Why Should I Buy a TV Wall Mount?
Wall-mounting your new flat-screen TV gives your living room a clean design and lets you better customize the room’s layout. We spent more than 80 hours evaluating 50 different TV mounts and narrowed that list to eight that are not only secure, but also enhance your viewing experience. This is especially true if your living room isn't square. A good wall mount makes your TV as flexible as it needs to be for you to view it from the optimal angle.
But what are the best TV wall mounts on the market today? Which ones are best for the type of wall you have? We've done the research, and this is what we've found.
Sturdy, adjustable and covered by a great warranty, Sanus Systems is our top choice
The Sanus Systems VMPL50A-B1 is the overall best wall mount, because it meets the most needs for the most people. This tilting wall mount allows you to move your TV with just a light touch, and installation is simple.
It's sturdy too. It can hold a TV measuring 32 to 70 inches and weighing up to 150 pounds. This mount is also compatible with all VESA patterns up to 673 x 438, so this product is likely to fit your TV, though you should still check beforehand.
The Sanus mount is built of sturdy, heavy-gauge steel and comes with a 10-year warranty. Its frame adjusts both horizontally and vertically for ideal TV placement, but the mount’s 10-degree tilting angle offers less flexibility than others.
One downside to the Sanus Systems mount is that it does cost more than many other products, but its quality and warranty justify the price.
This Cheetah wall mount is great for TV fans on a budget
The Cheetah Mounts brand is known for its low-price guarantee on TV wall mounts, which is one reason it’s one of the most popular and highly-rated mount brands on Amazon. Cheetah Mounts APTMM2B is a tilting wall mount that compares well with its competitors and costs less than $30.
It supports up to 165 pounds and fits TVs as big as 65 inches. When flat, it sits 1.5 inches from the wall, but the mount’s 15-degree tilt function may alter the TV’s profile. The mount is compatible with VESA patterns up to 600 x 400, which works with most TVs, though you should check your TV before purchasing a mount just in case.
The Cheetah mount has a built-in cord management system to keep your entertainment system’s wires from getting crossed. The biggest downside to the Cheetah mount is that it doesn’t come with much support from the manufacturer.
It does not have a manufacturer’s warranty, though the retailer might offer a type of warranty. Cheetah’s instruction manual and website support are also lackluster, but for the price, it’s a great mount.
OmniMount's fully adjustable TV mount is great for those who need fliexibility
The OmniMount PLAY40 is our pick for the best interactive TV wall mount because it provides full horizontal and lateral movement with a sturdy articulating arm. This TV wall mount is ideal for situations where you’re changing the viewing perspective a lot.
Though not as affordable as fixed mounts, the OmniMount adds value by giving your TV setup more flexibility. It adjusts with little effort thanks to its Constant Force joint technology and doesn’t require you to lock it into place.
The OmniMount PLAY40 is compliant with VESA up to 600 x 400, though it’s limited to TVs up to 55 inches and 40 pounds. Because of its flexible nature, it also does not have a low, wall-hugging profile like many fixed mounts. It sticks out from the wall about 5.5 inches.
Best Full Motion
This full-motion wall mount has a sturdy, single-stud mounting plate
The VideoSecu ML531BE is an extremely popular and affordable full-motion TV wall mount. It’s rated to support TVs up to 55 inches and up to 88 pounds, which is not quite as sturdy as other types of mounts but works well for its application.
It extends up to 20 inches away from the wall but keeps a low, 2.2-inch profile when set flat. The mount swivels 180 degrees with tilt capabilities up to 15 degrees to mitigate glare. It’s VESA compliant up to 400 x 400, which covers many TVs up to 55 inches.
The VideoSecu full-motion wall mount installs by attaching to a single wall stud, which gives the mount more placement flexibility than other options, many of which require a two-stud installation. Therefore, it’s great for putting your TV in a corner, as wall studs near the corner are irregularly placed.
The VideoSecu mount comes with everything you need for installation and a cord management system to keep your entertainment setup tidy. Overall, it’s the best full motion mount because of its combination of budget-friendly price and excellent mobility.
Best Fixed Mount
If you want your TV fixed securely in one position, this Mount-It model is a good choice
If you don’t need to move your TV around often, a fixed wall mount like the Mount-It MI-305B is a great option. Because of its fixed form factor, the Mount-It wall mount has a low, 1-inch profile that lets your TV sit close to the wall to look like it’s hung like a painting.
It’s simple, but it gets the job done for a good price. The MI-305B holds any TV that is between 32 and 60 inches and weighs less than 175 pounds. It is VESA compliant up to 750 x 400, which should fit most TVs in that size range.
Of the TV wall mounts we evaluated, the fixed Mount-It MI-305B is one of the most secure. It comes with extra mounting hardware to fit any installation, whether you plan to put it on a double stud, metal, concrete or brick wall.
