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How to Know if Your LCD is Going Bad

Updated February 21, 2017

Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) monitors have become a blessing for home and office. The technology reduces the amount necessary desk space for such monitors, and also greatly reduces the amount of energy consumed. LCD displays have also made their way into mobile phones and portable media players. Symptoms of an LCD screen's end-of-life differ from the symptoms of a large CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) screen which was used in the past.

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  1. Turn off the LCD display, media player, or mobile phone. Wait at least 30 seconds and then turn the unit back on. Observe the amount of time it takes for the LCD screen to reach full brightness. If you notice it takes a considerably longer period of time to reach full brightness, or if the brightness gets more dim as time goes on, the backlight of the display may need replacement. Take your device to the nearest service centre and allow a technician to replace the lamp.

  2. Observe your screen with an all-white screen. Open any application that shows predominantly white on the screen. Scan each area of the screen closely with your eyes. Begin in the upper left-hand corner of the screen and move your eyes slowly to the right, ending in the upper right-hand corner. Continue down the screen, scanning with your eyes in a zigzag motion (left to right, right to left) as you move down the screen. Note any "dead pixels," which will appear dark on any white areas. Dead pixels are a sign that the LCD grid is reaching the end of its useful life. Dead pixels will appear as dark specks much the same on a mobile phone or portable music player. Some dead pixels can also appear as white specks on a dark background, and may even have some colour to them. These can appear in brand new equipment at times, so keep your receipt and return for another unit if you find any dead or "stuck" pixels.

  3. Seek technical assistance if you notice any blotches on the screen. This is a sign that the LCD screen has ruptured in the given area, which will require either a complete LCD grid replacement or, if lower in cost, the purchase of a new monitor or device.

  4. Tip

    Dead pixels and ruptured grids are expensive to have repaired, as they require an entirely new LCD grid. In such cases, it may be less expensive to purchase a new monitor. LCD back lights, however, can be replaced relatively easily, so you may want to consider repair over replacement if the lamp is growing dim. LCD television sets follow the same principles. The LCD display portion is the same technology as that found in LCD computer monitors, mobile phones and other devices, with the only differences being resolution. The symptoms of going bad will be identical.

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About the Author

Kurt Schanaman has had several editorials printed by the Star-Herald Newspaper publication in Western Nebraska. He attended Western Nebraska Community College.

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