Ryobi Tek4™ Stud Sensor Review

Tek4™ Stud Sensor

Ryobi Tek4 Stud SensorThis week we continue to review tools from Ryobi’s Tek4™ collection. They sent us the all new Tek4™ Stud Sensor, Model RP4050 to test and evaluate. I was eager to test this stud sensor because frankly most of them on the market are nearly useless (IMHO). So read on to learn my thoughts about this Tek4™ tool.

From Ryobi

RYOBI Introduces the Tek4™ Stud Sensor powered by 4V Lithium-ion battery technology. This sensor offers a number of advanced features such as: Accurate wall scanning for residential and commercial construction sites, detects both wood and metal studs, offers Live Wire detection, and multiple depth detection modes for top accuracy. This impact, dust and water resistant tool is built for Work. Weather. And Life. The Stud Sensor from Tek4 Innovation also features and easy to read LCD screen with backlight. The Stud Sensor is backed by Ryobi’s 2 year warranty.


  • Accurate wall scanner for residential and commercial construction
  • Detects wood and metal studs
  • Live wire detection
  • Easy to read LCD screen with backlight
  • Intuitive display
  • Multiple depth detection modes for increased accuracy.
  • Rugged design

Tek4™ Stud Sensor Review

Stud sensors are such a useful tool, when they work! Needless to say I was skeptical at first because I’ve had some really bad experiences with stud sensors that just don’t perform. Well I’m happy to say the folks at Ryobi gave me a pleasant surprise with the RP4050 Stud Sensor.

The RP4050 is very easy to use. First you set the desired wall thickness (1/2″, 1″ or 1-1/2″). Most of the time you’ll find yourself setting it at 1/2″ for common drywall. Then you hold the side on button on the wall until it calibrates and says ready on the LCD screen. Then simply move the stud finder across the wall until the LCD lights up as shown in the adjacent photo.

This stud sensor tells you when the edge of a stud is found. I tried is on several different walls with consistent, repeatable results. I even went down to the basement where we have some walls that are only finished on one side so I could confirm the exact location of studs.

In addition to locating studs the RP4050 also indicates the presence of live wires. To test this I used the sensor near several outlets and quickly confirmed the known location of live wires in our walls.

As you can see in the photo there is a “lightning bolt” on the left side of the screen along with an audible signal alerting the user to the presence of live wires. This is a great safety feature for anyone about to cut into a wall.

Overall Impression

The Ryobi Tek4™ Stud Sensor works very well and it’s extremely easy to use. The built-in live wire feature is a great safety option. Overall I’d highly recommend this stud sensor. The price (about $40) seems just a bit high to me but it also means you get another Tek4™ battery that can be used with your other Tek4™ tools. Honestly there’s really nothing I’d change about this tool.

If you’d like to buy one they are available at The Home Depot or you can buy one online at the following link:

About the author

Todd Fratzel

Todd Fratzel is the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of Tool Box Buzz, and the President of Front Steps Media, LLC, a web based media company focused on the Home Improvement and Construction Industry.He is also the Principal Engineer for United Construction Corp., located in Newport, NH. In his capacity at United he oversees the Residential and Commercial Building Division along with all Design-Build projects.He is also the editor of Home Construction & Improvement.

@tfratzelTodd Fratzel

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  1. azure639

    Will it find studs behind bathroom tile?

    1. Todd Fratzel

      Not really sure. I think if it’s just tile over drywall it probably will. If it’s tile over a mud job…I doubt it.

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