Watch Out For Dead Pixels!

  1. A few years ago I purchased a nice new laptop and excitedly hurried home to set it up, delete the junk and trial software from the hard drive and generally give it a good tune up. When I booted for the first time, much to my dismay there appeared a dead pixel. It stood out like redeye on a photograph. The good news is if this ever happens to you, box up the laptop, and return it to the store where you purchased it, and they will usually exchange it for another just like it (except for dead pixels of course). Most stores have a refund/exchange policy of anywhere from two weeks to thirty days. Before you buy, ask the salesperson to clarify their store policy.

    Unfortunately, if you have dead pixels show up after the exchange time frame, the manufacturer’s warranty will be your only option for remedy, unless you purchase an extended protection plan. See my blog on “Understanding Extended Protection Plans” for more on this topic. The standard factory warranty usually covers dead LCD pixels only after a predetermined number have appeared. If you have fewer than their warranty specifies, then you are on your own.

    If you find yourself with one or very few dead pixels, there is something you can try. Take a small clean soft cloth (like flannel), and after draping it over your fingertip, begin to gently massage the dead pixel. Some have seen dead pixels disappear while massaging. I have not personally witnessed this, but I will try it myself if I ever see another dead pixel on my screen.

    Ever since my dead pixel experience, whenever I buy a new laptop, or a desktop LCD, I power it up to quickly inspect for little problems before I leave the store. If you see something obviously wrong before you leave, it can save you a lot of time and hassle, particularly if you live twenty miles or more from the store.

    Have you had any dead pixels on your LCD? How did you deal with them? What have your warranty experiences been with dead pixels?
    Last edit by Joe V on Jan 15, '15
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