OLED screens are known for two things. First is their excellent image quality and high contrast levels, which you can now experience on all manner of OLED-equipped TVs, PC monitors, smartphones, tablets, and handheld gaming consoles. The second is “OLED burn-in.”
Fortunately, as the technology has advanced, burn-in is less likely on newer OLED screens than when the first OLED TVs rolled out. However, it’s still enough of an issue that you should reassess how you’re using your OLED-equipped devices to make sure you’re not accidentally damaging them.
What is OLED burn-in?
“Burn-in” is when your screen shows a persistent after-image of something that is no longer on-screen. OLED displays are prone to these persistent phantom images because of how they work: In simplified terms, each pixel on an OLED screen is individually back-lit, rather than the area backlighting that other LED panels use. That means each OLED pixel can turn on, off, and change color depending on what’s on-screen. This is how OLED screens achieve the “deep blacks” and sharp contrast levels they’re renowned for, but it also means each pixel can be damaged or over-used, resulting in faded (or even burnt-out) pixels.
The worst burn-in culprits are UI elements in video games, apps, and streaming service menus; the tiny station ID icons on TV channels; lower-third chyrons on news stations; and static screen-saver images, all of which can be on-screen for hours at a time.
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To be clear, it’s unlikely you’ll experience OLED burn-in through general use. An image has to be on-screen for hundreds or even thousands of hours to truly damage the screen. Burn-in is also less likely to occur on newer OLEDs, which are often manufactured with burn-in mitigation tech included.
That said, it’s possible for minor distortion or discoloration to set in after just a few dozen hours, even on the latest devices. And once it sets in—even the tiniest bit—you can’t fix it. You can see first-hand evidence on many TV and smartphone floor models in stores like Best Buy, which often display the same images on-screen for days or weeks at a time. You can also see some evidence of long-term burn-in on the new Switch OLED model in the video below from YouTuber Wulff Den:
How to prevent OLED Burn-in
Sure, the above examples are rare edge cases that don’t reflect how general users interact with their OLED screen, but they’re still proof burn-in remains an issue for all OLED screens. There are ways you can avoid burn-in without resorting to extreme screen-time rationing, though.
Change what you watch and play
The most obvious thing is to regularly change what’s on-screen to avoid displaying static images for too long. For example, if you only watch ESPN on TV, maybe tune into FOX Sports or NBC once in a while to avoid burn-in from the “ESPN” logo. If you play a lot of Call of Duty, try some Apex Legends or Destiny to switch things up. And if you tend to watch lots of YouTube or Twitch, watch in full-screen mode to avoid having the interface on-screen for hours at a time.
Adjust the brightness
While varying what’s on your screen will ensure nothing is displayed long enough to burn in, screen brightness is also a major factor to keep in mind. Burn-in sets in faster on bright screens, so turning down the device’s brightness and enabling auto-dimming and auto-sleep modes that kick in after a few minutes of inactivity can decrease the likelihood for burn-in.
These don’t need to be extreme changes—anything below 90 percent is fine, but ideally, you should aim for the 70-80 percent range or lower. The same for auto-dimming and auto-shut-off or sleep timers: You don’t need your screen to dim every 10-30 seconds, 10 to 30 minutes work just fine. The point is to make sure the screen isn’t on and displaying the same images at max brightness all day.
Use dark mode and other settings
Some devices also have extra settings that further reduce the possibility of burn-in. Enabling dark mode for your OS and apps is an especially useful one for OLED screens, since the pixels are dimmed when displaying darker colors, and turned off entirely for black. Other examples include the “Extra-dim” mode on Android 12, and the “Reduce White Point” and further brightness-reduction options in iOS’ accessibility settings.
While you don’t need to turn on all of these settings to prevent burn-in, we recommend using at least a few that work for you to prevent this rare—but irreversible—screen damage.
