is burn in permanent

Is Burn-In Permanent & How To Avoid It

So you’ve read somewhere that OLED TVs can suffer from burn-in and are wondering if it’s permanent or not. OLED ...

By Dewayne

So you’ve read somewhere that OLED TVs can suffer from burn-in and are wondering if it’s permanent or not. OLED TVs are notorious for suffering from burn-in and many users use techniques to avoid such issues from occurring in the first place. If your OLED TV suffers from burn-in many users just consider the TV nearly useless as burn-in can be quite annoying.

What exactly is burn-in? Burn-in is an issue that is exclusive to OLED and plasma TVs, and it’s basically a stuck ghost of an image that was previously shown on screen. Burn-in occurs because of uneven usage of pixels on the screen. Each pixel on an OLED screen has its own lifespan, so when they’re used more than the others, they can lose their luminance causing an image to burn-in.

Burn-in is usually caused when static images are showing on screen for way too long. This can be caused by channel logos, and subtitles. black bars, and other static images. Even leaving the screen paused on a movie for too long technically can cause burn-in, but it’s extremely unlikely. Gaming can also cause burn-in, Games such as GTA which have static elements such as the minimap may burn into the screen if you play it too much.

So Is Burn-In Permanent?

black bar burn-in

When an OLED and Plasma TV suffers from true burn-in, it’s permanent. You cannot get rid of it as you cannot restore life to the overused pixels on the screen. Each pixel on the screen is self-illuminating therefore each of them is independent of the other making them have their own lifespans, it’s part of the nature of the screen.

OLED burn-in is frustrating especially if you spend $5000 on your top-tier OLED TV. It can seriously mess up the immersive experience if you’re watching movies or running a home theater. Also, it can be seen as a waste of money when you’ve spent so much money just to have a permanent mark on the screen.

There are claims that you can fix OLED Burn in by using various image restoration techniques such as pixel shifting and turning the brightness down. Unfortunately, these supposed solutions do not work, and they can sometimes cause more damage than good causing severe degradation to many pixels on the screen.

How Can I Avoid Getting Burn-In?

gaming burn-in

There are many ways you can avoid getting burn-in, usually, this involves reducing the screen time of static elements on the screen, or reducing the intensity of these elements. So essentially, less gaming, and reducing the screen time of TV programs with logos. If you like watching with subtitles, there are ways you can reduce the impact of subtitles through Netflix.

Using a QLED TV may be a better option for you if you’re already worried about your OLED screen burn-in. QLED screens do not suffer from burn-in and can be a great investment as they’re cheaper and far more durable. QLED TVs use backlights to illuminate their screen so no individual pixels will last longer than the other. Also, the Quantum Dot technology within QLED screens does not degrade over time.

Building a home theater requires a decent TV that is able to produce amazing cinematic experiences. OLED TVs are usually best at doing this, so it’s probably best to avoid watching harmful content and only reserve your home theater TV for movies. Also, reduce the pause time because this is essentially a static image. And if possible, try to watch movies in the native aspect ratio as black bars can cause burn-in.

Also Read: QLED Burn In

What Is Image Retention?

oled tv burn-in

If you notice a static image on your screen, do not worry immediately as this could be image retention instead of burn-in. Image retention is a less severe version of static images remaining on screens, and they’re temporary. It’s likely image retention if the static image on the screen is quite hard to notice.

To fix image retention, the best ways are to turn the brightness down on the screen, and the static image should fade over time. Also, stop viewing the source that caused an element to retain on screen immediately, as further viewing can make it harder for the static element to disappear.

Consider image retention as a warning that you should take better care of your OLED TV, as further damage can eventually lead to burn-in. Like previously stated, QLED TVs do not suffer from burn-in therefore they do not suffer from image retention. If burn-in is a serious issue for you, the best option for you is a QLED display.

How Long Does It Take To Burn-In?

home theater burn in

Burn-in is actually not easy to achieve, On average, you’ll have to watch on maximum brightness for up to 5000 hours of intense usage with the static element for burn-in to actually occur. This seems unrealistic, and in a real scenario, it’ll take much longer for you to notice the effects of burn-in. If you take good care of your OLED display, you’ll likely never experience it in the first place.

OLED TVs are actually durable, but QLED TVs typically last longer. You can expect an average OLED TV to last up to 100K hours and if you use the TV conservatively, you can expect it to last much longer. However, if you’re watching at full brightness every day, you can expect the image on the screen to actually start fading, this is due to the pixels on the screen losing their brightness intensity.

Increasing the lifespan is quite easy. Treat your TV with the respect it deserves by turning the brightness down from 100%, reducing the screentime of static elements, and overall reducing the usage of the TV on a day-to-day basis. This shouldn’t be too hard as a lot of the time, users will have their TV on for no reason even when no one watching it.


To conclude this post, yes OLED Burn-in is permanent, and you cannot do anything about it once it happens. The less severe version of burn-in is called screen retention, and this can be fixed by turning the brightness down and reducing the screen time of static elements. Eventually, the screen retention issue should fade over time.

It actually takes quite a long time for burn-in to occur, with intense usage which means watching every day for at least 5000 hours at 100% brightness, you can expect burn-in to occur, but this is a completely unrealistic scenario. In a real-life setting, burn-in shouldn’t occur if you do not watch at 100% brightness whilst viewing static elements. OLED TVs have got better over the years, and with perfect care, you should never have to experience such an issue.

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