Top Stud Finders Reviewed

stud finder reviewsOne of the more frustrating tasks when redecorating or doing minor remodeling is finding where the studs are located behind a wall.

It would be nice if everyone who built a house always used 16″ on center for spacing, but the reality is that not everyone does. Which means that if you want to hang a picture or a shelf, or mount that new flat screen TV securely, then you need to know exactly where the studs are in your wall.

Tapping on the wall with your knuckle and listening for the change of pitch is not an accurate way to locate a two-by-four behind sheetrock. What you really need is a stud finder.

How A Stud Finder Works

There are two basic ways that stud finders use to locate studs behind a wall:

  • Electronic – This type of stud finder detects changes in the density of the material. Since wooden studs are denser than drywall they pick up on this change and locate the stud.
    Most units don’t detect beyond 3/4 of an inch, and sometimes other things like conduit or pipes behind the wall can give a false positive.
  • Magnetic – These units don’t actually detect the wooden studs, but rather utilize magnets to locate screws or nails that attach the wall material to the wood.

Best Stud Finders For The Money

Here are the top selling stud finders:

1. Franklin Sensors FS710PROProSensor 710+

Franklin Sensors FS710PROProSensor 710+ Professional Stud Finder with Built-in Bubble Level & Ruler,Yellow
  • Prosensor 710+ professional stud finder with built-in bubble level and ruler
  • Small
  • Yellow

2. Precision Sensors ProFinder 5000+

Precision Sensors ProFinder 5000+ Deep Scanning Stud Finder
  • Deep Sensing Technology- The Profinder 5000+ Has More Sensor Pad Area So That You Get A Deeper Scan
  • One-Step Operation- Just Press Button: When Placed On The Wall, The ProFinder 5000+'s LED Lights Instantly Indicate The Location Of Studs
  • 13 Sensors- The ProFinder 5000+ Has 13 Individule Sensors Compared To 1 In Conventional Sensors. Each Sensor Provides An Individual Scan So Every Stud Is Correctly Identified.
  • High Accuracy- By Using Multiple Sensors, The ProFinder 5000+ Gives You Accurate Readings Every Time. Finding The Center Of The Stud Is Quick And Easy.
  • Built In Spirit Level and Ruler Help with Level Line Marking On Walls.


BLACK+DECKER Line Laser, Auto-leveling with Stud Sensor (BDL190S),Black/Orange
  • Two tools in one--an auto-leveling laser level and a stud sensor
  • Detects wood, metal, studs and live A/C wires
  • Patented auto-leveling technology
  • Easy to read LCD display
  • 2-year limited warranty

4. Zircon MultiScanner i520-FFP Center Finding Stud Finder

Zircon MultiScanner i520- Center Finding Stud Finder with Metal and Live AC Wire Detection
  • Zircon's MS i520 is a multi-surface scanner with 4 modes that detect studs, metal and live AC wiring to help you easily find studs and avoid hazards
  • Both StudScan and DeepScan modes locate the edges, center and direction of wood or metal studs; Metal Scan mode finds both non-ferrous metal (such as copper pipe) and ferrous metal (such as rebar); AC Scan finds and traces live, unshielded electrical AC wires
  • WireWarning Detection indicates the presence of live, unshielded electrical AC wiring while scanning in StudScan, DeepScan, and Metal Scan modes
  • ACT (Auto Correcting Technology) automatically corrects common user errors, such as when scanning begins over a stud, while the Patented SpotLite Pointing System clearly indicates the target location
  • One fully charged 9V battery, not included, is required for the multi-surface scanner to run at optimal performance

