Picture Frame Hardware - How to Install Hardware on the Back of Your Frame

Picture Frame Hardware - How to Install Hardware on the Back of Your Frame

If youve ever struggled to install your own picture frame hardware, then you know it can be challenging. Luckily, most hanging picture frames already have frame hardware installed. But, if you accidentally buy a frame without hanging hardware then these steps will tell you everything you need to know to install your frame hardware.

The very important first step to installing your picture frame hardware is to be sure you have selected the right type and size hardware for your frame. There are two types of picture frame hardware most commonly used - saw tooth hangers and eye hooks.

Saw Tooth Hangers

Saw tooth hangers are best used for picture frames smaller than 11x14. The name "saw tooth" is exactly how the hardware looks - a jagged, saw blade rectangular shaped hanger that is installed at the top center point of your frame. The saw tooth edge helps keep the picture frame even on the wall by giving the nail a secure place to rest.

Before you install the saw tooth hanger be sure you know which direction the picture will hang so it is centered on the right part of the frame. If you cant "eye" the center of the frame, use a tape measure. Place a dot at the center point of the frame and center the saw tooth hanger over the dot. To make sure the hanger is even with the line of the frame, you may want to use a level. Once the hanger is level and centered, hammer in the two small nails on each side of the saw tooth hanger and youre done.

Eye Hooks

Eye hooks screw into the wood of the frame. They work especially well for large or heavy frames. Eye hooks take a little more work to install than saw tooth hangers, but once you know how to install them, you will feel more confident in adding them yourself.

Eye hooks are installed on the side of the frame about 1/3 of the way down from the top of the frame. Using a tape measure, measure the back of the frame from the top of the frame to where you want to install the first eye hook. Make a mark on the back of the frame where the screw will need to go. Then, place the second eye hook using the same measurement. Accurately measuring for the screw placement will ensure that your picture frame hangs level.

Once screw placement has been determined, drill two very small holes to help with the installation of the screws. When the screws are secured in place cut a length of wire longer than the width of the frame to attach to the eye hooks. Thread one end of the wire through the eye hook until have a short length of wire that you can wrap around the long wire several times. Thread the other end of the wire through the other eye hook. Before securing the wire keep a hold of the unsecured piece of wire and hold the middle of the wire forming a triangular shape. Allowing for this triangular shape, wrap the short end of the wire several times around the wire, securing it in place. The wire should be snug enough so it does not show above the frame. Cut off any excess wire and make sure that each end is wrapped tightly.

Now you are ready to hang your wall frame. Pick the wall space where you want it to hang and have someone hold the picture so you can see if it looks good on the wall. If you have multiple wall frames, it is a good idea to position them on the floor and determine how they should be displayed before you hammer nails in your wall. For arranging on the floor, use string to represent the area on your wall so you can determine the proper spacing of your picture frames.

Make sure that you secure the nail or screw in a wall stud so it will be properly secured. The spacing in most homes is 16 inches between studs. If you are unsure or cant find a stud, you can use a "stud finder" available at any hardware store, or use wall anchors for added support in sheet rock. Hanging a frame on a cement, brick or concrete wall is different than on a sheet rock wall. For any type of cement, brick or concrete wall, pre-drill the holes with a mason bit and use screws with wall anchors. Be sure the screw is firmly secured in the wall so the frame doesnt fall off and get damaged.

It may take some extra effort to install your frame hardware and hang your picture, but once you see your picture frame displayed on the wall, youll be happy with the result and glad you took the extra time to do it.


Autumn Lockwood is a writer for YourPictureFrames.com and loves photography. Your Picture Frames offers a large selection of picture frames in a wide variety of finishes, colors and styles. If youre looking for old fashioned or vintage style picture frames check out our selection of antique picture frames or call us at 1-800-780-0699.