Installing Wire Closet Organizers
Wire closet shelving is easy to install. Follow these steps to create your perfect closet.
Planning and measuring are integral parts of any dream closet project. Before installing wire rack shelving, watch How to Design a Closet to create a plan that best suits your needs.
Begin by measuring your space. Start with the height from the floor to the ceiling. Next, measure the length of your useable wall space — both the back wall and any side walls. Finally, measure the depth of your closet.
Common top shelf heights, as measured from the floor, range from 70 inches for long-hanging configurations to 84 inches and 42 inches for double- or short-hanging configurations. Now is also the time to decide if you’ll be using any accessories like drawers or shoe racks.
Have the tools on hand to cut the wire rack in case you need to make adjustments.
Once you're done planning, prep your closet for the new installation. Remove your old closet system and repair the walls if needed. You may need to apply spackling compound, sand and prime the walls. This is also the perfect time to paint. When the paint is dry, use a stud finder to locate the wall studs, and lightly mark the wall where you’ll hang the unit. If you need help, check out How to Find Wall Studs.
Wire systems are easy to install. Using your plan as a guide, mark a level line and attach the hanger rail to the studs. Make sure it's level as you secure it. Watch What Do Level and Plumb Mean? for more help.
Now connect the uprights to the hanger rail. Make sure they're plumb — meaning straight up and down. Secure them at the bottom with screws.
If the uprights aren't in line with the studs, use wall anchors. Mark the spot and drill a pilot hole. Install a wall anchor and then drive the screw in.
The installation from here is simple. Lock in the shelf brackets on the uprights and then snap the shelves into place. Attach the rod hooks, cap the rod ends and snap in the hanger rod.
To maximize corner spaces, run one shelf the length of the wall. Cut the adjacent shelf to fit. Some closet organizer systems come with special corner shelves.
Finish up by installing adjustable accessories. Here are a few options:
- Shoe shelves can be made by turning a shelf piece upside down (lip pointed upwards). Clips attach the shelving to the wall and a special bracket holds the shelf at an angle. There are also special accessories available that are designed for shoe storage.
- Corners can be made two ways. You can use a specially shaped corner piece that attaches to shelves on either side with joiner plates. You can also use two straight shelves — one ending at the wall and the other ending at the edge of the first shelf — attached to each other with a corner support connector. Fit the support under the wires of one shelf and over the wires of the other.
- Drawers and baskets can be added using runner frames (for multiple drawers) or hanging drawer glides (to mount a single drawer underneath a shelf). Pre-configured runner frame kits are available, or you can customize a frame and drawer combination.