Diagnosing Plasma TV Problems

If your plasma TV problems are interrupting your regular viewing, it's time to dig up your user manual. Many people pride themselves on not opening a user manual, but if you're having plasma TV problems, the user manual is the perfect place to start diagnosing your issue. Most manufacturers list common issues in their user manuals, along with easy fixes. If you can't find your specific problem in the plasma TV manual, contact your manufacturer for help. In the event of a known issue, technicians can help you diagnose the problem over the phone and suggest appropriate courses of action. People often spend countless hours trying to avoid consulting the user manual or calling the manufacturer, when a few minutes with either of these options can help diagnose or even fix common plasma TV problems.

Some of the problems below happen with many plasma TV sets, so check if any of these problems apply to you:

My plasma TV has no picture, and lines along the top or bottom.
When you run into lines appearing along the top or bottom of your plasma screen, and the television won't display a picture, it's typically because the y-sustain board or the z-sustain board have failed. In the event of a y-sus or z-sus failure, technicians replace both boards simultaneously because there's no test to determine whether the y-sus or z-sus has failed.

My plasma TV just won't turn on.
If your plasma TV won't turn on, check to make sure all of the plugs are securely seated. Try plugging your plasma TV into a different power source just to see if it powers up in a different outlet. If your plasma TV still doesn't turn on when you try plugging it into different outlets, you could be looking at an internal power supply problem or failure of another part. Plasma TVs contain self-diagnostic programs that turn the TV off if it encounters a problem that could cause a critical failure.

In either event, you'll need to have a technician run tests on your TV set. If it's a power supply issue, and you have a reasonable degree of technical competence, you can order a replacement board online and perform the work yourself. If it's a deeper plasma TV problem, a technician may have to perform the repair, or it might just be time to replace your plasma TV.

Fixing a plasma TV problem with red, green or blue pixels.
Occasionally, some of the plasma TV pixels get "stuck" in a single color position, either red, green or blue. Many home users who aren't afraid to tinker with their electronics fix these "stuck" pixels by adjusting the voltage on the plasma screen's vscan setting. To adjust the voltage, you must remove the back panel of your plasma screen and look for a controller for vscan, typically designed for adjustment with a Philips screwdriver. Adjust this setting until the "stuck" pixels function normally. Beware of over-adjusting, as you can cause long-term issues with your screen.

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