Screwing MDF Skirting?

Hi all,

We’ve got 18mm MDF skirting boards we’ll be fixing to solid walls.

My initial plan was to use 5x60mm screws with brown plugs. However, there is the tedious task of having to countersink these screws, and then fill up the big ole holes afterwards. Not sure if I’m terrible at filling, but bigger screw holes tend to be harder to fill, too. Often need second filling, and as a result of being larger, can sometimes even see the filler outline through the paint.

I’ve already got these 5x60mm screws. Bought them way back when I thought I was going to do the skirting! Other DIY stuff got in the way. And well, Screwfix’s offers may have tempted me too  :)

Anyhow, I’m now wondering whether I should go out and buy a couple boxes of 3.5x50mm Lost Tite screws instead, to be used with red plugs. Not as burly or as long, but would require less filling. Maybe no need to drill a countersink too, as these heads hopefully will just push into the MDF? Plus, they’ve a nice clear section of shank at the top, meaning the skirting should pull in better?

Anyone used these screws for skirting in solid walls?

Thanks!

P.S. A screenshot from a video to show the head size difference. Ignore the nail!


Comments

  • victor2
    victor2 Posts: 7,502
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    paperclap said:
    Hi all,

    We’ve got 18mm MDF skirting boards we’ll be fixing to solid walls.

    My initial plan was to use 5x60mm screws with brown plugs. However, there is the tedious task of having to countersink these screws, and then fill up the big ole holes afterwards. Not sure if I’m terrible at filling, but bigger screw holes tend to be harder to fill, too. Often need second filling, and as a result of being larger, can sometimes even see the filler outline through the paint.

    I’ve already got these 5x60mm screws. Bought them way back when I thought I was going to do the skirting! Other DIY stuff got in the way. And well, Screwfix’s offers may have tempted me too  :)

    Anyhow, I’m now wondering whether I should go out and buy a couple boxes of 3.5x50mm Lost Tite screws instead, to be used with red plugs. Not as burly or as long, but would require less filling. Maybe no need to drill a countersink too, as these heads hopefully will just push into the MDF? Plus, they’ve a nice clear section of shank at the top, meaning the skirting should pull in better?

    Anyone used these screws for skirting in solid walls?

    Thanks!

    P.S. A screenshot from a video to show the head size difference. Ignore the nail!



    Why screw them on? The last time ours were replaced they were just glued on with (plenty of) No More Nails or similar. The odd screw was needed where things weren't quite square or flat, but so long as you can apply a little pressure while the glue dries, it saves a lot of hassle. They're relatively easy to remove as well, should the need arise.

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  • I don’t trust glue to do the job on its own. Plus, our walls are quite a bit out in places. I may use a touch of Gripfill, but only really to pack out areas where the board needs to come out. But first and foremost, screws!
  • Nobbie1967
    Nobbie1967 Posts: 1,444
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    Another vote for no more nails type fixing. Did it in my kitchen and lounge 4 years ago and not had any problems. 
  • victor2
    victor2 Posts: 7,502
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    There is no load to speak of on skirting boards, so the glue doesn't have much to hold. Of course if you've had to bend the skirting a bit to follow the wall, I can appreciate the need for a screw or two.
    When we had an extension built, the builder just glued the skirting boards on, and I was able to paint them before he did it, which was so much easier than trying to do it in place. Plus there were no screw heads to cover up. :)

    I’m a Forum Ambassador and I support the Forum Team on the In My Home MoneySaving, Energy and Techie Stuff boards. If you need any help on these boards, do let me know. Please note that Ambassadors are not moderators. Any posts you spot in breach of the Forum Rules should be reported via the report button, or by emailing [email protected]. 

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  • danrv
    danrv Posts: 1,379
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    edited 10 November 2023 at 5:34PM
    paperclap said:
    I don’t trust glue to do the job on its own. Plus, our walls are quite a bit out in places. I may use a touch of Gripfill, but only really to pack out areas where the board needs to come out. But first and foremost, screws!
    Walls out as in undulations in the plaster finish? Would have thought it best to have skirting straight then fill any gaps rather than have the screws pulling it in.
    I use Instant Nails grab adhesive from Toolstaion for MDF skirting. Works well, not too difficult to remove and no holes to fill.
    Just need plenty of weights to hold skirting in place.
    Especially with long lengths.
  • TELLIT01
    TELLIT01 Posts: 16,241
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    I've used 'Gorilla Glue' to secure paving slabs on steps when the original cement fixing gave out.  They have been in place with the glue longer than with the cement.
  • victor2
    victor2 Posts: 7,502
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    danrv said:
    paperclap said:
    I don’t trust glue to do the job on its own. Plus, our walls are quite a bit out in places. I may use a touch of Gripfill, but only really to pack out areas where the board needs to come out. But first and foremost, screws!
    Walls out as in undulations in the plaster finish? Would have thought it best to have skirting straight then fill any gaps rather than have the screws pulling it in.
    I use Instant Nails grab adhesive from Toolstaion for MDF skirting. Works well, not too difficult to remove and no holes to fill.
    Just need plenty of weights to hold skirting in place.
    Especially with long lengths.

    A nice heavy toolbox at each end seemed to do the trick (with a cloth in between so as not to chip the nice new gloss paint). :)

    I’m a Forum Ambassador and I support the Forum Team on the In My Home MoneySaving, Energy and Techie Stuff boards. If you need any help on these boards, do let me know. Please note that Ambassadors are not moderators. Any posts you spot in breach of the Forum Rules should be reported via the report button, or by emailing [email protected]. 

    All views are my own and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.

  • danrv
    danrv Posts: 1,379
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    victor2 said:
    danrv said:
    paperclap said:
    I don’t trust glue to do the job on its own. Plus, our walls are quite a bit out in places. I may use a touch of Gripfill, but only really to pack out areas where the board needs to come out. But first and foremost, screws!
    Walls out as in undulations in the plaster finish? Would have thought it best to have skirting straight then fill any gaps rather than have the screws pulling it in.
    I use Instant Nails grab adhesive from Toolstaion for MDF skirting. Works well, not too difficult to remove and no holes to fill.
    Just need plenty of weights to hold skirting in place.
    Especially with long lengths.

    A nice heavy toolbox at each end seemed to do the trick (with a cloth in between so as not to chip the nice new gloss paint). :)
    Yes. I used some heavy old tins of nuts & bolts that I inherited. 





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