Should I fix my LCD TV or replace it?
June 15, 2009 4:33 PM   Subscribe

Should I fix my LCD TV or replace it? Our 18-month-old LCD TV has died. Tech support says it's probably the "main board." We're outside the warranty period. Repairs (including shipping) will probably run to at least half the cost of simply replacing it.

The TV is an Olevia 532H; we'd probably replace it with a Samsung 32".

I'd like your advice on what to do. Here's how I see it:

Pro fixing: Until now, the TV has worked well, and we like it, so if a repair is likely to keep it going for another 5 years or so, that seems worthwhile-- but how long should we expect an LCD TV to last anyway? Repairing is probably cheaper, though it's unclear by how much. I think it's also better for the environment, since we won't be discarding one hunk of plastic and glass for another.

Pro replacing: Prices have come down, so the replacement would be a better-quality, more reliable set (though again, how long should an LCD TV last?). The cost of replacing it is known, whereas we don't know the cost of repairs until we've already spent $150+ sending it in and paying a diagnostic fee. We also get back to a working TV quicker.

What do you think?
posted by underthehat to Technology (7 answers total)
Buy a new TV.

Look at this this way... you can buy a used two year old Olevia that's prone to breakage for $150 plus whatever repair costs there will be, or you can spend $550 and get a top of the line new set.
posted by MegoSteve at 4:36 PM on June 15, 2009

What are the symptoms? If it just stopped turning on altogether, the tech support diagnosis is probably wrong. The repair will never be less than $150, but even broken the TV has resale value..
posted by Chuckles at 5:58 PM on June 15, 2009

Olevia and Vizio both are virtually unrepairable outside of replacing everything (all components are on one board. "Main board," indeed).
posted by bz at 5:59 PM on June 15, 2009

@Chuckles: When we power it on, the screen appears to be energized-- it goes form dead black to the "black screen" look. But the Olevia logo that should appear during startup, doesn't; there's no on-screen display at all; and no display of any inputs-- video or sound.
posted by underthehat at 6:04 PM on June 15, 2009

Ahh.. Well, the diagnosis is probably right then. It could be a loose connector, but it is probably something a lot worse (surface mount integrated circuit burned out, maybe.. not easy to fix at all).

Ask them what the total bill would be assuming it does need a main board swap, but I'm leaning towards MegoSteve's answer.

Resale potential is not so great either, but probably still better than garbage. Try sticking it on craigslist for $10-50, or at least freecycle it. There are lots of people around looking for parts from these things..
posted by Chuckles at 6:45 PM on June 15, 2009

And please, don't use @ notation.. :)
posted by Chuckles at 6:45 PM on June 15, 2009 [1 favorite]

Thanks for the advice, Chuckles-- both doses.
posted by underthehat at 6:48 PM on June 15, 2009

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