How to mount tv to metal studs

How to mount a TV on metal studs?

Johann a TV mounting Technician and Editor
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4 min read for expertise

Last Updated on June 7, 2022 by Johann Holsinger

If you have a preferred spot to mount your TV but realize after the fact that you will be dealing with metal studs, in your don’t worry!

Mounting your TV is easy with the right type of screws.

This article will show you how to install a TV wall mount on metal studs our recommended methods of connecting to steel studs are listed below.

Metal studs for walling bare

What are the challenges of mounting a TV on metal studs?

One of the main concerns is having to drill a hole into the metal stud to accommodate a heavy-duty toggle bolt.

This could ultimately weaken the metal stud itself and cause structural instability. Drywalls have limited holding capacity.

When using toggle bolts on metal studs, always be sure the hole for the bolt does not reduce the load-bearing weight capacity of the vertical stud.

If you are wondering why you cannot use normal screw-in metal studs [1], understand that metal studs are surprisingly thin meaning that there is not much for a screw to bite into and hold.

Using fine threaded screws is needed but the weight is limited compared to screwing into the timber.

That is why toggle bolts come into play when fixing hardware to metal studs.

Nevertheless, here are your options in installing drywall anchors.

Steel studs for a wall

What fixings can hold a TV to metal studs?

Before you start attaching the TV wall mount to metal studs, you have to decide on the fixings you can use.

Most metal studs measure 1.5” in width or less, which makes installing your fixings to the exact center important.

There are a few options to look over for the type of screws needed to mount a tv on metal studs. My go-to choice is toggle bolts let’s look over the types of fixings now.

1. Toggle bolts

These bolts are one of the first choices most people consider when mounting a TV to a metal stud.

Toggle bolts can be somewhat thicker than other hardware options, which means you may need to drill a larger hole into the metal stud.

The toggle bolt will open up and clamp on the other side of the face of the metal stud in the hollow section of the metal stud.

How a toggle bolt looks like from the back of the drywall

2. Self-drilling toggle anchors

The self-drilling toggle anchor is constructed in such a way that the hardware will fully grip not only the metal stud but the drywall or plaster wall you install through.

This can add an extra layer of security when mounting heavier TVs.

3. Snap-toggle

These are more heavy-duty than previous options and can be used to anchor your TV securely to the wall even when dealing with the metal studs as well as thick drywall or plaster covering. 

What other tools can you use when installing a TV mount on wall studs?

  • Drill. Your drill can be either corded or cordless, but the bits will need to be able to drill into drywall, plaster, and metal and accommodate the toggle bit or fine threaded screws.
  • Stud finder. An extremely important tool we use to make finding the center of wood or metal studs before drilling permanent holes.
  • Level. When drilling into multiple studs, we use a green laser level to ensure every hole is perfectly level on a horizontally plane.

Level and drill for mounting tv on RV wall

The problem with drilling into metal studs

  • Most metal studs measure 1.5” or less in width, so finding the exact center is important to retain structural integrity.
  • Any metal drill bit can be used for metal studs but can leave jagged holes. Carbide and titanium tipped bits [2] will make clean holes and last the longest.
  • Standard screws can’t bite and hold onto metal studs. In this case using anchor sleeves specifically for metal may be needed.

Close up view metal studs

Steps to mounting your TV on metal studs

Here are the steps on hanging a tv mount to metal studs:

Step 1. Have your hardware and tools handy.

This includes your drill, level, stud finder, anchors, screws, and mounting brackets

An extending TV bracket for mounting on a metal stud

Step 2. Find the studs.

Use your stud finder to slowly move back and forth over the area you want to mount the TV.

Consider drilling small test holes to verify the accuracy of the stud finder.

The great thing with metal studs is the reading on a stud finder will be easy and accurate to find as the studs are more highly magnetic compared to timber.

You can even use a strong magnet instead if you have one around to do a test to find a steel stud location.

Marking studs with a stud finder

Step 3. Drill an anchor hole. 

This is normally a ½” pilot hole that will need to be perfectly centered into the metal stud. Use the TV’s mounting template to ensure proper hole placement.

Step 4. Insert the anchor. 

Ensure the anchor is inserted all the way into the wall so that the thread goes through the TV’s mounting frame, the drywall, and into the metal stud.

Tighten clockwise to open the wings and secure your TV mount in place.

Step 5. Repeat on other studs.

Make sure you repeat the same steps on the other studs to ensure proper central placement of the anchor.

Use your level to ensure horizontal straightness. Tighten everything up and move on to the final step.

Mounting TV on a wall with metal studs

Step 6. Mount the TV. 

After everything is tightened, you can now mount your TV onto the mounting frame you anchored into the wall.

Have a friend help with larger TVs, especially when heightening a 75-inch TV or bigger. Stand back and admire your handy work!

Tv mounted on a wall behind metal studs

More tips for mounting your TV to metal studs

  • Don’t be afraid to drill small test holes around the stud to ensure the stud finder is accurate. You can easily plug these holes up later with putty, or ignore them since they will be behind the TV.
  • Take your time when using the level. The last thing you want is to find out your TV is mounted crooked because you forgot to use the level or rushed through the process.
  • Consider finding the best extending tv wall mount if you haven’t yet got one.

leveling wall properly to mount TV behind metal studs

Here are a few more tips.

Hopefully, we answered your question, “can you mount a TV on metal studs?”

Installing an articulating TV mount to metal studs is different from mounting to wooden studs.

You may want to invest in new metal drill bits to ensure you get clean holes in the metal, without blunting your drill bits.

Use toggle screws instead of standard screws to grip and clamp onto the back face of the steel stud.

Wall mounted Tv in a narrow space

More information:

  1. Screws buying guide, posted on
  2. How to drill into metal studs? a guide posted on


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Johann Holsinger portrait

Hi, my name is Johann Holsinger, here at I share all of the tips and tricks I have professionally learned to help you set up your ultimate home entertainment system.