How to Use a Craftsman Stud Finder

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Trying to find a wall stud to hang shelves from can be a frustrating experience. Just knocking on the wall isn't good enough and you can spend hours punching holes in drywall without ever finding a solid piece of wood. Worse still, you could hit a wire or conduit. A Craftsman stud finder eliminates the guessing, giving you a simple tool to locate studs, conduit or wires. Anyone can learn how to use one in about 5 minutes.

Things You'll Need

  • Phillips head screwdriver
  • Batteries
  • Craftsman stud finder
  • Pencil
  • Turn your Craftsman stud finder face down and open the battery compartment. On some models this may require a small Phillips head screwdriver or a dime. On others you will see a series of grooves in the cover to show you where to press down with your finger while sliding the compartment open. Install the appropriate battery for your model.

  • Turn on the stud finder. Some models must be placed flush against the wall before you can turn them on. If you turn your Craftsman stud finder on and it does not flash a sequence of lights or emit a series of short beeps, turn it off and place it against a wall before turning it back on. Once the stud finder is on and calibrated, choose the the item you are trying to find: metal, wood or electrical source.

  • Place the stud finder against the wall. Slowly slide it horizontally along the wall. As you get closer to a stud (or metal or electric. depending on how you set the stud finder) the finder will emit a series of lights or short beeps. When all of the lights are lit and/or a solid tone is emitted from the stud finder stop moving it. You have found the beginning edge of the metal, wood or an electrical source.

  • Use a pencil to mark that point on the wall. Some Craftsman models have a precast hole to press the point of the pencil through. Some have a printed arrow on the casing to indicate where you should mark. A few have a button you press that drives a small, sharp point into the wall.

  • Move the stud finder again, in the same direction, until the solid tone or line of lights ends. Stop moving the stud finder. You have reached the end of the stud, metal or electrical source. Mark the wall again with the pencil. Continue moving and marking the beginning and ends of the studs--until you have found enough studs for your purposes.

Tips & Warnings

  • Draw lines between the two pencil marks indicating the beginning and end of each stud.
  • Make sure the Craftsman stud finder you buy is adequate for the thickness of wall you need to "see" through. Only certain models can read through a thick wall.

References

  • personal expertise
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