How To Install A Towel Rack [5 Steps]

If you are remodeling your bathroom, adding a brand new towel rack can increase aesthetic appeal. It may seem that towel racks are commonly overlooked when it comes to bathroom aesthetics, but they can be the perfect addition to complement decor. If you have never installed a towel rack before, you may be wondering what the project entails. Well, look no further because we've found the best method for you. In this post, we will discuss how to install a new towel rack so that you can get your towels hung up in no time.

Here are the steps involved to install in your towel rack:

  1. Prepare the area
  2. Install an anchor
  3. Attach the first towel-bar mount
  4. Install the second anchor
  5. Finish the installation

The most important thing to remember when doing so is to ensure that you take accurate measurements and use a quality level to make sure the towel rack is positioned correctly. If you have basic handyman skills, you can certainly install your own towel rack within 30 to 40 minutes. Let's discuss how to install the rack. We'll also answer how to measure for a new rack and what a new rack may cost. As for styling questions, like how to hang your towels, we've got you covered!

A white towel hanged on a towel rack in a modern bathroom, How To Install A Towel Rack [5 Steps]

How To Install A Towel Rack

Towel on a hanger

Before installing your towel rack, it is important to ensure that the wall's surface is clean and in good condition for the installment. This means that it should not be damaged, cracked, or peeling in any way or can hinder the rack's adherence. If it is, be sure to repair these issues before installing the rack over the surface--or it may become loose prematurely.

Things you'll need:

  • Level
  • Drill
  • 1/4" or 1/8" drill bit
  • Pencil
  • Spackle
  • Putty knife
  • 120-grit sandpaper
  • Tape measure

1.Prepare the area

If there are any holes or dents in the wall from a previous rack, be sure to patch them up using spackle. Apply the spackle to the holes/dents using your putty knife and allow it to dry for a few minutes. Next, take your sandpaper and sand down the spackle so that the surface is even and smooth. Lastly, take a damp cloth and wipe the wall to remove the sandpaper's dust and debris.

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2. Install an anchor

Take your pencil and mark the area on the wall where you want the left screw of the towel rack to be located. Then take your level, and while holding it at the mark, make another mark on the right side where the other screw will be located. Ensure that the level is even before placing your mark or end up with a crooked towel rack.

Buy a level on Amazon.

3. Attach the first towel-bar mount

Take your screwdriver and screw the mounting plate to the anchor. You will notice that the toggle will begin to turn as the screw is driven in behind the drywall. Continue to screw and the mounting plate until the toggle lays snugly against the drywall.

4. Install the second anchor

Take your second toggle anchor and screw it into the wall where you made the mark on the right. Make sure that the toggle fits snugly against the drywall.

5. Finish the installation

Use your pencil to mark the locations of any remaining mounting plate screws. Then use your drill to screw and the toggle anchors for each one. If your towel rack has any additional mounting hardware that goes on the top and bottom of the anchors, now is the time to attach it. Finally, give the bar a quick tug to ensure that it is anchored securely onto the wall.

Buy a drill on Amazon!

To see these steps in action, check out this video:


How Much Does It Cost To Install A Towel Rack?

The cost of installing a new towel rack will vary depending on your location, the type of towel rack you install, and any finish you choose. The towel rack itself can range in price, starting at $20 and can go as high as $70 or $80. The installation range in price between $30 to $150. For this task, contractors may charge by the hour or a fixed price for the entire job. 

How Do You Measure For A Replacement Towel Rack?

When you are looking to install a new towel rack or replace an existing one, the easiest way to measure for the correct replacement size is to measure the current rack's length. To do this, simply grab a tape measure and hold it at the towel rack's inside edges to mark the distance between the two. Typically this measurement will be an even number, so it's best to round up to find the correct size for your replacement. For example, if your towel rack distance measures 17.25 inches, you will need an 18-inch towel rack for the replacement.

Click here to see Moen 18" brushed nickel towel rack on Amazon.

Most towel racks come in one of three lengths: 18, 24, or 30 inches. Though, you can find 20 and 22-inch racks. Most 18-inch towel racks are used for small bathrooms or areas square wall space is limited. These racks can typically fit a single oversized bath towel and a standard bath towel. You can also find specialty stores for designing custom-made towel racks for your preferred length or design.

Click here to see JQK double bar rack in brushed stainless on Amazon.

How Do You Fix A Loose Towel Rack?

Towel racks can become loose over time, as they constantly support the weight of wet and dry towels. If your towel rack becomes loose, here are the steps that you can take to fix it:

Steps To Fix A Loose Towel Rack

  1. Use your screwdriver to remove the broken or old towel rack from the wall.
  2. Change the bit in your cordless drill so that it is bigger than the previous holes, and then drill holes into the wall to install new toggle bolts.
  3. Place the toggle bolts onto the mounting hardware and slide the screw into the mounting hole.
  4. Next, use your screwdriver to tighten the bolts until they fit snugly against the wall.
  5. Place your towel rack onto the holder bracket and then attach the bracket to the wall.
  6. Tug at the towel rack to ensure that it is tight and secure.

How Do You Hang Towels On A Towel Rack

White towels on hotel bathroom

There are a few different ways that you can hang towels on a towel rack; here are a couple of the most popular ones:

The Traditional Towel Hanging Technique

Start by spreading the towel out on a table or bed (or any clean flat surface). Ensure the towel's best side, the side to display, is facing downward. Next, fold the towel into thirds and then hang it lengthwise on the towel rack. Using this method, you can stack smaller towels atop larger towels and coordinate colors and patterns. 


If your towel rack has a top shelf, you can display folded or rolled towels atop. This provides an excellent storage method and ensures guests have ample towels easily at hand. 

The Pocket Towel Hanging Technique

Lie the hand towel flat and fold the outer facing lip on the short edge back. Turn the towel over, keeping the lip folded back. Fold the towel into thirds lengthwise. Next, place the towel on a flat surface with the lip facing down and fold one side of the towel towards the middle. Then, do the same to the other side and tuck it into the lip. Turn to towel back over, and you will see the pocket that you have created.

Hang the towel on your towel rack so that the pocket faces out. In this pocket, you can store a washcloth or various toiletries like lotion, soap, and shampoo.


Wrapping Things Up

We hope that this post has illustrated a suitable method that you can use to install your new towel rack. Wondering how high to hang the towel bar? It's also worth noting that the average height for a towel rack is about 48 in high an adult bathroom and 38 inches for a children's bathroom.

Before you go, be sure to check out our other posts:

Bath Sheet Vs. Bath Towel: What’s The Difference?

How To Soften Towels (Including Without A Dryer)

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