Thursday, June 11, 2015

Home improvement with 3M Command Series Adhesives

I was recently very excited about moving in with my gf, SY, that I decided to engage in some home improvement projects!

Since things in the house seems to be rather cluttered, I thought perhaps if we move things onto the walls, there would be more space on the ground. SY sometimes complains about the mess and I mean anyone feels better looking at a neater apartment right?
Definitely not SY's apartment... maybe a little more like my current apartment...
SY's been pretty stressed out lately. Thought I would give the apartment a little makeover - just teeny tiny enough to make a difference. M did well with my current apartment, I thought I would use some his ideas too. So amidst crazy schedules and deadlines, I perused the web and found useful resources: here and here! Since I can't totally revamp the apartment nor put nails on the wall, I stumbled upon this info on damage-free adhesives. Somehow I got a little obsessed in trying out these adhesives, which IMO, if they work like magic, could turn things over at SY's place! There are, unfortunately, more misses than hits and here are some of my empirical evaluations of the products that I bought in chronological order.

Credits: Amazon

I wanted to hang a plywood medium-sized framed picture. I didn't know the better and accidentally got these. So my first purchase pretty much failed, since these are strictly for posters, as I learnt it the hard way. You guessed it; I tried them on the picture and it fell off the wall. Fortunately, there were no casualties.

Credits: Amazon
Next, I got these for the picture. But ended up using only the sawtooth ones (see the next one). My guess is this will hold only pictures that are very lightweight.

Credits: Amazon
This has been my most successful purchase so far. It has been almost 3 weeks now and the picture is still hanging on the wall very nicely. Hopefully that persists. I followed all the instructions to the T for all the adhesives, but only this one worked... At this point, SY is already a little annoyed with me spending all the money on these adhesives. I was determined to experiment with these and with one success, I hope to make them all work. Alas, little did I know I was going down a slippery slope...

4. Command Utility Hooks (supposedly holds 5 lbs)
I got a little bold with successful number 3. I wanted to hang things on the wall in the kitchen and the bathroom. Two places of very similar nature: typically hot, humid in both, and also oily in the kitchen - BUT I DIDN'T KNOW THEY HAVE VARIANTS for the strips.

M used these for hanging towels in the kitchen in my current apartment, so at least I know they work for very lightweight cloth. Before I started hanging heavier things, I want to make sure they stick. I left one each on kitchen and bathroom wall (same texture and wall material) without anything on.

After 1 day, the hook in the bathroom fell off. But the one in the kitchen persists. After 2 days, I decided the one in the kitchen will hold, so I started adding more items on it. Nothing too heavy, just a small rack with a total of 5 small bottles with condiments in them - definitely nowhere near 5 lbs. UNFORTUNATELY, it held for only about 2 weeks, then it came crashing down too, spilling salt all over the kitchen floor... 

Credits: Amazon
At this juncture, SY was a little annoyed with me (for obvious reasons). I was a little too obstinate and too hopeful to back down, since I really wanted to relieve the clutter. Plus, I really want to try these things for myself. I started perusing online reviews, I saw mixed outcome, due to differences on wall surfaces. I started browsing through their catalog of Command Series products. I found these water resistant ones!

However, they lasted only almost 2 weeks in the bathroom. The roommates and we woke up to an embarrassing loud crash in the morning. Thankfully, no one was hurt. I suspect the big heavy bottle of hand lotion might have contributed to the demise. 

Again, M has these in the bathroom in my current apartment to hang towels.

6. Caddy hanger (holds 7lbs)
Credits: Amazon
This seems the most regretful because it seems the most secure. I followed the instructions carefully - hold for 10 sec, slide off hook, hold 30 sec, let it stay for 24 hours, shower at least one during this time. Then I hanged an empty but heavy shower caddy on it.

But I had to take them down for safety reasons. I think the roommates started to get afraid - so they suggested taking them down, since they pose a potential shower hazard; somebody's toes might mangle badly if it comes crashing down. 

And so end my experiments and love-hate relationship with these 3M adhesives. To sum up, my experiences have been: pictures (probably posters as well) and towels and cloth are fine, but even slightly heavier items like small caddy racks and small bottles are a big no-no. I am disappointed with more the outcome of my projects than the products, since the devastating results can be a confluence of product quality, wall texture and unknown environmental issues.

Hopefully, the picture stays that way for eternity. I will update once I am able to hang other smaller objects later in the living room: clocks, pictures and posters.

Wish me luck.

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