Getting a new TV is awesome but then you get home and realize you need to mount it on your wall somehow. In this guide we will cover the best TV mounts we've used to install TV's on the wall and some basic tips for installing a TV wall mount.
TV Wall Mounts A Couple Things To Know
Before you start drilling holes for your TV wall mount it's first a good idea to determine what type of wall mount you want. Do you want a TV wall mount a standard wall mount that mounts flat on the wall with some angle adjustment or do you want a full motion TV wall mount?
It's important to figure out what you want to do with your TV before you get a TV wall mount. While a full motion TV wall mount might seem like a good idea at first glance a 75" TV looks pretty strange when it's angled away from a wall. The vast majority of people use standard TV wall mounts for larger TV’s which place the TV relatively flat to the wall. It's simple, it looks good and it will serve the needs of most people.
We see people use full motion TV wall mounts for smaller spaces like bedrooms, small apartments or maybe even over a bar. They will get you the viewing angle you want but can look clunky when pulled to far away from the wall.
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TV Mount Location
If possible you want to mount your TV on studs so your TV mount is securely fastened to the wall. We know that you can't always make that work but it's a good idea if you want to protect your TV from falling off. Most higher end TV mounts we recommend have larger mounting plates which spans larger distances which make it easier to hit a stud with the TV bracket and they also allow for horizontal adjustment of the TV on the bracket so you can position the TV exactly where you want it.
#1 Best TV Bracket: Sanus Wall Mount
The Sanus TV wall mount is the best wall mounted TV bracket that I have personally installed and can fit a wide range of TV sizes. The Sanus TV wall mount can fit everything from 40" to massive 90" TV's.
The reason that this TV mount is the best is because of engineered features designed into the mount. I've installed a lot of TV's and after while you learn just how awful it can be if you're stuck using bad mounting bracket. That's not the case with the Sanus TV wall mount, they thought of everything when designing this TV bracket to make installation and adjustment as simple as possible.
The features designed into this TV wall mount like quick mounting brackets are simple to use well designed. After using the Sanus mount to install a massive 85" TV I was hooked and now use it on all of my large flat screen TV installations when possible.
Sanus TV Mount Features
Large Mounting Base
If you look at the pictures of the Sanus Mounting Bracket you can see that the wall mounting section is incredibly long. This serves two purposes it gives you plenty of length on the bracket to find a secure it to a stud, but it also gives you plenty of length for horizontal adjustment of your TV.
I love having the extra length for horizontal adjustment because even if your studs aren't exactly where you want them you can slide the TV over on the bracket and position it exactly where you want it. Many lower end TV mounts don't have this feature and is a reason that I highly recommend the Sanus Mounts.
So even if you're incredibly careful it's hard to mount the TV bracket perfectly level. With lower end TV mounts this means your TV can be out of level and look crooked on a wall. Also with larger TV's you will often notice that even if you mounted the TV level they might hang at a slightly different angle once on wall because of their weight.
The Sanus mount solves this problem with built in leveling adjustment. What's great about the Sanus leveling adjustment is that you can level the TV after it's been installed without needing to remove it from the wall. The two screw leveling adjustment is perfect to get the TV level precisely adjusted with the TV on wall.
The Sanus TV mount allows you to mount the TV flat or install it with a tilt. The tilt is completely adjustable and can quickly be changed if you want to adjust the viewing angle of your TV
TV Mount Wall Extension
This is probably my favorite feature on this TV mount and I can't believe that more companies haven't caught on. The TV mount can extend 5.9" away from the wall which gives you enough room to easily plug in cables while the TV is mounted on the wall.
When your done installing cables you can push the TV back flush with the wall. A lot of mounts don't have this capability which makes it incredibly hard to install cables while the TV is mounted and often times requires you to install cables before you mount the TV which can be challenging.
Locked In Mounting
You install the TV by mounting it to the top rail first and then tilting the TV down. The TV then locks in place with the lower spring clips which provide positive feedback that the TV is locked in place. It's great to know that your TV is secure and when the spring clips engage the TV has a solid connection to the wall. For removal there are two easy to access quick release tabs that you can pull to disengage the springs and remove the TV from the wall.
