The Best Stud Finders

Whether you want to securely hang a new flat screen TV or attach a cabinet to the wall, a stud finder is a must-have tool for homeowners doing any sort of renovation. Finding the best stud finder for your home means reading reviews, studying product features, and diving into the ins and outs of available styles and tool configurations. With the right stud finder, this loathsome chore can become a quick, over-and-done with task.

We reviewed dozens of stud finders to identify the best of the best, based on Amazon reviews, how well they performed in tests, cost, and other considerations. We narrowed our search down to 5 of the top-rated stud finders homeowners can purchase to ensure they accurately detect behind-the-wall features.

Top Pick
Franklin Sensors ProSensor 710
Built-in bubble level, ruler, and 13 sensors for accurate readings.

We’ve identified Franklin Sensors ProSensor 710 as the best stud finder out there. With a built-in bubble level, ruler, and 13 sensors, this stud finder is one that will keep your entire home in tip-top shape. These benefits allow you to quickly and accurately find studs and other behind-the-wall features with ease.

The 5 Top-Rated Stud Finders

Editor's PicksBrandRating
Top PickFranklin Sensors ProSensor 7104.5
Runner UpTavool 4-in-1 Electronic Stud Sensor4.5
Best for BudgetFOLAI 4-in-1 Stud Finder4.3
Best Magnetic Stud FinderCH Hanson 03040 Magnetic Stud Finder4.6
Best Multi-Function Stud FinderHomder Stud Finder4.8

*Ratings are from Amazon at the time of publication and can change

Our Top Pick: Franklin Sensors ProSensor 710

The Franklin Sensors ProSensor 710 took the top spot on our list of the best stud finders, and features a built-in bubble level, ruler, and 13 sensors to provide the most accurate reading possible. It uses bright LED lights to indicate the position of hidden objects, making it quick and easy for homeowners to visualize items behind their walls. It can be used to identify the position of multiple studs at the same time, and can be used to detect both wood and metal studs.

Those who purchased and reviewed this stud finder appreciated that it was easy to use and read, and found it to be incredibly accurate for detecting studs. Even though it carries a higher upfront cost than a lot of stud finders, most reviewers felt it was well worth the money to have something that was so accurate and reliable.

With a price tag of about $50, it doesn’t come cheap, but the quality craftsmanship associated with the brand, as well as the ease of setup and use more than justifies that price. It has a rating of 4.5 on Amazon with more than 3,700 people reviewing it, which we think goes a long way in convincing homeowners to make the investment.

Franklin Sensors ProSensor 710 Key Features: 

  • Always active deep scanning of 1.5 inches
  • Can detect objects of multiple sizes
  • Displays stud center and edges simultaneously

Our Runner Up Pick: Tavool 4-in-1 Electronic Stud Sensor

Runner Up
Tavool 4-in-1 Electronic Stud Sensor
Includes four different scanning modes and large LCD display.

The Tavool 4-in-1 Electronic Stud Sensor took the runner-up spot on our list of the best stud finders, and features four different scanning modes and a large, easy-to-read LCD display. Stud mode detects wooden beams and joists in drywall up to 1.2 inches deep, while the metal mode can detect pipe, rebar, aluminum, and copper up to 1.57 inches. The deep scanning mode detects wood and metal parts located up to 1.77 inches, and there is an AC scan mode that detects 85-240 volt AC current for voltage and live electrical lines up to 2.36 inches deep.

Those who purchased and reviewed this stud finder appreciated that it was intuitive to use and easy to read. People commented that it was larger than a lot of stud finders, but felt this would make it easier to find. Users said it was easy to calibrate, and liked being able to detect both the edge and center of their studs with this tool.

At a cost of around $26, it doesn’t come cheap, but the quality craftsmanship associated with the brand, as well as the ease of setup and use more than justifies that price. It has a rating of 4.5 on Amazon with more than 4,700 people reviewing it, which we think goes a long way in convincing homeowners to make the investment.

