Top 10 Best Stud Finders 2018

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Model
Features
Fetanten TS005 Detector


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  • 4 Modes for versatile and precise application
  • Strong built-in sensor
  • Easy to read LCD display
  • Anti-slip design
Homder Stud Detector


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  • 3 functions
  • Can be used for various applications
  • Compact
  • Precise
  • Energy-efficient
Welquic Stud Finder


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  • 3 in 1 functionality - metal mode, stud mode, AC mode
  • Back-lit LCD display for easier reading
  • Portable
  • Visual and audio indicators
Senma Electronics Stud Finder


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  • Detects Metal, AC wiring and studs
  • Finds centre
  • Backlit LCD Screen
  • Audio indication
  • Low batter indication
sort
Echos 3-in-1 Stud Finder


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  • 3 in 1 functions
  • Backlit LCD screen
  • Ergonomic and lightweight design
  • Easy to calibrate and use

DIY is a great way of getting jobs done around the house, especially if you want to save money, and there are many tasks that can be completed easily by people who are competent with a decent set of tools. If you are keen on DIY you probably have your own kit. You most likely use a drill, perhaps a sander, an electric screwdriver and the usual culprits such as a hammer, level and other minor bits and pieces. This is the simple kit used by the DIY enthusiast, and there are many jobs that you can do with great effect.

Hanging cupboards and doors, fitting lights, touching up after the decorating, building furniture and more – all are jobs that can be done by you, with a little experience and the right tools. There are plenty of outdoor jobs you can take on too, and you may be surprised what you can achieve if you put your mind to it.

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There are certain cautions you need to take if you are to do your DIY jobs safely and effectively. A common error is, when drilling into a wall, you accidentally hit either a water pipe or an electrical cable. Both are troublesome, the latter potentially dangerous, and they can be avoided by using the piece of kit we are going to talk to you about today – the Stud Finder.

What is a stud finder, what can it do, and why do you need one? Before we give you the low-down on the top 10 best stud finders, let’s chat a bit more about these very useful devices.

Best Stud Finders

1: Fetanten TS005 Detector


A good choice for a first example, this is a very cheap yet capable hand-held stud detector that comes with all the features you could possibly want from a basic budget model. It’s simple in design, styled to fit in the hand neatly and with the control buttons in easily accessible positions, and is lightweight – a little over 250g – and compact. You get a nice clear LCD readout, and it comes with a sound alarm to tell you when it has detected what you are looking for.

This model comes with four functions: Deep mode, which will detect empty gaps or holes as large as 45mm deep; Stud mode, which looks for and finds the wooden beams inside the wall; Metal mode, which can find nails, screws and pipes within the wall up to a depth of 40mm, and AC mode, which will find any live electric cable up to 60mm deep. It cannot detect DC cables, and it is not for use on plaster walls. At the price, it’s worth a look.

Key Features
  • 4 x functions
  • Audible and visible indications
  • Cannot detect DC cables

2: Homder Stud Detector


This model is very similar to the above – in fact we are set to find a trend among these devices, as is the case with all items that perform a very specific purpose – and does the same job, although it does not offer the depth finding feature – it cannot tell you if there is gap there. It is a very brightly finished item so will not get lost among your tools, and comes with a nice clear and sensibly-sized LCD readout.

This device can be used with only three buttons, so if you are new to these machines it will not be a problem. You get an audible reaction and a readout on the screen when it detects what you are looking for. It can be set to detect live AC wires, pipes and metal, or wood, and does so up to sensible depths on the usual types of wall. It does the job, is easy to use and simple to handle, and is battery powered – you need to buy one – and comes at a good price.

Key Features
  • 3 x functions
  • LED readout
  • Beep notice

3: Welquic Stud Finder


For many people the primary use of a stud finder lies in making sure you are not about to drill into a water or gas pipe, or to get tangled up in electrical cables. You may be surprised how often this happens, even to professionals, when you come across pipes that you really didn’t expect to be there! This stud finder is absolutely typical of the breed, and offers the usual 3-in-1 detection package, and it’s also a small, light and easy to use device.

You can detect metal and live wires up to an impressive 76mm deep in the wall; that’s somewhat more than some of the others we have listed. It can detect wood stud up to 38mm in the wall, which is also a decent depth. It has a nice clear readout, you get loud beep indication, and it has a soft grip and an auto-shut off after three minutes so as not to waste your battery. It’s a very similar price to those above, so not expensive at all.