# 2 Echo Gear Mount
This offers a more value priced alternative to the the Sanus Mount. Personally I like the Sanus mount more and trust it to hold up my large TV. This Echogear mount will get the job done, it's just not as polished as the Sanus Mount. It can accomodate TV's between 40" and 85".
The Echo Gear mount has both tilting and swivel adjustment which can be accessed once the TV is mounted on the wall. It will also has built in level adjustment than can be done once the TV is installed which I view as must have for installing any wall mounted TV.
The biggest difference in features on the Echo Mount is that the wall mounted rail is shorter than the Sanus mount which means you are going to me much more restricted in horizontal adjustment of the TV and need to keep it mounted closer to the center of the studs in your wall.
It also lacks the spring clips on the lower rail which means you need to lock the lower rail into place with a tool. It also is limited to a maximum size of 85" TV's vs 90" TV's with the Sanus mount.
Best Full Motion TV Mounts
Below we’ve reviewed the best full motion TV mounts if you want to be able to pull your TV away from the wall or if you’re looking to angle your TV in one direction. Full motion mounts are often used in smaller spaces or when you need to mount a TV in the corner of a room. Or like in the picture below the full motion mount allows you to angle the TV for better viewing from the side of a room.
#1 Sanus Full Motion TV Mount
This Sanus full motion TV mount offers many of the same features as the standard wall mount but allows full motion travel of the TV. The mount will extend and astounding 28" from the wall and can be used for TV's from 40" to 90". If you plan on mounting your TV in a corner, want to be able to extend it from the wall or rotate it this is the TV mount for you.
Just like the standard TV mount it offers a large mounting brace so you have plenty of space to mount it on studs or adjust the horizontal mounting of the wall bracket. It also has simple tool free leveling and tilt adjustment which allow you to fine tune the mounting of your TV. Overall this is a quality mount and you will see it in the construction of the mount. The extension bars are beefy and feel like they can really support some serious weight.
When installing at full motion TV it's important that you hit the studs with your screws and I recommend using a stud finder to make sure you hit the studs dead center with your TV mounting.
#2 Mounting Dream Full Motion TV Mount
This mount is a more value priced full motion mount than the Sanus mount and lacks some of features but is a way to save some money mounting your TV if you still want a full motion mount.
The mount has a capacity for TV's from 45" to 75" and will allow both tilt and pan viewing angle adjustment. It has a smaller extension than the sanus mount and will only let you extend from the wall 18.5".
It does allow leveling adjustment after the TV is installed and has some horizontal adjustment available on the back bracket for centering the TV in your viewing area.
One downside is that this mount doesn't have quick release retention clips and the bottom rail will need to be secured with a tool.
TV Wall Mount Tips
Most TV wall mounts come with some included hardware but I've often found the included hardware lacking or difficult to install. When you go to install your TV wall mount I recommend having a few basic tools that will make the job easier
Drill - For installing the anchors.
Drill Bit Set - For drilling pilot holes to make installing the screws easier.
Long Screws - for securing the TV wall mount into the studs.
Stud finder- (Optional but helpful)
If you can only find one stud or you can't get any studs to secure your TV wall mount you will need to use specialized anchors and bolts. There is only one style of bolt / anchor I recommend if you are going to be securing your TV to the wall without a Stud they are called Toggler Anchors. You should always try to use a I stud, but I understand that's not always possible.
For mounting a TV with no studs you can use Toggler Drywall Anchors as shown below. Each of the toggler anchors can hold up to 80lbs each. They are the only mounting bolts I would trust to mount a TV without having a stud to secure the TV mount too. You should not mount a full motion TV mount with Toggler anchors. Full motion TV mounts need to be secured into studs.
Best TV Wall Mount Summary
When choosing the right mount for you consider how you will plan on using your mount and if you can use a flat mount or if you need a full motion mount. After installing dozens of TV’s I’m a fan of the Sanus Wall mounts because of the extra features that make installation and final adjustment of the mounted TV easily.