How to Hang a Curtain Rail

by Michael Straessle

Items you will need

  • Stepladder
  • Laser level
  • Curtain rail w/hardware
  • Variable-speed drill
  • Philips-head screw tip

Curtains dress up the window and the wall and play a significant role in the décor of a room. People who pay attention to the curtains in detail will also pay attention to the curtain rail used to hang the curtains over and around the window. Curtain choice has a bearing on the rail, so choose wisely with two factors in mind: installation and strength.

Step 1

Place the stepladder in the center of the window. Measure up from the top of the window opening and make a mark on the wall according to the curtain rail manufacturer’s instruction.

Step 2

Place the laser level on the mark, taking note that the laser light is on the mark made in Step 1. Measure the width of the opening. Calculate the difference between the window opening and the needed width of the curtain rail. If the opening is 72 inches and the rail is 84 inches long, subtract 72 from 84 and then divide by 2. In this case, the measurement is 6 inches.

Step 3

Make a mark over from the window to the determined measurement in Step 2. Be certain it is on the laser line so that the curtain rail will hang level. Move the ladder to the other side of the window and repeat this step.

Step 4

Place the curtain rail hanger on the mark and the laser line. Pencil in where the screw holes are on the hardware. Drill a pilot hole for each with the 1/16-inch drill bit.

Step 5

Secure the hanger to the wall using the variable-speed drill and the screws supplied by the curtain rail manufacturer. Be careful not to bend the hanger by applying too much pressure on the screw. Repeat this for the other side of the window. If the curtain rail needs a center support, secure it to the wall midway of the window opening. Check the curtain rail against the window opening before installing the curtains.

Tips

  • If no laser level is available, place a straightedge level with the top of the window opening and draw a line that is easily removed after installation.

    Install anchors in the wall if the hardware installation places it away from a stud or header.

Warnings

  • Do not leave power tools or stepladders unattended in the presence of children.

    Do not force the screws into the wall.

About the Author

Michael Straessle has written professionally about the construction industry since 1988. He authored “What a Strange Little Man,” among other books, and his work has appeared in various online publications. Straessle earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock in professional/technical writing.