02-26-2009 10:57 AM
My husband and I bought a Samsung 61" TV in February of 2006. We also purchased the 4 year warranty. In January and February of 2009 the picture on the TV became increasingly dark and we called for service. On February 19 a technician came and inspected the TV. He told us that he had never seen a problem like this before and called Samsung for help. Samsung said that he could try installing a new "light engine" and see if that helped.
My issues are:
1. I've called Best Buy and the light engine is not expected until March 8 at which time Best Buy will call us for an
installation appointment. The technician estimated two days for the part to be sent from Best Buy and a fast
appointment for installation. Obviously this will not be the case. Meanwhile, we have a 61" TV in our living room
that is virtually unwatchable.
2. Clearly our TV's problem is not a common problem since the technician had never seen it before and Samsung
was not sure what would correct it. The technician told me that the light engine makes up half of the components
of the TV. This is an extreme problem with a TV that is only 3 years old. What further recourse do we have with
this issue with regard to being given a replacement TV?
Can anyone advise us about this?
02-26-2009 11:59 AM
Probably this belongs in the warranties forum. BB's extended warranty service is, unfortunately, notoriously slow.
What is strange is that despite what the technician said, the symptom you describe (increasingly dark) is a common "failure" of projectors and projection style TVs - the bulb in the projector goes dim as it gets old. Typical life of metal halide projector bulbs is 1000-2000 hours, probably longer nowadays but 2000 was typical when I got my first projector in 1999. They are such a limiting factor in projector/projection TV (DLP TVs are a projection TV variant) lifetime that bulbs are generally considered a wear item/consumable. I'm not sure why there is a need to replace the entire "light engine" (probably marketingspeak for the projection subsystem - bulb, DLP chip, and support electronics, probably the optics too). (Of course, something else may have failed that was less likely...)
A bulb burning out (metal halides typically start dimming before they go out completely) would actually not be a surprise to me on a 3-year-old TV if it were used heavily.
Unfortunately, as sad as it is to say this, one can no longer expect a 3-year-old TV to be rock solid reliable. In the era of RoHS, consumer electronics have become far less reliable across the board. Sadly, it's a legally mandated change.
02-26-2009 01:20 PM
It's still listed on their site.
Keep in mind that in the electronics industry, a 1-year product cycle is pretty common...
If it is indeed THAT model, then yes, a fading display is unusual. Unlike the metal halide bulbs usually used in projection systems, LEDs have very long life unless:
1) The heatsink mechanism failed and the emitters overheated
2) They were overdriven from the beginning
3) The power supply for the LED failed
I would say that 1) is pretty unlikely, 2) is highly unlikely (pretty nasty design flaw if it is the problem), and 3) would be more likely to cause a total failure rather than gradual dimming.
02-26-2009 01:22 PM
03-04-2009 04:13 PM
03-04-2009 05:02 PM
Being that it is now March I’m sure it is extremely upsetting to have a TV that stopped working in January, and I can understand wanting to just have the TV replaced. It does sound like you purchased a Performance Service Plan (PSP) to provide extended coverage on the TV, and although the PSP is intended to repair your TV it does allow for replacement under very specific circumstances. If your TV has already had three qualifying repairs and this is the fourth repair you should get a replacement TV, if your TV is determined by us to be un-repairable the PSP would replace your TV, and if we determine that the repair is not economical to continue the PSP would replace your TV.
The technician should not be completely guessing as to what is needed to repair your TV, and should not have given you expectations that could not be met. I would like to get this situation resolved for you by getting your TV repaired or replaced as soon as possible. I am sending you a private message, and to check your messages you should make sure you are logged into the forum and then click on the letter icon in the upper right-hand corner of the page.
Thanks for posting your concern,
Best Buy® Corporate