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How Long Do HDMI Cables, Ports Last?

How Long Do HDMI Cables, Ports Last?

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HDMI is considered the established standard for sending audio and video from an entertainment device to a TV via cable. 

It’s the best way to connect an Ultra HD Blu-ray player, a streaming media device or a video game console, especially if you’re trying to connect anything less than a decade old to your TV — HDMI is the way to go. 

Over time, the world has seen upgraded versions of HDMI cables. With every version, the capacity to carry audio and video has increased. 

The latest variant, HDMI 2.1, can even support 120 frames per second on 4K resolution. However, one factor that still hangs in the balance is cable and port durability. 

How long do HDMI ports last? Is there a need to change your ports? 

Read on as we answer these questions. 

Can HDMI Ports Get Worn Out?

HDMI port on a black laptop


Even though HDMI ports are perhaps the most popular display port in the market, they are often criticized for their flimsy construction. 

How Do I Know if My HDMI Port Is Bad?

A close-up of hdmi port on a blue laptop

To check if your laptop’s HDMI port is working or not, consider following this procedure:

  • Before you turn on your computer, you first need to ensure the HDMI cable is connected the way it should be into the port. It should not be loose.
    • If it is loose, it can be because of a thick or heavy HDMI cable putting excessive strain on the port, 
    • If the port is loose, remove the HDMI cable, then
    • Get a Phillips-head screwdriver and tighten the screws on the HDMI port.
  • It’s also worth mentioning that most HDMI ports are damaged when people try to plug in the cable and end up disintegrating the pins either on the port or on the cable. Be gentle but effective. 
  • Once you’re sure the HDMI cable is connected properly, turn on your computer.
  • Right-click on the “My Computer” or “This PC” icon. From the side menu that appears, click on the properties.
  • Now click on “Device Manager.”
  • Scroll down the list, and you’ll see a section that lists the HDMI port under the “Display Adapters” section. If an HDMI port is not listed in this category, then it’s likely that your PC’s HDMI port has stopped working and that you need to replace it. 

However, if you do see an HDMI port listed in this category, right-click on it, and then click on “Properties.”

  • In the dialogue box that pops up, you will see the status of the HDMI cable. 

If this says, “This device is working properly,” then your HDMI port is working the way it should. However, if there’s a troubleshooting indicator or a “failed” prompt, there may be a problem with the port that needs to be fixed.

What Happens When an HDMI Port Goes Bad?

In some cases, it may not be possible to detect a faulty HDMI port or a faulty HDMI cable through the troubleshooting procedure we mentioned. 

Instead, these problems will be a lot more apparent in other ways, including the following:

A Fuzzy Picture

A blur picture

One of the most obvious signs of an HDMI port not working properly is a display. 

Once you turn on the TV and use the HDMI source to source your content, the image you see won’t be clear. If it is clear, it’ll keep fading out. If this happens, you need to get either a new port or a new HDMI cable. 

No Sound

no sound

Another problem you may face because of a faulty port is not hearing any sound from your TV. 

Initially, you may think there’s something wrong with your TV, but remember that HDMI carries both sound and video. When an HDMI port isn’t working properly, this can happen, too. 

“No Signal”

A no signal TV

If you try to use HDMI and the TV instead shows “No Signal,” it can also mean that you have a faulty HDMI port. 

Distorted Colors

Distorted Colors

Every HDMI cable and port has a life cycle. 

Once they complete this cycle, you may see mismatched colors, dots on the screen or discolorations. This also indicates that either your port or your cable has worn out.  

How Long Can an HDMI Cable Last Before It Loses Quality?

Different size of hdmi cables

Sadly, there is no definite answer to this question. 

An HDMI cable may last five days or five years, depending on the person using them. 

In most cases, these cables are resilient and strong, so it’s rare to see a case in which an HDMI cable breaks. One of the few reasons people throw away older HDMI cables is because they upgrade to new HDMI cables. 

Newer cables give them a higher refresh rate and a better video resolution. 

However, the one reason your HDMI cable may stop working is because of a faulty port. While HDMI cables may last for a long time, ports can deteriorate soon.

Before you decide to discard a port altogether, try cleaning it out first with compressed air. 

Additionally, make sure you don’t use any sharp objects to clean the port. The HDMI connectors inside the port are fragile, and if you even slightly scratch a connector, you can say goodbye to the port. 

Another problem you may face is a loose connection. 

If the HDMI cable keeps falling out, then you should consider buying an HDMI lock. Most of these are easily available on Amazon. 

These locks support the HDMI cable since the lock is mounted on your laptop’s body. This way, the cable always stays in place and does not fall out. 


A man plugs a red hdmi cable into a port

The HDMI standard of transporting video and audio from one device to another has been a widely successful solution for all content-transportation issues. 

However, just like every other solution, this one isn’t foolproof either. 

While problems are few, they can still cause a few hurdles. Manufacturers can instead focus on making the cable more durable (perhaps decreasing the number of pins) to ensure the cable withstands the tests of time. 

This will make the cable more affordable, since lesser repairs will be needed.

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