How to Fix Dark Samsung TV Screen

Dark Samsung TV screen? Here’s how to fix it!

Chances are, when you’re relaxing and watching a movie on your Samsung TV, you’d feel uneasy when the screen suddenly dims. No, it’s not Fright Night, and there’s no need to be scared as this issue could be just how the TV is meant to behave. 

The picture on your Samsung TV goes dark due to the Ambient Light Detection function or, worse, due to a faulty backlight. You can fix this issue by turning off the feature, resetting the picture settings, or replacing the LED strips.

In this post, we’ll shed light on the question, “Why is my Samsung TV so dark?” More importantly, we’ll give you thirteen effective solutions with easy steps you can DIY so you can deal with the issue in a little over an hour — once and for all. 

DifficultyEasy ●●○○○
Duration59 minutes and 35 seconds
Number of Ways13
Things You NeedSamsung Smart TV
Samsung remote control
A PC
Smartphone
USB stick
A working internet connection
Screwdriver
Suction cups
Replacement LED strips

1. Address power supply issues on your Samsung TV

Most issues on the Samsung TV can be attributed to minor system errors or small details you might have overlooked. Insufficient power supply due to the loose power cable is one of many possible reasons your Samsung TV is so dark.

Issues like this usually only require an equally simple solution, such as rebooting or power cycling your Samsung TV. Rebooting your Samsung TV is simply shutting it down with its apps and programs to boot up in a fresh new state.

Power cycling involves discharging the stored electrical energy inside your Samsung TV, which also allows it to fix other performance issues. We recommend performing both the reboot and power cycle to improve your chances of fixing the issue.

Reboot your Samsung TV

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps2
Duration20 seconds
Step 1: Power off your Samsung TV by unplugging its power cable from the
            power/wall outlet.

Step 2: Plug your Samsung TV back into the power/wall outlet after 10 seconds.            
 Wait until your Samsung TV boots back up.


Note: Press the power button on your Samsung TV or remote control if it doesn’t automatically power on after plugging it back in.

Power cycle your Samsung TV

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps3
Duration1 minute and 15 seconds
Step 1: Power off your Samsung TV by unplugging its power cable from the
            power/wall outlet.

Step 2: Discharge the residual electrical energy by pressing/holding the power button on your Samsung TV for 30 seconds.


Note: The location of the power button on your Samsung TV will depend on its model. You can check its user manual for more information.
Step 3: Plug your Samsung TV back into the power/wall outlet after 30 more seconds.
Wait for your TV to boot back up.


Note: Press the power button on your Samsung TV or remote control if it doesn’t automatically power on after plugging it back in.

2. Disable Ambient Light Detection on your Samsung TV

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps4
Duration10 seconds

The display screen of your Samsung TV can automatically change its brightness level by measuring the ambient lighting condition. This is thanks to the Ambient Light Detection function built-in to Samsung TV, which lets it measure the light around it.

Simply put, your Samsung TV display screen will be brighter when the ambient lighting is also bright. If you’re watching in a very dark room, that could explain why your Samsung TV is so dark.

Please note that the Ambient Light Detection feature is only available on Samsung TV models from 2017 and later. Samsung TV models that are older have a similar feature that’s called ECO Sensor instead.

Step 1: Open the settings menu on your Samsung TV by pressing the settings button on your remote control.


Note: If you’re using a Samsung Smart remote control, press the home button and select the gear icon on the upper-right corner of the display screen to achieve the same result.
Step 2: Scroll down/click General.

Step 3: Scroll down/click Eco Solution.

Step 4: Select/click Ambient Light Detection to toggle it off.


Note: If the circle beside it is green, it’s turned off. If the circle is gray, it’s turned off.

3. Reset the picture settings to their default configuration.

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps6
Duration20 seconds

Did your Samsung TV display screen look normal the last time you watched a TV show or movie on it? If yes, then you have a good reason to wonder, “Why is my Samsung TV so dark?.”

