Are you tired of having pots and pans falling out of your kitchen cabinets every time you open them? If so, a hanging pot rack could be the answer to your crowded kitchen. With a few easy steps and a free weekend, you can be on your way to organized kitchen bliss.

Time Required
Estimated Cost

What You Need for This Project

Size the Rack

Racks vary in size based on the dimensions of the rails and the number of dowel rods. Use the following steps to determine the size and number of parts for your rack. For clarity, we will use 38 inch long by 28 in. wide for our rack dimensions and 10 in. as the diameter of the largest piece of cookware we intend to hang from our rack.

Rail Dimensions


Cut the Long Side Rails

The rails for the long sides of the track should be equal to the overall track length. For example, if the rack is 38 in. long, cut two 2x4s to be 38 in. long each.


Cut the Short Side Rails

The rails for the short sides or the rack should be 3 in. less than the overall width of the rack. For example, if your rack is 28 in. wide, your short rails will be 25 in. Cut two 2x4s so each one is 25 in. long.


Cut the Dowel Rods

The dowel rods should be 1 1/2 in. longer than the short rails. For example, if your short rails are 25 in. long, add 1 1/2 in. so the dowel rods are 26 1/2 in. long. Cut each dowel rod to this length.

Dowel Rods & Dowel Holes


Measuring the On-Centre Spacing for the Dowel Rods

Measure the diameter (in inches) of the largest item you intend to hang on the rack. Use that measurement as the on-centre (OC) spacing for the dowel rods. For example, if your largest pot or pan is 10 in. in diameter, the your OC dowel rod spacing will be 10 in.


Measure the Cut Lines for the Dowel Rods

Mark the centre of each long rail and measure to the left and right of the centre mark using the OC spacing. Continue measuring and marking until your measurements extend past the ends of the long rails.

For example, if your long rails are 38 in. long and your OC spacing is 10 in., divide the length of the long rail by 2. Measure the result (19 in.) to find the centre of each long rail. From the left end of each rail, measure 19 in. minus 10 in. (result: 9 in.). Measuring another OC spacing to the left extends the mark past the left end of the rail so you have one dowel rod left of the centre dowel rod. Mark the right side of the rail as a mirror to the left.


Cut the Dowel Rods

Cut the dowel rods to the predetermined length. For example, if your dowel rods are 26 1/2 in. long, cut them to that length.


Bore the Dowel Holes

Use a 3/4 in. spade or forstner bit to bore 7/8 in. deep dowel holes, centred on the marks you made for the dowels. The drilled face is the inside face of each rail.

Building the Rack


Attach a Short Rail to the Long Rail

Butt one end of each short rail to the inside face of one long rail. Flush one short rail with each end of the long rail. Use two 2 1/2 in. wood screws to secure the long rail to each short rail.

Stand the assembly on edge with the long rail down and insert dowels into the dowel holes.


Attach the Second Long Rail

Place the second long rail over the assembly. Insert the dowels into the dowel holes and align the short rails with the ends of the long rail. Use two 2 1/2 in. wood screws to secure the second long rail to each short rail.


Paint or Stain

Paint or stain the assembly to your liking. If you want, you can also add an accent of decorative moulding to the side rails of your rack.

Installing the Hardware


Bore Pilot Holes on the Long Rails

Measure in 3 in. from the end of each long rail and mark the centre of the top edge of the rail. Bore a pilot hole at each mark 1/2 in. shallower than the threaded portion of the screw eye.


Install Screw Eyes

Fill the pilot holes halfway with silicone caulk and install a screw eye into each hole. Wipe away any excess caulk that squeezes out of the hole.


Mark Screw Hook Locations on the Ceiling

Have two helpers on ladders hold the rack upside down against the ceiling, directly above where it will hang. Make marks on the ceiling corresponding to the screw eyes in the rack. The marks on the ceiling represent the locations for the screw hooks.


Bore Screw Hook Pilot Holes

Bore pilot holes into the ceiling 1/2 in. shallower than the threaded portion of the screw hook. If the screw hook holes don't fall on ceiling joists, install headers between the joists to hold the screw hooks.

Tip: If you don't have access to your ceiling joists, consider hiring a professional to install the rack.


Cut & Insert Headers in the Attic

Go into the attic and locate each hole in the ceiling.

Measure the distance between the joists and cut headers to fit between them. Insert a header over each hole and secure it to the joists with 20d nails at each end.


Bore Pilot Holes in the Headers

Go back and bore pilot holes in the headers 1/2 in. shallower than the threaded portion of the screw hook.

Fill the pilot holes halfway with silicone caulk and install a screw hook into each hole. Remove any caulk that squeezes out of the hole. Allow the caulk to cure according to the manufacturer's instructions.

Note: Don't space screw eyes and hooks more than 48 in. OC. If your overall rack length is greater than 48 in., add one set of screw eyes and hooks for each 48 in.

Good to Know

Hang the rack near the stovetop or over a kitchen island for easy access to your pots and pans. Don't hang the rack over a cooktop. Pots and pans will gather grease and can be a hazard if you lean over the cooktop to reach for one. Hang the rack based on your height. The rack should be low enough so you can easily reach a pan, but high enough so the pots and pans aren't in the way.

Hanging the Rack


Cut & Thread Chains

Measure the distance between the top of the rack to the ceiling. Double this number, and cut four pieces of chain to this length.

Slip a piece of chain through each screw and lay it over the top of the rack.


Hang the Pots & Pans

Have two helpers hold the rack in position while you place the end links of each piece of chain over the corresponding screw hooks.

Use S hooks to hang pots and pans from the dowels. Bend the top of the S hooks closed to keep them from coming unhooked from the dowel.

After your rack is up, accessorize it by wrapping artificial ivy around the chain or placing a basket of artificial plants or flowers on top of the rack.

How To Terms

Tools, products, materials, techniques, building codes, and local regulations change; therefore, Lowe's assumes no liability for omissions, errors, or the outcome of any project. The reader must always exercise reasonable caution, follow current codes and regulations that may apply, and is urged to consult with a licensed professional if in doubt about any procedures.

Related Articles