How to Wall Mount Your Flat Screen TV

Mounting your flat screen television to a wall saves space and protects your investment. Afraid of doing it yourself? No need. Getting it up there is easy. Just follow these five steps, and make sure you have the proper equipment and a friend or two on hand to help you.

Equipment

You’ll need to purchase a mounting kit. These are usually available anywhere that sells TVs, but it can be overwhelming to sift through all your options. Don’t worry, though, there are only three main types you need to know about.

First, there are basic mounts for places where you can mount the TV without much need for adjustment. These might be right for you if you’re thinking of putting your TV above the mantle. Second, there are tilting mounts, great for spaces where the sofa is a bit low to the ground. And lastly, there are full-motion mounts, the best option if you’re looking to tilt the TV in different directions from a corner or another problematic place.

Most TVs these days will work with just about any mount, but to save some trouble, consider choosing a mount that’s made by the same manufacturer as your TV.

Tools

Once you have your kit, you’ll need the following tools to install it:

  • Power drill
  • Cable-wire tester
  • Level
  • Screwdriver
  • Stud finder
  • Tape measure
  • Pencil
  • Socket wrench
  • Masking tape

Prep

To save time and avoid costly or dangerous mistakes, complete these tasks before you begin installation work:

  • Gather up all the necessary hardware.
  • Read the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Decide whether or not you will cover your wires and cables.
  • Have at least one person present to help you.
  • Use a cable-wire tester to ensure you won’t be drilling into any electrical wires or fuse boxes.

Steps to Mounting Your TV

1. Secure the mounting bracket

  • Remove the existing stand from your TV.
  • Find the mounting holes on your television and remove the plastic caps.
  • Secure mounting arms to mounting holes.
  • Prep all the recommended hardware.
  • Set your TV aside.

2. Find the best location to mount your TV

  • Consider glare, visibility, and seating.
  • Think of the best angle for viewing.
  • Select a location near an electrical outlet.
  • Pick a wall that’s weight-bearing.

3. Attach the mounting bracket to the wall

Note: If you are connecting your television to a fixed mounting with no arms, consider connecting cables (step 4) before beginning this step.

  • Using your stud finder, locate the two studs you will be drilling into in order to mount your TV.
  • Carefully mark the center of each stud. Use a nail to probe and ensure the stud is where you think it is.
  • Measure the space between the top and bottom holes for both mounting arms. Using a level, make corresponding marks over the studs so that the holes are at equal height.
  • Use your power drill to make pilot holes. These should be 75% smaller than the mounting screws.
  • Using the recommended hardware, attach the wall bracket to the wall. Drive in lag bolts with a socket wrench if they come with your mount kit.
  • Lastly, do a final check to make sure everything is level.

4. Connect all cables

  • Ensure the TV and all attached devices are not connected to a power source.
  • Ask your helper to hold the TV to the wall mount.
  • Connect the audio/video cables to your TV per the manufacturer’s specifications.

5. Mount Your Television

Note: Do not attempt this step without help.

  • Lock the mounting arms onto the wall bracket. Test them for weight-bearing strength by tugging down firmly but carefully.
  • Be sure each point is locked down snugly, testing again by carefully applying downward pressure.
  • Test your electrical connections. Perform any necessary adjustments.