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Video:How to Hang a Flat Screen TV

with Jonathon E. Stewart

Paying a pro to hang your flat screen can cost a pretty penny -- but armed with a little knowledge and a few tools, you can easily do the job yourself.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Hang a Flat Screen TV

One of the great things about owning a flat screen TV, other than its superior picture quality and sleek design, is having the ability to save space in your living room and hang it on a wall. And you don't even have to be Bob Villa to do it.

Supplies Needed to Hang a Flat Screen TV

You'll need a few basic tools to get the job done: a measuring tape, a pencil, a stud finder, a drill, a level, a wall mounting kit, and a flat screen TV.

Plasma TV Mounting Kits

There are scores of mounting kits out there, and prices vary quite a bit. I'd recommend spending just a little more for one that allows you to adjust the angle of the screen, even if it's only a few degrees. Having access to your cable inputs is worth the difference in price, and it doesn't hurt to be able to eliminate a pesky glare with a quick tilt.

Find a Wall to Hang the TV

Start by choosing the general area where you plan to hang your TV -- the ideal height should position the center of the screen at eye level. Locate the studs in your wall with your stud-finder and mark the center of each beam with a pencil. Depending on the size of your screen, you'll probably need two or three beams to get the job done.

Definitely do not attempt to mount your screen on drywall or sheet rock alone, even with anchors for your screws. If you don't have a stud finder, know that studs are typically 16 inches from center to center, starting at the wall's edge.

Hang the Flat Screen TV

Next, measuring from the floor up, determine the exact height and location for your wall mount, and again mark the distance with your pencil. Position your mount according to your measurements, and use your level to make sure you've got it straight. Once you're set, mark the mount screw holes in pencil once again. Drilling pilot holes at this point may help you to keep your screws straight, especially if you don't have anyone assisting you.

With the mounting plate lined up with your marks, screw it tightly down against the wall. Be sure to use every hole the mount offers -- ideally you will be able to support up to four times the weight of your TV on this piece of hardware. Make sure all screws are tight, and flush with the mount.

If your mount is even slightly wobbly at this point, you've probably missed your stud, and need to go back to square one. The last thing you want to do is lose your new TV to gravity.

Securely attach the mount brackets to the back of your television, and if your screen is large enough, you may want to enlist a friend to help you attach the screen to the mount. But either way, don't let go of the TV until you're 100% sure that it's anchored correctly. Lock any safety mechanisms that may or may not come with your mount, and finally attach your power and component cables.

Flat Screen TV Cables

Hiding your cables can be done a couple ways -- wire covers or runners are typically inexpensive and easy to install, and can be used in apartments where digging big holes in your drywall might be discouraged. You can also run your cables through the wall, just make sure your power-supply is electrician approved. And finally, sit back, relax, and enjoy the show.

I'm Jonathon Stewart, with About.com.
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