- TVs can be damaged by heat, whether from overheating internally, exposure to external heat sources like fireplaces or hot cars, or from the sun.
- Temperatures above 125 degrees Fahrenheit (or 52 degrees Celsius) can damage your TV.
- Leaving a TV in a hot car can lead to dangerously high temperatures, potentially damaging your TV.
Concerned about the effects of heat on your valuable TV? Heat can indeed pose risks both internally and externally, potentially shortening your TV’s lifespan.
As summer approaches, learn how to shield your TV from overheating, whether it’s indoors or in a sweltering car.
Dive in to protect your investment!
- Can a TV Break From the Heat?
- What Happens If a TV Gets Too Hot?
- What Temperature Will Damage a TV?
- How To Reduce Heat From TV?
- Wrapping Things Up
Can a TV Break From the Heat?
Yes, a TV can break from the heat.
TVs can certainly break from the heat.
Just as you wouldn’t put your phone or projector right next to a heater or fireplace, you shouldn’t expose your TV to high heat levels.
The TV could break from overheating. If left on too long without proper ventilation or from an external heat source, it can break your TV. For instance, leaving your TV in a hot car or placing it next to a fireplace or heater will also damage your TV.
Additionally, your warranty is unlikely to cover heat damage, so you may need to pay for repairs or a replacement out of pocket.
What Happens If a TV Gets Too Hot?
A few things could happen if your TV gets too hot.
If your TV overheats, it can cause damage to both the internal and external hardware.
Let’s go over what could happen if your TV overheats.
The Pixels Could Be Damaged
The excess heat could damage your TV’s pixels, making it difficult for them to produce or accurately change color.
You could find yourself looking at a TV with several black spots made up of dead pixels.
Additionally, the pixels could become stuck, usually turning a bright color and not changing color with the rest of the screen.
Dead pixels are almost impossible to fix. Stuck pixels can be fixed, but it’s usually a risky process with low success rates.
This phenomenon is especially common with plasma TVs, though the pixels on LCD and OLED TVs are also likely to sustain damage if overheated.
Although TVs have cooling systems, they can only take so much heat before they start to break down.
The Hardware Could Melt
If your TV is over a fireplace or near a heater, the TV’s hardware could begin to melt.
You may begin to see your TV soften up and hear that the speakers don’t sound right. You may also be able to smell the plastic burning, which releases toxic fumes into the air.
Black or white spots could appear on-screen in addition to brightly-colored vertical lines.
The dangerous thing about your TV melting is that you won’t notice it until it’s already happened. Your TV could be melting for several hours without you seeing it.
Not only is this alarming, but it’s also incredibly dangerous.
The TV Could Combust
TVs can combust when exposed to high levels of heat.
The risk of your TV combusting is higher when your TV is plugged in and powered on, as the electrical components overheat inside the TV and combust.
Unfortunately, TVs catching on fire is more common than most people think. Several companies, like Sony and Samsung, have recalled certain TV models and released statements warning customers to be wary of their units combusting.
The first signs of combustion usually involve dead spots on-screen and melting. You will also notice that your TV is extremely hot to the touch.
Warning: If you see that your TV is exhibiting any of the above symptoms, immediately turn it off. Be careful when unplugging it, since you risk burning or electrocuting yourself from touching the hot plug. Contact your local fire safety authorities for further guidance.
What Temperature Will Damage a TV?
Temperatures about 125-degrees Fahrenheit will damage your TV.
An environment hotter than 125-degrees Fahrenheit (or 52-degrees Celsius) will damage your TV.
To be safe, make sure your TV is not somewhere that exceeds 100-degrees Fahrenheit (or 38-degrees Celsius).
Your TV produces heat when powered on, so hot environments could only exacerbate the risk of overheating.
How To Reduce Heat From TV?
Follow our tips below to reduce the risk of heat damaging your TV.
TVs breaking from the heat can be scary, but it’s completely avoidable if you take the proper precautions.
Follow our tips to keep you and your family safe while watching TV and lower the risk of your TV overheating.
Choose Your TV Mounting Place Carefully
Mounting your TV over a fireplace may look cool, but things can heat up very quickly.
Measure your mantle temperature when your fireplace is turned up high before mounting your TV there.
Mark where you want your TV to go and place a wall thermometer where the bottom of the TV will lay.
Turn on your fireplace, let it run for an hour or so, and observe how hot the area becomes.
If the thermometer reads 100-degrees Fahrenheit or more, you’re better off mounting your TV elsewhere.
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Additionally, placing your TV in an area of the home that receives several hours of direct sunlight isn’t recommended. The sun’s rays could heat your TV, and although it may not melt the hardware, it risks damaging the screen.
Ensure It’s Properly Ventilated
Your TV has a built-in cooling and ventilation system that circulates cool air.
However, your TV is more likely to overheat if the air vents are blocked or dirty.
Periodically check that your TV’s vents are dust-free, cleaning away any debris with a soft brush or cloth.
Encourage proper airflow by ensuring your TV is not mounting flat against the wall. A TV’s vents are typically found on its back, so there must be space between the TV and mount to allow for proper airflow.
Using spacers when mounting your TV will help prevent your TV from overheating. They’re affordable, easy to use, and can save your TV from heat damage.
Finally, don’t drape cloths over your TV. Your TV will remain warm for a while after it’s turned off, so avoid covering the screen and vents with any cloth (e.g., TV covers, curtains, doilies, etc.).
Don’t Leave it in Hot Areas for Extended Periods
Avoid leaving your TV in hot spaces (e.g., attics, storage units, cars, etc.) for extended periods.
The heat can damage your TV, and you may be unpleasantly surprised when you plug it in and find that the screen is damaged.
Instead, make sure your TV is somewhere that’s well-ventilated, cool, and dry.
As a rule of thumb, if it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for your TV.
Is It Okay To Leave a TV in a Hot Car?
It is not okay to leave your TV in a hot car.
Cars’ internal temperatures can reach up to 138-degrees Fahrenheit (59-degrees Celsius) on a hot day.
Although you may not be sweating outside your car, your TV could reach dangerously high temperatures.
Because it’s hard to tell how hot your car will become during spring and summer, it’s best to avoid leaving your TV in your car to avoid damaging it.
So, instead of running a few more errands after buying your new TV on a warm summer’s day, just take your TV straight home. You’ll be thankful you did.
Wrapping Things Up
TVs, like many other electronic devices, are temperature sensitive and prone to overheating.
Your TV could not only break from the heat, but it could also catch on fire and risk hurting you and your loved ones.
To reduce the likelihood of your TV sustaining heat damage, don’t mount it over a hot fireplace or in direct sunlight. Keep it well ventilated, and place it in a cool, dry environment.
If you notice your TV has black or white spots and is melting, call fire safety authorities immediately and proceed with caution.
TVs are great for watching life’s most dramatic moments without living them. Just make sure you don’t end up on the evening news from a TV combusting.
What’s your experience with TVs breaking from the heat? Let us know in the comments below!
Yesenia Achlim is a technical copywriter and editor with a focus on AV equipment. She aims to break down complicated topics and make technology accessible, no matter your technical expertise. When she’s not teaching you how to replace a projector lamp, you can find her reading and baking.