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Can an HDTV be fixed at home?

Discussion in 'Electronic Repair' started by M, Oct 23, 2005.

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  1. M

    M Guest

    I think I'll buy a (plasma) HDTV soon.

    I have fixed my 20-year old Panasonic several times over its lifetime
    capacitors, etc.that I've learned about here), but will I be able to fix an

    I'm competant with scopes, DVMs, soldering and the like but if new TVs are
    made like the computers I work on, the repair philosophy is "replace the
    and my experience is not valuable then.

    What do shops do now? Do they just replace the defective board like a
    motherboard or troubleshoot the problem to the part? Are the devices
    mounted that prohibits their replacement or can devices be easily replaced?

    I typically don't take the "extended warranties" but in this case, is it
    worth it?

    Finally, do you think I would be able to buy service info like I got for my

    It's a different (service) world these days.

  2. Guest

    Yes it is probably worth while to buy the extended warranty, plus you
    want to make sure you homeowners insurance covers accidental damage to
    the unit.

    The units are board level repair plus some adjustments. Manufactures
    typically will only sell the boards to authorized servicers. Some use
    special computer interfaces and software to perform adjustments.
    Schematics are typically block diagrams with test points, sometimes a
    power supply schematic is provided.

    Some of the circuitry is now etched right onto the plasma panel and if
    there is a problem with a row driver, the unit is pretty much not cost
    effective to repair as the whole panel would need replaced.

    There are several things you can do that will improve the quality life
    of your unit.
    1. Keep the unit on good clean stable power. No el-cheapo UPS power.
    A properly installed whole house surge protection and filter or one
    just on the circuit at the main circuit breaker box. Proper grounding
    off all outlets and equipment is always important.
    2. Keep it cool. They generate a lot of heat and the cooling vents
    must be kept clear and the unit kept at normal room temperature.
    3. No graphics or static images. Screen burn can happen very quickly
    on a plasma monitor due to the way they excite the phosphor.
  3. Jerry G.

    Jerry G. Guest

    Because of the type of technology employed, you will not be able to do
    much in the way of repairs. These sets are serviced mainly at the board
    level only. The proper setup is required for many of the service
    adjustments. Service manuals are mainly block diagrams.

    I would strongly suggest a service contract for this type of set. If
    there are problems after the warrenty runs out, it can be very
    expensive to service.

    Jerry G.
  4. RonKZ650

    RonKZ650 Guest

    No support for HDTV. No service manuals, all special order. No parts,
    all special order. Wonderful new technolology, isn't it? A month to
    order the manual, another month to order any part. Gotta love it, great
    new shit here. Shit being the key word.
  5. RonKZ650

    RonKZ650 Guest

    Just to clarify on HDTV. Replace the entire board? Either not available
    or $1000. Replace the individual IC or any other part? 1 month special
    order. Not fixed? well reorder another part and wait another month.
    This is by far the greatest thing that's ever been introdused to the
    general public ever. Gotta love this crap, Nope. Being in the repair
    business, I'll have to say HDTV is the end of the road here.
  6. True with some, not true with others. More sets are becoming board level
    repairable only to a greater degree and may have no support, but others do.

    The OP should ask a specific question on a specific product and someone can
    give a meaningful answer. Generalizing gets results like the post above.

    Sorry you are so bitter about the business, RonKZ650, but there are
    opportunities out there if you are willing to adapt to the market...

  7. Bob Urz

    Bob Urz Guest

    I know where he is coming from. Look at the influx of no name
    Chinese OEM'ed LCD Plasma TV's now. You think you got a chance in
    hell of ever getting parts for those? YOU might get lucky on a few,
    But for the most part there un fixable. And even the RPTV. WHat will
    the bulb supply be in 5 or 10 years? How much if available at all?
    The future will tell how long the optical engines will last. Those
    little DMD mirrors are only rated for so many operations. And the
    dye color filters in front of LCD's can fade and wear out too.
    For the most part, the optical engines are depot repair.

    The gravy years of fixing VCR's is over. Sure, there are still some
    fixable items, but its getting less and less. The biggest growth
    industry will be the disposal or CRT based displays after flat panels
    take over and the US HDTV transition takes place in 2009 (?).

    Hell, i tried to fix some factory ford radios from 2003 last month.
    Think i could get parts? Had to buy Ebay cores to fix them.
    Scavengers are going to be the successes of the future.
    That's if you got the space and the patience.

  8. Andy Cuffe

    Andy Cuffe Guest

    I don't have much experience with plasmas, but for other types of
    HDTVs a lot of those same old problems still apply. I still see a lot
    of sets with things like bad soldering, broken coax connectors and
    power supply problems. In my experience, those hard to find,
    impossible to solder large ICs rarely fail. When they do, it's
    usually the result of a lighting hit, or botched repair attempt. I've
    observed a lot of the poorly skilled people resort to board swapping
    when it wasn't at all necessary. These people don't last long because
    there isn't much money in board swapping.

    The lack of schematics would make me avoid a plasma if I was
    interested in repairing it myself. CRT HDTVs are pretty conventional
    apart from the metal box that contains all the digital processing.
    Andy Cuffe

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