Picture this- you’ve found the perfect mount and the ideal spot to put your TV up on the wall. Excited, you get to work with a stud finder- only to find out that there aren’t any studs in that part of the wall! What do you do? Can you still mount your TV to the wall, even if there are no studs?
Yes, it is possible to mount your TV without studs. As long as your mount is not a full-motion mount, you can use hollow wall anchors such as toggle anchors or molly bolts; add a mounting plate or even use ceiling mounts to mount your TV securely to the wall.
However, it can be quite tricky to do this, so you’ll need to take extra care during the process. After all, you cannot afford for your TV to fall.
Also read: Screw Sizes for TV Mounts: A Comprehensive Guide
Why is it difficult to mount a TV to a wall without studs?
Wall studs are vertical pieces of wood or metal that provide the framework to support dry walls.
Since mounted TVs tend to exert pressure on the wall behind, most TV mounts are designed to be fixed to wall studs to make them more stable.
This is because drywalls tend to be brittle and do not grip a nail with strength. They can easily crumble or break if the weight is too much.
Mounting the TV onto the wall using the available wall studs helps provide strong anchor points to support the weight of the TV. As a result, the weight of the TV is balanced out and the wall does not crumble.
That’s why the most secure way to attach your TV to your wall is by using wall studs.
However, if wall studs are not available, there are still some workarounds you can use to safely mount your TV to the wall.
Procedure for Mounting Your TV without Studs
If you’re mounting your TV without using wall studs, you’re going to need sturdy anchor points and a way to distribute the weight so that your wall doesn’t give way.
You can do that by using a mounting plate as well as heavy-duty wall anchors and bolts such as toggle anchors and molly bolts.
1. Use a Mounting Plate
A mounting plate creates a larger surface area to hold the weight of your TV.
It can be attached to the wall with multiple heavy-duty anchors so that the weight is distributed evenly and the TV is mounted securely.
Mounting plates can be either metal or plywood. If you’re worried about aesthetics, you can choose one that blends in with your decor and can be hidden by your TV. Just make sure you choose one that is compatible with your TV.
To mount a TV using a mounting plate, first, screw the mounting plate into the wall and then the TV mount to the plate.
2. Using heavy-duty wall anchors
If you’ve ever attached a sink to a wall without using studs, you’re probably familiar with a toggle anchor. Relatively inexpensive, they are used for attaching heavy items onto hollow walls.
Toggle anchors look like regular screws with butterfly toggles. They have two main parts- a metal bolt and a spring-loaded pair of wings.
The wings are folded so that they can fit in the hole in the wall. Once you force them through the hole, they open up on the other side. As you tighten the screw, it causes the wings to draw up against the back of the wall.
This enables the weight to be spread over a larger surface area. As a result, the wall does not crumble.
How to use Toggle anchors to mount your TV
While selecting the size and number of the toggle anchors you use, you will need to keep in mind the weight of your TV and the thickness of your wall. Follow these steps to use toggle anchors to mount your TV.
- Check the wall for wires, pipes, and studs.
- Next, mark out the areas where you plan to drill the holes.
- Now, drill a hole according to the diameter specified in the toggle bolt package
- To attach the toggle anchor to the mounting plate, you’ll need to first separate its two parts- the bolt and the wing. Slide in the toggle bolts through the front of the plate.
- At the back of the plate, attach the wings towards the ends of the bolts.
- Taking some help from an assistant, shut the wings and push them through the holes. You should hear the bolts click open once they are on the other side of the wall.
- Get your assistant to gently pull the plate toward you while you tighten the bolts clockwise. Continue till it is firm against the wall.
Another type of hollow wall anchor you can use is the molly bolt. Molly bolts have sleeves that expand once they are inserted into a hollow wall. They create an anchor at the back of the wall and help distribute the weight.
Molly bolts come in two varieties- pointed and non-pointed. Pointed molly bolts can be installed in the wall with a hammer without requiring a pre-installation hole. A non-pointed molly bolt, on the other hand, requires a pre-installation hole.
How to use molly bolts to mount your TV
- Check the wall for wires, pipes, and studs.
- Next, mark out the areas where you plan to drill the holes. For non-pointed molly bolts, you’ll need to drill an installation hole first. Follow the instructions and drill a hole according to the diameter mentioned in the molly bolt package. (A hole too small will cause damage, and too big would not tighten properly.)
- Place the molly bolt into the hole, and then securely anchor it.
- Next, remove the screw and insert it through the hole of the mounting plate. Then reinsert the screw in the anchor and tighten it.
3. Try a ceiling mount
Another alternative is to mount your TV from the ceiling. You can use the beams on the ceiling to mount the TV, provided your ceilings aren’t too high.
Before you buy the mount, you need to figure out whether your ceiling is suitable. Choose the best spot by using a stud finder to find a solid wood beam and make sure it is near an outlet.
There are a lot of ceiling mounts available in the market. You can choose between a fixed or rotated ceiling mount. Check the label specifications to see if the mount is compatible with your TV and can support its weight.
Here’s a helpful article with step-by-step instructions on how to ceiling mount a TV.
As you can see, mounting your TV to a wall without studs is indeed possible. Remember to factor in the weight of your TV and the condition of your wall before you buy your materials and get to work.
You will also need an extra set of hands, so make sure you get someone to help you set up. When in doubt, call a professional.