You probably know that attaching wood to masonry isn't as easy as picking up a hammer and a nail, but it's also not an impossible task. It's something that you can do yourself with the proper tools. If you're looking to add a shelf to your concrete mantle or maybe you have a brick wall in your home and want to hang some pictures, there are a few things you need to know. The safest, most secure way to attach a 2x4 to brick or concrete is to use concrete screw anchors, which you can find at your local hardware store.
Mark the Edges Before Hanging
You'll want to make sure that the wood item you're trying to hang ends up level and in the correct spot on the wall before you start poking holes in the concrete. Place the item against the wall and use a level to make sure it's straight. Mark the wall at the ends of your item using a piece of chalk. Using chalk allows you to see the marks and erase them with ease.
Depending on the type of mounts you're looking to install, use a measuring tape to mark the areas where you want to drill your holes. For example, for installing a "floating shelf" (that is, a shelf in which you don't see any hardware), your drill marks will be toward the center of the piece.
If you aren't using mounts, simply mark the areas where you want the screw anchor to go.
Pre-Drill Holes Using a Hammer Drill
Using a hammer drill is advised, as they operate differently than a typical power drill. If you don't own one, for less than $30 you can rent a hammer drill from Home Depot or Lowe's. You may have to call the location ahead of time and reserve the item, which you can keep for four hours.
Use a drill bit that is slightly smaller than the screw anchors you've purchased. Drill on the marks that you've made, going into the concrete about 1/4 inch longer than the length of the screw anchors. For example, if you are using screw anchors that are 1/4 inches wide and 3 1/4 inches in length, drill into the masonry using a 1/4 inch drill bit, drilling into the wall 3 1/2 inches.
If you are looking to affix the piece of wood to the wall directly, pre-drill holes into the wood as well, using a measuring tape and marking off the areas using a pencil.
Drive the Anchor Into the Wall
You can pick up a driving bit set for less than $15 at Home Depot. You will need to use the size that corresponds with the size of the screw anchor you are using. Place your mounting bracket or other mount of choice against the wall, over the pre-drilled hole.
Using a nut driver on the hammer drill, put the anchor in place. Drive the anchor into the pre-drilled hole until the head is flush with the mounting bracket (or the wood itself). Repeat this on the other side and voila! You have successfully attached wood to masonry.