All the steps you need to take so your home theater is ready for movie night
If you’ve had enough with those unsightly TV wires and the media console taking up half the living room, it’s time to hire a pro and get your flatscreen properly mounted. Not only will you reclaim the living room, but also get a streamlined look and reduce tripping hazards.
How to Find a TV Mounting Pro
Mounting the TV might sound like an easy enough job, but hanging it improperly can lead to problems. Trust us—you don’t want to be at a season cliffhanger when the TV slides down the wall or—worse—falls onto the floor.
There are a few ways to find the right TV mounting services near you. Read online reviews or ask friends and family members for suggestions. You can also use Angi to find the right company. Aim to get at least three quotes for the job's cost and how long it will take before making your final decision.
Labor for mounting a flat-screen TV usually costs between $150 and $400, or an average of $300. You’ll also need to factor in the price of the mount.
Before Hiring a Pro
Before you call a pro, there are a few things you need to do first.
Buy Your Wall-Mounting Bracket
To wall mount a flat screen TV, you’ll need a specialized bracket to secure the TV to the wall.
Brackets can range from $50 for a lightweight one and $300 or more for a more durable one that tilts, angles, or has articulating arms that let you move the TV off the wall to lower it to eye level or swivel it around corners.
Measure Twice (and Convert to Metric)
The backs of most TVs have mounting holes in a square or rectangular pattern. VESA Mount Compatibility numbers represent standardized vertical and horizontal patterns for those wall-mount holes.
VESA numbers are metric and range from 50mm to 800mm. If you have your owner’s manual, the VESA numbers should be listed. A bracket’s VESA numbers should match or be larger than the TV’s VESA numbers.
Otherwise, we’re going to have to get out the measuring tape and be prepared to convert those measurements to the metric system. Note the screen’s diagonal measurement, the TV’s weight and the distance between the two vertical mounting holes and the two horizontal ones.
If the pattern is rectangular, the vertical measure is the smaller number.
Each bracket has a TV weight limit. You’ll want a bracket that can comfortably hold your TV. Go up if you need to.
Choose Where to Hang the TV
Who hasn’t shown up to watch the game at a friends’ house to find that their TV is basically mounted on the ceiling? After the final inning, you probably had to go home and rest your aching neck.
Don’t make your home theater like always sitting in the front row at the movie theater. Your TV should sit at a comfortable viewing height. If that’s not possible where you want to mount it, consider a bracket that lets you pull the TV down and out.
Take time to find the ideal spot before bringing in the pro, then ask their professional opinion. They’ll also have to make sure there’s a stud in the wall in your preferred spot—a must for hanging a flat-screen safely.
When choosing your spot, don’t forget any gaming systems, DVRs, cable boxes, or speaker bars that you’ll need to accommodate.
Mounting Over a Fireplace
Mounting a TV over a fireplace can be tempting, especially because it makes couch placement super easy. But it’s something to consider carefully. Fireplace walls get hot, and heat rises.
One way to test if your TV can handle being above the fireplace is to tape a thermometer to the spot and start a fire. If the thermometer goes over 100 degrees, choose a different spot—unless you’re so committed to the TV that you’re willing to forego use of the fireplace.
Some electric fireplaces might not burn so hot, but do be careful of mounting the TV too high.
Plan Your Project for Accurate Quotes
Before you call a TV mounting service, have an idea of where you want the TV mounted so you can get accurate quotes.
For example, if you hope to mount your TV above a brick fireplace, the pro needs to know that in order to bring the proper tools.
Don’t forget to tell the pro how you want to hide wires. To save money, you can buy cable covers that adhere to the wall (rather than hiding cords in the wall itself). Cable cover kits cost about $10 to $40.
Hiding cables in the wall is more complex and can cost up to $1,000, but it provides a cleaner look and could prevent any tripping accidents.
Check Your TV Mounting Service’s Qualifications and References
Get a recommendation or read reviews before calling a service.
Questions to Ask Your TV Mounting Pro
Some pros might offer general handyperson services. In that case, be sure to ask:
How many TVs have you mounted?
Is your business insured to cover any damages to my house?
When is payment due?
Do you require a contract or a down payment before beginning work?
Do you supply a mounting bracket or do I need to order one myself?
How will the wires be concealed?
Hiring Your TV Mounting Pro
Once you find someone you feel confident in and comfortable with, schedule your service.
Keep Records of Your TV Project
Ask if the service charges per project or by the hour. If you’re paying by the hour, make note of what time the pro arrived and left—keeping in mind that you might owe for travel time, too. You can also make a note of any materials they provided.
After Your TV Mounting Pro Has Finished
After your TV is mounted, be sure to give it a gentle shake to make sure it’s safe and secure. If you’re satisfied with the pro’s work, ask for a business card and snap a picture with your phone, so you can share it with friends and colleagues looking for a similar service. It’s always nice to leave a helpful review online and offer to be a reference, if needed.