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There are a number of causes of the Samsung TV white screen of death, ranging from software glitches to weak connections between the T-Con board’s LVDS cable and the display panel, but all of them are possible to fix at home with only a little effort.
In this troubleshooting guide, I’ll cover every possible fix for a Samsung TV white screen, and I’m very confident that you can use this to get your TV back up and running again.
Why Is My Samsung TV Screen White?
|QLED/Frame TV Ambient Mode||If you’re getting a white screen when in Ambient Mode, this is because it has not downloaded any content. You’ll need to connect your TV to a network.|
|Software Glitch||Cold booting or power cycling your TV can often fix issues stuck in the flash memory that cause the picture to glitch on a white screen.|
|Poor HDMI Connection||A bad HDMI cable or poorly seated connection can mean that your TV doesn’t get a proper signal.|
|T-Con Connection Failure||A loose T-Con connection or failed board means that your screen isn’t receiving the correct signal.|
There are a couple of related issues with the Samsung TV white screen, either:
- the screen itself is completely white with sound
- the brightness appears to be turned right up but you can still make out the picture underneath so that the screen appears cloudy or hazy.
These can both be ultimately fixed by changing the T-Con board, but it’s worthwhile checking that there are no simpler fixes first, as often a power cycle or software update can fix your TV.
All of the initial fixes below are relevant if your Samsung TV picture is too white but you can still see the display. If you can’t see your display, then try cold booting your TV and skip to the final steps.
1. QLED and Frame TV Ambient Mode
Ambient Mode on the most recent Samsung TVs should display an artwork or picture at low brightness when your TV is switched off.
If you are instead only seeing a white screen, this is because your TV has not downloaded the necessary content to display.
Make sure your QLED/Frame TV is connected to a network, then leave it to download the content on its own.
If you’ve waited a few hours and the screen is still white, then factory reset your TV, with the steps for this found further down this guide.
2. Power Cycle Your Samsung TV
With modern electronics, it’s possible that your Samsung TV has a hazy screen because of something stuck in your TV’s flash memory, which can also be a problem if you are seeing the blue screen of death.
Power cycling or cold booting your TV will clear out any issues with non-permanent memory and reset your mainboard without losing your personal settings.
This is quick and painless and won’t cause you to lose any of your saved settings.
- Switch off and unplug your TV.
- Hold down the physical power button on the TV for at least 15 seconds.
- Wait for at least 30 minutes for any residual power to drain from the TV’s capacitors (which are capable of storing charge for several minutes).
- Plug your TV back in and try switching it on. You should see a red light if you have been successful.
Make sure you do wait for the full 30 minutes before plugging your TV back in – you would be surprised how long the components within your TV can hold a charge, and you want to make sure it has fully reset.
Although this seems a very basic step, don’t overlook it because, in the vast majority of cases, a simple soft reset fixes most issues.
3. Change Over Your HDMI Cables
There’s a strong possibility that a poorly seated cable is creating signal noise which is displaying as a bleached screen on your Samsung TV.
This comes down to either a:
- Faulty HDMI cable with a break in it
- Damaged HDMI port with broken pins
- Poor HDMI connection where the cable and connector are not fully making contact
To check your HDMI and other cables:
- Switch off your TV.
- Remove any HDMI or other physical cables connected to the back of your TV.
- If you have any compressed air, use that to clean the contacts both of the cable and in the connector on the TV. If you don’t have compressed air, then blow gently on them.
- Firmly push the cables back into their slots on the TV.
- Switch your TV back on again.
If that hasn’t fixed the problem, then try using a different HDMI input. Most TVs have 3 or 4 HDMI ports.
If you have one that is on a different part of the TV then that would be the best one to try, as this should have a separate connection to the TV’s main board.
Plug your HDMI cable into the new port, note the number next to it, then choose this HDMI input on your TV, by using the Input or Source button on your TV remote or the Input or Menu button on your TV itself.
Most Samsung TVs come with the option to run an HDMI self-test, which can check that HDMI cables are working properly. Note that this only works on cables less than 2m long.
For TVs made before 2021, set your TV’s source to the HDMI channel you want to test, then go to Settings -> Support -> Self diagnosis -> Signal information -> HDMI cable test -> Start test.
