Introduction: Fix a Stuck Pixel on an LCD Monitor

Picture of Fix a Stuck Pixel on an LCD Monitor

If you liked this instructable, then you'll probably like the other things on my site here... Voiding Warranties

UPDATE: This Instructable was on Engadget!

I am going to show you how to fix a stuck pixel on your LCD monitor. Stuck pixels are really annoying and just plain look bad. Over the past few years I have had to fix SO many stuck pixels. It's not that hard to do and usually only takes a couple of minutes. Enjoy!

This will only work on LCD monitors, but this includes computer LCD monitors, laptop screens, cameras (the screen might have a hard protective shield over it that you will have to take off), and hand-held systems (will most likely have a hard protective shield). Does anybody know if this will work with an OLED screen? I think that it will, but I'm not positive.

Note: This will only fix stuck pixels. Not dead pixels or hot pixels. A dead pixel is when the pixel is always off. It is easiest to spot a dead pixel against a white background. The pixel will appear to be non existent. It will look darker than the stuck pixel in the image below. A hot pixel is when the pixel is always on. It is easiest to see against a dark background. The pixel will be bright white. A stuck pixel will usually the red, green, blue or yellow, but can also be a light black color (pictured below). A stuck pixel is caused by a manufacturing defect in which it leaves one or more sub-pixels permanently turned on or off.

By the way, the picture that I took is a bad example of a stuck pixel. Because it is black, one might think that it is actually a dead pixel but it is not. It just so happened that all of the sub-pixels in that pixel were permanently turned off. The next time I see a dead pixel on a computer that isn't black, I will update the picture because the current one is a bad example.

PS: This is my first Instructable so please be nice. :)

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials

There are three different methods that I know on how to fix a stuck pixel. Here are the materials you will need for each.

1st method, flashing different colors rapidly: has a great tool. This is their free java applet or you can download it below.

2nd method, applying pressure to pixel:
Damp paper towel
Small stylus or dull pencil. (I used an odd looking stylus from a board game)

3rd method, tapping the pixel:
Pen with cover on or another small, blunt object. (I used the back of the same stylus)

Step 2: First Method: Flashing Colors Rapidly

Picture of First Method: Flashing Colors Rapidly

This is the most traditional method. It fixes the stuck pixel by rapidly flashing different colors to try to get it to change. This method works very well, but if you do it for to long, it can actually create more stuck pixels. Get it here or download it below. The site claims that it can also reduce burn in on plasma displays but I have not tested it yet.

Open the java applet and resize it so that the window is very small. Now move the window over to where your stuck pixel is. Leave it be for five minutes than close the window and see if it's fixed. If its not than repeat again for another five minutes. The site says that it may take up to 20 minutes but I have found that it usually works within the first 10.

PS: Beetlegossip suggested that you could also go into Notepad in Windows and then create a batch file and write this,

@color 53
@color 35
@color 23
@color 32
@goto A

I have not tested his batch file method yet (I have a mac) so please tell me your results. And obviously the batch file method will not work for macs.

Step 3: Second Method: Applying Pressure to Stuck Pixel

Picture of Second Method: Applying Pressure to Stuck Pixel

This method is done by placing a damp (not wet!) paper towel over you monitor. Place your stylus or blunt pencil tip on the paper towel over where the stuck pixel is. You have to place it exactly on the stuck pixel. Now turn of your monitor and apply a small amount of pressure to the stylus / pencil. Wait two seconds and then turn your monitor back on. Your stuck pixel should be fixed! If it is not, try repeating but this time, apply a little more pressure.

This method works because a stuck pixel is a pixel in which the liquid in the liquid crystal has not or not completely spread to this pixel. The backlight uses this liquid and lets different amounts of light through. This affects the color of the pixel. The pressure helps the liquid in the liquid crystal move around.

Step 4: Third Method: Tapping Monitor

Picture of Third Method: Tapping Monitor

This final method works but can easily create more stuck pixels or even do some real damage so be careful. First you need to display a dark color / image over your stuck pixel. (Make sure it's really showing a dark color / image and not just a blank signal) Take the back of your stylus, or another small, blunt object, and lightly tap on the stuck pixel. You should briefly see a white spot where you tapped. If not, then tap a little harder. Keep tapping, each time tapping a little harder. This should only take about 5-10 taps. This should correct the stuck pixel. Be careful thought, because doing it too many times may cause damage to your monitor.

