It happened this weekend. The dreaded “click of death” started on the 46 inch LCD TV. First it was just a few clicks and then the familiar Samsung start up tone would sound and the the screen would turn on. After a few days of delayed TV start ups with the “clicking of death”, eventually there was only clicking. No start up tone, no indicator lights, just a steady clicking of impending television doom. (much like MSNBC). <g>
So I did a little standard troubleshooting, unplugging and plugging the TV back in to the surge protected power strip and still nothing. Though after I unplugged the Samsung TV, the clicking kept going for few seconds and then had 2 quick clicks and stopped. Which led me to believe it was a bad capacitor that was still charged after removing the power source. I tried resetting the TV with the remote, no response. Tried to get it working by plugging the power cord straight into the wall socket and bypass the surge protector, nothing, just a steady click in the blackness of a blank, black screen.
This “click of death” has become a common problem on certain Samsung television sets that were manufactured with a bad batch of capacitors. (This one is a LN46A550P3FXZA) So common in fact that they have a “Capacitor Settlement Division” that I was transferred to when I called Samsung support. These capacitor death caps may be hidden in your TV, waiting to pop and cause you to go to the gym rather than watch Game of Thrones.
Even if you believe that your monitor is out of warranty, check with Samsung first to see if it eligible for a free repair at 1-800-SAMSUNG (1-800-726-7864). You can also go straight to the Samsung Capacitor Settlement site, or call 1-888-899-7602.
You’ll need the model number and serial number, as it is a one-time repair. Specifically, a one-time free of charge repair to replace the capacitors and if that doesn’t work, they’ll replace the power supply.
Affected model numbers as listed by Samsung:
Dell had a widespread issue with capacitors a few years back and took a public beating for it. Samsung seems to have learned that it is far better to stand and fix this problem than to let the interwebs sully their reputation as a quality consumer electronics manufacturer. The failed capacitor phenomenon has become known as “capacitor plague”.
The Samsung Captivate Android smartphone may have so named so that something other than “Samsung Capacitor” comes up in a Google search when you start typing “Samsung Cap….” But they seem to fixing this problem even on older out of warranty televisions. (My LCD TV was purchased in 2008)
Now if they can only take a bite out of Apple’s “patent of death” legal team.
Update: So the Samsung technician arrived at about 9:45 this morning and was out the door by 10am. Pretty quick. The repair process required taking off the back cover of the TV, removing the power supply circuit board, removing the 2 offending capacitors and replacing them with fresh ones, soldering them to the board and putting the parts back together. That’s it. All working now.