For TVs made after 2021, go to Settings -> Device care -> Self diagnosis -> HDMI troubleshooting and choose the HDMI connection you want to test.
You can also try removing all external devices, including those connected by Bluetooth and any coaxial or signal cables so that the TV only has a power cable going into it.
If the brightness level is now correct, then try re-seating your HDMI and other cables one by one, until you find the damaged cable that needs replacing.
4. Adjust Your Picture Settings
Most Samsung TVs have the option to change the brightness or other aspects of the picture, but first, try running a picture test to check if the white screen is software-related.
For TVs made before 2021, go to Settings -> Support -> Self Diagnosis -> Picture Test.
For TVs made after 2021, go to Settings -> Device Care -> Self Diagnosis -> Picture Test and follow the on-screen instructions.
If this hasn’t helped, then using your remote control, navigate to the Home screen, then Settings and All Settings and go to the Picture menu.
Try setting the Picture Mode to Dynamic, and if that doesn’t fix your problem, then go to Expert Settings.
This allows you to change the brightness of your TV’s backlight and hopefully will let you change it enough to totally fix the white screen problem.
You should start with the Brightness setting, decreasing this as much as possible, then take a look at Contrast, Gamma, and Shadow Detail, and hopefully, you will be able to get a decent picture.
If not, you should then go to Power and Energy Saving in the All Settings menu, and switch off Brightness Optimisation, Brightness Reduction, and Motion Lighting (if available).
If you can’t switch off Motion Lighting, this is probably because Game Mode is on. Switch this off from the main menu.
In the System menu, go to Eco Solution and switch off Energy Saving, Motion Lighting (if it’s here instead) and Ambient Light Detection, as this has an effect on the backlight’s brightness.
5. Update Your Samsung’s Firmware
Because the white screen can be software-related, it’s always a good idea to try updating your TV’s system firmware and hope that that solves the problem.
QLED/Frame Samsung TVs support auto-updating of firmware, but you can’t assume that this is turned on for you.
To check that auto-updating is on for firmware/software on your Samsung TV over Wi-Fi:
- Press the Menu or Home button on your remote and go to Settings.
- Click Support.
- Then Software Update.
- Agree to any terms and conditions that may pop up, then switch on Auto Update.
For older Samsung TVs, you’ll need to update the firmware by USB. To do this:
- Press the Menu or Home button on your remote and go to Settings.
- Go to Support.
- Then Contact Samsung or About This TV.
- Take note of the Model Code and Software Version currently installed.
- Go to Samsung’s Support site and enter your model number.
- Select Manuals & Downloads and look for the newest firmware version.
- If this Firmware Version is later than the version you noted was installed on your TV, then download it, along with the Firmware Update User Manual which will give you full instructions on how to install your update.
6. Factory Reset Your Samsung TV
Returning your TV back to its factory settings is a more extreme step, as it will delete any personalization features, downloaded apps, or connected devices, but it’s the best solution if you still have a white haze on your TV that previous steps have not removed.
To factory reset a Samsung Smart TV:
- Press the Menu or Home button on your remote and go to Settings.
- Then General & Privacy.
- And Reset.
- Enter your PIN, which by default is 0000 (four zeroes) for Samsung.
- Then select one final Reset in the popup.
Samsung has provided a video of these steps in the video below.
If your Samsung remote is not working, then you can get to the same menu items by using the physical Menu button that is most likely underneath your Samsung TV’s logo, next to the Power button.
Press this and use the Volume + and – or Channel + and – depending on the model to follow the steps above.
That should brighten up your screen without you having to delve into hardware problems, but just in case you still have a problem then this will be caused by the T-Con, which we will look at next.
7. Check for T-Con Causing the White Screen of Death
A white screen of death on a Samsung TV is often a sign that there is a failure of the LVDS cable connecting the T-Con board to the display panel itself, or a chip failure on the T-Con.
The Timing Control (T-Con) board is a small PCB board that drives your TV’s panel, sending the signal to each pixel row of your screen using internal clocks to keep each row in sync.
The Main Board is a larger PCB where you plug your HDMI and other connectors into. This does a lot of the work of translating the input into signal, which then goes to the T-Con board.
The Power Board is where you plug in your power cable, and it converts your home electricity supply into a voltage and current that your TV can use.
