Rawl bolts are one of the most popular fasteners that are used by do it yourself gurus. They are really versatile and are available in a wide range of sizes and strengths. If you are not a do it yourself guru then this is an article for you.
Rawl bolts are a kind of expansion bolt. More precisely they are what is known as an expanding shield anchor fastener. Do not let this technical term concern you though, just be satisfied in the knowledge that once you insert bolts they will expand to fill the entire hole and be really secure. It takes quite a bit of doing to get one out. In fact, the method used to get rawl bolts out of their holes is to hit it really hard with a hammer and then to wiggle the bolt and so on and so forth until it comes out. Sounds a little uncouth, but it seems to be the only way to get them out. The other option is to just hit them into the wall so that you can plaster over them and no one even knows they are there.
It is best if you use bolts in bricks or concrete or something equally solid as the bolt does need to have something to grip onto. Although, having said that, people have had success using bolts in thermalite and partition walls. It often happens that the rawl bolts do not grip the thermalite or that it crumbles under pressure in which case a quick hardening resin is used to bond the bolt to the wall.
Rawl bolts are one of the most secure option for hanging heavy things because of the expansion making sure that the bolt is securely seated in the wall as long as it is tightened properly. The weight that they are able to handle will be indicated on the packaging and the size hole needed should also be indicated.
Installing a set of rawl bolts is really easy too. All you have to do is drill the appropriate sized hole, making sure you do not put a hole into a mortar joint. Clean out the hole so that there is no dust inside it from the drilling process. Any dirt in the hole can make the bolt slip as it is not going to be actually gripping the wall but will be trying to grip the dirt instead. Then you insert the bolt and its sleeve and start to tighten the nut. As you tighten the nut the sleeve will expand and fill the hole. This is what makes the rawl bolt stay in place.
If you need to hang a television mount or some book shelves then you may want to consider using rawl bolts. Just make sure that you use enough of them to make sure that you do not exceed the weight that they can handle and cause them to rip free of the wall you have put them into.