How do you prevent burning in OLED? ›
The easiest way to prevent burn-in from happening is to change the type of content you're watching and not spend too long with a logo anywhere on the screen. For example, if you only watch CNN it's possible that older OLED TVs might experience burn-in of the logo on the lower right corner.What does OLED burn-in mean? ›
Burn-in is a visible mark that is left on the screen and remains no matter what you are watching or doing. This may be caused by leaving a fixed image on the screen for a long period of time and can be particularly noticeable on OLED TVs.Is there solution to OLED burn-in? ›
There's no fix for burn-in, only ways to prolong it from happening. Before you assume your screen has burn-in damage, try these tips and wait to see if it's just image retention. Image retention is a harmless and common occurrence on many screens.How does OLED burn-in happen? ›
Most cases of burn-in in televisions is a result of static images or on-screen elements displaying on the screen uninterrupted for many hours or days at a time – with brightness typically at peak levels. So, it is possible to create image retention in almost any display if one really tries hard enough.How long does it take for an OLED screen to burn-in? ›
The good news? It's taken 3600 hours for any burn-in to become noticeable. That's 150 days sat on the same image almost entirely without breaks - something you'll never need to do yourself under normal conditions. If playback doesn't begin shortly, try restarting your device.Which TV does not have burn-in? ›
For an absolute guarantee that you won't experience burn-in, your best bet is QLED TV. LG, as the biggest maker of OLED TVs, acknowledges the potential for image retention within its user manuals for its OLED TVs but says that under normal viewing conditions it shouldn't happen.Is OLED burn-in a real concern? ›
OLED TVs have great picture quality; however, there are concerns about their long-term performance due to the possibility of permanent image retention, commonly referred to as burn-in. Our previous 20 hours per day burn-in test ran for a little over two years, and the OLED TV has permanent image retention.How do you take care of an OLED TV? ›
- Fragile, this way up. Flat panel TVs in general are fragile due to their thin design. ...
- Change the factory settings. ...
- Keep it plugged in and on 'standby' overnight. ...
- Screen burn / image retention (OLED TVs only) ...
- Cleaning. ...
- Consider using a surge protector. ...
- Read the manual(!) ...
- Do not DIY.
LG's warranty does NOT cover burn in.What is the lifespan of OLED TV? ›
Ever since OLED was a research project, the lifespan of the organic material has been debated. There is no reason to worry, says LG. The latest generation of OLED TVs now has a lifespan of 100,000 hours, according to a report by Korea Times.
What are the disadvantages of OLED? ›
- Lifespan. The biggest technical problem for OLEDs is the limited lifetime of the organic materials. ...
- Color balance. ...
- Efficiency of blue OLEDs. ...
- Water damage. ...
- Outdoor performance. ...
- Power consumption. ...
- Screen flicker.
- Turn it on. ...
- Go to Dial Pad -> Key in *#0*#
- Samsung Diagnostic Menu will appear. ...
- Tap on Red, Green, and Blue button to check for: ...
- Tap on LED button to check for: ...
- To end, Double Tap on Back Button or Display Screen to exit the menu.
For the highest quality of all screen types, look to OLED! While it does have LED in the name, OLED is very different from an LED TV. OLED stands for organic light-emitting diode and uses organic materials, such as carbon, to create light when it's directly supplied by an electrical current.What are common problems with LG OLED TV? ›
- False Contouring or Posterization.
- Colors are Inconsistent.
- No Sound Output.
- HDMI 2.1 Ports Not Displaying Properly.
- Streaming Apps not Working.
- Horizontal lines appear on the screen.
