Best TV Mounts

Updated July 2021
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

30 Models Considered
12 Hours Researched
2 Experts Interviewed
208 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best TV mounts

TV screens are growing larger, yet they continue to shed weight. Consequently, you don’t need to dedicate a huge, clunky entertainment center or even a TV stand to your television anymore. You can open up the space in your living room by attaching your TV to a low-profile wall mount.

Using a wall mount allows you to open up floor space in your living room, bedroom, or wherever you watch shows and movies. It also lets you select the precise viewing angle you want. Furthermore, many of today’s wall mounts cost less than the hefty furniture-style entertainment centers of yore.

At BestReviews, we set out to find the best TV wall mounts. Before you open your wallet, we want you to understand your options.

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Types of TV wall mounts

Tilt and swivel

A TV mount that can tilt and swivel away from the wall is the most expensive – and often the most desirable – option. A tilting TV wall mount provides a more comfortable viewing experience; a swiveling mechanism makes it easier for you to hook up cables in the back.

  • If you have more than one sitting location in an oddly shaped room, a mount with this ability is a must-have. You can adjust the screen angle and location to fit your needs.
  • Some people prefer a swiveling arm mount because it allows them to “hide” the TV in a cabinet when they don’t want to look at it.

What’s the best height for a wall-mounted TV? Experts recommend that you mount it so the center of the screen is at your eye level when sitting.

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Tilt

A tiltable TV mount allows you to tilt the screen, rotating it on a horizontal axis. You can pull the top of the screen outward, which tilts the screen downward. This is the most common use for a tiltable wall mount.

Some tiltable TV mounts allow you to pull the bottom of the TV away from the wall, angling the screen upward. This is a less common configuration.

If you pick a tiltable TV mount, don’t expect to angle it at something like 45 degrees to the wall. You can only move it 1 or 2 inches from the wall in a typical tilted setup.

If you pick a tilt-and-swivel TV mount, make sure your cabling is long enough to reach wherever you might want to swing the TV.

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Fixed

A fixed TV mount was the most common option several years ago. It holds the television about one-half inch from the wall, sitting parallel to the wall. Unlike the options discussed below, it doesn’t have tilt features. It’s the cheapest and easiest mount to install.

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Expert Tip
If you must hang your TV at a higher-than-optimal level (like over a fireplace), tilting it at a slight downward angle can make it more comfortable to watch.
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Understanding VESA

VESA is a mounting interface standard that ensures compatibility between TV mounts and flat screen TVs. The Video Electronics Standards Association created the VESA size concept two decades ago.

Basically, VESA size refers to the pattern of screw mounting holes on the mounting bracket and TV, ensuring they align properly.

When searching for a proper TV mount, you may hear (or read) that a mount is VESA compliant. But you’ll actually want to make sure both the flat-panel TV and the mount are VESA compliant.

VESA patterns are sometimes referred to as FDMI, or Flat Panel Mounting Interface.

Did you know?
If you already own a mount and plan to get a bigger TV soon, chances are you’ll need a new wall mount bracket to accommodate this purchase.
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Best TV wall mount features

Compatibility

The TV mount must work with your TV brand, size, and model. Don’t mount it to an incompatible mechanism.

Make sure any mount you pick is VESA compliant, too.

Materials

TV mounts made of plastic, aluminum, or steel. Some contain all three materials.

A mount with a fair amount of plastic won’t cost as much as an all-steel mount. However, if your mount has a lot of plastic, it should be limited to a lightweight TV.

This may sound daunting, but that’s one reason why VESA sizes, and the standard itself, exist.

As long as the TV model and the mount are compatible with each other, you should feel free to combine them. Understandably, though, you may feel more comfortable with an all-steel mount.

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For your safety
Got a TV you love? Don’t want to mount it yourself? Consider hiring a professional to install your new mechanism.
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Measuring screen size

The size of a TV screen is measured diagonally by the TV manufacturer. This measurement determines TV mount compatibility.

