How to Install Closet Poles if There Are No Studs

Installing a closet rod in a closet without conveniently located studs is a simple job that requires no special tools or advanced carpentry skills.
Closet rods are typically held by flange-type sockets that are attached to the wall, screwed into framing studs. In this project, pieces of lumber are affixed to opposite closet walls, which provide support for the rods by acting as studs. Winged nylon wall anchors hold the lumber securely to the wall. This job may be completed in under one hour.

Step 1

Mark one closet wall 3 inches above where you intend to hang the closet rod. Measure the distance from the mark to the floor and to the nearest corner of the closet. Transfer these dimensions to mark the opposite wall in the same position.

Step 2

Measure and mark the transverse centers of one end of each piece of lumber. Position one board on one wall so it is oriented vertically and the mark on the wall is aligned with the mark on the end of the board. Using a drill and drilling bit, drill four evenly spaced holes in a vertical line down the center of board, into the wall. The pilot holes should be 4 to 5 inches apart. Remove the board. Repeat to prepare the second board on the opposite wall.

Step 3

Switch to a larger drill bit that will make holes large enough to fit the compressed wings of the wall fasteners. Redrill the pilot holes in both walls. Insert one wall anchor in each hole in the walls. Tap the anchors with a mallet so the anchors are flush with the wall.

Step 4

Reposition a board on one wall, aligning the pilot holes with the wall anchors. Screw the board to the wall, using a drill and driving bit. Repeat to install a predrilled board on the opposite closet wall.

Step 5

Measure and mark the transverse center of each board, 3 inches from the top. Use a drill bit, smaller in diameter than the threaded shanks of the screws in the rod socket kit, to drill pilot holes through the marks on the boards. Position the sockets on the board, aligning the center screw hole in each socket to the pilot holes in the boards. Using the screws provided in the kit, screw the sockets to the boards.

Step 6

Measure the distance between the screws holding the sockets to the board. Measure and trim the closet rod 1/2 inch shorter than that dimension. Insert the trimmed closet rod into the sockets to finish the project..

Things You Will Need

  • Lumber, 1 inch by 4 inches, 2 feet in length
  • Measuring tape
  • Pencil
  • Drill with drilling and driving bits
  • Nylon wing-type drywall anchors
  • Mallet
  • Wood screws, 1 1/2 inches long
  • Rod socket kit with screws
  • Saw

About the Author

Denise Nyland "Denisen" is a long term resident of Panama City, Fla. She studied radiologic sciences and education and has published articles in multiple professional journals and contributed to various educational texts.