I often get asked about mounting flat-screen televisions. What height should I mount it? Does it matter what kind of bracket I use? What about the best location for the power outlet? Is there anything I can do in advance of getting my flat-screen to ensure that I have the best look? Will this allow me to change my flat-screen easily in the future when new models come out? Yes, these are all great questions and I have the answers for you.
What height should I mount it?
As a general rule of thumb I like to mount my flat-screens like art. I am an artist so anything that is not mounted like art tends to frustrate me. Typically artwork is hung at 5 feet to the centre above the finished floor (AFF). This height is appealing on the eye, it looks good when you are standing, when you are sitting and when you are lying in bed. It works well most of the time. If you have a very small room and you will be sitting close to the TV, you may decide to go lower than this. Also, if you are mounting over a fireplace and there is a mantel and such, you might need to go higher than this. Each case can be unique.
Does it matter what kind of bracket I use?
This is a great question. And why are there so many types of brackets anyway? One of the less obvious things about mounting a flat-screen is the need for a mounting niche for best look. In most cases interior designers these days will want the flat-screen as tight to the wall as possible. This may seem like just buying the thinnest bracket is the best answer, but it is not. You will need a certain amount of space for power connections, video connections, etc., and the thinnest brackets are too tight to the wall in general for all of this stuff. For a flat-clean installation on the wall, I suggest that you build a niche that is approximately 2” smaller than the height and width of your TV and at least 3” in depth. Then use a cantilever articulating bracket. This will allow you to mount the bracket in your niche, make your connections and such, and then push the TV tight to the wall. This gives you an easy path for future upgrades too. Important: study the profile of the back of the TV that you are buying and the locations of connections when planning for your niche and your bracket.
What about the best location for the power outlet?
I like to place my power outlets in the top centre behind the TV so that it is not in the way of the mounting bracket. Another approach to this is to use a TV wiring preparation rough-in box. There a few on the market that I have seen and this gives you a recessed box to conceal all or your connections and your power outlet. It is optional, but it is a cleaner and more professional way to do things. If you are working with an integrator ask about this.
Well, I certainly hope this helps you in planning your custom installed flat-screen TV. Happy watching! And as always, feel free to reach out with any questions you have about this or any other article I have written.