June 2021

Plasma TV Problems, Solutions, and Advice

June 2021
The common problems a plasma TV might get, usually start with the screen.
Note that if the plasma screen is broken or crashed, it’s not repairable anymore. If this is the case, the TV needs a screen replacement, which may cost you more then the plasma TV itself. (A new screen price is around 2 -3k).
Protection front screen (The glass on the front) can be easily replaced and not so expensive as PDP panel behind it.
If you have just protection screen damage, your screen(PDP panel) will work without any problems.
Plasma screen contains:

An aluminum base and two pieces of glass between them (gas inside not rechargeable).
Pixels with controlled by small electrodes. Each pixel contains 3 colored sub-pixels: they are green, blue and red.

Does the Plasma Screen Work? 2 Step Process:

1) Gas Ignition
2) Picture Development
IGNITION: Power Supply > Logic Control > Z or X Sustain > Screen
PICTURE DEVELOPMENT: Power Supply > Video Control Board or Scaler > Logic Control Board > Y Sustain > X Sustain > Buffer Boards > Screen
Common problems with plasma panels: Electrodes damage inside, change gas parameters, drivers on ribbon connectors damage.

Typical Bad Plasma Screen Symptoms:
  1. Flashing red dots or pixels on the screen when it is cold (after warm up it goes away)
  2. Distorted colors on part of the screen. Left or Right Corner.
  3. Colored vertical lines on the picture
  4. Flashing red dots on some part of the screen.
90% of the screen problems are not repairable
10% on panels 42V6 and 42V5, there’s a chance to repair it.

Burn-in image:

This is an Image you can see on top of the normal picture.
It’s usually displayed as dark lines or a dark area on the screen.
Burn-in image developers: TV in-service in airports, libraries, restaurants, hotels, security networks, bars, all public places.
If your plasma TV displays an image that’s not moving (static image) for a long time, it will develop burn-in spots.
This issue is not repairable and you will need a new screen (PDP panel). That’s why for all those restaurants, bars, and public places, it’s better if you use an LCD type TV, not a plasma.
For example, a Panasonic plasma TV was in a King County bar for 6 months on a sports channel and it developed a burn-in sport channel image. The estimated cost for this type of problem would be $2,500.00. Be smart and save your money!

Vertical or horizontal lines or bars that are 2″-3″ wide:

There is 60% of chance you will need a new screen.
The may have is the dead driver (part of a screen) or poor connection between plasma glass and ribbon wire connector.
There is some solution for it but not long lasting.
PDP panel and address driver on it are not separated.
If one of 26-40 drivers is going out, you will need a new screen.
It is a why manufacturers don’t separate expensive PDP panel ($2000 and more) and $40 driver IC on it.
It is replacing a small $40 part than the entire screen. So just ignore this issue.
The panel will be aluminum + glass + gas only. (no more drivers on it)
Other common lines on screen: Buffer boards, a high amount for these boards due to poor electronic design: 1) Voltage needed to operate controllers on buffer board just too high for small SMD IC. 2)they are not to drive address electrode). be changed reliable parts.

Other problems:

A plasma TV is a very hard working device. It is working harder than any TV that has been built before, and as a result – it produces a lot of heat.
75% of the technical problems in our shop on plasma TV’s are caused by overheating problems.
If there is no active cooling system, most of them die in the first 3-6 years.
Always ask at the store before buying if there is a cooling system inside.
No cooling fans inside = no long life.
That is a major rule about plasma TV.
Just some advice from real experience: Company names that ignore cooling system – PHILIPS, DAEWOO, some SONY models.

A real test in a shop:
PHILIPS 42 pf7220a/37. After 10 work without a cooling system, some of the components on the power supply board were out of temperature balance. Vs voltage changes up to 2 volts plus. This may lead to an overheating problem and cause other permanent damages.
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