Tavool 4-in-1 Electronic Stud Sensor Key Features: 

  • Suitable for use by professionals and DIY enthusiasts
  • Ergonomic grip for user comfort
  • Sound warning when an object is detected

Best Budget Pick: FOLAI 4-in-1 Stud Finder

Best for Budget
FOLAI 4-in-1 Stud Finder
Advanced sensor technology for professionals or DIY enthusiasts.

The FOLAI 4-in-1 Stud Finder is an excellent choice for those looking for a stud finder that won’t break the bank. It boasts a 4-in-1 design that is suitable for use finding metal pipes, fire lines, studs, wooden frames, steel bars, and supporting beams hidden behind walls, floors, and ceilings. Automatic calibration ensures always accurate results, while the bright, LCD screen makes it easy to read and determine the exact placement of your stud.

Those who purchased and reviewed this stud finder appreciated that it was easy to hold and felt that it offered good value for the money. While some reviewers found it very accurate, there were some who had the unit beeping when there was no stud to be found. People also commented that they liked that it auto-calibrated itself, and had multiple depth settings.

With a cost of approximately $18, this stud finder is a solid choice for those looking for a stud finder option on a budget. It has a rating of 4.3 on Amazon with more than 300 people reviewing it, which we think goes a long way in convincing homeowners that this budget-friendly pick is just as good at locating studs as its more expensive counterparts.

FOLAI 4-in-1 Stud Finder Key Features: 

  • Battery operated for ease of use (battery included)
  • Ergonomic grip for user comfort
  • Audible detection alarm

Best Magnetic Stud Finder: CH Hanson 03040 Magnetic Stud Finder

Best Magnetic Stud Finder
CH Hanson 03040 Magnetic Stud Finder
A budget-friendly option with a compact and simple design.

The CH Hanson 03040 Magnetic Stud Finder is an excellent choice for those looking for a magnetic stud finder. It boasts a compact design that easily fits in any pocket or tool belt, and the powerful, rare earth magnets allow for hands-free use for added convenience when detecting screws and steel studs. The rotating vial makes it easy to detect level and plumb, and the soft, comfort grip outer edge makes for easy grabbing.

Those who purchased and reviewed this stud finder appreciated that it was durable and easy to read. People liked that it doesn’t result in false positives, and found it helpful for detecting a number of different metals. Reviewers mentioned that the plumb-bob and leveler were handy, and found this stud finder easy to use overall.

With a price tag of about $7, it’s a very affordable option, and the quality craftsmanship associated with the brand, as well as the ease of setup and use more than justifies that price. It has a rating of 4.6 on Amazon with more than 12,000 people reviewing it, which we think goes a long way in convincing homeowners to make the investment.

CH Hanson 03040 Magnetic Stud Finder Key Features: 

  • Available in single or multi-packs
  • No batteries required
  • Accuracy of +/-0.5 inches

Best Multi-Function Stud Finder: Homder Stud Finder

Best Multi-Function Stud Finder
Homder Stud Finder
Offers 5 detection modes to meet all the needs of home wall DIY projects.

The Homder Stud Finder is a great option for those looking for a multi-function stud finder, as it offers a choice of five detection modes to meet all the needs of home wall DIY projects. Scanning modes include 1/2 inch stud scan (up to 13mm deep), 1 inch stud scan (up to 25mm deep), 1.5 inch stud scan (up to 38mm deep), metal scan for up to 2.36 inch (60 mm) deep, and AC scan up for up to 2 inches (51mm) deep. It is suitable for use finding wood beams, studs, and joists, as well as metal screws, studs, and pipes. It is also useful for detecting AC wires and deeply embedded objects behind floors, ceilings, and walls.

Those who purchased and reviewed this stud finder appreciated that it was easy to use and read, and felt that it offered good value for the price. People liked the ability to adjust for different depths, and were impressed that it worked on plaster walls. While some users found it was very intuitive to use, most said by reading and following the instructions, they didn’t have any problems.

At a cost of around $23, it doesn’t come cheap, but the quality craftsmanship associated with the brand, as well as the ease of setup and use more than justifies that price. It has a rating of 4.8 on Amazon with more than 400 people reviewing it, which we think goes a long way in convincing homeowners to make the investment.

