Vertical Blinds Installation Problem

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Old 01-19-19, 03:12 PM
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Vertical Blinds Installation Problem

So. . .we decided to purchase a new set of vertical blinds for a dining room window that measures 72" wide by 62" long. Easy enough to install, I'm thinking, even for a klutz like myself. Hours later, I'm still looking at a window without blinds.
Why? Trying with all my might I haven't been able to penetrate the frame of the window to screw in the valance, clips and headrail. I get about an inch or inch and a half and I'm hitting something that has proven to be impenetrable. Masonry bits, tapcons, hammer drill. . .nothing is getting into whatever the hell is in this window frame. My assumption going in was a 20 minute task drilling a few screws into some wood.
I'm stumped. What is going on??
 
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Old 01-19-19, 03:19 PM
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Most likely, you're trying drill a hole into the window frame itself. Are they metal frames?

Make life easy. Patch those holes and buy a 1 x 3 or 4 strip of wood as long as the window. Mount that above the window on the wall. Attach the blinds to that.
 
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Old 01-19-19, 03:57 PM
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We had a member here with a similar problem. He was in a condo or an apartment. It took seeing pictures to figure out the problem. There was a metal lintel over the window frame.

Pictures can be helpful..... How-to-insert-pictures
 
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Old 01-19-19, 04:42 PM
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Norm: Yes. 40 year old house with the original windows. Looks like aluminum frames. I can't go with your suggestion. The verticals were custom made and so they won't fit if I do that.

PJ: I'll take a picture or two tomorrow and post it here.
 
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Old 01-19-19, 04:51 PM
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When you screw into the frame about an inch or so, is it a solid catch like a wood screw into wood, or is it like metal screw that just catches the edge of the metal? If it's the latter,then use a word strip across the frame instead above it. Just use a lot more screws to secure the wood strip.
 
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Old 01-20-19, 06:01 AM
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Here's a few photos which may or may not prove helpful. . .

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Last edited by PJmax; 01-20-19 at 12:09 PM. Reason: cropped/resized/enhanced pictures
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Old 01-20-19, 08:06 AM
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Just curious as to what size screws you're using. You say you drilled in 1 1/2" before you hit something. Do you need such long screws?
 
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Old 01-20-19, 09:01 AM
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I'm using the screws that came with the verticals, which I just checked. They're 1.5" hex head wood screws. So I guess I'm getting in about 3/4 to 1" before hitting the mother load. Do you think I'd get the necessary support if I go with a heavier gauge 1" screw?
 
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Old 01-20-19, 09:46 AM
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The screws that are included with blinds are usually junk and they're probably not the right ones anyway.
You should probably try using self-drilling screws. You can get at Home Depot.
 
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Old 01-20-19, 11:17 AM
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Your pictures show a boxed in area where you are trying to fasten those blinds. At the very least there will be some major wood above there and quite possibly a steel beam.

Take something long and pointy. An ice pick is perfect. Try putting it in one of your holes and hitting it with a hammer. If it doesn't go in..... it's going to be metal.
 
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Old 01-20-19, 11:28 AM
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Pete, I don't have an ice pick. No matter. From what I've seen there has to be a metal beam of some kind running through there. I'm going to try a shorter, stouter screw and see if that solves the problem. The headrail and verticals are lightweight, so I don't think there will be an issue with support.
 
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Old 01-20-19, 11:49 AM
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In all likelihood this is a masonry house, covered with plaster and stucco. Above the windows there is likely a heavy steel lintel, which is what you are having trouble drilling into, and you will likely wear yourself out trying. You need a sharp drill bit and oil to drill through the steel. When you drill through the steel (probably about 1/4" thick) you will likely hit the concrete and dull your drill bit. Therefore if you are trying to drill 8 holes you might want 8 nice sharp drill bits. Seems like a waste but IMO I'm happy to spend a few bucks if it makes it easier or faster with less swearing. lol

Since there is likely concrete above, you will likely need to either tap the steel and use a machine screw, or insert a plastic anchor into the hole. A concrete screw might also be possible- once you drill through the steel.
 
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Old 01-20-19, 11:55 AM
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In all likelihood this is a masonry house, covered with plaster and stucco.
Indeed it is. I'm going to try a few shorter, heavier gauge screws. If that doesn't work I'm selling the damn house and moving. Hehe. . .
 
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Old 01-20-19, 12:07 PM
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Shorter/heavier screws aren't going to do it. The easiest way around your problem is to determine the distance from the surface of the sheetrock to the steel. You'll need anchors to catch only the sheetrock. I would use spin-in easy anchors.

Anchors

If you can mount the blinds close to the edge of the box..... at the farthest point from the window..... there will be some type of sheetrock nailer that you may be able to catch. I added a red line to the picture.
 
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Old 01-21-19, 01:14 PM
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You can use wall brackets screwed into the vinyl/aluminum window frame using one screw in each.
https://home.repairparts.co/white-5-...rack-hardware/
 

Last edited by johnam; 01-21-19 at 01:23 PM. Reason: change image
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