You can get a rough estimate of this measurement by running a tape measure from corner to corner. However, it’s even better to use the manufacturer’s official screen measurement.

The position of the wall studs will affect where you put your mount. You may have to position the TV a few inches left or right of where you’d like it. However, some mount brackets can slide a few inches horizontally, which fixes this problem.

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Picking a type of mount

Look closely at your space. Will you need the mount to tilt and/or swivel? Think about how your seating is arranged to determine whether you need some versatility in the TV’s angle.

Did you know?
Flat-panel TVs don’t ship with wall mount bracket hardware. This is an extra purchase you’d have to make.
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TV mount prices

Prices vary somewhat, especially for 55-inch TVs and larger.

  • For a fixed mount, expect to spend between $25 and $125.
  • For a tilt mount, anywhere between $50 and $250 is reasonable.
  • A tilt/swivel mount costs $75 to $500.
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Expert Tip
Know your screen size and TV model when shopping. Keep in mind that one particular model may come in several sizes.
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Tips

Finding a wall stud

Mounting to drywall alone will not hold the weight of the bracket and TV over the long run. You must attach the mounting bracket to wood studs. Use a stud finder to locate them.

If you can’t make your stud finder work, it’s possible to remove the trim at the bottom of the wall and look for drywall screws, which would have been placed into the studs. Or, if you have a drop ceiling, you may be able to see the studs by removing a ceiling panel.

Once you’ve located a stud, use a tiny drill bit and drill into the wall. If you hit resistance from the stud, you’ll feel it in this test hole as you drill. No resistance occurs behind drywall only.

Using the bubble level

Do not skip the step of ensuring that the mount is level before hanging the TV.

Use your bubble level to measure the mount horizontally and vertically, ensuring it’s straight. If it isn’t, take down the mount and start the process over.

A crooked TV mount will leave the television’s weight off-center, which could cause the mount to eventually fail.

If you cannot use a wall mount at your home for whatever reason, bear in mind that manufacturers do make ceiling mounts that can fit a wide variety of TV sizes.

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It takes two

Don’t hang the TV on the mount by yourself. Find someone to help you lift and properly position it. Having a third person to organize and hold the cables doesn’t hurt, either.

Tools needed

If you decide to mount the bracket yourself, you’ll need certain tools beyond a stud finder.

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Caution
Don’t try to install your TV mount without the proper tools. Improper installation could cause the bracket to fail.
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Brick or stone

What if your living room has brick or stone walls? You can install a TV mount bracket into the brick of a fireplace or into a stone wall. But first, make sure the stone is well-constructed, thick, and secure. (A stone façade may not be sturdy enough.) You’ll then need to screw the bracket hardware into concrete anchors. This is a tricky installation process that requires some know-how.

Hooking up cables

Unless you have a swiveling/tilting TV wall mount that moves well away from the wall, you will want to connect the cables to the back of the TV before hanging it. It’s difficult to slide the cable into a port when the TV is nearly flush to the wall with a fixed mount.

FAQ

Q. How do I know whether the mount can support my TV’s weight?

A. Consult your TV manufacturer’s website to determine which brackets are compatible with your TV model. The website should list sizes and brands of TV it works with, too.

If both mount and television are compatible, the mount will support the TV’s weight.

Q. How can I be sure a TV wall mount is safe?

A. No one wants their wall-mounted TV to break loose and crash to the floor. Proper installation is key. Follow all instructions exactly. If you’re at all unsure, hire a professional who will guarantee the work.

Q. What should I do with my soundbar?

A. Some TV mounts have extra hardware where you can mount a soundbar. If yours does not, perhaps you could install a wall shelf near the TV to hold the soundbar.

Q. Do these TV brackets work with curved-screen TVs?

A. Most mounts will fit a curved TV and a flat screen TV equally well. Just make sure the mount you use is listed as compatible with your curved TV model and size.

 

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