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HDMI Cable Not Working (Causes and Fixes)

I recently bought a new HDMI cable to hook up my laptop to my TV, only to discover that the HDMI cable wasn’t working! After some trial and error, I finally figured out what was wrong and what I needed to do to get the HDMI cable working properly. In this blog post, I’m going to share the causes and fixes of why my HDMI cable wasn’t working so that you can prevent and solve this common problem. If you’ve ever encountered this issue before, I hope my tips will be of help to you as well!

8 Reasons Behind HDMI Cable Not Working

Here’s everything that might be wrong with your HDMI connection:

  1. Improper Connection to Ports

Your cable might not be connected well to the ports, or it may be connected to a faulty port.

Also, if this is the first time you use this HDMI cable, double-check that it’s compatible with both your laptop and TV (or any device you’re using).

  1. Not Choosing the Input Source That Corresponds to the Connected Port

There’s a common mistake where you connect your HDMI cable to the second port, but choose “HDMI 1” as the source of input on your TV.

That could simply be the reason why your HDMI cable isn’t establishing a connection, and it has nothing to do with the cable itself being damaged.

  1. Not Choosing the Correct Display Setting on a Laptop

Your laptop has multiple options when it comes to the display, and they are as follows:

  • PC Screen Only: This option displays content only on your laptop screen (source of content).
  • Duplicate: This option displays the content on both your laptop and TV simultaneously.
  • Extended: This option replicates the content to two or more displays.
  • Second Screen Only: This option reflects the content of the connected display to the second screen without it appearing on the first.

So, the problem with your HDMI display could be that you’re using one option when you’re supposed to choose another.

  1. HDMI Isn’t Set as the Default Option

Your HDMI connection won’t work if your laptop’s default system setting isn’t set to HDMI.

It’s often a simple thing that you might overlook when setting up your connection.

  1. The Graphics Driver Requires an Update

Your graphics driver is the main player when it comes to displaying content, and that’s why it has to be up-to-date. 

Otherwise, it’ll pose an obstacle to your system and the HDMI communication between your laptop and TV.

  1. The Cable Is Loose or Frayed

If none of the above applies to your situation, it’s likely that your HDMI cable is loose, damaged, or frayed.

Because HDMI cables are really sensitive, they’re more susceptible to damage than any other type of cable.

What to Do If Your HDMI Cable Isn’t Working?

So, now that we know the root causes of the problem, let’s look at how we can troubleshoot and fix each.

  1. Check Your Hardware for Malfunctions

Start a simple check that the cable is properly connected to both your laptop and your TV.

You can try changing the port you’re using. Alternatively, you may want to try another cable to make sure that it’s the port and not the cable that’s faulty.

  1. Restart Your Devices

Restarting your electronic device is known as “Power Cycling.” 

This is a process where you allow your device to reinitialize its configuration parameters, especially if it hits an unresponsive state.

  1. Choose the Right HDMI Input

To make sure you’re on the right track, check which port you’re using on the TV. 

Then, from your TV’s settings or remote, switch to the corresponding input source.

  1. Choose the Correct Display Setting

The next step is to check if the display settings are configured properly. Press “Windows + P” to get a list of the possible configurations.

You can switch between Duplicate, Extend, and Second Screen Only to see if the HDMI works with any.

  1. Set HDMI as Default on Your Laptop

To set HDMI as default, right-click on the volume icon on the taskbar and press “Sounds.” From the window that pops up, choose the “Playback” tab.

In this section, you’ll see all your connected devices, including the HDMI ones and the system speakers.

Choose the HDMI device you’re trying to configure and press “Set Default,” then select “Ok.” 

  1. Update Your Graphics Driver

Search for “Device Manager,” where you’ll see all your devices and components for input and output.

Scroll to “Display Adapters,” and you’ll find your graphics card when you expand that entry. Right-click on your graphics card and choose “Update Drivers,” and simply follow the instructions.

It’s worth mentioning that sometimes your driver won’t have any updates. In that case, you might try disabling and re-enabling it, or even uninstalling and reinstalling it.

  1. Check Your Cable for Loose Ends or Frayed Wires

Finally, you may want to check if the HDMI cable itself is becoming loose or has any frayed wires.

In that case, it’ll be time for you to upgrade to a new cable.

Final Words

Since there are multiple factors coming into play, troubleshooting the HDMI cable not working issue can be a bit of an extensive process.

However, all the possibilities are easy to deal with and quickly fixable once you figure them out.