Installing flat screen tv above fireplace

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Old 12-23-07, 08:02 AM
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Installing flat screen tv above fireplace

Hello, I'm considering getting a 42 inch flat screen tv which would be installed above my fireplace. The fireplace is not something we use often (or ever), so that is not really my concern. My concern is whether or not the wall above the fireplace is able to hold the television. A carpenter friend of mine said that generally speaking, the wall above a fireplace is not as sturdy as other walls in the home. We live in a 7 year old townhouse. The television I have in mind weighs 84 pounds. Does anyone have any thoughts or experience with this? I'd hate to install it and then find out the hard way that my friend was right.
 
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Old 12-23-07, 08:23 AM
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Flat screen mount

Hi Brian

As long as you lag bolt to the studs, and don't get one of those extendable mounts, you should be fine. The most important thing, is getting the lag bolts centered in the stud, and are the studs in the right location to center the TV above the fireplace. Don't buy a cheapie mount, expect to pay $65-75.

You may have to get a mount with 2 brackets that mount to the wall, and then a connecting bar that mounts to the TV. That will spread the load a bit.

Now, about those hookup wires......

Best in 2008
 
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Old 12-23-07, 08:59 AM
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Putting a flat screen above a fireplace is not the best idea.

Flat screens are best viewed at eye level while seating. No one wants to be looking up to watch TV.

Also, often time fireplaces will create small amounts of soot that escape from the face of the fireplace, you do not want this stuff near your TV.
 
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Old 12-23-07, 10:23 AM
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Flat screen or flat panel? There is a difference. Flat screen can be a CRT TV.
I presume flat panel. What is the weight of the TV?
 
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Old 12-24-07, 06:10 AM
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Originally Posted by brianmcgann View Post
A carpenter friend of mine said that generally speaking, the wall above a fireplace is not as sturdy as other walls in the home.
I've never known that to be true. Unless the builder really skimped to put the studs at 24" on center for non-load-bearing walls, the fireplace wall should have studs at 16" o.c. and be as strong as every other wall in the structure. Use a stud finder to be sure, but even at 24" o.c. you can mount 84 pounds on a bracket that spans two studs.

As HotinOKC said, though, it's best to place your TV at eye level when you're seated.
 
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Old 12-26-07, 11:10 PM
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My remodel contractor did not space the studs above my fireplace correctly, so I ended up adding extra studs & L-Brackets to boot.

Here are some photo's & commentary from my install

http://hangthatflatscreen.blogspot.com

-Lattice
 
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Old 12-28-07, 08:58 AM
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Also considering mounting a flat screen above the fireplace

we're considering putting a flatscreen above our fireplace as well. Looking up at it won't be much of a problem as there is a significant distance from the couch and the wall mount also has a tilt feature. But, before we take on this task we were just wondering everyone's opinion since we do enjoy using the fireplace during the winter months...any heat/soot issues? We've spoken to a number of people - contractors, architects - and they all give us a different answer. Any thoughts?
 
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Old 12-28-07, 02:13 PM
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Heat and soot (ashes, dust, cigarette smoke, etc) are enemies of electronic components. The TV probably has cooling vents at both the bottom and top of the back panel. It uses convection to draw in cool air at the bottom and release heated air at the top. This is exactly how the soot and heat from the firplace will travel.

Personally, I would find a different location.
 
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Old 01-06-08, 01:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Lattice View Post
My remodel contractor did not space the studs above my fireplace correctly, so I ended up adding extra studs & L-Brackets to boot. Here are some photo's & commentary from my install http://hangthatflatscreen.blogspot.com -Lattice
Looks like an excellent job at your place. You and your contractor do great design / install work. Way to go!!!!

Your pictures reminds me of my buddy and his large screen TV wall mount system. Like you, he installed a "dedicated" 14/2 using 15A breaker on the wall stud. Same as in your electrical outlet.

