Introduction: Fix Your Westinghouse SK-19H210S Television

My nice little 19" Westinghouse TV lasted just over a year before it died. It had been working beautifully until one day, it refused to turn on. The little power LED wouldn't even flicker. I called Westinghouse and they said that I was out of luck because it was no longer under warranty. Shoot.

After some Googling, I discovered that my particular model (SK-19H210S) is notorious for this exact problem. Every review I read told the same story: "It lasted a year and then died! Westinghouse told me I was S.O.L.!"

Time to break out the ol' screwdriver and take a peek under the hood.

My first suspect was the power supply board. Possibly just a blown fuse? After taking the TV apart, and inspecting the power supply, I found the culprit: a bad 2200uF capacitor. One lousy capacitor goes and the whole darn TV is useless! Sheesh...

I have a sneaking suspicion that Westinghouse bought a got bad batch of capacitors that only lasted for a year. If I am correct, than replacing this one little part could revive your poor little TV!

These instructions are intended for only this specific model of TV. Even if you do have the same model, it is still possible that the problem is something completely different. It might be worth a shot though. The worst you could do is break it. If its already broken then whats the difference?

A word of caution: You may encounter high voltages! Capacitors can store a lot of electricity. It is a good idea to discharge capacitors by shorting out their leads with a plastic handled screwdriver. Wear safety glasses while doing this!

Basic soldering

Safety glasses
Multimeter (for checking faulty components)
Phillips screwdriver
Plastic pry bars (For getting the case apart without scratching it. An old credit card might work too. Try a butter knife if you don't care about scratches)
Soldering Iron
Towel (to keep the screen from getting scratched)
Hammer (for if it doesn't work and you get frustrated)

One 2200uF 16v Electrolytic capacitor
Aluminum foil tape (duct tape or Gorilla tape might work in a pinch)

FREE (if you scrounge, $3 at the most if you don't)
If you have all the tools, then all you need is the replacement capacitor. I scrounged one from my pile of electronic junk.

If you don't have one on hand, try a local hobby shop or RadioShack. I did a quick search on eBay and found a lot of 5 for $2.50 including shipping.

Just make sure that the one you're using is a 2200uF electrolytic capacitor with a 16v working voltage.

Step 1: Case Disassembly

Getting the case open can be tricky. Just pay attention to how it all comes apart because you will have to put it back together when you're done! Pay attention to which screws came from which holes.

If you are an experienced TV-disassembler, skip to step 7.

It helps to keep small parts in a dish or a cup.
Taping screws to a piece of paper and writing notes helps you remember where they go.
Marking or labeling parts and wires as you take them apart is helpful when it comes time to reassemble.

First, remove the front speaker cover by prying it downward. It is just snapped on, no screws.

Step 2: Remove the Stand.

Put down a towel to protect the screen and lay the TV on its front. Remove the stand. Pry off the small cover on the back and undo the 4 screws that hold the stand on.

Step 3: Remove the Front Case Half.

Once you have removed the stand, there are 6 more screws that hold the case together. Undo these and then turn the TV on its back. Use the pry bars to pry the front half of the case off, starting at the bottom.

Step 4: Unplug Controls.

On the right side, there is a small circuit board with all of the control buttons on it. Gently lift it up and carefully remove the four wires and the ribbon cable from it. Two of the four wires go to the speakers, one goes to the IR remote sensor and one goes to the power LED. These are marked on the circuit board. Just remember to reconnect them in the right places when you put it all back together.

There are four screws holding the screen in place. Undo these, and the whole electronics assembly lifts out.

Step 5: Electronics Disassembly

Lay the screen assembly down on the towel. Disconnect the thick ribbon cable and the backlight wires. Make sure you mark the backlight wires so that you can connect them to the correct places when you're done.

The back section that contains the power supply board and the controller board is only attached with foil tape. If you take your time and peel carefully, you can peel back the foil tape and then stick it back down when youre done.

I don't have that much patience. Fortunately, I had some aluminum foil tape on hand. Ordinary duct tape or other sturdy tape would work too. I just cut along the edges of the tape with an exacto knife and taped it back down when I was done. Just be careful if you choose to do it this way. There is a ribbon cable underneath the foil tape on one side. Don't cut this ribbon cable!

Step 6: Remove PCBs

The section containing the power supply board and the other electronics should lift free once the wires are disconnected and the tape is cut. Place the LCD panel in a safe place.

The power supply is plugged into the other PCB in such a way that you must remove both boards at the same time to avoid damaging the connection.

Unscrew the eight screws that hold the boards down. You will also need to unscrew the screws on the side with all of the inputs.

Once all of the screws are removed, carefully pry up the boards together. Make sure you keep the whole assembly straight or you will bend the connector pins between them.

Step 7: Locate and Replace the Capacitor!

The power supply board is the one with the power plug on it. Inspect it for other problems. This Instructible only covers replacing the faulty capacitor, but perhaps the problem on your particular set is a blown fuse or a bad backlight circuit.

Look for the 2200uF electrolytic capacitor on the power board. The top will likely appear a little bulged and it may look like it has been leaking.

All you need to do now is remove it and replace it with a shiny new one! Make sure you pay attention to the polarity. There is a white stripe on the side of electrolytic capacitors. This is the negative side. Make sure you place the new capacitor in the same direction as the original.

Take your soldering iron and melt the two solder joints below the capacitor. Wiggle it out until it comes free.

Take your new capacitor and solder it into place!

Step 8: Reassemble!

This is the hardest part of the whole process!

Theoretically, you can just follow this Instructable backwards and everything will go back together nicely and without any leftover screws!

In reality, it may take a couple of tries. Just be patient, don't force anything and make sure there are no wires getting pinched. Try to remember which screws went where...

Once it is all reassembled, plug it in and try 'er out! Hopefully, it will present you with a glorious blue glow!

If not, try taking it all apart again and make sure everything is put back together correctly. It took me several tries. There is still the possibility that your problem was something completely different in the first place.

If it still doesn't work despite all of your efforts, well then at least you tried. Get out your biggest hammer and fix that stinkin' TV as hard as you can! You might not be able to watch your favorite show when you're done, but at least it will be entertaining! ;)