How to Hang a Swing from Ceiling [Baby Chair or Hammock]

Indoor hammocks are a great stress-reliever if you’re looking to relax and ease your mind without having to leave your home. Indoor baby swings- meanwhile- are great for a baby’s mental development and can also keep your baby busy and free you up to perform other tasks.

These helpful functionalities notwithstanding- one of the most common questions homeowners often ask when looking to hang an indoor swing from the ceiling is whether it’s a safe thing to do. In this blog article, we’ll take you through how to safely and properly install an indoor hammock/baby swing from your ceiling.

Is it safe to hang an indoor swing chair from the ceiling?

Yes, you can safely hang an indoor swing chair from the ceiling by mounting it to a solid ceiling joist. You’ll- however- want to avoid mounting the swing /hammock onto a ceiling board that doesn’t have a supporting joist above it, as this might cause the drywall seams to crack and the ceiling board to fall on you. Meanwhile, if you have a concrete ceiling, it should be strong enough to support the weight of the hammock chair.

How much weight can a ceiling joist support?

The amount of weight that a wooden ceiling joist can hold depends on the size of the joist, its design, and the nature of the attic above it. Averagely- though- a 2×6-inch ceiling joist can withstand up to 50-pounds of weight. Here’s a brief overview of the factors you should take into account when looking to attach an object to the ceiling:

  • The number of supporting joists- a rail of joists is capable of holding more weight compared to a single beam, which may be structurally flawed.
  • The design of the house- your home’s structural design also determines whether a ceiling joist can withstand additional weight. For instance, shorter beams are more structurally stable when extra weight is applied to them, as opposed to longer beams which tend to sag.
  • The nature of the attic- an attic with roof trusses already exerts weight pressure on ceiling joists, thus lowering their capacity to hold more weight. On the other hand- if the attic is empty, the joists are left free to support as much weight as they possibly can.
  • Position of the weight- a joist will better support the weight of an object mounted onto it if the object is placed at the edges of the joist. If the object is mounted onto the center, the beam is likely to hang or collapse due to a lower center of gravity.
  • Structural Mishaps- structural errors such as loose screws may cause a beam to hang or collapse when weight is applied to it, even if the beam is of the right size and design.  

How to Hang a Swing Chair from the Ceiling

Before you start attaching your hammock swing chair to the ceiling, collect all the tools and materials that you’ll need to effectively complete the job. These include a drill and concrete/wood drill bits, a stud finder, a screwdriver, a stainless-steel ceiling mount (600-pound weight capacity), lag screws/expansion bolts, spring snap hooks, a stainless steel chain, and- of course- a hammock swing chair.

Here’s  how to hang a swing chair from the ceiling:

1. Select and mark a suitable spot on the ceiling

Select a spot in the room where you feel it would be best to position your indoor swing chair. You don’t want the hammock to hit the side walls or rails as you swing. Therefore- ensure there’s at least 3 feet of space on the front and behind the swing chair.

Meanwhile- the spacing for the sides should be at least 15-inches from the wall. And as a rule of thumb, the hammock should be installed at least three feet away from doorways.

2. Locate a ceiling joist

The next step is to locate a ceiling beam onto which you’ll mount your hammock chair. The joist should be located directly above the spot that you’d chosen in the room. If there’s no ceiling joist above the spot, you’ll have to rethink the positioning of your hammock.

To accurately locate a ceiling joist, use a stud finder such as the ProSensor 710 Precision Stud Finder and mark out the ends of the beam. Note that- if you have a concrete ceiling- this step won’t be necessary.

3. Install the hammock mount

After locating and marking out the ends of the support beam, it’s now time to install the swing mount. First off, drill a two-inch deep hole for the hook directly at the center of the joist using a ¼-inch drill bit and drill. You want to ensure that the hole for your eye hook is straight and not angled. You should- therefore- hold the drill in a vertical position. Next, fasten the eye hook to the hole- first using your bare hands- and as the hook tightens- using pliers.

For stronger weight support, you’ll want to use a ceiling mount instead of an eye hook, as it provides a sturdier anchor point. A mount with a 600-pound weight capacity is recommended as it will safely support the weight of anyone that lays on the indoor swing chair. To install a four-hole ceiling mount, drill four pilot holes into the ceiling drywall board and attach the mount using screws and a screwdriver.

4. Install the hammock chain/rope

After installing your ceiling mount/eye hook, the next step is to attach the swing cable. For an eye hook, you can attach the chain directly. For a ceiling mount, first, attach a spring hook to the mount- then attach the chain/rope to the spring hook. Finally, place another spring hook to the lower end of the chain. The hammock will attach to this hook.

An important consideration when installing the swing rope is its length. Typically, the size of the chain should be such that the hammock hangs 18-24-inches from the ground after installation.

5. Install and test the indoor swing chair.

Now, it’s time to hang your hammock chair by attaching it to the lower spring link. After hanging the swing, make sure to test out its strength by lying on it in different positions and distributing your weight. If everything seems solid and okay, it’s now time to lie back and enjoy the coziness of your indoor swing chair.

Can you hang a baby swing in an apartment?

If you live in an apartment complex, the ceiling is most likely made of concrete. Concrete ceilings are structurally strong enough to support up to 600 pounds of weight. Being as baby swings and babies weigh much less than this, it’s totally safe to hang a baby swing inside an apartment.

Installing a baby swing on a concrete ceiling isn’t that much different from installing it on a ceiling with wooden joists. Simply replace the screws for the pilot holes with expansion bolts and the wooden drill bits with concrete drill bits. Also, don’t forget to hang the baby hammock at least 25-inches above the floor.

Finally, test out the baby swing (by placing objects on it and rocking it from side to side) to ensure that it can safely support the weight of your baby.

What types of ceiling can support swing chairs?

Concrete ceilings and ceilings with steel or wood joists can adequately support indoor swing chairs.

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