Key Features
  • 3 x functions
  • LED readout
  • Beep notice

4: Senma Electronics Stud Finder


There is some merit in having brightly coloured tools. It may sound pointless, but think about it: search for that hammer in your toolbox and it’s among a whole load of other tools that are the same colour – you can’t immediately see it! This stud finder is, very helpfully, bright yellow, so you’re never going to lose it in your crowd of tools. It has the usual LCD display for giving you the visual detection information, and an audible beep that is suitably loud.

This is the standard three function type – for detecting live wires, metal pipes and wood or metal studs – and is easy to use and battery powered. It has a calibration mode so you press the button for a couple of seconds and it resets. It is nicely made and light, and comes with simple operations. You need to supply the batteries – but that’s pretty much the same for all of these – and it’s very similarly priced to the rest of the above.

Key Features
  • LCD screen
  • Easy to use
  • Three functions

5: Echos 3-in-1 Stud Finder


This is yet another model that does what it says on the box; it’s a 3-in-1 stud finder device that looks like the rest, and is similarly priced. . It has the usual LCD display for giving you the visual detection information, and an audible beep that is suitably loud. This one is not brightly coloured by instead a quite subdued grey and black, but it’s light, compact and easy to use.

This device can be used with only three buttons, so if you are new to these machines it will not be a problem. You get an audible reaction and a readout on the screen when it detects what you are looking for. It can be set to detect live AC wires, pipes and metal, or wood, and does so up to sensible depths on the usual types of wall. It does the job, is easy to use and simple to handle, and is battery powered – you need to buy one – and comes at a good price.

Key Features
  • Auto shut-off
  • Beep notice
  • 3 x functions

6: Vivreal Stud Finder


If this one has anything that makes it stand out, it’s that it does not look quite like the others. It’s not wildly different, yet it has its own sense of style – it’s also very workmanlike and quite neat. You get a digital LCD display for all your visual notifications, plus an audible beep that tells you when you have found what you are searching for. You also have an easy to use three way button on the front for making your selection.

This model is suitably light and very compact and comes with all three functions – live wires, metal pipes, wood and metal studs can all be detected – and is also fitted with an automatic calibration feature so you don’t need to mess around pressing buttons in the first instance. It also has an audible warning when your battery is low – no battery is supplied so you need to factor that into the price – and is a similar price to all of those above so worth checking out.

Key Features
  • 3 x functions
  • Stylish design
  • Digital LCD display
  • Audible warnings

7: Folai Stud Scanner


This is another model that, while standard in type, shows that the maker has recognised how adding bright colour can make tools easier to find when they are lost among others. It’s a neat design and one that is very cheap indeed. This stud finder is, very helpfully, bright yellow, so you’re never going to lose it in your crowd of tools. It has the usual LCD display for giving you the visual detection information, and an audible beep that is suitably loud.

This is the standard three function type – for detecting live wires, metal pipes and wood or metal studs – and is easy to use and battery powered. It has a calibration mode so you press the button for a couple of seconds and it resets. It is nicely made and light, and comes with simple operations. You need to supply the batteries – but that’s pretty much the same for all of these – and it’s very similarly priced to the rest of the above.

Key Features
  • LCD screen
  • Three functions
  • Easy to use

8: CH Hanson 04030 Stud Finder


We wondered whether we’d get through our list of ten without finding one that had no differences to the others in terms of what it can do; well, we didn’t because this little tool is very different to the rest! It’s a very basic stud finder; for that, read a small, non-powered device that is intended for find screws or nails – or other metal objects – within a wall. As such, it’s handy to have in your pocket, but not as versatile as any of the above.

How does it work? It contains powerful rare-earth magnets, which are designed to detect easily the metal objects within the wall. It’s very simple to use, there is no readout you simply feel the pull of the magnet – and it comes with a built in spirit level bubble. It’s very cheap, it’s useful and it’s small, but would we buy it over those above? You have to want one of these to do so we think!

Key Features
  • Magnet powered
  • No batteries required
  • Finds metal in walls

9: Tacklife DMS03 Cable Detector


A brand with a reputation for quality products that are designed for accuracy and reliability, Tacklife has a wide range of products of this type, and this stud detector is a good example of what to expect. For a start, it comes with a neat little carry pouch which is a nice touch, and it offers all the functions you could expect from a quality stud detecting device – including AC cables, all pipes and metal objects, and wooden and metal studs in the wall.

