When you buy a new TV, it’s a good idea to do some cost-benefit analysis. As the old saying goes, you get what you pay for, so if you buy a cheaper TV, you can expect it to have a shorter life than some premium models. What about a Samsung TV? How long do those last?
A Samsung TV can last around 4 to 7 years with constant use, at the highest brightness, and being almost always on. If taken care of properly, it can last much longer.
Do all TV’s these days have the same usage life? How can you tell if your TV is dying? Can you stretch out the life of your TV? Does it matter what you use it for (video games or movies) to determine the lifespan? Let’s get into it.
What’s the average life span of a modern television set?
It mostly comes down to the type of set you have, rather than brand, that determines lifespan. Modern TVs, that is, LED’s and LCD’s last on average 7-8 years. Plasma TVs on the other hand are on the upper range of that number, having the highest life expectancy of modern television sets.
Here is where a brand can make a difference: big manufacturers like Samsung typically use higher quality components and parts to make their TVs, so with the right TLC your Samsung TV could well exceed those numbers.
TVs are roughly given an estimate of how long they will last, but these numbers are not indisputable. Some things can affect your TV life greatly, as we will get to down below.
Like most things in your life, your TV’s lifespan will depend on how much you take care of it. So what is happening if your TV keeps going on the fritz? And what can you do about it?
How can I know if my TV is dying?
There are several warning signs that you might need to get a new TV set. Sometimes you can take it to an electronic repair store and only fix what’s broken, but when you do that a couple of times and your screen is still acting wonky, then it may be that you need to buy a new one.
Things to look out for:
- Dead Pixels. These little black dots in your screen are the dead pixels that have fried out over time. They’re an easy fix.
- Color Distortion. When the colors are obviously off and no adjusting
- Bars and Lines. The running lines going up your screen, sometimes with large blocks of empty space.
- Image Retention. Also known as an image ‘burning’ into the screen. This happens when you pause an image for too long and it imprints.
- Fuzzy Screen. Make sure your cable or internet is connected properly because that can sometimes cause this. If everything is plugged in and your screen is still blurry, it’s an issue.
- Fading Screens. A screen sometimes fades all at once, or one patch at a time. It could be dim or distorted.
Before you just go out and buy a new set, especially if these things happen under warranty or within the warranty of your TV, make sure you check that first. Most Samsung TVs for instance, have a one-year warranty just in case it breaks when you first buy it.
Can you stretch out the life of your TV?
You can absolutely prolong the life of your TV if you take steps to keep it in good shape. Luckily there are some simple and straightforward steps.
- Turn off your TV. When you’re not using it, make sure your TV is off. The backlights on your TV are the first to go due to heat buildup. Some TVs have built-in timers to save power, so take advantage of them.
- Provide space for your TV. Keep your TV away from areas where it can be damaged by the sun or by rain; so keep it away from a window. Don’t keep it on or near other appliances that produce heat. Make sure there’s enough airflow for the TV to be well-ventilated, preventing overheating. A wall mount could work as well.
- Clean your TV. This seems like a no-brainer, but it’s a good habit to get into. Clean appliances last longer than ones caked with dust and debris. Use a microfiber cloth for the screen and compressed air for the more vulnerable parts. Stay away from chemicals, as these could cause further problems.
- Check the brightness. Higher brightness levels can burn your backlights more quickly, so be sure your brightness is where you need it to be.
- Use a power strip. Power surges could fry your TV, and a surge protector could save your TV from breaking.
If you do all the above, you can prolong the life of your TV by several years. Especially if you have a Samsung TV, or a set that was well-made and with decent components. But even if you have a cheaper brand TV set, doing these things can make all the difference in the world. Along with these steps, also consider:
- Don’t drop your TV. Keep it in a stable place.
- Don’t spill any liquids on your TV. This includes rain and chemical cleaners.
- Do not puncture or smash the front of your TV. If you have pets or children, keep the TV out of their reach for their safety and the longevity of your TV.
Can Video Games ruin my TV?
Modern TV sets don’t suffer many of the problems that older TV sets had. Video games used to harm television sets, burning their images into the screens. Luckily, modern HDTV and Plasms TVs don’t see this kind of problem. This follows true for LCD and LED screens as well. Your Samsung TV should not suffer any problems from hooking in game consoles.
This goes the same for any images used on modern TVs, whether it be from streaming, a manual DVD player, or any other hook in.
How often should I replace my TV?
Should you replace your TV on a regular interval of five to seven years? That completely depends on your personal choice and what your television needs are. Households used to only have one TV, but the modern American household can have several.
If your TV starts to fail and the cost to repair is more than the cost to replace, then shopping for a new TV might be the most fiscally responsible decision. As your television gets older and experiences use, it is more likely to break or fail short of expectations.
There’s a reason why the average consumer has been upgrading more often when it comes to their television sets than they used to: technological advancement.
Our TVs are getting more sophisticated by the year. TVs are getting bigger, better, and cheaper than ever before. As our TVs get better and cheaper, consumers are ditching their older sets for clearer pictures and better sounds on a much larger screen. There are also plug-in components to consider. When you get a new TV or even a new device, they might not be compatible. Modern soundbars, stereo systems, speakers, consoles, and streaming sticks like Google Chrome might not hook into an older TV, and a modern TV might not have plugs for your vintage game system.
Ultimately, that decision is yours to make. If you’re happy with your two-year-old TV and it does everything you need it to do, the choice is yours if you want to upgrade. There are no hard laws or regulations for what TV we can use in our homes.
Is it worth it to repair my TV?
If something happens to your TV and it isn’t covered by warranty, is it even worth it to repair your TV? With TVs getting cheaper by the year, what point is there to repair them?
It can be a very good idea to repair your TV! If the issue is small and easily repaired, you could save yourself hundreds of dollars. Cracked screens are the most often cited repair, and those are cheap in comparison to a whole new set.
If you have a top-of-the-line TV, it could be much cheaper to repair than to replace. Even the biggest screens can be an easier fix than shelling out a bunch of money for another one. Check your local electronic repair stations, they sometimes give quotes.
There’s also an ecological reason to repair your TVs, as repairing them saves them from a landfill and polluting the area with their internal metals.
How do I dispose of my TV?
Some cities and states in the US don’t even let you throw away your old TVs in the normal garbage because some metals in your TV can be toxic. Doing so can come with a fine or a hefty garbage fee. But what can you do if yours breaks, or you get a new one?
You have several options depending on where you live and what the local laws are.
If your TV still works and you simply wanted an upgrade, give away your old TV to a family member, friend, workmate, or schoolmate. There are also several charities and donation centers if you have no one who wants your TV. That way, you have your new TV and someone else has one that could last them for years to come!
If your city or town has a policy against throwing TVs into the landfill with everything else, search around for an e-recycling center or repair shop. They can take your old TV (and any other electronic device you don’t need) and recycle it, scrap it for parts for other repairs, or repurpose it for something else. Many repair shops will also outright tell you if a TV is worth repairing or not.
There are also big-named companies that can do the same thing, so check around for them as well. Even if your city’s dumping policies don’t include big electronics like TVs, you can be sure to find a final home for your old set with very little hassle.
Samsung TVs can last for upwards to 10 years if taken care of properly and nothing malfunctions. Keeping it in a safe place, keeping it clean, turning it off when not in use, and using surge protectors can really make a difference in the longevity of your TV.
Be sure that you are familiar with the type of TV you have (LCD, LED, Plasma), as this can also make a big difference in the lifespan of your TV.