Installing Drop-In Anchors: Step-by-Step Installation Instructions
Having a workshop in your home or business not only helps you work on future projects—creating the workshop can be a project, too! Of course, safety has to come first. That means taking precautions and using the right tools and fixtures for the job.
Say you have a table saw that you want to install in the garage. It’s got to be installed securely for safety and longevity. This is a great application for a drop-in anchor.
Drop-in anchors can be used for a variety of projects around the home, business or job site.
Drop-in anchors are concrete fasteners designed for use in solid concrete only. Once set in the concrete, the anchor becomes permanent. The internal threads of the anchor are national coarse threads with a length equal to about one-half the total anchor length. A setting tool must be used to set the anchor in the concrete. They cannot be used in any other base materials such as brick or block.
Start Your Project
1. Assembling Your Tools
- A hole must be drilled in the concrete to insert the anchor. To ensure proper hole dimensions, a hammer drill must be used. The hammer drill must be set in the hammer and rotation mode. A straight rotation drill should not be used for drilling holes into concrete.
- Along with the hammer drill, a carbide tipped bit that meets ANSI standards must be used to ensure proper hole tolerance. Proper hole tolerance is critical.
- The diameter of the bit required for an anchor is equal to the outside diameter of the anchor, shown below. The designated diameter of an anchor refers to the inside diameter of the anchor.
Drop-In Anchor Designated Diameter
Carbide Bit Diameter
2. Drilling the Hole
- Drill a hole to the depth that is equal to the length of the anchor being installed. The minimum embedment depth of the anchor is equal to the length of the anchor.
- Correct and consistent depth of the hole can be achieved by setting the depth gauge provided with the hammer drill or by using tape that is placed on the bit at the required depth. When setting the depth gauge or placing the tape on the bit, make sure that the drill bit is positioned in the chuck at the most retracted position.
3. Cleaning Up
- Clean out all of the dust and debris from the new hole. Use an up and down and turning motion with a wire brush that is the same diameter as the hole. Vacuum the hole and repeat this process to ensure the hole is clean of all dust and debris. Compressed air can be used, but it may create a lot of concrete dust in the air.
- Insert the anchor into the hole. The slotted, closed end of the anchor should be inserted first with the threaded open end facing up towards the surface of the concrete.
- Each anchor has a matching setting tool that is required to set the anchor in concrete. For example, a 3/8” anchor requires the use of a 3/8” setting tool. Insert the proper setting tool into the threaded end of the anchor.
- Using a hammer, strike the setting tool with several hard sharp blows until the internal plug fully expands the anchor. Some brands are set when the lip of the setting tool meets the lip of the anchor. Install it in the concrete so that the top of the anchor is flush with the surface of the concrete.
Tips & Tricks
- Never over torque, the bolt placed in the anchor on a drop-in anchor as this may cause the anchor to spin in the hole, which will diminish its ability to hold tight.
- Drop-in anchors can only be installed in concrete.