I believe that the reason this works is the same as method 2.

Step 5: Enjoy Your Now Flawless Monitor!

Picture of Enjoy Your Now Flawless Monitor!

Enjoy your monitor without those annoying stuck pixels!

And as I said before, this will obviously only work on LCD monitors.


MrJLatino (author)2008-12-03

Hi, i have a question: can stuck pixels be fixed if they are all in a straight line that comes down across the screen? I m trying all these methods on my IMAC but its not working. Can you help me out?

Can you describe it more? Is it a vertical or horizontal line, or is it a diagonal line? Is it a solid line, or is it a bunch of stuck pixels that just happen to be in a line-like shape? If it is a solid vertical, or horizontal line, then it is a faulty lcd, and there is nothing you can do. Also, is your iMac the newer one that is aluminum and black? If it is, than the display has a glass/plastic plate over the lcd making method 2 & 3 useless.

I think he means like screen burn-in...

animaster (author)Richard_[UK]2009-05-20

LCD's can't burn in, he just got a broken LCD screen

lisamyfix (author)animaster2017-08-18

They can get some image retention in very odd situations... but it takes months and months of a static image for it to happen... while a plasma screen will have image retention in a matter of minutes.

99.99% of regular pc users would never notice image retention unless they never turned their monitors off and always left the exact image on the screens all day long 24/7 for years.

Plasma and even the newer OLED screens have it bad. Its why OLED's high cost, and its poor pixel lifespan make it a fairly useless tech since for much less money you can get a mainstream LCD/LED display and with new tech like HDR, the contrast ratio is on footing with OLED but has the pixel life and almost zero chance of image retention, makes OLED very unwelcome unless it became cheaper than LCD screens.

underwhelmed (author)animaster2009-07-24

Actually, he has a video card issue that is well known for iMacs. If you take it to an Apple store they will fix it for you.

PedroDaGr8 (author)MrJLatino2011-11-19

As others have mentioned this is either a video card issue or bad/dying LCD column driver. The latter are not fixable (to the best of my knowledge.) while according to the poster above the former are a silent recall issue for the iMac.

lisamyfix (author)2017-08-18

This actually worked. I just noticed 4 dark/dead pixels on my screen (noticeable on a while image). I used that UDPixel program for around 30 minutes and it didn't work by just using it by itself.

But i kept it running while also using a damp paper towl and used my finger and just rotated it around a bit on the pixel for a few seconds and it fixed all 4 dead pixels.

If it doesn't work for you, keep trying and let your screen warm up a lot and run that pixel program to really work it up and use some massage action on the area with a bit of gentle pressure with your soft finger and see how it goes. I wouldn't use a solid object. Your finger and paper towel is better because its nice and soft.

As some mentioned in other comments, if it happens again just keep doing it and it should go away again and is this is a very nice trick... My current monitor is a 2560x1080p LG ultrawide (34UM67). But i've got a really old 15 year old lcd monitor with a dead pixel i want to try this out and see if it works on it.

HarryK3 (author)2015-07-22

Thx..Pressure method worked for me

sheepinthebigcity (author)2015-05-15

I asked in Tom's hardware and they asked me to visit this page.

My display has been running great for 4 whole years, and then yesterday it suddenly developed a very bright red spot in an edge. It was annoying, my eyes would always go to that spot, the more i tried to avoid the more i found myself looking at it.

I tried the pressure method first, didn't work.

I tried the rub, tap method, didn't work.

I tried UDPixel for one hour, didn't work.

I fired up UDPixel again, and left it running overnight.

And viola, the stuck red pixel has disappeared and the screen looks perfect again!

I really had my doubts that this'd work, it's a hardware problem, and a software generally cannot fix hardware-hence I tried the pressure methods first.

But who woulda known, it really worked!

