How to Mount a Projector to the Ceiling: A Quick Guide

Tags: Projector Basics
Mount a Projector


When it comes to "how to mount a ceiling projector," the key is finding just the right spot on the ceiling. Once you do, and install the projector, you will be able to do terrific presentations with a minimum of fuss.

Is it Safe to Mount a Projector on the Ceiling? 

projector on the ceiling

The short answer is, "Yes." The longer answer is, "You have to mount them correctly." You can't just mount them anywhere on the ceiling. Projectors are heavy, and unless they're anchored to something firm, they will fall either immediately or somewhat later at a most inopportune time. The kind of mount you use depends on the size of the projector. 

Some are small enough just to screw into an existing floor joist. Others are big and heavy enough to require a mount above the ceiling, which allows for a greater distribution of weight on multiple anchor points.

Where to Mount Projector on the Ceiling 

The simplest method is to hang the projector below the ceiling. Usually, such mounts are for lighter, smaller projectors. Despite the simplicity of this type of mount, you'll still need the mounting kit that comes with the projector. 

For larger and heavier projectors, you'll need to carve out a piece of the ceiling to place the mount on four corners on either joists or other boards that are attached to the top of the joists. The reason for this is that they're heavy enough to pull even the largest screws out of the joists. The fanciest and most complicated version is the projector lift, which disappears into the ceiling when not in use. They're usually powered by 12-volt motors.

How To Mount A Projector To The Ceiling 

The first step is to determine how far from the screen you need the projector to be so that the images are in proportion and not out of focus. Assuming you want a 16:9 aspect ratio, proceed as follows with how to mount the ceiling projector:  Measure the diagonal size of your screen. projector will be in proportion and in focus on the screen.

  1.   Measure the diagonal size of your screen. 
  2.   Then, measure the "throw distance" as indicated in your WeWatch projector's user manual. That's the spot where the images from the projector will be in proportion and in focus on the screen.
  3.   Be sure to use the measurements recommended for ceiling mounts because the angles differ from desk mounts.
  4.   Mark the spot on the floor at the throw distance.
  5.   Then, use a plumb line to the ceiling directly over the mark you made on the floor. That is the spot where the projector will go.
  6.   Determine the projector's vertical offset. Refer to the owner's manual to find the percentage. This will determine how low the projector has to be to achieve the desired results. If you have very tall ceilings, mount the projector at the end of a long rod.
  7.   Attach the mount to the projector by flipping it upside down. Remember, ceiling projectors are designed to be mounted upside down.
  8.   Follow the instructions in the user manual to mount the projector. Remember to base the type of installation on the size and weight of the projector.
  9.   Follow the instructions in the user's manual for wiring the projector. If you want hidden wires, then you will have to install an outlet above the ceiling into which you will plug the power cable. Be sure to follow all applicable electrical codes when doing this.
  10.   You will also need to install an HDMI cable to have sound on your screen when the projector is running. Depending on how far the throw distance is, and how far off the ground your projector is, you might need additional HDMI accessories. These could include anything from additional wires to an HDMI signal extender. If you're skilled, then you can run these additional wires through the ceiling. If not, you can get several decorative "wire hiders" for the ceiling, walls, and baseboards.
  11.   Now that the projector is mounted, and the screen is placed, the next step in "how to install a ceiling mount projector" is to align the images on the screen. Your projector will have adjustments for the lens. Move the lens in and out and up and down until the image is centered on your screen. WeWatch projectors also have a nifty feature called "horizontal lens shift." This will allow you to bypass fans or other obstructions between your projector and your home theater screen. You can still create a rectangular image even if you have to offset the projector somewhat.

Types of Projector Ceiling Mounts  

  • Above Ceiling Projector Mounts

As stated, these are for heavy projectors that need extra support. You might need to install extra beams to your existing joists.

  • Below Ceiling Projector Mounts

You just screw these into the joists through the ceiling. They're just right for smaller and lighter projectors.

  • Projector Lifts

These will let you hide your projector away in the ceiling when it's not in use. They're motorized and usually require strong mounts for both the projector and the accompanying motor.

Can You Mount a Ceiling Projector Without Drilling? 

ceiling projector

Even though the adhesive pads provide strong "stickum" for mounting a projector, they're only for the smallest and lightest of all projectors. Velcro is another method, but again, it's only for small, light projectors. 

Some projectors come with hooks that you use to attach them. There are even portable, removable mounts that will work with certain ceilings. Be sure to read the user manual for your WeWatch projector to see its weight and suitability for alternative mounting methods.


A ceiling projector is a great way to improve your home theater. You won't have to worry about people "blocking the view" because the projector is high in the air. With a little care and attention to detail, you'll be able to install such a projector fairly quickly and then get right to watching your favorite movies. Get a WeWatch projector today!

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