5. Zircon StudSensor e50 Electronic Wall Scanner/Edge Finding Stud Finder

Zircon StudSensor e50 Electronic Wall Scanner / Edge Finding Stud Finder / Live AC WireWarning Detection
2,610 Reviews
Zircon StudSensor e50 Electronic Wall Scanner / Edge Finding Stud Finder / Live AC WireWarning Detection
  • The Zircon SS e50 electronic stud scanner detects the edges of wood and metal studs and alerts you of live AC wires helping you easily find studs and avoid hazards while mounting a TV, hanging cabinets, installing garage shelving and more
  • StudScan mode locates the edges of wood or metal studs up to 0.75 inches (19 mm) deep while DeepScan mode locates targets up to 1.5 inches (38 mm) deep
  • WireWarning Detection indicates the presence of live, unshielded electrical AC wiring while scanning in StudScan and DeepScan modes.Operating Temperature:20° to 105°F (-7° to 41°C)
  • Patented "Over the Stud" Indicator and SpotLite Pointing System ensure the e50 provides trustworthy results while the ergonomic grip design allows for comfortable use regardless of hand size
  • One fully charged 9V battery, not included, is required for the stud scanner to run at optimal performance

6. CH Hanson 03040 Magnetic Stud Finder

CH Hanson 03040 Magnetic Stud Finder
  • Small and compact, easily fits in pocket
  • Powerful magnets allows hands free use
  • 2 way level for ease of marking
  • No batteries required. Scan Depth: 1 inch
  • Soft grip for easy grabbing and gentle touch

7. Stud Finder By Classware

Stud Finder By Classware | Wireless Metal Detector And AC Live Wire Multi-Scanner | Multifunctional Wall Scanning Device With LCD Screen | High Precision, Long-Lasting And Lightweight Design
  • SCAN YOUR HOUSE WALLS WITH EASE: Do you want to find all of the wires and studs that are hidden behind the walls of your house? Don’t call a professional electrician and waste a fortune! You can now do this yourself with the help of the Classware stud finder. This multi-scanner can detect studs, ceiling joints, hot AC wires and other metals with very high precision. The procedure is easy, fast and even fun! Try it out and see for yourself!
  • YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE A PROFESSIONAL: This small scanning device may be technologically advanced, however, it is very easy to use. Once the stud finder detects a metal, it will emit a beeping sound to notify you. At the same time, the stud material detected will be displayed on the high definition LCD screen. The metal detector has been tested multiple times, so you can be 100% sure that it works. For your convenience, Classware has added a detailed instruction manual to the package.
  • POWERFUL AND LONG LASTING BATTERY: Nobody likes tugging and tangled wires. That’s why this wireless metal detector is the best choice! You are only going to need a 9V battery (sold separately) in order to activate the stud finder. Classware has made sure that this metal detecting device does not consume too much energy, so you will not have to replace the powerful battery often. So start scanning the walls and ceiling of your house and don’t worry about the battery.
  • PRACTICAL SIZE AND SMART DESIGN: In order to scan your walls and ceilings with the handheld stud finder, you need to hold and move your arm for a long time. Here at Calssware we wanted to make things a bit easier for you, that’s why we made sure that the stud finder is very lightweight! At the same time, the metal detector is ergonomically designed, so you will have the most comfortable and secure grip, without straining your hand and arm.
  • YOUR SATISFACTION IS GUARANTEED: Classware has designed the most practical and the best working stud finder. In fact, we’re so confident about our metal detector that we have backed it up with a 30-day satisfaction guarantee.

8. Multi-Function Wall Stud Sensor Detector

How To Use A Stud Finder

While the process may differ slightly from one model to the next, these are the general steps to using a stud finder:

  1. Turn on the unit and select the scanning mode.
  2. Hold the stud finder flat against the wall. While keeping the device still, press and hold the button to calibrate the unit. This typically takes only a second or two. Once calibration has finished most stud finders will make a beep and clear the display.
  3. Hold the button, and slowly move the unit along the wall you want to scan.
  4. When a stud is located the unit will beep continuously and also indicate a “hit” on the display.

If you have never used a stud finder before, here is a great YouTube video that walks you through the entire process from start to finish:

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