Thanks Einsteins Circuitry you managed to add more life to my 4 years old laptop :)

I signed up just to thank you. Thanks, you really helped. Kudos. :)

AbrahamJ1 (author)2015-03-06

Nothing works :(

ektor5 (author)2014-06-04

Tried the third method using a smooth metal pen button (the click-click one!), and it worked after a few taps! Thanks! Finally my 4-year black pixel went away! Bye bye!

violentorchid (author)2011-07-07

I haven't really ever had a stuck pixel. Must be all the shaking and stuff. Treat you screen like an etch-a-sketch is what I got out of this.

Power-Inside (author)2011-05-30

I heard someone say to try moving a magnet piece near the stuck pixel..

scistone (author)Power-Inside2011-06-19

don't use a big one or you need to get a new coputer.

doofusrocker (author)2011-04-29

i just named mine "Pete" and left him alone.

Win Guy (author)doofusrocker2011-05-16

I have two named "Joe" and "Phil".

rcguymike (author)2011-04-27

@color 90
@color C0
@color A0
@color F0
@color 00
@goto A

much better colors, light blue, light red, light green, white, black, and repeat. This will use quite a bit of cpu because it is an endless loop executing as fast as the cpu can command it. (author)2011-04-17

that is still only 4 cores I have 2 processors to run windows at acceptable speed :-)

Sovereignty (author)2011-04-17

You can use the NDIS wrapper with the original Windows drivers to activate your Wireless. Linux, Windows, I'd even return to DOS before I used a Mac. Why someone would be 'proud' to own one is beyond me. Like being proud of riding the short bus.

who is proud?

killbox (author)2007-12-27

>PS: Beetlegossip suggested that you could also go into Notepad in >Windows >and then create a batch file and write this, > :>A >@color 0f >@color f0 >@goto A name that something like test.bat and then run it, hit alt+enter to make it full screen, this is not as good as the color option but it does make it flicker white and black.

beetlegossip (author)killbox2007-12-28

If you wanted a change in colors you could put something like, @color 53 @color 35 @color 23 @color 32 The possibilities are endless in a bat file! PS: You should see if the same thing works on a mac

torma616 (author)beetlegossip2007-12-30

When I tried to make the .bat file, it didn't work. When i clicked run, the cmd prompt window opened and then closed, i didn't have enough time to do anything. Do you know why?

Sovereignty (author)torma6162011-04-17

Type the cmd command in Run... Hit enter and the terminal will stay open.

beetlegossip (author)torma6162007-12-30

Perhaps you have an existing .bat file that has corrupted the earlier data? If not try recreating the .bat file. I suggest something simple like :A @color 0f @color f0 @color 0f @color f0 @goto A Then save the file as a .bat on your desktop which I am sure you know how to do. If this doesn't work then I have no idea what to do. After all I am only in 10th grade... Still learning about stuff

torma616 (author)beetlegossip2007-12-31 in 9th grade

zpersichetti (author)torma6162008-12-02 in 7th grade

me 2 !!!

and vista?

Swert (author)beetlegossip2008-03-21

that would have taken me like an hour to write something similar in java, thats pretty amazing.

N1CK4ND0 (author)torma6162009-04-21

you might have copied extra text. a letter or 2 extra can sometimes cause the program to exit

Shynobi (author)torma6162008-01-17

i think what u have to do is run the batch file from a command promt window. open command promt->type in start "name of batch file with the .bat at the end"->press enter and it should work ps. when u put batch file name don't use quotes

torma616 (author)torma6162007-12-30

Nevermind...i found out why. You need to type "@goto A" at the end for it to work!

beetlegossip (author)torma6162007-12-30

Oh ok then that would've been the problem that i would've thought of eventually =)

anomdebus (author)beetlegossip2009-03-09

(this is XP or later, I think; tested on XP)
@set /a tx=%RANDOM% %% 16
@if %tx% LSS 10 (@set x=%tx%) ELSE if %tx% EQU 10 (@set x=A) ELSE if %tx% EQU 11 (@set x=B) ELSE if %tx% EQU 12 (@set x=C) ELSE if %tx% EQU 13 (@set x=D) ELSE if %tx% EQU 14 (@set x=E) ELSE if %tx% EQU 15 (@set x=F )
@set /a ty=%RANDOM% %% 16
@if %ty% LSS 10 (@set y=%ty%) ELSE if %ty% EQU 10 (@set y=A) ELSE if %ty% EQU 11 (@set y=B) ELSE if %ty% EQU 12 (@set y=C) ELSE if %ty% EQU 13 (@set y=D) ELSE if %ty% EQU 14 (@set y=E) ELSE if %ty% EQU 15 (@set y=F )
@color %x%%y%
@goto A

drresearch (author)anomdebus2010-04-18

Just curious, what would something equivalent be in the linux bash?

