Understanding LCD Display Dead Pixels

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Understanding LCD Display Dead Pixels

A liquid crystal display (LCD) is a thin, electronic flat panel used to display information and images. It includes monitors for computers, televisions, instrument panels, and other devices ranging from aircraft cockpit displays, to every-day consumer devices such as video players, gaming devices, clocks, watches, calculators, and telephones. LCDs are simply everywhere now.

Its major features and benefits are: lightweight construction (compared to Plasma displays); portability (in the case of smaller displays); the ability to be produced in much larger screen sizes than were practical for older Tube (CRT) displays; and perhaps most important, its much lower power consumption.

Technically, an LCD display is an “electronically-modulated optical device” made up of any number of tiny pixels filled with liquid crystals and arrayed in front of a light source (backlight) or reflector to produce images in color. The earliest discoveries leading to the development of LCD technology date from 1888. Today, tube CRT displays are almost a thing of the past!


Unfortunately, from time to time, a new LCD TV or Monitor will have a problem pixel. This is where the physical crystal actually is stuck or frozen in place. However, don’t panic, since these can frequently be fixed.

There are three basic types of problem pixels:

  • a hot pixel (always on, usually white)
  • a dead pixel (always off, black)
  • a stuck pixel (one or more sub-pixels (red, blue or green) are always on or always off)

To solve a problem pixel, it is recommended to let the display fully warm up (leave on for at least a full day) – this alone can fix many problems, as the display expands due to warming and can free the pixel. Always try this before calling for help. Next, call the manufacturer’s technical support for other techniques that they might recommend – each manufacturer may have different solutions for their products. There are also other techniques that you might try, but always be careful not to damage your display, as this might void your warranty.