If we look into your Samsung TV’s picture settings, there are two possible reasons for this. It might be that you’ve accidentally changed and reconfigured the settings, or somebody else messed it up without you knowing.

Either way, you can resolve this issue by resetting the picture settings on your Samsung TV. This action will restore the picture settings to their default values and configuration like nothing was changed.

Step 1: Access the Smart Hub on your Samsung TV by pressing the home button on your remote control.

Step 2: Scroll left/click Settings to access the settings menu.

Step 3: Select/click Picture to access the picture settings.

Step 4: Scroll down/click Expert Settings to configure advanced options.

Step 5: Scroll down/click Reset Picture to reset the picture settings.

Step 6: Select/click Yes to confirm the picture reset.

4. Use the SmartThings app to enable Night Mode on your Samsung The Frame TV

Difficulty Easy ●●○○○
Number of Steps24
Duration1 minute

If you own a Samsung The Frame TV, its display screen might turn dark or shut down due to its Art Mode feature. Its Art Mode is a nifty feature that turns your Samsung The Frame TV into a piece of art when you’re not watching anything on it.

With its Art Mode Enhancer, you can improve how The Frame behaves while in Art Mode. It even has a Night Mode that automatically turns off the display screen when no light is detected in your Samsung TV’s room.

This could be why your Samsung TV is so dark suddenly without your input. You can prevent this from happening by setting the night mode timer to a high value so the display screen doesn’t turn off automatically.

4.1. Download the SmartThings app

If you haven’t downloaded the Samsung SmartThings app on your smartphone, use the instructions below to find out how to.

Step 1: Select/open the Google Play Store or Apple App Store on your smartphone.

 
Step 2: Go to the search bar and search for the SmartThings app.

 
Step 3: Download and install the app by clicking the Install button beside it.

 
Step 4:  Launch the SmartThings app by clicking the Open button.

Step 5: Follow the on-screen instructions to sign in to your Samsung account.
Step 6: Select/click the + symbol in the upper-right corner.

Step 7: Select/click Add device.

Step 8: Select/click the Scan button under Scan for nearby devices.

Step 9: Select/click TV on the list of products.

Step 10: Select/click Samsung.

Step 11: Select/click your Frame TV to add it.

Step 12: Select/click Start to begin the setup process.

Step 13: Select/click the Room option to set the room.

Step 14: Select/click Save to continue.
Step 15: Select/click Next to proceed.
Step 16: Select/click your Samsung Frame TV.

Step 17: Type the PIN code seen on your Samsung TV display screen and hit Done.

Step 18: Wait until the SmartThings app is fully connected to your Frame TV to
              conclude the setup.

4.2 Adjust Night Mode on your Samsung The Frame TV

Step 1: Open the SmartThings app on your iPhone or Samsung phone.


Note: You can also install the SmartThings app on other Android phones.
Step 2: Select/click your Samsung Frame TV on the app to access its control options.
Step 3: Select/click Art Mode to access the Art Mode options.

Step 4: Select/click Settings to open the Art Mode settings.
Step 5: Select/click Night Mode.
Step 6: Set the timer for Night Mode anywhere between 5 minutes and 4 hours so
            your Frame TV doesn’t automatically turn off.

If you haven’t downloaded the Samsung SmartThings app on your smartphone, use the instructions below to find out how to.

5. Turn off your Samsung TV’s Energy Saving Mode feature

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps5
Duration15 seconds

Another reason why your Samsung TV is so dark is its Energy Saving Mode feature that automatically cuts down its power usage and consumption. When this feature is enabled, the display screen might lower its brightness to save power.

If the brightness level of the display screen is dimming without your input, this feature is the likely culprit. Turn Energy Saving Mode off manually to prevent it from adjusting the brightness of your Samsung TV display screen and making it dark.

Step 1: Open the settings menu on your Samsung TV by pressing the settings button on your remote control.


