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How To Repair A Broken TV Screen
Has your TV screen gone black and you’re not sure what to do? A broken or cracked TV screen doesn’t necessarily mean you need to buy a new television. In some instances, you could repair the broken TV screen yourself. However, you have come to the right place if you are looking for a guide on how to fix or repair a broken or cracked TV screen.
Before you attempt to fix a broken or cracked TV screen, it’s important to note that the cost of repairing your TV might be close to or higher than the cost of buying a new one. It also might not be possible to completely fix the screen, in which case you’ll still see a broken image on your TV.
With that said, read on for a few tips on how to repair a broken or cracked TV screen.
Cracked Screen and Scratches: At a Glance
Before making any repairs, you should check whether your warranty will cover the cost of having someone else fix it. This is particularly important if you purchased an extended warranty since you might be able to get a free repair.
Tiny, narrow hairline cracks called “spiderweb cracks” that don’t completely shatter the screen are often repairable, mainly because they typically indicate that the components haven’t been damaged.
On the other hand, large cracks that run from one side of the screen to the other are usually irreparable. This is because they typically mean that the LCD panel has been shattered and will need to be replaced, which is usually not worth the cost.
If you have a Plasma TV, it’s important to note that these screens can’t be repaired – you’ll need to replace the entire television if the screen is broken or cracked.
Common Types of Cracks on a TV Screen
Different types of cracks can cause different amounts of functional impact on your TV. However, note that in most cases, it’s not possible to completely repair a cracked screen – you’ll likely still see the crack even after making repairs.
Some of the most widespread cracks on a TV are:
Shallow hairline cracks
Horizontal or vertical lines
Let’s take a closer look at each type of crack.
Shallow Hairline Cracks
Shallow hairline cracks are thin lines that run across your screen, possibly interfering with your vision while watching TV. These cracks typically indicate that the glass screen has been shattered, but the LCD panel is still intact.
You can quickly repair a shallow hairline crack on the screen’s surface. Cracks that penetrate the inner surface of the screen cause issues. If so, you must replace the TV screen.
It’s possible that the tiny crack didn’t form as a result of an accident or mishap but rather formed on its own. This is often caused by the screen’s material expanding or contracting due to extreme changes in temperature.
In such case, see whether your warranty remains in effect and send the TV back for a free repair or replacement.
Spiderweb cracks are tiny screen cracks that emanate from a central point, creating a web-like pattern. These cracks typically result from accidentally hitting your screen or dropping your TV. Due to the fragile nature of the screen, it shatters like glass when cracked.
Depending on the severity of the spiderweb cracks, you might be able to repair them by using a special screen-repair kit.
However, if the spiderweb crack is on the interior part of the screen, it will be difficult to fix, and you might need to replace the screen.
Given the expensive nature of TV screens, it might be more cost-effective to replace your television entirely rather than replacing the broken screen.
Horizontal or Vertical Lines
If you see horizontal or vertical lines running through your screen, this means that the ribbon cable connecting the LCD panel to the driver board has become loose.
This can lead to an unpleasant viewing experience since the lines divide the screen in two, one of which is blacked out while the other displays the image.
If you have horizontal or vertical lines running through your screen, check the screen for scratches by rubbing your palm over it. However, if there are no scratches, the ribbon cable is probably loose and needs to be reconnected.
If the ribbon cable is broken, you’ll need to replace it. This is a delicate process that only an expert should handle.
Most people mistake dead pixels for cracks, but they’re not. A dead pixel occurs when your screen is fixated on a single color or when many bright colors are present.
To revive the dead pixel, get a damp cloth, wrap a pencil with the cloth, and gently press on the dead pixel for a few seconds. You can also try using a Q-tip if you don’t have a pencil.
Scratches on a television screen are usually superficial, meaning they can be removed without negatively impacting the set’s features and functions.
You can try to gently wipe away any small scratches with a clean, non-abrasive piece of cloth if they are minor. If there are any sharp edges or pieces of shattered glass on the scratch, be careful not to cut yourself.
For bigger scratches, you can try using a small amount of toothpaste (not gel) on a clean, non-abrasive cloth. Thoroughly rub the toothpaste in a round motion over the scratch. Rinse the area and then dry it off.
The following section will highlight some more tips on how you can repair your broken or cracked TV screen.
How to Fix a Broken TV Screen
While we talked about how a broken or cracked TV screen is unfixable in the majority of cases, there are a few cases where a broken screen can be fixed without having to replace the entire TV.
If a crack has not yet spread to the inside components of the TV, you can cover it using one of the following methods.
Isopropyl alcohol isn’t just for first-aid anymore, you can use it to temporarily fix a broken TV screen as well. The rubbing alcohol will help hold the shattered glass in place, preventing any further cracking.
You should use 12 parts water to 1 part alcohol to dilute the alcohol. Then, gently clean the scratch with a cotton cloth soaked in the diluted alcohol.
After letting the solution rest on the crack for a few minutes, use a different fiber cloth soaked in water to remove the alcohol. After doing this, the crack should be less visible.
Petroleum jelly is another household staple that can be used to fix a broken TV screen. Using the jelly, the broken glass will be held together to prevent it from spreading.
To repair a scratched surface, clean it off with a microfiber cloth, then fill in any visible cracks with petroleum jelly. After letting the jelly rest on the surface, wipe up any residual jelly using a clean cloth. That should eliminate the scratches.
Note that excessive use of petroleum jelly can cause the screen to become glossy, so use it sparingly.
Sounds crazy, right? But a pencil eraser can actually help fix a broken TV screen. Just like the other two methods, the pencil eraser will help to hold the broken glass together and prevent the crack from spreading.
Start with wiping the area down using a damp cloth, and then use an eraser to clear the cracks. To prevent further damage to the screen, make sure to be gentle when using the eraser.
Screen Repair Kit
You can purchase screen repair kits from most TV manufacturers to fix lines or cracks on your TV screen.
The kits include a solution or paste with a cloth and detailed instructions for doing the essential screen routine maintenance. Most TVs come with a one-time use kit, so if you have more than one broken screen, you’ll need to buy an additional kit.
Hire a Professional
If you have a broken or cracked TV screen and are not comfortable trying to fix it yourself, you can always hire a professional. Search for a tech repair company in your area that specializes in repairing broken TV screens.
Keep in mind that hiring a professional to fix your broken screen will likely be more expensive than buying a new TV. Unless you have an expensive, high-end TV, it’s usually not worth spending the money to repair a broken screen.
Is it expensive to repair my broken TV screen?
If you’re wondering how much it will cost to fix your broken TV screen, there are several factors to consider.
First, prices may differ depending on how big your TV screen is and if it can be set or has to be replaced. A 40″ LED TV screen, for example, may cost $200 to fix, while a 60″ LED TV screen of the same make and model could cost up to $400.
Second, the price may also differ depending on the damage’s severity. If only one pixel is broken, it may be cheaper to repair than if the entire screen is shattered.
A third factor that may affect the price is choosing whether to hire an expert or do it yourself. If you hire a professional, you can expect to pay anywhere from $75 to $200 per hour for labor, plus the cost of parts.
If you try to fix it yourself, you’ll need to factor in the cost of materials, which will vary depending on the method you use.
Finally, keep in mind that the price of repairing your broken TV screen may not be worth it in the long run. In many cases, it’s cheaper to just buy a new TV than it is to fix a broken or cracked one. So make sure to weigh your options carefully before making a decision.
No one likes a broken or cracked TV screen, but fortunately, you can fix it in multiple ways. Whether you use tape, petroleum jelly, or a screen repair kit, there’s a method out there that will work for you.