How To Fix A Swaying Bookcase (No More Swaying!)

  • By: homeshacks
  • Date: March 23, 2023
  • Time to read: 6 min.
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Swaying bookcases don’t last long. All it takes is the push of a well-placed knee to send one crashing down, spilling its contents onto the carpet below. But you can brace almost any bookshelf so it doesn’t fall over in normal use. The secret is knowing which wall it leans against and then drilling into that wall stud for anchor points.

Most swaying bookcases are old, normal-weight units that are simply top-heavy. They are usually made of plywood or particleboard with two or three shelves, though sometimes they have four or more shelves.

A lighter bookcase can be steadied by drilling into its side and screwing the screws directly into the studs. The side of the bookcase acts as an enormous lever, so it will need to be anchored on both sides. Some older bookcases are made of solid wood and can’t be braced in this way. If that’s your case, try propping the unbraced end against a wall stud or using felt pads to balance it.

To drill into the stud, use a metal bit that’s slightly smaller than the screw you’re using. Hold it in place firmly with your left hand while turning on the drill.

When you feel it start to bite, push slowly until the bit is just shy of punching through both sides of your wall cavity. Then release the bit and let the drill spin out.

The top shelves of a bookcase are usually too short to reach over the bracket you just installed, so remove those and use them as a spacer for the bottom shelf.

You’ll have an easy time doing this if the brackets are designed to release from below. Once all brackets are in place, reattach the top shelves, pushing them flush against the wall.

If a bookcase still isn’t secure after you attach it to the studs on both sides of the room, use felt pads to make it ride smoothly at its base.

How do you secure a bookshelf without screws?

It’s a problem every bookshelf owner faces. You want to buy a new bookcase but you can’t put screws on the wall where you are planning to place it. Maybe there is no stud, or maybe you live in an apartment, etc. You know that if you just prop the bookcase up against the wall, eventually the weight of the books will pull it over. You may even have already experienced this with your old bookcase, or perhaps with a friend’s old shelf.

The idea of putting screws and drilling into your wall put a lot of people off the idea of securing the bookshelf without destroying the wall behind them (if a mistake is made). So, instead, we have listed below different ways you can secure a bookshelf without nailing, screwing, and drilling into any walls in your home.

  1. Use Shoe Holders – A way to attach the bookshelf without screws is using Shoe Holders. They come in a number of sizes and can be attached to walls or any other surfaces using nails or strong adhesive. So why not utilize this space for your bookcase? Here are some brilliant examples from Amazon of shoe holders being used for bookshelves.
  2.  Use A Drywall Anchor – Another way to secure a bookshelf without screws is by using a drywall anchor. These can be bought at any local hardware store or online and will come in different sizes. They are quite reasonably priced too, with some as small as $2 for 20 of them. They provide a simple but effective solution to those who struggle with attaching anything to a wall without putting screws into it.
  3. Use A French Cleat – Another great solution for how you can secure a bookshelf without screws is by using the French cleat system. This is probably the best way to achieve this job, as not only are they easy enough to attach but also incredibly strong. They are named after the French who created these ingenious systems, and are essentially just pieces of wood but with some key differences. A French cleat is a board that runs down the back of the bookcase and attached to the wall using pegs (or nails). It is adjustable in height, depending on how high you want your shelf.
  4. Use An Adjustable Wall Mount – Another simple but effective solution for securing a bookshelf without screws is by using adjustable wall mounts. These are brackets that hang on the back of your bookcase and attach to your wall. They provide stability and strength without the need to drill into your wall.
  5. Use Cable Ties – Another little-known but brilliant solution for how you can secure a bookshelf without screws is using cable ties. They are incredibly cheap (usually less than $2 for 100 of them), and they provide a very strong hold onto the wall. If you are worried about damaging your paintwork, you can use cable tie mounts to ensure that nothing is attached to your walls. This way it makes the whole process very easy and provides a secure solution without any drilling or screwing required.

There you have it – 5 different solutions for how you can secure a bookshelf without screws. They provide the simplest and easiest methods of doing so and ultimately save you time and money to focus on other things in your life. If you already have a shelf that is wobbling or falling over, make sure to try one of these out.

Can you remove built-in shelves?

When people think about built-in shelves, a few things may come to mind. Many people would think of stylish shelving around the house that makes a good room look homey and up-to-date. But others might consider them a nuisance because they can’t seem to get out of their way when they want to put something else there.

The answer to the question of whether you can remove built-in shelves is yes, with a little effort. With just some basic carpentry tools and know-how, almost anyone can replace their built-in shelves with ones that click into place or are completely free-standing. Some people opt to build their own custom shelving units while others look for premade shelving that fits their needs.

However, A built-in shelf is secured to the wall by studs or crossbeams should ideally be very well-investigated before starting. The reasoning for this is that once a stud is installed in a wall, it isn’t easy to remove without causing damage to the structure of the house, and this type of structural change should only be undertaken if you have the know-how and have experienced otherwise seek out professional renovation companies or persons!

How do you unscrew a bookshelf?

Some bookshelves have a release mechanism to enable them to be broken down into two separate pieces. This may mean that there is a catch or kickstand that will allow you to tip the shelf forward and then slide it out from the wall. If not, look for screws holding the shelves in place. Unscrew these and remove the shelves. Some shelves may still be attached to the wall, in which case you will have to remove these by using a drill. To avoid any damage to your walls when doing this, place a piece of wood behind the shelf before drilling into the wall. The bookcase should then come away from the wall when unscrewed.

However, if using a screwdriver (Manual, handwork) then this section below will be more related to you. The first thing you have to do is put some dishwashing liquid on the screwdriver so it can go in easily. Then, put the screwdriver in the slot and twist it then slide it out. That should do it.

Unscrewing a bookshelf does not have to be difficult if you are simply replacing one shelf with another. However, when you must take apart an entire bookcase because it is warped or damaged in some way, you need to know how to do this by unscrewing it.

If the screws are very tight, you should make sure that you will get enough leverage. This is because there needs to be enough force on the screwdriver so the screws can come out easily. After several minutes of turning, your bookshelf will eventually fall apart!

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