your location and drill straight in. You should feel resistance the entire way in; if not, your stud was missed.

Which Screws Work Best For Drilling Into Wood Studs?

The length of the screw should be long enough to penetrate one inch into your stud. Deck screws or wood screws are excellent choices since they are coarsely drilled and hold remarkably well.

The thickness of your wall and the thickness of any brackets you could be attaching should be taken into account when choosing a screw if you are drilling through a wall and into a stud.

For instance, if you want to connect a shelf to a wall using recessed screws and the wall itself is only an inch thick, you will need a 2 inch screw to pierce the stud’s 1 inch thickness.

When drilling into a stud, it is advisable to use the shortest screw possible in order to prevent any risks from plumbing or electrical cables that could be present inside the wall.


Why can’t I drill into a stud?
The drill is rotating in the wrong direction, which is the most frequent cause of a drill completely failing to penetrate a wall. The usual reason for resistance encountered when the drill bit reaches the wall is a metal plate or masonry barrier.

Can I drill a hole in a stud?
Bored holes in studs must not have a diameter greater than 60% of the stud’s depth, their edges must not be less than 5/8 inches (16 mm) from the stud’s edge, and they must not be situated next to cuts or notches.

How far can I drill into a stud?
A stud’s hole may be 1 1/4 inches from the wood’s edge. This indicates that you need at least 1 1/4 inches of wood to drill safely. Any less than that, and the wires or pipes are covered with a nail plate.

Do you need an anchor when drilling into a stud?
Always, always install shelves using drywall anchors (if you aren’t screwing them into studs, that is), whether they are floating shelves or shelves with brackets.

What does it feel like to drill into a stud?
You may occasionally hear a hollow sound. There will be more “solid” sounding regions. You have struck a stud when you hear the “solid” sound. The distance between studs is between 16 and 24 inches. When you are this far from the first stud on each side, knock on the wall again to see if you’ve struck another one.

Should I drill a pilot hole into a stud?
You should definitely install it directly to the wall studs if you’re hanging shelves or mounting anything else heavy to the wall. But prior to putting any screws in, you need drill pilot holes.

Where can you not drill into walls?
Do not drill close to outlets or light sockets. Behind outlets and plugs, wires in the wall frequently join vertically and horizontally, which might result in electrocution. Flooding might happen if you run into a wall pipe. Avoid drilling anywhere near potential electrical hookups or pipelines, as a general rule of thumb.

Are studs metal or wood?
Many houses feature stud-built wall frames. The framework of a wall is made up of vertical pieces of wood or metal that are spaced tightly apart. There is a very good probability that your home uses wall studs because they are used in the majority of non-masonry constructions.

How far are wood studs apart?
Wall studs are typically spaced 16 inches on center, however they might be 24 inches.

Which drill bits are for wood?
Which drill bit should I use for wood? These specialized drill bits, also known as spur point bits or wood or dowel bits, contain a center point and two elevated spurs that assist the bit drill straight. When used in a power drill, the bit quickly and cleanly removes wood while leaving a hole.

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