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Sign Mounting HARDWARE


The type of mounting hardware, of course, depends on the type of post or surface you intend to mount the sign on, but

  • All sign mounting hardware should be plated; non-plated steel hardware WILL rust and will eventually discolor the sign.  All of our hardware is zinc plated and our special sign mounting brackets are made of rust-proof aluminum.  Zinc plated or galvanized hardware (nuts, bolts and washers) is also available at hardware stores 
  • All hardware (nuts & bolts) should be an absolute minimum of Grade 3 (and only for small signs).  Grade 5 is the best choice for all signs up to 8' X 4'.  Only extremely large signs (huge overhead signs on Interstate highways, etc.) would require Grade 8 hardware; using this grade would be an expensive "overkill" for most signs.  All of our "nut & bolt" hardware is Grade 5, which is also available at most hardware stores.

The following describes the hardward and methods for the most common posts and surfaces:

Sign mounting Hardware forSquare or “U-Channel” Metal Sign Posts

Most sign posts are either heavy duty square posts (commonly used on city streets) and medium duty “U” shaped posts (sometimes used in parking lots). Both types come in various lengths and sizes, and both almost always have 3/8” pre-drilled holes every 1”. These holes match up with the holes we provide on every ARA Signs (unless requested otherwise).

Although 3/8” nuts, bolts and washers can be used, the next smaller diameter, 5/16” is usually used to allow a little “wiggle room” in the event the holes in the posts and signs are not perfectly aligned.

You will need 2 bolts, 2 metal washers and 2 nuts for each sign that has 2 mounting holes(large signs with 4 mounting holes to be mounted on 2 sign posts, of course, will need twice the number).

We provide, at no cost, special nylon washers for every sign (see “All Methods”, below).

The length of the bolts is critical and depends on the size of the post. Allow additional length for the nut, 2 washers and the thickness of the sign itself (0.080”; slightly thicker than 1/16”).

We sell Grade 5, zinc plated nut, bolt and washer sets, however these common pieces of hardware are available at ANY hardware store from small corner hardware stores to mega-home improvement centers, often at a lower cost if purchased in bulk. If, however, you prefer to purchase from us, please let us know the length desired or the size / thickness of the post.

We also offer aluminum RIVETS to mount signs to metal sign posts.  They are easy to install (requires a hammer), are fast & easy to install, are rust-proof and are vandal / theft-resistant.  One rivet for each mounting hole (usually 2, but large signs mounted on 2 sign posts will require 4 rivets) are needed.  No other sign mounting hardware (except the nylon washers we provide at no charge, seel below) is required.

In addition, we also offer VANDAL RESISTANT NUTS for use with our (or hardware store) zinc plated Grade 5 bolts / machine screws.  They are easy to install but, unless sign thiefs know the "trick" (which they don't) are very difficult to remove; their pliers or wrenches simply "slip off".

Our 1 3/4" and 2" square metal sign posts and our U-Channel sign posts can be ordered WITH or WITHOUT a variety of sign mounting hardware.


Sign mounting Hardware for Wooden Posts, fences or any wood surface

Wood screws, available at any hardware store, can be used. For a more secure, more permanent method, drill holes thru the post and attach the sign(s) using long bolts, nuts and washers. Again, plated hardware should be used.  In addition to bolts, we also offer zinc plated "one-way", vandal / theft-resistant lag screws that are easily installed with a screwdriver, but very difficult to remove.

We (and hardware stores) offer zinc plated carriage bolts for use nuts and washers on 4X4 posts.  Whereas there is no slot on the head of a carriage bolt, they are more difficult to remove.  If also used with our vandal / theft-resistant nuts, the sign is extremely difficult to remove (see metal posts, above).


Sign mounting Hardware for Round Metal Posts

Special brackets and adapters are required. These items are usually not available at hardware stores and must be ordered from us or sign post suppliers.

For a more economical solutions (but more time consuming and labor intensive), holes (that correspond with the hole spacing on our signs) can be drilled thru the post and standard long bolts, nuts and washers can be used to mount the sign.


Sign mounting Hardware for Street Light Poles

Similarly, special brackets and adapters usually only available by special order are required.  Obviously, drilling holes thur a street light post to mount signs with nuts and bolts is NOT an option.


All Methods

To prevent damage to the surface of the signs, 3M™ and ARA Signs, Inc. recommends the use of nylon washers. Since nylon washers are difficult to find and, if only a few are purchased, the cost per washer is extremely high, ARA SIGNS INCLUDES, AT NO CHARGE, ENOUGH 5/16” I.D. NYLON WASHERS FOR EACH SIGN.

Nylon washers are only needed on the front of the sign where the bolt comes in contact with the sign face.  Regular metal washers and lockwashers (not included, but available), can be used on the back of the sign post ahead of the regular hex nut or theft-resistant nut.

Please click on the sign category images above to see the 9,000+ signs we offer