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Stud finders help you securely fasten cabinets and more to walls

If you've ever had to deal with a costly and time-draining drywall repair because you didn't bother to find a wall stud when hanging a heavy picture or attaching a cabinet, you know why stud finders are so important. Drywall simply can't handle the weight a stud can. Need to be sure that the family heirloom mirror or photo of your great- grandfather won't fall and end up damaged? Don't want to waste time and money patching drywall? Find your studs and stick to them.

Start you stud finder by looking for a stud away from windows, corners and doors. There is a network of studs and supports around such features, which can give misleading readings. Scope out where the electrical outlets are. Usually, they are attached to one side of a stud. About an inch to one side of the outlet, there should be a stud. Starting with the studs you know can help you find the pattern of studs within your wall.

Have a slightly tougher project to tackle than drywall and wood? You may appreciate the Craftsman Wall Scanner with CenterVision. It will help you find the center of not only wood but also metal studs and joists. What's more, it'll help locate hot AC voltage and trace hot wiring. That's important if you're tearing down a wall or partial wall and need to know where NOT to cut. It scans down 1.5 inches through wood and 3 inches deep when in metal mode as you search for pipe and rebar. It has an easy-to-read LCD display with on-screen graphics and audio signals that indicate the edges and centers of the studs and more. The SpotLight Pointing System shines a light to indicate the stud's center. There are other features, too. Keep in mind that sometimes you could get a false reading. The stud finder could "read" a plumping pipe as a stud, for example. So, before you get out your hammer and nails to hang something, mark that spot with a pencil and do a quick verification. Look for other studs near to that pencil mark. As a general rule of thumb, once you find a stud, there should be one about 16 to 24 inches to the left and right of it. If you find another stud 16 to 24 inches from that pencil mark, you're good to go.

Stud finders are relatively maintenance-free. They are battery operated, so before you get started you will have to make sure you have spare batteries on hand in case you need them. Also, make sure you wipe off the back of the stud finder so that nothing interferes with the reading. Once you find a stud, you might need some other tools to get the job done. Tools often used in conjunction with stud finders are plumb bobs, tape measures and other measuring tools. Sears knows you have a list of home projects to tackle, so we carry a number of tools and materials to help you get those jobs done quickly and easily. Turn to us to make sure your tools will keep you going for years to come. You'll always find a number of quality brands from which to choose.

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