Video and Audio Center Blog

Monday, April 14, 2014

Why You Should Wall Mount Your Flat Panel TV

Flat panel TVs are amazingly lightweight, even though there's more, not less electronics crammed into their thin chassis. And the colorful and high-resolution picture they provide are now found in displays many times larger than was once conceived of for home viewing (example: the 60" Samsung UN60H7150). But the "big" advantage of a flat panel is that it can be wall-mounted. This not only eliminates a TV stand but makes the TV part of the decor of the room.

But most people haven't had any experience in putting things on the wall beyond hammering in a nail for a picture frame. So what do you need to do in order to mount a flat panel TV on the wall securely and safely? There are two issues that must be considered:

Issue # One — Cables for the Flat Panel TV

A flat panel TV needs two cables at the minimum connected to it in order to function: the first is the cable that comes from a cable box/satellite receiver and/or a video player (i.e., a Blu-ray player like the Sony BDPS5200) that provides the video signal. The second is for power and connects to an ordinary AC outlet.
But how to hide these cables? Having them exposed as they go up the wall is one way, but that's unsightly. One solution might be to "mask" (cover them up) by placing wall riders in front of them — basically hiding the cable behind a plastic strip that can be painted to match the color of the wall. Another method is to have the cable go through the inside of the wall, say in at the base of the wall, and then exit out where the TV will be mounted. The downside of this is the necessity of having to deal with any wiring that is inside the wall, such as existing electrical wiring. This can be dangerous and not something to take lightly. So here, instead of doing it yourself, is where calling in a local installer or certified electrician can make good sense; to provide for doing this in a safe manner (example: Just ONE TOUCH).

Issue # Two — Mounting the Flat Panel TV

Mounting a flat panel on the wall requires two people, not because of the weight so much as it being ungainly to handle — this is as true of the 4K Ultra HD models, from Sony for example, as it is for 1080p HDTVs. First the flat panel should be held on the wall at the height desired — this is determined by its size relative to how far back those watching will be seated so that folks are looking "up" at the picture in a comfortable manner.
What will be needed is a knowledge as to what's inside the walls that the flat panel can be screwed into. This requires ordinary tools that can be found around most homes, although a stud-finder might not be in the average person's tool case. A wall mount bracket might be purchased for use too because it will make for an easier method of getting the flat panel up on the wall — additionally, wall mounts can allow the TV to be maneuver (i.e., "angled") rather than forced to lie flat.

And while it sounds obvious, it helps to make a note to remind oneself to connect the video and power cables to the TV before it's placed against the wall and screwed on.

While all of the above is doable by the average person, there are a few things that might come into play for inhibiting DIY (do-it-yourself) when putting a flat panel TV on the wall. One of these is whether it is allowed at all. Home owners can pretty much do what they want, but apartment dwellers and those living in condo/co-op places may have restrictions placed by the building's owner or a regulating board that they can't disobey.


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