Samsung LCD TV Purple Dot Power Issues

A few weeks ago my Samsung 46″ LCD TV starting acting up. It’s just over two years old (Model Number LN-T4665F), but that’s long enough to be out of the warranty period. Every once in a while purple dots would cover the picture, but if you turned the TV off and then back on, the dots would go away.

Right around the same time the TV had another issue where it would power on a couple times before the picture would actually appear on the screen. The Samsung plays a start up sound when you first press power on your remote. Normally the picture appears shortly after the start up sound, but my TV would play the sound two or three times before the picture would appear.

A Google search turned up a number of people with the same symptoms. AVS Forum has a huge thread on this series of Samsung LCD’s, and includes a bunch of advice on how to fix the problem. Long story short, you need to replace some bad capacitors on the power supply board.

Step one is opening up the TV. There are a bunch of screws to remove on the back, don’t forget the big wall mount bolts. Here’s a picture with the back cover removed.

And here is a close up of the bad capacitors.

I replaced three of these (total cost was < $6 at Fry’s). The bad ones are the medium sized black capacitors with a bulge on top. I put everything back together and the TV is working great!

UPDATE: Several readers have been able to get Samsung to fix this issue even if your set is out of warranty. Read the comments below for more information.

70 thoughts on “Samsung LCD TV Purple Dot Power Issues

  1. Brian

    Just called 1800Samsung and the rep told me my TV model (LNT4661FX/XAA) is on their service list however, my Serial number is outside of the affected range. So, am I out of luck? I asked. Yes! the rep replied. What a BS! It seems like Samsung just don’t have the balls to backup their own mess. That leaves fixing it myself is the only choice.

  2. Jeff

    Ok.. I’m on the never buy a Samsung TV list again also. Same problem as everyone else. LNT4665F – Purple Dots, then TV Rebooting, finally not turning on at all. Called and talked to 1st level customer service and then Executive Customer Relations Department. ECR told me that it is definitely a known problem with this model but they wouldn’t fix it as it was outside their 39 month window for a free repair. Apparently, their manufacturing issue (bad capacitators) caused the TV to fail too slowly for them to own up to it and fix it. Most ridiculous thing I ever heard. Let’s hope Apple makes TVs soon as I won’t be getting anything else from Samsung.

  3. JAY

    THIS IS GREAT INFORMATION THAT YOUR ARTICLE INCLUDED BUT ONE CRITICAL PIECE OF INFORMATION IS MISSING CONCERNING THE “FREE REPAIR IN-HOUSE FROM SAMSUNG AUTHORIZED TECHS”. SAMSUNG’S LIMITATIONS FOR PROVIDING A FREE REPAIR FOR THIS PROBLEM IS 39 MONTHS FROM THE DATE OF MANUFACTURING DATE AND NOT THE PURCHASE DATE. THIS IS A CRITIAL ISSUE OTHERWISE SAMSUNG WILL NOT PROVIDE A FREE REPAIR FOR THIS SPECIFIC PROBLEM. PLEASE SHARE THIS INFORMATION WITH YOUR READERS…. CALLING BACK ANOTHER SAMSUNG CUSTOMER SERVICE PERSONNL WILL NOT RESOLVE A PERSON’S ISSUE IF THE TV IS OUTSIDE THE 39 MONTHS MANUFACTURING DATE LIMITS….
    THANK YOU.

  4. Tim

    Thanks for this great article. For anyone who has swapped out the capacitors, how difficult was it? Do try simply screw on or do they have to be soldered? I’ve never soldered before. Just looking to find out so I know how long it will take to do and what supplies I might need. Thanks!

  5. batchcuter@msn.com

    We took our Samsung with the white dots (diamonds) to D&L Electronics in Ft. Lauderdale and had it fixed in one day for a hundred bucks.

  6. mark

    I’m having the same issue with my Samsung. Does anybody know if this is fatal, or can I simply continue to turn it on/off/on to watch it without the dots? And as Tim asked, can a novice do this, or should I not attempt?