Homder Stud Finder Key Features:

  • Large, easy-to-read display
  • Audible detection alarm
  • Automatic calibration for increased accuracy

Who Should Buy a Stud Finder

A stud finder is an ideal choice for those who are doing any sort of renovation on their home where they will be drilling into the wall. Because a stud finder helps to detect studs and other objects behind the wall, it is an invaluable tool for those who want to ensure that they are either drilling into a secure spot, or missing any potential hazards such as pipes and wires.

Whether you want to securely hang a new flat screen TV or painting in the living room, or attach cabinets in your laundry space, a stud finder is a must-have tool for homeowners doing any sort of renovation, potentially saving time, money, and frustration by helping to avoid drilling in the wrong spot.

Top Pick
Franklin Sensors ProSensor 710
Built-in bubble level, ruler, and 13 sensors for accurate readings

Important Features to Consider

Not all stud finders are created equal. A stud finder should be accurate and easy to use. Here’s what to consider when evaluating the options in search of the best stud finder for your home renovation needs:

  • Sensor. Arguably the most important consideration when it comes to choosing the best stud finder for your needs is what type of sensor it has. For most people, a wood stud finder is adequate for detecting most studs in the home, but others will want the ability to detect metal as well for metal studs and plumbing. A stud finder that detects AC current can help to ensure that you aren’t drilling into live wires.
  • Accuracy. The next most important factor for picking a stud finder is how accurate it is. There is no sense picking up a stud finder that isn’t going to accurately tell you where items are behind the wall.
  • Sensor size. Keep in mind the size of the sensor when choosing a stud finder, as that will impact how easy it is to find studs over a large area of space, and whether or not you can find multiple studs at once.
  • Center targeting capabilities. A feature of more advanced electronic stud finders, center targeting capabilities allow the user to determine the center point of the stud through scanning, rather than by manual calculations.
  • Visual display. For electronic stud finders, a large, easy-to-read LCD display makes it simple to tell when you’ve hit a stud or other item. Some others use lights to indicate when you’re over a stud.
  • Alert system. While magnetic stud finders aren’t likely to provide any special alert system when you are on a stud aside from sticking in place, there are models that provide an audible noise when you’ve reached a stud, in addition to those with visual display alerts.
  • Grip. A quality stud finder should be lightweight and easy to hold in your hand. Some include graspable material around the outside of the unit for added comfort and security.
  • Price point. Finally, consider how much you are willing to spend on a stud finder. Stud finders vary in price from $10-$60 or more.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a stud finder and how does it work?

A stud finder is a handheld tool that allows the operator to detect a stud behind drywall. There are also models that can help detect metal and live wires behind drywall and various other types of floors, ceilings, or walls. A stud finder works in one of two ways, either magnetically or electronically. Magnetic stud finders use magnets in order to pinpoint the location of screws and/or nails within a wood stud, or to detect metal studs themselves. Electronic stud finders work by using sensors which detect changes in the permittivity of the wall, such as when placed over a stud. When the presence of a stud in the wall is detected, it is displayed on an LCD screen, via lights, or with an audible alert.

Do you need a stud finder to mount a TV?

A stud finder is an essential tool for mounting a TV safely and securely. Many televisions are heavy, and simply attaching them to drywall is not going to provide enough stability to hold it in place. By using a stud finder to detect where a stud is, you can ensure that you are installing the mounting hardware for your TV into a secure place. Drilling fasteners into a stud will help hold them more securely than simply drilling into drywall or plaster.

How do you find the center of a stud?

Finding the center of a stud will vary depending on the stud finder you’re using, so always read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for use. That said, the general procedure for finding a stud involves a few steps. First, power on your stud finder and choose the applicable scanning mode. Next, place the device flat against the wall and calibrate. After calibrating the stud finder, press and hold the button (if applicable), while moving the stud finder along the wall to scan. When a stud is detected, it will beep or display a warning on the screen, letting you know you’ve hit a stud. Mark the edges on both sides of the stud. Once you’ve found the edges, you can then mark in the middle in order to find the center of the stud.

