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Why Does My TV Keep Going Black For A Second? (How To Fix)

TVs have been offering entertainment and pleasure to billions of people for more than half a century. It’s something that your entire household can enjoy at the end of a busy day. But, like all technology, sometimes a TV doesn’t work as it should. A common problem is when a TV keeps going black for a second before coming back on. But what causes this black screen, and how can you fix it?

There are multiple possible causes for a TV screen going black for a few seconds. Common causes include power supply problems, LED strip issues, overheating of specific components, and even interference through the HDMI cable. Each cause has its own fix, and some require professional assistance.

Because there are so many possible causes for your TV randomly going black for a few seconds, we must follow a process of elimination to find the true culprit and figure out how to solve the problem. It isn’t an easy answer, but failing technology hardly ever has easy answers. Let’s look at the process of elimination and potential fixes for each possible cause.

Your TV’s Power Supply Could Be Causing The Black Screen Problem

Perhaps the most common cause of the random black screen problem is a failing power supply or another type of power supply problem. 

The power supply regulates the flow of power throughout your TV. When your power supply overheats or starts to fail, the consistent flow of electricity through your TV is interrupted, and not all components get the power they need. The most power-hungry component is the backlight (provided by LEDs in modern TVs).

When the backlight fails, your TV’s screen appears to be black. The faint outline of the TV image should still be slightly visible if you shine a bright light onto the screen, but it won’t be clearly visible because the light behind the image is gone. That is an indication that it could just be the power supply.

How To Fix TV Power Supply Problems

There are two possible solutions to a power supply problem in your TV that’s causing a random, intermittent black screen.

The first is the cheapest solution, and it works surprisingly often. It involves draining the power supply of all power by following these steps:

  1. Turn off your TV using the remote.
  1. Unplug your TV from the wall power socket.
  1. Press the TV’s power button (on the TV itself, not the remote) while it is still unplugged.
  1. Hold the power button down for at least 30 seconds (or closer to two or three minutes if this isn’t the first time you’re following these steps).
  1. Release the power button.
  1. Plug the TV’s power cable back into the wall power socket and try again.
  1. If it still isn’t working, repeat the steps, but hold the power button down for longer each time.

This process will of the remaining  the power supply the issue.

Fix An Overheating Power Supply

Your TVs power supply is also one of the components in the TV that gives off the highest heat levels, and heat is the enemy of all electronic components. So, often it isn’t a case of the power supply being faulty; it could simply be overheating. It’s easy to tell. If your TV is perfectly fine when you switch it on but starts going black a few minutes later, chances are that something is overheating.

You can temporarily resolve the issue by placing a cooling fan behind the TV. When your TV starts to go black, carefully feel around the back of your TV to find the spots that are warm. If you position a fan to blow cool air into that area, it could very well resolve the issue. It isn’t an elegant solution, though, and chances are you will have to eventually take the TV to a professional to fix it.

TV Going Black Because Of LED Strip Failure

Failing LED strips is not commonly the cause of your TV screen going black, but it is possible, so it’s worth mentioning. Usually, a faulty LED strip will cause the screen to go black permanently, not just for a few seconds, but it isn’t impossible for it to happen this way.

Modern TVs use LEDs (light-emitting diodes) to light up the screen. If the LEDs aren’t working, the actual image will still be displayed on the screen, but you will be unable to see it due to the backlight (the LEDs) not working. This is similar to what happens with a faulty power supply, but instead of the power supply being the cause of the problem, it is actually caused by the LED strips themselves.

Once you’ve eliminated the power supply as the cause of the problem, the logical next possibility is the LED strips. If these strips are connected in serial (which differs between manufacturers), one faulty LED strip will cause them all to stop functioning. If they are connected in parallel, you should only see a black line across your screen, not the entire screen going down.

Fixing A Faulty LED Strip

Unfortunately, there’s no easy or straightforward way to fix a faulty LED strip. You require electronic equipment, like multimeters, to test the LED strips and find the faulty ones. After that, you must remove the faulty strip and replace it with a new strip with identical values, which often requires a soldering iron and a solid knowledge of electronics, amps, voltages, and ohms. 

If you have all these tools and understand all those terms, you might be able to do so yourself. Anyone else would be better off taking the TV to a repair shop. The components shouldn’t be very expensive, but the cost of the technician could be.

Black Screen Caused By Interference On The HDMI Cable

People are surprised when they realize how often some kind of interference is the cause of a problem with any electronic device, including TVs and computers.

If your TV goes black for a second or two, but predictably, chances are that it’s caused by interference. For example, it’s been recorded several times that some TVs can go black whenever a fluorescent light (tube light) is switched on in the same room. It lasts a second or two; then, the image reappears on the TV. 

These fluorescent lights (the original type, not the modern LED varieties) cause a lot of interference with electronics. Still, many other things could do the same thing, including microwave ovens, cellular phones, two-way radios, and heavy machinery.

Fixing The Interference Problem

If you notice that your TV goes black specifically when you operate any of these items, chances are good that it’s caused by interference picked up over the HDMI cable. Some HDMI cables have low ratings, meaning they aren’t as shielded and high-performance as other types. You can usually feel that they are a bit thinner than other HDMI cables.

If that’s the case, fixing the problem is as simple as buying a new HDMI cable with better shielding capabilities and replacing your old cable with that one—no long waiting periods or expensive call-out fees involved. In fact, this is such an easy fix that it’s worth trying it out anyway, even if it doesn’t seem to be caused by interference. You can never be 100% sure with interference.

Try a soft reset

A soft reset, is where you turn off the TV and unplug it from the wall outlet. You then usually have to wait for 60 seconds then you can put the plug back in and turn the TV on again. Performing a soft reset clears a device’s internal memory of running programs, which often clears up any technical glitches.

Try a hard reset

A hard reset involves completely resetting the TV to its factory defaults. Most TV models have specific instructions. However, if you have a Samsung TV here are the steps to follow:

To perform a factory reset:

  1. Head to Settings > General.
  2. Select Reset.
  3. Enter your PIN > then select Reset.

Note: If you didn’t change your PIN initially the code is 0000

Try updating the software on your TV

It might also be due to a software bug and it would help to try updating your TV’s software in the system settings.

Conclusion

Those are three relatively common causes of a TV going black for a few seconds. It is very rarely a serious problem, and fixing it can be simple and inexpensive. But if you must get a professional to look at it, always remember that simply buying a new one will very often be cheaper than the repair costs. It’s worth considering the possibility if you can’t resolve the problem yourself.

References

https://www.quora.com/What-can-I-do-if-my-TVs-screen-goes-black-for-a-second

https://removeandreplace.com/2018/10/12/tv-screen-goes-black-randomly-power-light-still-on/

https://tvrepairny.com/tv-screen-goes-black-randomly

https://www.thebigscreenstore.com/5-common-tv-problems-and-exactly-how-to-fix-them/