Note: If you’re using a Samsung Smart remote control, press the home button and select the gear icon on the upper-right corner of the display screen to achieve the same result.
Step 2: Scroll down/click General.

Step 3: Scroll down/click Eco Solution.

Step 4: Scroll down/click Energy Saving Mode.

Step 5: Select/click Off to disable Energy Saving Mode.

6. Adjust the minimum backlight on your Samsung TV.

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps5
Duration15 seconds

Adjusting the minimum backlight of your Samsung TV display screen is another solution you can use to brighten it or reduce its darkness. This option is also found under Eco Solution, like the previous two solutions, so it’s easy for you to do.

This option is responsible for the lighting source on your Samsung TV display screen. You can freely adjust the minimum backlight meter to see what level brightens or reduces the darkness on the screen of your Samsung TV.

Step 1: Open the settings menu on your Samsung TV by pressing the settings button on your remote control.


Note: If you’re using a Samsung Smart remote control, press the home button and select the gear icon on the upper-right corner of the display screen to achieve the same result.
Step 2: Scroll down/click General.

Step 3: Scroll down/click Eco Solution

Step 4: Scroll down/click Minimum Backlight.

Step 5: Use the right/left arrow keys on your remote control to adjust the minimum
            backlight meter.

7. Turn off your Samsung TV’s contrast enhancer feature.

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps5
Duration15 seconds

The contrast enhancer is an energy efficiency feature used by Samsung TVs to reduce the difference between light and dark areas on the display screen. This feature can achieve this by automatically adjusting the brightness level of the TV’s display screen.

As a result, your Samsung TV might appear brighter or darker. This makes the built-in contrast enhancer feature a plausible reason why your Samsung TV is so dark.

Step 1: Open the settings menu on your Samsung TV by pressing the settings button
            on your remote control.


Note: If you’re using a Samsung Smart remote control, press the home button and select the gear icon on the upper-right corner of the display screen to achieve the same result.
Step 2: Select/click Picture to open the picture settings.

Step 3: Scroll down/click Expert Settings to configure advanced options.

Step 4: Scroll down/click Contrast Enhancer.

Step 5: Select/click Off to turn this feature off.

8. Turn off the brightness optimization on your Samsung TV.

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps5
Duration15 seconds

Another energy efficiency feature on Samsung TVs that adjusts the brightness level of its display screen is brightness optimization. This feature is available on older devices that don’t have the Ambient Light Detection function.

Brightness optimization also works by measuring the ambient lighting condition and adjusting the brightness of the Samsung TV display. The brightness optimization could be why Samsung TV is so dark in low ambient lighting conditions.

Step 1: Access the Smart Hub on your Samsung TV by pressing the home button
            on your remote control.

Step 2: Scroll left/click Settings to open the settings menu.

Step 3: Scroll down/click General.

Step 4: Select/click Power and Energy Saving.

Step 5: Select/click Battery Optimization to toggle it off.


Note: If the circle beside it is green, it’s turned off. If the circle is gray, it’s turned off.

9. Turn off the brightness reduction feature on your Samsung TV.

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps5
Duration15 seconds

One of the energy efficiency features on your Samsung TV that you also need to look into is brightness reduction. As its name suggests, this feature will reduce the display screen’s brightness to cut down power consumption and save energy.

For this reason, brightness reduction is a common culprit for the display screen’s brightness dimming or darkening. Keeping this feature turned on could be why Samsung TV is so dark while you’re watching.

Step 1: Access the Smart Hub on your Samsung TV by pressing the home button on your remote control.

Step 2: Scroll left/click Settings to open the settings menu.

Step 3: Scroll down/click General.

Step 4: Select/click Power and Energy Saving.

Step 5: Scroll down/click Brightness Reduction to toggle it off.


Note: If the circle beside it is green, it’s turned off. If the circle is gray, it’s turned off.