Can you use a magnet to find a stud?

You can use a magnet to find a stud, but it will need to be a powerful enough magnet in order to detect through any wall covering such as drywall. Magnetic stud finders are a better choice for this application, and are a very accurate and affordable option.

Other Stud Finders We Reviewed

Top Pick
Franklin Sensors ProSensor 710
Built-in bubble level, ruler, and 13 sensors for accurate readings

We looked at 20 other stud finders. Even though they didn’t make our 5 best stud finders list, they’re the best of the rest and each is still a great option for your home renovation needs. The information you’ll need to compare each one is included with the listing.

Digital Stud Finders

Walabot DIY Plus

Walabot DIY Plus

This digital stud finder boasts a cutting-edge technology that allows you to see clearly inside the wall, and is suitable for detecting wooden studs, metal studs, pipes, and wires.

Key Features: 

  • Detects up to 4 inches deep
  • Works on drywall, solid concrete, and plaster and lath
  • Teflon strips provide a smoother scanning experience

Cost: $60

Zircon StudSensor e50 

Zircon StudSensor e50 

This digital stud finder boasts the ability to detect the edges of wood and metal studs, and alerts you to any live AC wires within the wall for a safer mounting experience.

Key Features: 

  • Ergonomic grip design
  • Detects up to 1.5 inches deep
  • Battery operated (battery not included)

Cost: $25

Bosch Digital Multi-Scanner GMS120

Bosch Digital Multi-Scanner GMS120

This digital stud finder boasts a multi-mode laser detection system that is suitable for use finding wood studs, metal objects, and live wiring.

Key Features: 

  • Detects up to 4.75 inches deep
  • Automatic calibration for increased precision
  • Illuminated graphical LCD display

Cost: $54

Stud Finder By Classware

Stud Finder By Classware

This digital stud finder is suitable for use detecting studs, ceiling joints, and live AC wires and other metals with very high precision.

Key Features: 

  • High definition LCD screen
  • Battery operated (battery not included)
  • Lightweight, ergonomic design

Cost: $10

Walabot DIY

Walabot DIY

This digital stud finder boasts a cutting-edge technology that allows you to see clearly inside your walls, and detects both wood and metal studs, PVC and metal pipes, as well as electric cables and wires.

Key Features: 

  • Suitable for use with concrete and drywall
  • Compatible with Android devices
  • Detects up to 4 inches deep

Cost: $50

Meterk Stud Finder Sensor

Meterk Stud Finder Sensor

This digital stud finder boasts a selection of five different scanning modes, including wood, deep wood, metal, and copper, AC wiring, as well as the ability to detect moisture within the wall.

Key Features: 

  • Convenient mute setting
  • Large LCD display
  • Includes a 2-year warranty

Cost: $30

INTEY Stud Detector

INTEY Stud Detector

This digital stud finder boasts a selection of three scanning modes for various depths up to 1.5 inches, and is suitable for detecting wood, metal, pipes, and AC wiring.

Key Features: 

  • LCD backlight
  • Anti-slip grip
  • Battery operated (battery not included)

Cost: $16

FRANKLIN SENSORS Prosensor T6 Stud Finder 

FRANKLIN SENSORS Prosensor T6 Stud Finder 

This digital stud finder boasts six precision sensors which quickly and easily detect and display stud center and edges simultaneously, with no special calibration required.

Key Features: 

  • Always on deep sensing technology
  • Detects both wood and metal
  • Durable, lightweight design

Cost: $20

Preciva Stud Finder

Preciva Stud Finder

This digital stud finder boasts a selection of four different scanning modes, including stud, deep mode, metal scan, and AC wire scan.

Key Features: 

  • Backlit LCD display
  • Battery operated (battery included)
  • Automatic calibration

Cost: $19

Multi-Function Stud Finders

VIVREAL 4-in-1 Stud Finder

VIVREAL 4-in-1 Stud Finder

This multi-function stud finder boasts a selection of four scanning modes, including stud, deep, metal, and AC scan. It can detect up to 2 inches deep.

