If you’re fond of the minimalist, decluttered look then wall mounting your TV could be for you. It saves valuable floor space if you have a small home and gives a more streamlined look. And if you have kids or pets, it’ll keep them and your TV out of harm’s way.
You can also find the best viewing angle and reduce glare from lights or windows with extending, tilting and swivelling wall mounts.
Before you start, there are a few things you'll need to check...
Unless it’s a really old house, you’ll probably have at least two different types of wall in your home - brick, and stud walls. Most walls can support a TV, but you need to be particularly careful with stud walls. Here’s what to look for…
These walls are fine for mounting a TV of any size, but try to make sure the mounts go into the brick, and not the mortar, as the brick will provide a much more secure fitting. When you’re mounting a large TV, it’s a good idea to use heavy-duty wall anchors that are specifically designed to go into brick to support heavy items.
Interior walls are often made from a wooden ‘stud’ frame with plasterboard attached to it. The wooden 'studs' are strong enough to hold a TV but if you’re planning on mounting your TV directly onto the plasterboard, you’ll need to use special plasterboard fixings and make sure the TV weight doesn’t exceed the maximum weight of the fixing kit.
Some stud walls have a metal frame, with these wall types, your TV will need to be fixed to the plasterboard so make sure your TV isn’t too heavy for the plasterboard fixings.
You’ll need the following equipment:
- Mounting bracket
- Tape measure
- Spirit level
- Rawl plugs
Mounting a TV can make for heavy lifting, so it’s a good idea to get a friend to help out.
Use VESA standards to find the right mounting bracket
For most TVs, there are several bracket options – so you’ll want to find the right one for your TV weight and wall type.
To make it easier, most TVs use the VESA (Video Electronics Standards Association) standards. These are guidelines that match flat-screen TVs to appropriate wall mounts by measuring the patterns of holes on the back of your TV.
To work out the VESA dimension:
Using a tape measure, measure the distance between the horizontal holes and vertical holes in mm (numbers can also be found in your TV manual). These two numbers are your VESA dimension which can also usually be found in your TV manual or in the TV specifications when you buy your TV.
Non-VESA TV brackets
Some TV manufacturers don’t follow VESA standards. If your TV is one of these, you’ll need a universal mounting bracket – which can be adjusted to properly align with holes.
Remember, the bigger your TV screen, the heavier it’ll be – and the more support it’ll need. Always compare your TV’s weight to the weight rating of your TV mount for safety. A badly mounted TV could be costly, not to mention dangerous.
So, now you've got everything you need and you know where your TV's going, let's get to mounting it...
1. Get your TV in the right position
Before you start drilling holes, you should make sure you know exactly where you want the TV to be positioned. It’s a good idea to cut out a template of your TV so you can stick it on the wall and sit in the seat you’d normally use to watch TV. This way, you’ll know whether the TV is too high, or too low, and you can mark the wall exactly where you want the center of the TV to be.
If you have small children or pets, you might also want to make sure it’s positioned high enough that they can’t reach it.
If you’re not sure exactly where your TV should go, out Where should I put my new TV? article should help.
2. Fix the mount to the wall
Most TV brackets come in two parts, the wall mount which screws directly onto your wall, and the TV bracket which hold the TV and fixes to the wall mount.
Once you’ve decided where your TV is going using a template, use a tape measure to work out the distance between the bottom of the TV and the bottom of the mounting bracket. Then mark with a pencil where the bottom of the bracket will sit on your TV template.
Line up the wall part of the bracket along this line and using a spirit level to keep it straight mark the drill holes with a pencil.
Before you start drilling, it’s always a good idea to double-check you’re not drilling close to any electrical cables or pipes.
When you’re happy that everything’s level and in the right position, drill your holes in the wall and place your rawl plugs inside the holes. Position the bracket over the holes and attach it with screws.
3. Attach the bracket to your TV
This part should be nice and easy, it’s best to hold the TV upright rather than laying it face down while you do this, so you might want to rope in some help.
Tip: Make sure the screw holes are lined up properly, and the screws don’t prevent the mount from tilting or swivelling.
4. Connect the cables and lift your TV into place
Connect everything you want to attach to your TV, like the power, aerial and HDMI before you mount it. You don’t want to get just right, then realise you can’t reach the HDMI sockets.
Then, with the help of someone else, lift the TV into place – securing the 2 parts of the bracket with a screwdriver or alan key (depending on the type of bracket).
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