What is a black spot on a LCD TV and how to remove them?

Updated July 19, 2017

LCD televisions offer superior picture clarity in comparison to older cathode ray tube (CRT) sets. Their ability to display higher resolutions are defined by an increased number of pixels for every inch of screen space and this makes images sharper and text is easier to read. Unfortunately, black spots caused by dead or stuck pixels compromise viewing enjoyment, especially when they appear in the centre of the screen. Dead pixels remove easily and preventative measures arrest problems in the future.

Causes of black spots

LCD televisions use liquid crystal display technology and backlighting to display images on the screen. The amount of liquid filtered to an individual pixel determines the colour or shade when light passes through. Black spots arise when an insufficient amount of liquid reaches the pixel or the liquid within an individual pixel sticks in place.

Locating black spots

Although LCD television owner refer to dead pixels as called black spots, they can actually display other colours based on the amount of liquid stored inside them and the amount of backlight penetrating through. Create a DVD using still, single-colour images from a computer and burn them onto a disc. Play the disc on a DVD player, remembering to pause on each individual colour, and highlight dead pixels with the corner of a repositionable office note pointing towards them.

Removing black spots

Take a pencil or stylus and wrap a small amount of masking tape around one end to remove the sharpness of the tip. Working one dead pixel at a time, place the tip of the pencil or stylus in a central position and tap the opposite end lightly. Avoid tapping too hard as the pencil or stylus could still penetrate the protective screen. Continue tapping until the liquid within each pixel disperses. Repeat the process for every dead pixel before watching your television on a normal channel to ensure correct liquid distribution.

Preventative measures

Regular cleaning can help reduce the risk of dead pixels and black spots. Purchase a specialist cleaner from an audio/video store or make your own solution using 1 part of isopropyl alcohol to 3 parts of water, mixing them together thoroughly in a spray bottle. Turn off the LCD television and leave to cool before spraying a light application of cleaning solution onto a soft microfiber cloth. Wipe over the entire screen using light pressure to manipulate the pixels. Dry thoroughly with clean cloth and leave to dry for five minutes to ensure a streak-free finish.

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About the Author

Based in the United Kingdom, Paul Miceli has been a professional writer since 2006. He has been published online by Ideate Media and Promiga and has a proven track record of producing informational articles and sales copy. Miceli is educated to U.K. "A-level" standard, continues to work as a paint sprayer and has more than 25 years of automotive body repair experience.