Consumers constant demand higher resolutions and larger screens on the monitors, and the screen real-estate we are afforded on an LCD screen these days is great.  But what do you do when you un-box your new 32-inch monitor to find it has a broken pixel right in the middle of the screen?

A ‘stuck pixel’ is a pixel which is jammed as one color, usually black but it can also be green, blue or red.  No matter what you do on the screen, that one tiny pixel will not change color, making it appear like a pesky piece of dirt on the screen.

A kick in the teeth can occur if you get a stuck pixel as most monitor manufacturers do not consider it to be a manufacturing fault, so you will not get a replacement under the standard manufacturer’s warranty.  If you have a stuck pixel on a recently purchased monitor and can’t fix it using this guide, we suggest you return to the retailer quickly as they will probably replace it without question under a retailer warranty.  Once this warranty has expired you’ll be in the hands of the manufacturer who will be much less obliged to replace your screen.

The reason that manufacturers can refuse to replace your monitor is that there are so many million pixels in each screen each with four colors that it is inevitable that faulty pixels will occur.  The monitor industry came up with an ISO standard that defines how much of a margin of error defines a monitor to be faulty.  This is based on how many pixels are faulty per million, whether the pixel is black or colored (black is considered to be a worse fault than a permanently colored pixel), and where the pixel appears on the screen.  As a very rough guide, expect there to need to over 3 dead pixels on a 19′ monitor before it to be considered a fault by a manufacturer.

If you find yourself stuck in this position or if you want to try a manual fix, there are a few things you can try.  There are free applications you can try that will flicker the pixels quickly, but the most likely fix for a stuck pixel is simply applying a small amount of pressure with your thumb wrapped in a soft cloth and rubbing in a circular motion for about 30 seconds.  For added affect, switch the monitor on and off a couple of times while doing this, or move some different colors on the screen so that the pixel will attempt to flicker the problem color on and off.

If this doesn’t solve the problem, try bringing in the monitor to San Diego PC Help, and we’ll see if we can fix it for you.  Otherwise you can hot-foot it back to the retailer and try and get a replacement.

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