If you want the best-looking TV image that money can buy, choose an OLED TV. Thanks to a panel design that's fundamentally different from LCD TVs, OLED TVs naturally produce perfectly inky black levels, highly saturated colors, smooth motion, and superior viewing angles.Do OLED screens get worse over time? ›
Though great improvements have been made in recent years, OLEDs still have a limited lifespan. This is typically 28,000 hours for red or green OLEDs, after which time the brightness of the screen will reduce by 50%.Do Iphone OLED screens get burn-in? ›
With extended long-term use, OLED displays can also show slight visual changes. This is also expected behavior and can include “image persistence” or “burn-in,” where the display shows a faint remnant of an image even after a new image appears on the screen.Which is better LG or Samsung TV? ›
If you prefer a brighter picture, Samsung's QLED sets are the way to go. However, if you want a better contrast ratio (where blacks look black and not gray) and a wider viewing angle, we recommend an OLED TV from LG.Do modern TVs suffer from screen burn? ›
Although much less susceptible than Plasma TVs, LCD TVs are still subject to screen burn in (image retention). In general, you should avoid keeping a static picture (that is, a picture that contains no or few moving elements) or a picture with static elements (black bars, black borders, logos, etc.)Is OLED better than 4K? ›
In looking at standard 4K LED TVs vs 4K OLED TVs, both offer great viewing experiences and improvements over 1080p. But LG OLED technology will truly transform your home entertainment experience with superior blacks, cinematic colors and High Dynamic Range with Dolby Vision support.
Which is better OLED or Qled? ›
OLED has better contrast and black level
QLED/LCD TVs, even the best ones with the most effective full-array local dimming, let some light through, leading to more washed-out, grayer black levels and blooming around bright sections.
Pros and Cons
OLED displays have higher contrast ratios (1 million : 1 static compared with 1,000 : 1 for LCD screens), deeper blacks and lower power consumption compared with LCD displays. They also have greater color accuracy. However, they are more expensive, and blue OLEDs have a shorter lifetime.
No, it is not safe to use Windex to clean your computer monitor or TV. Repeat after me: I will never use Windex—or any type of window cleaning products—to clean my screen. Window cleaners contain harsh chemicals (like alcohol, ammonia, and lauramine oxide) that can do permanent damage to LCD and OLED panels.Can I clean my OLED TV with Windex? ›
Avoid Harmful Chemicals
Alcohol and ammonia, found in window cleaners such as Windex, can wreak havoc on your expensive flat-screen TV, so don't use cleaners that have them.
Gently wipe the screen or the exterior with a dry, soft cloth, such as an eyeglass cleaner. For inks from oil markers on the screen, soak a cloth in a non-soap synthetic cleanser diluted (by less than 1% ) with water.Can screen Burning be fixed? ›
Burn-in on the LCD screen is a form of image retention but is permanent and virtually impossible to fix.Does screen burn-in get worse over time? ›
What is Screen Burn? Screen burn, also called screen burn-in, ghost image, or display burns are images or icons that are displayed on a screen when they should not be there. Screen burn comes on gradually and gets worse over time and is most common on OLED screens.Do 4K TVs get burn-in? ›
Like the rest of the TVs above, 4K TV burn-in can occur if you're not careful. Take preventative measures to keep burn-in from happening on this TV technology. Note: LED, QLED, and OLED TVs can all be 4K.Does Best Buy cover burn-in on OLED? ›
They explicitly don't cover burn-in. However, Best Buy's Geek Squad Protection Plan might, depending on when you bought it.What is OLED 5 year warranty? ›
With a 5-year panel warranty, feel assurance in the craftsmanship of premium LG OLED televisions for years to come. *In the 1st year of the warranty, panel, parts, and labor costs are covered. In the 2nd - 5th year of the warranty, only panels are covered, and labor will be charged.
