Best stud finders

(Image credit: Zircon)

As the name goes, stud finders help us locate studs, wires, or pipes behind a wall. We could make lots of jokes about finding studs, but there’s nothing funny about driving a nail straight through drywall and missing. If you’re planning to hang pictures or tackle home improvement jobs, a stud finder is a priceless addition to your tool collection. Here are some of the best stud finders we’ve found to help you get the job done.

Staff pick

(Image credit: Amazon)

Tavool stud finder

Accurate to a tee

Tavool’s stud finder uses advanced sensor technology and is the most accurate stud finder you can get. Not only does this stud finder locate wooden studs, but it can also help you pinpoint or avoid metals and AC wires. It even has a deep scan function for thicker walls. A brightly lit LCD screen features the stud location and guides you in the right direction. The device has a comfy push-button design and an audible alarm that gets louder the closer you get to the stud. This is a great tool that makes it easy to hang pictures, install TV mounts, and tackle other DIY home improvement projects.

Pocket size

(Image credit: Amazon)

CH Hanson 03040 magnetic stud finder

No batteries, just powerful magnets to get the job done

This deceptively simple device has no batteries or wires. Instead, it uses super strong magnets to find the nails used to install the studs and joists in your walls. Simply slide the stud finder over the wall, and it sticks to the spot where the nail is, so you can tell precisely where the stud is located. It has a built-in level for added convenience and is one of the cheapest options you can buy.

No calibration procedure

(Image credit: Franklin Sensors)

Franklin ProSensor stud finder

Fastest and most accurate stud finder

The Franklin ProSensor is fitted with a whopping 13 sensors to help you locate studs and other objects in an instant. Coupling that with the one-operation button (no prior calibration needed) qualifies it as the fastest, easiest to use, and most accurate stud finder on the market. Once you locate the stud, the LED light comes on, clearly indicating the edges and center of the stud. Also, the stud finder includes a bubble level and an integrated ruler to help you position all your fixtures.

Best for DIY projects

(Image credit: Amazon)

VIVREAL stud finder wall scanner

Easy to use with professional quality results

Four modes make this scanner and stud finder a versatile tool that’s easy enough for even beginners to use. Push-button calibration helps to ensure you find whatever you’re looking for, from wires to wooden studs to metal, every time. The LCD screen provides a visual display of the location of the stud or pipe, and the device lets out an audible alarm that gets louder the closer you get. It’s not a complicated or fancy stud finder, but it does the job well and makes it easier for you to tackle your home decor or renovation projects.


(Image credit: Black & Decker )

Black & Decker Bullseye level and stud finder

Two tools in one unit

If you keep hanging pictures only to find out they do not align, this tool is for you. Not only does the Bullseye help locate metal studs, wooden studs, AC wires, metal, and more, it also helps keep your project level. No more crooked shelves or wonky pictures. Just use the stud finder to locate studs, then employ the laser level to ensure nails or screws are in just the right place for a neat and level finished project.

Center finder

(Image credit: Amazon)

Zircon A200 Pro stud finder

Ergonomic rubber grip for precision

The Zircon does not just signal where the stud is located, but it also accurately finds the center, edge, and direction of the stud. Equipped with a three-mode switch, you can easily scan for metal, wood, and wires behind walls. The stud finder also allows you to scan both shallow or deep fixed studs, and locates ferrous and non-ferrous metals. Lastly, the backlit display makes it easier to scan in poorly lit areas.

See through walls

Anything that makes your DIY job easier and faster is a must-have. Whether you’re hanging a television or delving into a DIY home renovation project, a stud finder is invaluable. Our favorite pick, the Tavool Stud Finder, has all the bells and whistles of a reliable stud finder, taking the guesswork out of all home DIYs. 

If you prefer one that works beyond finding studs, the Black & Decker Bullseye Level and Stud Finder can't be beaten. It will help you locate the studs and align your fixture. (No more crooked shelves or slanting portraits.) It makes the job easier with an LCD screen and a simple mode of operation.