The built-in bubble level helps ensure a straightforward installation. The bracket that you attach to the wall has three height settings, so you can change the height of your TV. It also has an anti-theft locking bar, which adds an extra level of security.
How We Tested TV Wall Mounts
We know that your TV is an important centerpiece to your home entertainment system. You therefore don’t want to buy a wall mount without having complete faith that it can hold your TV well. We did the research and put in the hours to find wall mounts that combine reliability, security and a reasonable price so you know your TV is safe when you mount it.
We spent more than 80 hours evaluating dozens of TV wall mounts to find the ones best suited to fit your TV and your space. We pored over product description pages, user reviews and star ratings, mobility specifications and installation instructions and compared our findings to determine which products work best for different circumstances, especially tricky installations like corners or brick walls.
Top Tips For Choosing a TV Wall Mount
At first glance, it may seem like all wall mounts are the same, but they do have some important differences, including tilt range, TV size compatibility and weight capacity. We suggest picking out your TV before purchasing a wall mount to ensure they are a proper match, as some mounts are only compatible with TVs up to a certain size and weight.
TV wall mounts can vary wildly by cost. Some cost as little as $20 while others can exceed hundreds of dollars. Since there is little difference between a mount that costs over $200 and one that costs around $20, our recommendations focus on models that had the best specifications at the most affordable prices.
The best way to gauge whether a product like a TV wall mount lives up to its listed specifications is to read user reviews. As such, we read hundreds of user reviews and considered each mount’s popularity compared to similar models. If a TV wall mount is popular among users and has very few bad reviews, it’s a safe bet.
Weight & Universal Mounting
Wall mounts vary in size to match a wide variety of TVs. Some only fit TVs between 20 and 32 inches, while others can fit models between 20 and 60 inches. We looked for mounts that fit the widest range of TV sizes.
We also looked for TV mounts with universal VESA Compliant brackets. These brackets can fit almost every type of TV on the market and range in size between 100 x 100 millimeters and 800 x 400 millimeters. Still, you should always make sure the brackets on the back of your TV fit within the specifications listed for the mount.
We only considered the mobility specifications for mounts that were designed to move. We considered the maximum extension, pan, tilt and vertical movement. Having a TV stand that offers mobility allows you to get the viewing angle just right for your setup or adjust it whenever you need to.
Some mounts have an arm option, which extends the TV further out from the wall than a traditional mount would. This is a great solution if you need to mount the TV in a corner, or if you want to be able to access cords, devices, ports or anything you plan on keeping behind the TV.
The most important thing to remember when installing a mount is that you have to find studs that can support the TV’s weight. Since you can’t see the studs in your wall, you need to use a stud finder.
More on TV
TV wall mounts require either a single stud or a double stud. Typically, if the mount is rated to hold over 100 pounds, it’s going to require a double-stud installation. If this is the case, you need to determine whether your studs are separated by 16 or 24 inches. They are typically separated by 16 inches, but if you’re installing the mount in a corner, the studs are likely 24 inches apart. Many mounts come with a built-in level. If yours doesn’t, you should definitely use one to ensure your TV doesn’t hang like a crooked painting.
If you’re nervous about installing a TV wall mount, or if your flat-screen is too heavy to place on the mount by yourself, consider hiring a professional service to take care of it for you. Services like Handy let you set up an appointment for a technician to come over and install the mount. Depending on where you buy your mount, such as Best Buy, also offer similar services.
Even though choosing a TV wall mount may seem straightforward, it can actually have a great impact on your TV viewing experience and the feel of your living room. Large flat-screen TVs aren't cheap, and you don't want an inadequate TV mount to fail and drop your entertainment hub to the floor. Making sure your TV is secure and the mount is reliable is of the utmost importance.
Why UL Approval Is Good
Given how heavy many flat screen TVs are, it’s important to have a wall mount that is strong enough to support it. Buying a TV wall mount that has been UL certified gives you peace of mind that the product will literally hold up its end of the bargain.
A mount with UL approval means it has gone through additional third-party quality testing. This process is designed to ensure that each mount is capable of holding at least four times the amount of weight it advertises being able to support. So, if your TV weighs 30 pounds, UL approval means that the mount should be able to hold 120 pounds, if not more. Most mounts on the market today are capable of supporting weight ratings between approximately 135 and 175 pounds.
Be sure that you double check the weight of your particular TV model along with the maximum weight capacity of the TV mount, which should be listed right on the device, before making a purchase. Mounts that have undergone the UL certification process will have the UL mark either directly on their chassis or printed on a sticker on the chassis. As a general rule of thumb, most name-brand wall mounts have UL approval. If you’re looking to purchase a more budget-friendly wall mount, keep in mind that one of the reasons it has a lower price is that it may not have undergone the third-party UL testing process.
Contributing Reviewers: Suzanne Humphries, Anna Burleson