How to Fix a Stuck Pixel on an LCD Monitor

Five Methods:Determining the ProblemPressure MethodHeat MethodSoftware MethodHardware Method

Little blemishes on your computer screen might be driving you crazy! If your LCD screen has a point on the screen that is "stuck" (either it's always bright or always dark), it is potentially possible to fix it on your own. Start at Step 1 to DIY fix your own LCD monitor's stuck pixel

Method 1
Determining the Problem

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    Figure out if the pixel is stuck or dead. A stuck pixel usually shows a color. A dead pixel is solid white (for TN panels) or solid black. Try to determine whether the pixel is merely stuck, or if it's completely dead.
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    Send the screen back to the manufacturer (optional). If the pixel is dead, your best bet is to cash in on your screen's warranty and send it back to the manufacturer.
    • If the warranty on the screen has expired, you can attempt the following methods. Be aware, though, that they're meant primarily to remedy stuck pixels.

Method 2
Pressure Method

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    Turn on the computer and LCD screen.
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    Display a black image, which will show the stuck pixel very clearly against the background. It is very important that you are showing a black image and not just a blank signal, as you need the backlighting of the LCD to be illuminating the back of the panel.
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    Find a narrow object with a blunt, narrow end. A Sharpie marker with the cap on, an extremely dull pencil, a plastic stylus, or the end of a makeup brush would all work for this.
    • Before you proceed further read the warnings at the end of this article. Physically rubbing your monitor might actually make things worse.
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    Use the rounded end of the object to gently tap the stuck pixel. Don't tap hard to start with, just enough to see a quick white glow under the point of contact. If you didn't see a white glow, then you didn't tap hard enough, so use just slightly more pressure this time.
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    Tap harder. Increase the pressure on the taps gradually for 5-10 taps until the pixel rights itself.
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    Apply pressure instead. If your tapping hasn't yielded any results, grab a damp (not wet) washcloth or paper towel. Fold the fabric so that you don't accidentally tear it, and hold it over the stuck pixel, and apply gentle but consistent pressure with the same object you used for tapping.
    • Try to apply pressure only to the stuck pixel and not the surrounding area.
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    Check your results. Display a white image (such as an empty text document, or sending your browser to about:blank and going to fullscreen with F11) to verify that you haven't accidentally caused more damage than you fixed. If you fixed the stuck pixel, your whole screen should be white.

Method 3
Heat Method

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    Turn on the computer and the LCD screen.
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    Dampen a washcloth with water that's as hot as possible. If you can, heat water on the stove or microwave until it's just beginning to show air bubbles at the bottom of the container. Put the washcloth in a colander, and dump the hot water over the washcloth.
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    Put on gloves, or cover your hands with oven mitts. You don't want to burn your fingers in the next steps.
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    Put the hot washcloth in a plastic sandwich bag. Make sure the seal is completely closed.
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    Hold the plastic bag with the hot washcloth up against the stuck pixel. Hold the plastic bag up to the screen such that the area you're using doesn't have a seam on it, because the seam may break open, and hot water may damage your computer. As much as you can, try to only focus the heat on the stuck pixel.
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    "Massage" the pixel in slow circles. Move the bag around the pixel a bit in a massage-like motion. The heat generated will cause the liquid crystal to flow more easily into the areas that were not formerly filled.

Method 4
Software Method

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    Try running pixel-fixing software (see Sources and Citations). Stuck pixels can often be re-energized by rapidly turning them on and off. There are screensavers available for download that will do this to your LCD screen.

Method 5
Hardware Method

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    Try a solid state solution like PixelTuneup (see Sources and Citations). These devices produce specially tuned video signals that eliminate stuck pixels while enhancing picture quality, color, and contrast. Also works on televisions, including LCD, LED, plasma, or CRT.
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    Turn off the monitor.
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    Plug in and turn on PixelTuneup, then turn on the monitor.
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    Wait 20 minutes.
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    Turn off and unplug PixelTuneup.
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    Stuck pixels and other IR will be gone, and color/contrast will be improved.

Tips

  • If these instructions don't work, try to get the monitor replaced through your manufacturer. If your monitor falls under the specifications of replacement, get in contact with the manufacturer to set up replacement plans.

Warnings

  • Some people claim that touching the screen can cause more pixels to become stuck, although this has not been proven.
  • Do not attempt to open the monitor. This will void the warranty, and the manufacturer will not replace it.
  • LCD Displays are composed of multiple layers. Each layer is separated by very small glass spacers. These spacers and the individual layers are very delicate. Rubbing an LCD panel with a finger or even a cloth can cause the spacers to break and cause further issues beyond the original pixel fault. As such most repair technicians with service certifications are trained not to use the rub or tap methods - use them at your own risk.
  • Most LCD manufacturer warranties for LCD displays will cover replacement of the panel when the display reaches a certain number of pixel anomalies. However, these warranties generally will not cover damage caused by rubbing the screen, so use extreme caution and contact the manufacturer before proceeding to see if you qualify for repair or replacement.
  • Beware of websites that let you download screensavers. Many have viruses that are much worse than a stuck pixel.
  • Make sure you don't get any electrical equipment wet, or it may break.

Sources and Citations

  • pixel-fixer – A website that rapidly cycles the browser window through primary and secondary colors to attempt to fix stuck pixels with no need to install any application or use the Java Applet.
  • JScreenFix – A web-based Java Applet that randomly turns on and off each pixel at up to 60 times a second to fix stuck pixels.
  • DPT 2.20 – A Windows application to help locate and identify dead/stuck pixels. Also has a pixel exerciser built in to possibly get lazy pixels working again.
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