How to install that medicine cabinet

By Joanne Loos Posted in: ImproveThe Fix is In

I am a self-proclaimed germophobe, and so I like to keep my toothbrush stored behind closed doors. However, when my family and I first moved into our new home, I quickly had to adapt to the absence of a medicine cabinet in the bathrooms.

When enough was enough, we fi nally purchased and installed a new one. I was quite surprised at how much I liked it. Not only is this new medicine cabinet bigger and more stylish than the cabinet at our old home, but this one comes with clear, modern shelving inside and built-in accessories to hold things like cotton swabs, toothbrushes, cotton pads and other bath products. It also has a slow-close cabinet door and mirrors on the inside and out.

If you want to replace, upgrade or install a new medicine cabinet of your own, know that the process is easier than you probably think. If you purchase your medicine cabinet new, make sure that it comes with the necessary parts for installation. Ours came with everything except for measuring tape, a drill, pencil, level and stud finder. You may also want to enlist the help of a friend and set aside an hour or so.

First, remove the existing cabinet or mirror. Then, use your stud finder to locate the studs on the wall. Mark the areas with a pencil. If you do not have studs in your wall, you will need to use toggle bolts. These bolts will hold your cabinet against the back of the wall when installed and can support up to 150 pounds. Luckily, our medicine cabinet came with toggle bolts.

Open up your medicine cabinet and lay out all of the pieces and instructions. Read over everything carefully. Then, locate the nailing strips on the cabinet. These are what you will use to secure the cabinet to your wall.

Measure where you would like to place your cabinet. Remember to take into account plumbing fixtures, light fixtures and outlets. Use your pencil to mark the spot where you would like the top of your cabinet to lie.

Next, drill mounting holes according to the pre-drilled holes in the cabinet. Use your measuring tape to measure where the holes are in the cabinet, and measure and mark the spots accordingly on your wall. Drill a pilot hole and then have your friend help you to place the cabinet on the wall. Hold it up and mount one side of the cabinet.

Make sure the cabinet is level, and then mount the other side. Finish by mounting the remaining screws.

Have a comment or question for Joanne? Email thefixisinhawaii@gmail.com.