Do OLED TVs use a lot of electricity? ›
OLEDs have been consistently more power-hungry than the average LED models. In both cases, it's not a ton of power, especially compared to older plasma TVs that often consumed twice as much as even the hungriest LEDs and OLEDs.What will replace OLED TV? ›
QLED TV uses four main elements to produce its pictures: An LED backlight, a layer of quantum dots, an LCD matrix, and a color filter. The LED backlight produces all of the brightness you see — and modern LED backlights can produce a lot of brightness, far more than OLED light sources.Is Sony OLED better than Samsung? ›
The Samsung TV gets a bit brighter in general, and colors are significantly brighter thanks to its new QD-OLED display technology. On the other hand, the Samsung TV sacrifices accuracy in HDR for a more vivid, impactful image, so if image fidelity matters to you, the Sony is a better choice.Is OLED worse for eyes? ›
OLEDs are true emissive components that produce light on their own and do not require a light source. Meaning they produce a light that's more natural and less harsh on your eyes. OLED TVs also provide excellent color and contrast because they do not use light from other sources to display colors, as LCD/LED TVs do.Is OLED better for your health? ›
The study results revealed the display with lower brightness and higher contrast, such as OLED TV, could have a lower impact on visual fatigue, arousal, concentration, comfort, sleep disorder and circadian disruption than the other device.Are OLED TVs better for your eyes? ›
OLED minimizes eye strain by eliminating flicker that can't be detected by the naked eye and glare that disrupts your viewing experience. OLED self-emissive technology controls light and colors by pixel, it reproduces perfect blacks without halo effect.Does OLED burn-in more than LED? ›
Due to the nature of LED technology, LED TVs are not susceptible to the phenomenon known as "burn-in", where a display has a picture permanently burned into the screen. OLED screens are not likely to ever produce a burn-in effect, but are nonetheless susceptible to it.Which is the No 1 TV in the world? ›
South Korea's Samsung is the de facto market leader in the world television space, leading competitors like LG and Sony by a wide margin in terms of overall sales.Is Costco a good place to buy a TV? ›
If you're in the market for a new TV, Costco should definitely be on your list of places to look. Not only does Costco sell a wide range of some of the highest quality TVs on the market–they also offer them at competitive prices.What brand of TV lasts longest? ›
As our technical engineers mentioned, TV brands with the highest longevity are Samsung, Sony, LG, and Panasonic. However, you can find other affordable brands that could give you several years of use if well maintained. These brands include Sharp and Vizio.
Should I buy an LG OLED TV? ›
Is OLED TV worth buying? OLED TVs have the best picture quality, best viewing angles, infinite contrast ratios, true blacks, and—on some models—very thin profiles. So, while OLED TVs aren't as bright as LED or QLED TVs, and are more expensive than both, they're well worth the investment.How do I know if my OLED screen is damaged? ›
If your OLED screen has blotchy, uneven coloration where your navigation bar is, you have burn-in. Each pixel within an Active Matrix Organic Light-Emitting Diode (AMOLED) comprises red, green, and blue (and sometimes white) sub-pixels. When they emit light, they decay.Why do I have to keep unplugging my LG TV? ›
An 'always on' TV has power to the 'programming functions' even when you 'power down' via the remote. So, to clear the 'memory' you have to pull the plug.What is the lifespan of OLED? ›
Lifespan of an OLED TV is supposedly pretty good - at least 6–8 years. I would put moderate use as 4–6 hours of TV daily, or maybe 8 max. If one is watching more, then I will say - folks please get a little more life.How do I get rid of the burn on my LG OLED? ›
It's important to remember that once burn-in occurs, there's no way to fully reverse it. You may need to replace your entire panel or device in order to resolve the problem. At best, you can employ preventative measures to stop it from happening in the first place.What not to do with an OLED TV? ›
As well as providing various features to help prevent OLED burn in, TV manufacturers provide guidance to OLED TV owners about how to use their sets. In particular, you're advised that you should avoid displaying images that may cause image retention. As in, images with bright static elements.How long should a TV be on a day? ›
Experts say adults should limit screen time outside of work to less than two hours per day. Any time beyond that which you would typically spend on screens should instead be spent participating in physical activity.Should I worry about OLED burn-in? ›
Early OLED TVs did have trouble with this phenomenon, throwing the technology into question. But these days, nearly all of the OLED TVs on the market today are equipped with preventative measures to curb burn-in, and unless you're a very particular type of television viewer, you needn't worry about it at all.What is the lifespan of LG OLED TV? ›
On average, LG TVs last roughly 100,000 hours if they use OLED technology. However, the number drops to about 60,000 hours if it's an LCD TV. Other factors such as the usage and environmental elements also play a role in determining the lifespan.