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Tapcon Anchors

Published by Robert Carlisle on Feb 26th 2011

Purchase Tapcon Anchors

Tapcon anchors are the original concrete screw and are made in the United States of America.  These anchors are screws with special threads that allow them to tap threads into hard base materials such as concrete, brick, and block.  The advanced threadform technology allows the tapcon anchor to be installed easier by requiring less torque.   

The tapcon anchor can be used for fastening items to concrete, brick or block. They are approved for use with treated lumber.

Advanced Threadform Technology
The design of the threads cuts and removes the base material, allowing for 30% less required torque and increasing the holding values by 20%.

Choosing a Tapcon Anchor
There are four different choices to make when determining the tapcon anchor to use for any particular application.

  1. The diameter of tapcon anchor chosen depends on the holding values required for the particular application.  The 3/16” diameter tapcon anchor should be used for lighter applications, such as a picture frame being fastened to a concrete wall.  The 1/4” diameter tapcon anchor is used for heavier duty applications, such as a 2x4 fastened to concrete.
  2. The thickness of the material being fastened and the embedment depth of the tapcon anchor into the base material determine the length of tapcon anchor chosen.  Minimum embedment depth for both diameters of tapcon anchors is 1” and the maximum embedment depth is 1-3/4”.  To determine the minimum length of tapcon anchor needed, add the thickness of the material being fastened to the minimum embedment of 1”.  The maximum length tapcon anchor to use is determined by adding the thickness of the material being fastened to the maximum embedment of 1-3/4”.
  3. Tapcon anchors are manufactured with two different types of heads.  The flat Phillips countersunk head is used in applications where the head of the tapcon anchor is countersunk into the material being fastened and the top of the head is flat with the surface.  The hex slotted washer head is used in applications where the head is above the surface of the material being fastened.
  4. The depth of the hole in the base material must be a minimum of 1/4” deeper than the tapcon anchor will penetrate. It is important to choose a drill bit that will ensure that the hole can be drilled into the base material a minimum of 1/4” deeper than the tapcon anchor will penetrate.

Blue Climaseal® Tapcon Anchors

The standard tapcon anchor comes coated with an application of Climaseal® coating that provides a protection against rust.   The Climaseal® coating for the standard tapcon anchor is colored blue, giving the tapcon anchor its nickname of “the blue screw”.

Stainless Steel Tapcon Anchors:
Tapcon anchors are available in a 410 stainless steel that is coated with a silver Climaseal® coating for extra corrosion resistance.  The stainless steel tapcon anchors are superior in corrosion resistance over the standard blue tapcon anchors. They can be used in outdoor applications such as screened-in porches, pool enclosures, and railings.

Bits for Tapcon Anchors
Both diameters of tapcon anchors require a different diameter of the bit to be used for drilling the hole. The hole size is critical to provide the tapcon anchor with maximum holding values.  Tapcon drill bits have a carbide tip and meet ANSI standards.  A 5/32” diameter tapcon bit is used for installing the 3/16” diameter tapcon anchor, and a 3/16” diameter tapcon bit is used for installing the 1/4” diameter tapcon.  The tapcon bit can be purchased separately and also comes packaged in each box of 100 screws.

Tapcon Installation Kit
Tapcon installation kit or “Condrive” is an installation kit that provides fast, easy and accurate installation of the tapcon anchor.  The installation kit is designed for use with a hammer drill and eliminates the need for two drills. It installs both the 3/16” diameter and 1/4” diameter and the hex or flat headed tapcon anchors.

Installing Tapcon Anchors

  1. With a hammer drill in the hammer mode, drill the correct diameter hole into the base material required for the tapcon anchor being used. It is important to use a bit that meets ANSI standards.
  2. Drill the hole deep enough so that the hole will be a minimum of 1/4” deeper than the tapcon anchor will penetrate.
  3. Clean the hole with a wire brush, vacuum or compressed air before inserting tapcon anchor into the hole.
  4. Insert tapcon anchor through the hole in the fixture and into the hole in the base material.
  5. Using a wrench, screwdriver or electric drill, turn the head of the tapcon anchor clockwise until the head of the screw is tight against the surface of the material being fastened, making sure not to over torque.

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