Sagging IKEA Drawer Bottom Repaired With This $6 Fix

repair drawer bottom sag
Photo Credit: Jules Yap

I have several IKEA chests of drawers – the MALM, IVAR, and HEMNES – all demonstrate one trait after a few years of use: Saggy bottoms.

The HEMNES drawers struggle to hold up my Marie Kondo folded T-shirts. The MALM chest drawers fare better but still falter under the weight of my bedlinens. Don’t get me started on the IVAR drawers. They are the worst. Even with nothing in them – the drawer bottom gives way and droops sadly.

Sagging drawers are a common problem that can happen over time as the wood structure loses its integrity under the weight of the load. As the drawer bottom sags, it becomes more difficult to open and close smoothly. You may even risk the bottom falling out entirely if this problem goes unchecked.

Scrolling through Instagram, someone recommended a little plastic gizmo that fixed her IKEA dressers. (I forgot to note her account. If that’s you, a big “Thank You!”) So, utterly frustrated with my IKEA drawers, I decided to try this fix. Here’s what I did.

Fix Drawer Sag with Drawer Wedges

plastic drawer wedges with screw
Photo Credit: Jules Yap

What are drawer wedges? Drawer wedges, also called mending wedges or support brackets, are small plastic shims placed between the drawer bottom and the dado on the front panel. The wedges lift the drawer bottom back into proper alignment by adding support under the weak spots.

How to use drawer wedges to fix a sagging drawer

sagging IKEA drawer bottom, fiberboard panel has dropped down
Photo Credit: Jules Yap

Get a pack of drawer wedges. Amazon sells them in packs of 50 or 100 for about $6. Get a bag, and you’ll have plenty for your drawers. I fixed three chests of drawers and had leftovers for future use.

Tip: Add them when assembling new fiberboard IKEA drawer bottoms to prevent the bottom panel from sagging.

Fix sagging drawer bottom with drawer wedges
Photo Credit: Jules Yap

Step 1: Empty the contents of the drawer. Flip the drawer over with the bottom facing up. Inspect where the sag is occurring. It’s usually in the middle front of the drawer. Push the drawer bottom panel – usually a thin fiberboard – back into position within the dado. This is the most critical step to ensure the wedges work correctly.

If other drawer parts need fixing, now is the time. I also realigned the front panel on this drawer, which had come loose from the side panel. I pushed the front panel towards the side panel and tightened the cam lock.

Lightly hammer in the wedges
Photo Credit: Jules Yap

Step 2: Place a drawer wedge flat against the drawer bottom in the problem area, parallel to the front of the drawer. I start in the middle, where the sag is most severe. Slide the thin edge of the wedge into the groove. A few light knocks with a hammer help the wedge get in there.

Use a screwdriver to fix sagging drawer bottom with drawer wedges
Photo Credit: Jules Yap

Step 3: Use a screwdriver to fasten the screw into the drawer base. Do not over-tighten. I did that on one of them, and the screw slightly poked through the drawer’s bottom panel.

Fix sagging drawer bottom with drawer wedges
Photo Credit: Jules Yap

Step 4: Insert additional wedges along the groove, building support to lift the sag.

Sagging drawer bottom repaired with drawer wedges
Photo Credit: Jules Yap

Step 5: Flip the drawer and apply gentle downward pressure on the bottom panel to test the fix. Add wedges as needed.

Step 6: Replace any contents and test the drawer motion. It should now glide smoothly in and out. Drawer wedges are not foolproof. If you overload the drawers, the bottom may still sag in time.

Drawer wedges are a quick, inexpensive way to regain years of use from a drawer starting to droop. With just a few minutes of work, you can fix the problem and keep your kitchen or bedroom storage organized and functional. The wedges will work on most saggy drawers, not just IKEA.

More IKEA Drawer Repair Tips

How to fix a broken drawer divider: Repair a broken spar on the MALM dresser without dismantling the whole chest. You’ll need a spare piece of wood, angle brackets, and screws for this quick fix.