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What Are Sign Standoffs and How Can They Improve Signage?

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Any opportunity to elevate interior signage—especially ADA signs—is worth exploring. Whether you need displays for your building or a client’s, you want to be sure the end result draws attention. Make no mistake: The smallest details can have a huge impact. That’s why you shouldn’t underestimate the value of sign standoff hardware. 

Sign standoffs can go a long way in improving signage, including its appearance, ease of installation, and more. 

Not convinced?

Learn more about these fasteners and the advantages of using them. 

What Are Sign Standoffs?

Sign standoffs, sometimes referred to as standoff screws, are pieces of hardware used for sign mounting purposes. The standoff itself consists of a barrel, cap, and wall screw. It fastens to the sign and attaches it to the wall, leaving a roughly 1-inch gap. 

Unlike other sign mounting methods, the use of sign standoff hardware allows the sign to pop out from the wall. 

Types of Sign Standoff Hardware

Standoffs are usually made from aluminum. They are available in various finishes, such as satin and polished. However, they can also be made out of stainless steel, brass, or other materials with different types of metallic finishes.   

Additionally, there are different types of standoffs in terms of function:

What Are the Benefits of Using Sign Standoffs?

There are several benefits to hanging signage with standoffs. That’s why this mounting hardware has become an increasingly popular choice in the sign industry. Here are just a few examples…

The most common reason sign standoffs are used is that they can transform the appearance of ordinary signage. The simple addition of this hardware provides otherwise lackluster displays with an eye-catching, 3-dimensional look. Plus, it makes signs in unique shapes even more prominent. 

With sign standoff hardware, you can enhance a display’s appeal and complement the building’s existing décor. This is especially important when clients fear their ADA signage will clash with their interior design

When using tape or other adhesive to hang signage, there’s always a risk that the display could fall down. With standoffs, however, that risk is significantly reduced. The hardware provides a more reliable means of hanging signage. The standoffs are screwed into the wall and are sturdy enough to support the weight of the display itself. 

In addition to being reliable, sign standoff hardware is easy to use. In fact, the person tasked with installing the new signage will be impressed by how simple it is. All it takes is a few tools and a handful of steps. Typically, a standoff sign can be installed in just a couple of minutes. 

Standoffs can also make a space look more professional. Although it’s a minor detail, the hardware can take signage to the next level. It shows the business has put care into every aspect of the interior, including signs. And as a result, it can give visitors a more positive impression. 

Though there are several inexpensive sign mounting techniques out there, few (if any) can deliver the same value as sign standoffs. When you combine the reasonable price of the hardware with its attractive look and dependability, it becomes clear that the use of standoffs is one of the best methods available. 

Click to shop for Quick Ship ADA Signs.

What Materials Can Be Used with Sign Standoff Hardware?

One of the great things about sign standoff hardware is its versatility. You can use sign standoffs with virtually any type of sign material available. As long as the material is durable enough to be notched or drilled, standoffs can be used to hang it. 

Here are a few materials that are compatible with standoffs:

How to Install a Sign with Standoffs

If you’ve been tasked with installing signage in your building or a client’s, it’s important to know how to do it properly. Fortunately, assembling and hanging displays using this method is fairly straightforward. It’s just about gathering the necessary items and following the right steps.

Items You Need

To install signs with standoffs, you first need to make sure you have the right tools and materials at your disposal. That includes the following:

Steps to Follow

As soon as you’ve gathered the tools and materials listed above, you can move forward with mounting your signage. Here are the basic steps required:

  1. Using your level, line up the sign with the wall it will be displayed on and mark where the screws will need to be inserted. 

Note: Traditionally, signs are mounted with screws in all 4 corners, but you can do top and bottom center only, top corners only, or a custom placement.

  1. Unscrew the standoff cap from the standoff barrel.
  2. Holding the standoff barrel over the first marked spot, drill the wall screw through the barrel and into the wall. Repeat for each spot you marked. 

Note: If your kit came with anchors, make sure to drill your holes first and insert the anchors before adding the wall screws and barrels. 

  1. If you’re using through-hold standoffs, you’ll need to match up the holes in the sign itself with the standoff barrels you just drilled into the wall. Holding the sign in place, screw the standoff cap into each standoff barrel.
  2. If you’re using edge grip standoffs, simply slide your sign panel into place so the edges fit snugly against the spaces in the standoff barrels (or the notches in the sign itself fit against the barrels). Depending on the edge grip standoffs you have, you may need to tighten down the set screws and/or attach the accompanying adhesive cap to each standoff. 

Once the sign is in place, the job is done!

Who Should Consider Using Sign Standoff Hardware?

As previously mentioned, sign standoffs are praised for their ability to give signage a more upscale, luxurious, and professional look. As such, they’re an excellent means of mounting signage in establishments that value appearance. Some examples include the following:

Ultimately, though, standoffs can be used to take any business’s signage to the next level. 

Can ADA Signs Have Standoffs?

ADA family restroom sign with pictograms on frosted acrylic face with steel standoffs.

The short answer is yes. ADA signs can have standoffs. After all, they’re just another way of mounting signage. If you want to make sure that your or your client’s ADA signs are clearly visible without sacrificing appearance, sign standoffs are a great way to go. 

However, if you opt to use standoffs, it’s important to ensure every display still meets ADA guidelines in terms of color contrast, text size, text font, spacing, mounting height, and more. Otherwise, you could leave your business or your client vulnerable to the consequences resulting from noncompliance


Sign standoffs are an affordable, reliable, and easy-to-use method of installing signage. That’s why you may come across them in a variety of establishments. If you or your client is concerned that ADA signage will take away from existing décor, consider using standoffs as a way to improve the look of new displays.

If you have additional questions about standoffs or want to enlist Erie Custom Signs’ help with a custom project, reach out for a free quote today!

Filed Under: Design and Customization

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