How to Choose a TV Wall Mount

Learn what type of wall mount your TV needs

It's increasingly common to mount a flat-screen TV on a wall instead of perching it on an entertainment center. If you're looking to make this upgrade, you want to make sure you pick the best TV wall mount for your situation. However, if this is the first time you've done this process, you'll start by deciding what kind of hardware works for your home, display, and layout. Here's how to choose a TV wall mount.

A flat-screen TV mounted on a wall

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Does It Matter What TV Mount to Buy?

Choosing a suitable mount for your specific TV is essential, but finding it doesn't require much information. When selecting a wall mount, you have three primary considerations: your wall material, the size of bracket you need, and what you want to do with your TV once it's mounted.

How Do I Know What Wall Mount My TV Needs?

TV mounts typically come with everything you need to install the bracket into drywall, one of the most common interior materials. However, if you plan to hang your TV on another kind of surface—for example, brick, stone, or plaster—you'll likely need more equipment than what's in the box. If that's your only option, you may require a masonry drill bit and different anchors.

Do All TV Wall Mounts Fit All TVs?

The second bit of information you'll need is the size of the bracket. Most TV and wall mount manufacturers have agreed on a standard that relies on four screw holes arranged in a rectangle on the back of the set. Thanks to this standard (VESA), the only thing you need to worry about is the distance between them. The best place to find this information is by checking the TV's owner's manual; if you don't still have it, you can likely find it at the manufacturer's website. Otherwise, you can measure it yourself.

VESA measures spacing in millimeters and will look like "300mm x 200mm," which means the rectangle of screw holes is 300 millimeters wide and 200 millimeters tall. Most TV wall brackets accommodate various sizes, and all of the compatible sizes should be on the box or listing online.

You should note the VESA numbers to ensure the bracket will fit on your TV. You'll also want to check the bracket's screen size and weight limits to ensure the bracket is strong enough to hold the set. This information should also be on the packaging or in the specifications online.

What Type of TV Wall Bracket Is Best?

As far as types of brackets, you'll typically have three options:

  • Fixed
  • Tilting
  • Full-motion

A fixed bracket attaches to the wall and holds your TV; that's it. You won't be able to make adjustments once it's up there. This option is best for living rooms and other locations where you'll typically only watch the screen from one angle.

Fixed brackets are usually "low-profile" and hold the set closer to the wall. A low-profile bracket isn't the best choice if you need full access to the cables, but it can provide the neatest look, especially if you have an extra-thin TV.

A tilting bracket is suitable for when you might need to adjust the screen to avoid glare or watch from different angles. For example, you might tilt the TV up if you're viewing from a treadmill and then back down once you switch to the couch. Tilting brackets also provide easier access to cables.

A full-motion wall bracket can tilt up and down and left and right. You might also be able to pull it away from the wall. This feature means you have complete, easy access to the cables and should see the screen from anywhere in the room. Full-motion wall brackets are also suitable for placing TVs in corners.

Which bracket is "best" depends on your needs and uses. A fixed bracket will work fine most of the time, but you have other options if your case is unique. Each type should be available in any size you'll need, too, so you won't have that limit on your options.

  • How do you mount a TV on wall without wires showing?

    When installing your TV, cut two small holes in the sheetrock to drop cords through the wall. First, cut the top hole inside the bracket area where the TV will hide it once it is mounted. Next, cut the second hole about one foot above the floor directly beneath the first hole and use steel fish tape to feed the cords through the holes.

  • How do remove a TV from a wall mount?

    First, unplug all cords, including any cables connected to the TV, such as video game or streaming device wires. Next, grab the bottom of the TV, tilt it gently towards you, and lift it. Unscrew or pull the strings to unlock the safety lock and then lift the television off the mount, placing it carefully on a blanket or other soft surface.

  • How high should I mount my TV on the wall?

    The center of the TV screen should be about eye level for seated viewers. Typically, this is about 42 inches from the floor to the middle of the TV. However, this can differ for everyone depending on height, furniture size, and other factors, so tape a large piece of paper to the wall and test the height before you install the TV.

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