Either the cable connectors themselves can come loose or get covered in grime or dust, preventing a clean contact or components on the boards can fail, meaning they don’t power the backlight sufficiently or cannot provide a constant picture signal.
To access the boards, first remove the back panel. If you’re not confident doing this, then now is the time to get an expert in. Otherwise:
- Unplug your TV, hold down the power button, and wait for at least 30 minutes. There are large capacitors in the power board for the backlight and these can hold charge for an extended period of time.
- Place your TV face down on a large table or workbench. Make sure there is nothing that can scratch the screen on your work surface.
- Ground yourself.
- Open your TV by unscrewing the screws in the back panel. It should come apart in two pieces: front and back.
- Put the back panel somewhere out of the way and take a look at the circuit boards that have been revealed.
- You will see a T-Con panel for translating the signal into a TV picture, a power board, and a main board.
See how to open a Samsung TV in the video below.
It’s a good idea to start your investigation with the T-Con board, as one or more of the internal clocks failing is a regular cause of TV screen problems.
The position of the boards will vary by model, but the T-Con board can be identified by the ribbon cables connecting it to the TV’s panel.
Start by giving everything a good clean, preferably with compressed air or a non-static brush. It’s possible that dust in the connections can block the signal.
Then, you should be able to remove the ribbon-like low voltage differential signaling (LVDS) cables on the T-Con board by pushing the locking cover down and they will then easily come away from the board. Don’t try to force them out without unlocking them first.
After removing the LVDS cable, take a look at the individual connectors on the ends of the cables, and the connectors in the socket. You are looking for any signs of corrosion, damage, or dust.
The contacts should be a shiny gold or silver color. If they are dull and appear to have a rough, copper-like layer over them, this would indicate oxidation, and therefore a new cable is recommended.
Get your TV back into an upright position, and with one of the LVDS cables connecting the T-Con to the Main Board disconnected, switch your TV back on and see if any picture is there. Disconnect that cable and re-connect the opposite cable.
If your TV is now working with either of the cables connected, then you know the problem is either with your T-Con or Main Boards.
Both T-Con and Main Boards can be replaced for around $30 from eBay.
To get the correct board, note the T-Con / Main Board model number written on the label on the board, and put this into eBay.
If your screen is still white, then you can check the chips on the boards themselves for failure. See how to do this in the video below.
8. Try Pressing Your TV’s Edges
If the issue isn’t with the T-Con itself and you have an older TV, the issue is very likely to be with the boards that the T-Con connects to, which are factory-bonded to the display panel.
You’ll know if this is the problem if pressure on the top or bottom edge of your panel temporarily fixes your TV.
The problem is caused by heat from your TV making the factory bonds unstable and eventually causing them to fail. Pressure can reinstate the contacts and restore the picture, but this is only a temporary fix and is essentially the same problem seen with gate drivers for horizontal lines on screen.
You can try using tape as in the video below, but this is a tricky problem to fix at home since the contacts you are trying to restore are factory-bonded and the cost of a new display panel usually exceeds the cost of a new TV.
Samsung TV Support and Warranty
You can check your current warranty status at Samsung’s warranty site.
Unfortunately, warranties typically only last a year unless you have already paid to extend it.
Although you are unlikely to see a white screen on a Samsung TV under one year old, this can happen. If so, return your TV under warranty and get it fixed.
You can also try to contact Samsung support directly to see if they can offer any help.
You can use the Samsung support site to help diagnose your problem, but if you are at this stage, then you are better off calling them directly at:
- 1-800-SAMSUNG (726-7864)
They are in the office 7 am – 12 am EST, 7 days a week, but their automated chatbot is available on their site 24/7.
Even if Samsung won’t fix your TV, they might still offer you a discount on a future model if you pester them hard enough! Always worth a try!
- You can almost always fix the white screen on a Samsung TV by checking the LVDS cables between the T-Con and panel are properly connected, or ultimately by changing the T-Con board itself.
- Power cycling your TV and ensuring that it is unplugged for 30 minutes can fix the problem in some situations.
- Don’t overlook possible HDMI issues, with bad cables a frequent cause of screen problems.
- The self-diagnosis picture test can be a helpful tool to tell you if the problem is hardware or software-related.
If you still are having problems with your TV, then try Samsung support, but otherwise, you will be most likely looking at a new TV.