anomdebus (author)drresearch2010-04-19

Ok, you got me there.. The syntax is easier, but I don't know of a built in command to change the colors of an xterm via the command line..

I did modify a script to give a similar effect, though (comments from original):

# $XTermId:,v 1.3 2006/09/29 21:49:03 tom Exp $
# $XFree86: xc/programs/xterm/vttests/,v 1.1 1999/07/11 08:49:54 dawes Exp $
# This uses 33 print-lines on an 80-column display.  Printing the numbers in
# hexadecimal would make it compact enough for 24x80, but less readable.

while (1) {
        for ($bg = 0; $bg < 256; $bg++) {
                # print "\x1b[9;1H\x1b[2J";
                for ($fg = 0; $fg < 256; $fg++) {
                        print "\x1b[48;5;${bg}m\x1b[38;5;${fg}m";
                        printf "%03.3d/%03.3d ", $fg, $bg;

beetlegossip (author)anomdebus2009-03-10

what the heck is that? I'm not going to try that unless i know what it does so could you please explain what exactly it does? I don't want to mess up my computer ha ha.

anomdebus (author)beetlegossip2009-03-10

first get a random number less than 16 (%RANDOM% gives a larger number than we can use, so get the remainder from dividing by 16). Then we need to convert that number to hex, there is no direct way, so I use a if/else tree to convert numbers 10-15 to A-F. Do the same for another variable. Use those two variables to set the colors Wash, rinse, repeat. I did this mainly because I am not so familiar w/ batch programming, though I am familiar with shell scripting (unixy). I learned: set /a (set with arithmetic) %RANDOM% % works comparisons are stupidly named in batch

beetlegossip (author)anomdebus2009-03-11

Ahh alright so that's not a batch file then is it? i haven't tried it yet

anomdebus (author)beetlegossip2009-03-11

It is a batch file, bourne shell would not drive one to claw at one's eyes. I also forgot to mention that '%%' is translated to '%' in execution; since '%' is the variable symbol, you need to tell it to be a literal '%'. Also, the effect looks nicer (?) when there is text on the screen so you can get the two color effect.

N1CK4ND0 (author)anomdebus2009-04-21

its just an overcomplicated version

torma616 (author)beetlegossip2007-12-31

one more question... what numbers do the colors go up to? ex: @color XX

DSAdzionator (author)torma6162009-02-23

The colours system in Batch doesn't work like that.
It is a combination of two digits put together like XX representing background and text, respectively.

0 = Black 8 = Grey
1 = Blue 9 = Light Blue
2 = Green A = Light Green
3 = D. Turquoise B = Turquoise
4 = Red C = Light Red
5 = Purple D = Light Purple
6 = Yellow E = Light Yellow
7 = White F = Bright White

TiLt (author)torma6162008-06-28

I'm guessing that there would be about 88 (11-99) and as for vista running the best on a mac, I would guess that it wouldn't be classified as a mac once you put vista on it. But in reality so long as the machine meets the specks.

Aslai (author)torma6162008-02-19

open Command Prompt, and type in either: help color color /? then read.

beetlegossip (author)torma6162007-12-31

um I Have absolutely no idea lol

SonOfaVermonter (author)2010-08-29

Thank you for using a mac, they are the best. As I'm sure you know

That is just your opinion. I think Macs are terrible. Overpriced with poor hardware and keyboards that give you RSI. Windows for the win, atleast for me. (Yes, I have used a mac with snow leopard so i know what i am talking about.)

About This Instructable




Bio: I love computer programming and hardware hacking, robotics, and building stuff. This is my website, [].
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