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Popular Help Topics

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Here are some of the most frequently asked questions by our customers:

My LCD screen has gone dark, how do I repair or replace it?
Unfortunately, many businesses and consumers do not realize just how relatively inexpensive and easy it is to repair an LCD screen.  Instead, most choose to just throw out and buy a new screen or machine.  However, if you are a business with many LCD screens or you have an LCD control panel on an expensive piece of equipment, then the financial impacts could be massive.  We offer high quality replacements for the backlights that go into every LCD screen on the market.  We also have a network of service partners that use our trusted, premium quality backlights for repairs of a single screen or for thousands of screens, and everything in between.

What are the symptoms of a failed LCD screen CCFL backlight?
If your LCD display has gone black or is simply not illuminating, and it has not been subject to damage such as dropping it, then is very likely that your backlight (CCFL or LED) is to blame. Typical symptoms of an aging or failed lamp include flickering, low light output, pinkish hue to the screen, momentary flash on at start up and then out or simply inconsistency, on/off of the LCD display.

How do I figure out if I need to replace my LCD screen backlight?
If you have experienced any of the above-mentioned symptoms it is probably a good idea to change out your backlight. As CCFL lamps age they require more and more voltage to stay lit. This puts a tremendous strain on the inverter that powers the lamp. Failure to change out an aging or failing lamp can result in a much more expensive repair. While lamps are very inexpensive, new power inverters for laptops generally start at about $75- $100, and even more for monitors that require multiple lamps.

Is the problem with my Inverter or the CCFL lamp?
Typically a new lamp fixes 95% of all of these types of display failures.  Inverters tend not to go out nearly as often as backlights. When the backlight ages it requires more and more voltage to come from the inverter. Eventually the inverter will not be able to supply the amount of voltage the backlight is requiring, and will shut itself off (a sort of self-protect mode). When the screen is dark it means the backlight definitely needs replacing, the inverter may need replacing as well if it wasn't able to shut itself off and self-protect in time.

Typically, it's best to do the backlight replacement, since you know you need that for sure. If the screen is working fine after that then you’re good to go. If it's still not lighting up properly after replacing the backlight, then you would consider replacing the inverter also.

Should the inverter be changed out at the same time as the lamp?
Some individuals simply choose to do so to eliminate all doubt, but from experience this is definitely an unnecessary expense. As mentioned previously, the lamp is almost always your failure point and from experience the inverter is simply an unnecessary replacement cost.

How do I know which lamp to order?
We always suggest that you extract the original lamp from your unit and take careful measurements before ordering. Just because your laptop is a specific model, for example a Dell Inspiron might have some variance as to the specific LCD manufacturer. Additionally, depending on the year, this model is likely available in multiple screen sizes 14 - 18+ inches.

Are your lamps compatible with my equipment?
Absolutely.  In fact, in many cases our lamps are much higher quality than the original OEM CCFL lamps or LED strips installed during manufacturing. Because we use much higher quality glass, electrodes and phosphors our lamps typically will require a much lower strike and running voltage making them compatible with all devices and insuring a much longer life expectancy.

Why did my lamp go out, my laptop is only a year old?
Today’s competitive market place and high volume LCD manufacturing has resulted in the use of cheaper and cheaper CCFL lamps and LED strips that in some instances barely cover the manufacturer's one year warranty period. Besides, the manufacturers are in the business of selling new panels...

What is the typical life of a CCFL lamp and a LED strip?
The typical rated life of a CCFL backlight is 20,000 to 40,000 hours. When used in LCD applications such as laptops you should expect between 1 and 3 years of use from most manufacturers, depending on how much use the unit gets.  If your application is a demanding 24/7 environment such as a casino or restaurant, your life expectancy can be much lower.  LED's typically have a life of 50,000+ hours but are more expensive than CCFL.

What makes your lamps better than others available?
Many overseas manufacturers quite simply build and sell lamps for novelty purposes, and some uneducated distributors sell them and represent them as OEM quality lamps. These lamps can fail anywhere from several weeks, several months (most common) and some even last a year. The inconsistency is not relevant only to life, but also lamp color due to poor phosphors and overall light output due to impure gases and pressurization. The quality and reliability of our lamps is unparalleled in the industry. We utilize only the highest quality borosilicate glass strains, proprietary electrode configurations, specialized processes including proprietary emissive coatings for optimum performance, and only the purest of phosphors and gases available.

Our high-tech facilities are unlike any other manufacturing facilities in the world. Plazmo has cemented itself as the leader in technical competence, quality, delivery, performance and providing an unparalleled total overall value to our customers.  Call or email us today to speak with one of our experts.