Key Features: 

  • Backlit LCD display
  • Beep signal alert
  • Automatic calibration

Cost: $26

ROYADVE PLS-431 Multifunction Stud Finder 

ROYADVE PLS-431 Multifunction Stud Finder 

This multi-function stud finder boasts an ergonomic design, and the ability to detect wood studs, metal objects such as rebar, studs and steel or copper pipes, as well as live wires.

Key Features: 

  • Large LCD digital display
  • Detects up to 2 inches deep
  • Includes a 1-year warranty

Cost: $23

Tavool 5-in-1 Stud Finder

Tavool 5-in-1 Stud Finder

This multi-function stud finder boasts upgraded internal sensors for improved accuracy, and allows you to detect the edges and center of a stud.

Key Features: 

  • Choice of five scanning modes detect up to 60mm depth
  • Wire sensing indicator
  • LCD display and sound warning

Cost: $24

Xmifer Stud Finder Sensor

Xmifer Stud Finder Sensor

This multi-function stud finder boasts a 5-in-1 electronic design, that quickly locates metal, wires, studs, wood, steel, and other objects behind ceilings and walls.

Key Features: 

  • Detects up to 60mm depth
  • Automatic calibration
  • 24/hour customer support for 1 year

Cost: $26

Veken Stud Finder Wall Scanner

Veken Stud Finder Wall Scanner

This multi-function stud finder boasts upgraded sensors for improved accuracy, and a choice of five different scan modes for materials of all kinds. A choice of four measurement modes detect things like temperature and humidity.

Key Features: 

  • Illuminated LCD display
  • Ergonomic anti-slip handle
  • Battery operated (battery included)

Cost: $23

TACKLIFE 5-in-1 Multi-Functional Stud Finder

TACKLIFE 5-in-1 Multi-Functional Stud Finder

This multi-function stud finder boasts the ability to detect wood studs up to 0.75 inch (20mm) and 1.5 inch (38mm) deep, as well as ferrous metals up to 4.75 inch (120mm) and non-ferrous metals up to 3.125 inch (80mm) deep. It also detects live AC wires up to 2 inch (50mm) deep.

Key Features: 

  • LCD display, lights, and sound warnings
  • Automatic calibration
  • Battery and storage bag included

Cost: $32

Magnetic Stud Finders

The StudBuddy Plus Magnetic Stud Finder and Level

The StudBuddy Plus Magnetic Stud Finder and Level

This magnetic stud finder boasts a simple and easy-to-use design that is suitable for use on drywall, as well as lath and plaster walls.

Key Features: 

  • Finds wood and metal studs
  • Built-in plumb and horizontal levels
  • Made in the USA

Cost: $15

MagnetPal Stud Finder

MagnetPal Stud Finder

This magnetic stud finder offers a simple yet accurate way to quickly and easily find your studs. It is suitable for use on plaster, drywall/sheetrock, wood, tile, or plastic.

Key Features: 

  • Compact design
  • Professional quality
  • Can lift up to 12 pounds of metal

Cost: $13

Studpop Magnetic Stud Finder

Studpop Magnetic Stud Finder

This magnetic stud finder boasts an innovative and unique design that features an indicator which moves and clicks when a metal fastener is found.

Key Features: 

  • Detects metal fasteners up to 0.5 inch deep
  • Suitable with plaster, wood lath, sheetrock, and metal studs
  • No batteries or calibration required

Cost: $11

Stanley 47-400 Magnetic Stud Finder

Stanley 47-400 Magnetic Stud Finder

This magnetic stud finder boasts a notched base that makes it convenient to mark the wall once a stud has been located.

Key Features: 

  • Lightweight, compact design
  • Includes a limited lifetime warranty
  • No batteries or calibration required

Cost: $5

The StudBuddy Magnetic Stud Finder

The StudBuddy Magnetic Stud Finder

This magnetic stud finder boasts a simple and easy to use design that can accurately find wood and metal studs behind drywall.

Key Features: 

  • Available in single or multi-packs
  • No batteries or calibration required
  • Made in the USA

Cost: $10

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