For his TV cabling, he installed a 1.5" PVC conduit going into a large 6"x 6" deep box. This conduit goes up into his room's suspended ceiling tiles. Where, its speaker and other wires fan outwards. When he wants to replace cabling (in 5+ years) or pull in more speaker cabling, he can do it - using this 1.5" PVC conduit. He also has a different 1.5" PVC conduit and large 6x6" deep box that allows wires to flow into the floor area. By removing basement ceiling ties, he re-routes these wires to under floor main floor room locations. Like the end tables on each side of his sofa. And, to bring cables to his VCR/DVD Players. This 1.5" PVC conduit with smooth corner angles seems to work for his needs.

Hope this helps others as well...

.
 
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Old 01-11-08, 12:42 PM
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Thanks Spike99, that PVC idea would have been perfect for my flat screen mount install. I'm going to be installing a DLP projector downstairs and will definitely be using that idea.

Thanks much.
 
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Old 01-12-08, 06:46 AM
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Another option is corrugated flexible PVC tubing, a.k.a. Smurf Tube.

PVC pipe can make for a tough time pulling new cables where there are several 90 degree bends. Smurf tube maintains a soft bend radius.
 

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Old 01-12-08, 09:27 PM
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I personally don't like tv's above the fireplace, but have done it. If you have a mantle between the tv and the firebox, that will help push heat and soot out and away from the tv. It needs to be low though, so you don't get a crick in your neck. If the front is masonry, you want to make sure it's real and not fake rock, as there may not be as much strength as you would think.
 
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Old 01-13-08, 03:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Integrator97 View Post
It needs to be low though, so you don't get a crick in your neck.
Around these parts a "crick" flows into a river.

I used a piece of paper & scotch tape to find the center of the viewing angle for my built-in TV before I cut the hole in the wall. I was suprised to find that even with the Barca-lounger-style sofa fully extended, the center-screen height was about 35 inches. Anything above that was uncomfortable.
 
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Old 01-13-08, 11:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Rick Johnston View Post
Around these parts a "crick" flows into a river.
That would be a creek around here.
 
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Old 07-30-09, 09:10 AM
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We have a gas fireplace, are there any precautions for mounting above that?
 
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Old 07-30-09, 10:28 AM
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you are most likely OK to hang

if the front of the fireplace is framed right, then it's not a problem hanging a flat screen, even a big one, i just hung a 400 lb 60 inch LG one over a fireplace ( that extends out ), soot is also not an issue, as the if you got a fireplace emitting soot, then you got issues with proper updraft, even with out doors in front of the box. heat might be the only factor if you burn wood, if you burn gas only, then heat will not be an issue since the gas logs do not even get the liner hot enough to be a factor for heat radiating outward to the walls, you will get some heat radiating from the front of the fireplace opening, but a mantle is usually set at code to the opening where it can safely be set and not combust, so anything set above that is usually safe.

as for the higher viewing angle, that is also personal preference. movie theaters are never set at eye level and most people do not have have issues with the higher viewing angles, the same goes true for home theater, so as long as you are not to close seating wise.
 
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Old 04-28-12, 11:25 AM
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What if Studs aren't centered above fireplace?

I am in an apartment so I will not be cutting drywall, etc. The studs above the fireplace are NOT centered.

My idea to solve this problem is listed below - I just don't know if it's safe or wise.

-Take a piece of wood (2x4 or other), and attach this to the studs
-Then attach the wall mount to the wood

THe TV is 40" and weighs 40 lbs approximately.

I don't want to screw it up, but a non-centered TV will bug me endlessly.
 
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Old 04-28-12, 12:15 PM
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Mount a piece of 3/4" plywood about the same size as your screen to the stud wall. Then attach the TV mount to the plywood. This can eliminate some of the problems with stud spacing and allow a lot of lags. Most swivel/extension mounts have two different bolt patterns depending on the TV to be mounted.

I mounted a 37" TV (only 40#) with an extension/swivel/tilt mount to a real (3-5/8" thick) brick fireplace front and it only took 3 - 3-1/2" bolts with plastic sleeves and did not need any plywood mounting surface. The mount was about $85 at Costco, but could also handle a 47" TV by using one of the extra mount configurations included. I put the mount centered above the opening and just closed off the fireplace opening and trimmed it out since a fireplace is like a window (an uninsulated hole in the wall).

Dick
 
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