Mounting units such as televisions or picture frames seem like a straight-forward job, but many pitfalls await the unwary handy man. One potential hazard is not taking the material of the wall into account. It is not just a matter of the wall being able to properly support the weight but whether it can do so without cracking, crumbling or other damage.

Most instructions for mounting units such as televisions assume hollow wooden walls of standard thickness and stud spacing, so follow the instructions carefully if this is the case. Walls with thick veneers such as tile or stone paneling may need slightly longer mounting screws. To ensure the drill does not penetrate too far and possibly damage or crack the stud, place colored tape on the drill bit just above the measured hole depth.

One of the most worrisome wall materials to work with is tile since many tile materials tend to crack if treated carelessly. To avoid this, use one or more layers of masking tape over the spot to be drilled. The tape gives the drill bit just enough of a cushion to avoid the skittering that often leads to scratches and cracks.

Brick and masonry walls tend to ruin normal drill bits. They require a specialized hammer drill. Using that tool also requires more specialized safety equipment, such as thick safety gloves and a dust mask.

Different types of walls need different types of fixings that anchor the mounting screws. Solid walls need conical fixings, while hollow walls need ones with flanges. Fixings are color coded for different materials, so a quick consultation online reveals which type is needed.

Mounting is a very common task that many homeowners have to face at one time or another, but they need not face the task alone. Besides self-help sites online, experts at stores are always willing to share their expertise with less experienced handy men. Working with different wall materials may seem daunting at first but is easily overcome with diligence and proper knowledge.