  7. Pete Dela Cruz

    Mike your close up picture is exactly the same what I have. Did you replace the capacitors exactly the same value. Some people blogs say they replace theirs the 10V to 15V others say 25v. Is this OK. Need your advice.

  8. mike Post author

    @Pete – I tried to find the exact same ones, but from what I can remember Fry’s didn’t have enough of the ones I needed. This was a while ago, so I don’t remember what voltage I ended up getting. You can read the link I had in the original post on AVS Forum. Those guys talk about using different voltages that work.

  9. clay

    Mine just reached the purple dots, restart, all OK stage a few weeks ago. It’s good to know what the problem is; I can deal with this.

    @Pete – The general rule with capacitors is to use a voltage rating at least as high as the original because that rating represents the most voltage the capacitor can handle without breaking down. Higher is OK, but higher voltage rated capacitors tend to be physically larger, so just make sure they’ll fit in the available space. As for the capacitance, in power supply applications close is good enough, and a little higher is better than lower, again making sure the physical fit is acceptable.

  10. German

    Thanks for the post – I am one more satisfied victim of Samsung (okay, I got the TV used from someone) who followed your comments and now the tv works perfect. Cheers, G.

  11. Ryan

    UPDATE: Samsung has settled on a class action law suit that gives people who have TV’s manufactured prior to December 31, 2008 the option of a free repair. Also, if you spent money getting the problem diagnosed or fixed or even if you got rid of the TV you are eligible for reimbursement.

    Here is the web link:
    http://www.samsung.com/us/capacitorsettlement/

    I was having the same problems. I’ve searched how to fix it before but never got around to doing anything about it. I just happened to stumble upon it in my last search, looks like the settlement is fairly recent.

  12. Elaine

    Thanks! Your instructions and a quick review of a YouTube video made it easy. The TV is back to working correctly for under $10.

  13. Ron B

    I called my local TV repair shop describing the problem an giving them the serial number of the set. They told me of the class action and suggested I call Samsung. I did that, and the set was repaired at my house the next day. Took about an hour.

  14. Andy F

    My LCD TV started producing the purple dots about a week ago. So far they go away with a restart. I have not had any other issues though. When I called up Samsung they said that their settlement did not provide for servicing for purple dots, only for “clicking” as well as delayed start-up or inability to start-up (at least those are the conditions I remember). So I would be curious to know if people generally saw purple dots before the capacitor issues recognized by Samasung, or if they are possibly unrelated problems. Thanks.

  15. mike Post author

    @Andy – My TV started having problems first with those purple dots, but then the power issues started shortly after.

  16. Andy F

    Thanks MIke. Indeed, just as in your case, the purple dots have been followed by startup issues. They are still rare, but on occasion it takes the TV about ten seconds and two tries to turn on. I will call Samsung back and see about having them fix the problem. This website has a great help. Cheers.

  17. Kyle

    This worked and it was super easy. The solder points are easily accessible and large enough to work with. Took more time to drive and get the parts than it did to fix the TV. Can’t believe i’ve been waiting 5+ minutes for my TV to turn on for a few years now and all it took was 60 minutes and less than $4USD in parts.

    I had to replace 3 of the 10 volt 1000uF capacitors at $1.03 USD each.

    Pay attention the positive and negative positions otherwise if you put them in wrong you’ll blow them right off the bat.

  18. Jeff

    i’m experiencing this issue but they tell me there was a time limit on the class action settlement. I am fighting it up the ladder because I think it’s ridiculous to put a limit on a specific known issue. Regardless of what happens, I wanted to say thanks for this blog. It really helped me gather some info on this issue and if they won’t fix it, you and the other readers have given me the confidence to take a shot at fixing it myself. Thanks!

  19. Chase

    Identical to the 2 primary problems we’ve encountered just within the last couple of weeks. Sure enough, our Samsung 40 inch was purchased in 2008. First, the false start-up of the TV. Now, the purple pixelation. I’m not sure I’m skilled enough with my soldering iron to replace the parts. At least you’ve given me, however, a great point to start with my local repair shop. I’ll part with a service fee to have it done right, but I’ll know to be on guard against a crazy repair estimate if one is offered. Thanks for this info.

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