It’s easy to use with a clear and concise display and an audible signal, can find both ferrous and non-ferrous metals at decent depths, is adept at searching for AC cables and is very simple to set up and go. It’s also very light and designed to be comfortable when held in the hand, and we like it a lot. The only thing we will say about this one is that it is the most expensive on the list, but when you compare the price to others it’s perhaps worth the little extra for what is clearly quality gear.

Key Features
  • Carry pouch
  • Display and sound

10: Intey Stud Finder


There is some merit in having brightly coloured tools. It may sound pointless, but think about it: search for that hammer in your toolbox and it’s among a whole load of other tools that are the same colour – you can’t immediately see it! This stud finder is, very helpfully, bright yellow, so you’re never going to lose it in your crowd of tools. It has the usual LCD display for giving you the visual detection information, and an audible beep that is suitably loud.

This model is suitably light and very compact and comes with all three functions – live wires, metal pipes, wood and metal studs can all be detected – and is also fitted with an automatic calibration feature so you don’t need to mess around pressing buttons in the first instance. It also has an audible warning when your battery is low – no battery is supplied so you need to factor that into the price – and is a similar price to all of those above so worth checking out.

Key Features
  • LCD screen
  • Easy to use
  • HDMI cable and spirit level
  • Three functions

That’s our selection of the ten best stud finders on the market today and, as all but one are very similar in terms of function, size and price, it’s going to be a hard decision to recommend one to you. We’ll give it a go, but before we do, let’s have a reminder of some of the features you need to look for when choosing your stud detector.

How It Works

What does a stud finder do? Well, they come in a variety of different forms but, basically, they are used to find out what is behind an internal wall before you go ahead and drill it, put a screw in, or nail something to it. They do so by way of electrical trickery – that’s the best way to put it – that allows them to see through the stud wall, and to detect what is behind it.

These devices are used by professionals who want to ensure an efficient job is done. They are very simple to use, however, so are also popular with home DIY users who need to avoid hitting pipes or cables, or material that cannot be drilled or screwed into. Some stud finders will find electrical and water pipes, others will also find spaces behind the wall and wooden sections, and the more functions you have, the better!

These are not expensive devices – you will hardly break the bank buying even the very best of those we have listed – and really will make a much-used and welcome addition to your tool kit, so we recommend you check them out carefully. It’s better to be safe than sorry, and by using the best stud finder as instructed, you can avoid expensive plumbing or electrical repairs that come about via those common mistakes!

Important Features

What do you need to look for when choosing the best stud finder? These are devices that are designed for a very specific and simple purpose, so really you are going to be driven by their ability to discover what you are looking for, quality and price. Here’s a few things to consider:

Functions – all of the above, bar one, offer you the functions to find live AC wires, metal pipes, and metal and wood studs in the walls. One also offers you a depth finder, which can tell you where there are holes or cavities in the wall, a useful function if you are hanging a cupboard, for example.

Depth – what we mean by this is how far into the wall your stud detector can ‘see’; there are some wide variations among those on our list, so it is worth checking out in case you need one with added depth capability.

Audio and Visual – each of the nine standard models featured offers both an audible beep when it finds the detected item, and a visual display that is clear and easy to read.

Ease of Use – the nine featured are so similar that each is very easy to use.

That’s about it really, so you can see that not only do we have a difficult choice, but you will when you come to buy one! Let’s see if we can pick one or two that make sense.

Let’s Wrap It Up!

Ten stud detectors to choose from – and all, but one, so similar! It’s a very difficult choice, so let’s start with that unique model, the Hanson magnetic device at number 8. It’s handy, it’s small, and it will find metal objects in your walls easily and effectively, but it is not entirely accurate and is perhaps best kept for occasional use – it’s cheap, though, so not bad for having in your pocket.

So, back the electric models, is there a stand-out? To be honest, if you are looking for a stud detector to find metal, wood studs, pipes and electric cables, any one of the nine remaining will do the job, yet we can recommend you spend the little extra and buy the Tacklife model, simply because it is a quality item and is not expensive.

Our other choice would be the first on the list, from Fetanten, which also offers a gap-detection setting. If you are on a budget, you have a choice of several that won’t cost you much more than a tenner, so the choice really is yours.

Have another look and get yourself a stud detector – even if you use it only occasionally, for a very small outlay you can protect yourself against that accidental hole in an essential water pipe! We hope we have helped you choose the best stud finder.