10. Turn off the motion lighting feature on your Samsung TV

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps5
Duration15 seconds

Speaking of energy efficiency features, the final one we recommend you turn off on your Samsung TV is the motion lighting feature. Like the others, motion lighting can automatically adjust the brightness level of the display screen on your Samsung TV.

Motion lighting uses the movement on the display screen as a basis for adjusting the brightness level. When this feature is enabled, you might suddenly wonder why Samsung TV is so dark or dim without your input.

Step 1: Access the Smart Hub on your Samsung TV by pressing the home button on your remote control.

Step 2: Scroll left/click Settings to open the settings menu.

Step 3: Scroll down/click General.

Step 4: Select/click Power and Energy Saving.

Step 5: Scroll down/click Motion Lighting to toggle it off.


Note: If the circle beside it is green, it’s turned off. If the circle is gray, it’s turned off.

Alternatively, you can disable energy efficiency features such as brightness optimization, brightness reduction, and motion lighting at once by turning on Intelligent Mode on your Samsung TV.

11. Upgrade your Samsung TV to the latest firmware version

If you keep using your Samsung TV while it still has the old firmware version installed, it might be prone to errors and issues, such as the screen turning dim and dark. Prevent this from happening by updating your Samsung TV’s firmware version.

This allows your Samsung TV to upgrade its power efficiency, performance, and compatibility with newer apps, features, and programs. Another benefit of the firmware update is that it will patch errors and bugs on your Samsung TV.

You can upgrade your Samsung TV by installing the latest firmware version in two ways. The firmware update can be installed over the air or using a USB stick containing the upgrade file.

Upgrade your Samsung TV’s firmware over the air

Difficulty Easy ●●○○○
Number of Steps6
Duration10 minutes
Step 1: Access the Smart Hub on your Samsung TV by pressing the home button on your remote control.

Step 2: Scroll left/click Settings to open the settings menu.

Step 3: Scroll down/click Support.

Step 4: Click Software Update.

Step 5: Click Update Now to initiate the update process.

Step 6: Wait for the TV to search, download, and install the latest firmware version.

Instead of an over-the-air update, you can also download the latest firmware version into a computer and extract it into your USB stick. You can then plug the USB stick into your Samsung TV to manually install the latest firmware version.

Upgrade your Samsung TV with the USB stick method:

Difficulty Easy ●●○○○
Number of Steps17
Duration15 minutes
Step 1: Access the Smart Hub on your Samsung TV by pressing the home button on your remote control.

Step 2: Scroll left/click Settings to open the settings menu.

Step 3: Scroll down/click Support.

Step 4: Scroll down/click About This TV to view the device information.

Step 5: Write down your Samsung TV’s model number and its current firmware
            version.

Step 6: Visit the download section of Samsung Support using a PC web browser.             
Type/search the model number of your Samsung TV on their search bar.

Step 7: Scroll down/click the download button below Upgrade File(USB type) to
            download the latest firmware version on your PC.

Step 8: Extract the downloaded firmware file into your PC’s desktop.


Note: Modifying or renaming the firmware file isn’t recommended as it might cause it to not work properly.
Step 9: Copy the latest firmware file into a USB stick plugged into the PC.

Step 10: Unplug the USB stick containing the latest firmware version               
Plug the USB stick into the port at the back of your Samsung TV.

Step 11: Access the Smart Hub on your Samsung TV by pressing the home button
              on your remote control.

Step 12: Scroll left/click Settings to open the settings menu.

Step 13: Scroll down/click Support.

Step 14: Click Software Update.

Step 15: Click Update Now.              
 Wait until your Samsung TV fails the update check.

Step 16: Select/click Yes to scan the contents of the USB stick you’ve plugged in.

Step 17: Click Yes to install the latest firmware update detected inside the USB stick.

12. Restore your Samsung TV via a factory reset

Are you still wondering why Samsung TV is so dark after performing the abovementioned troubleshooting tricks? Well, your Samsung TV might need a factory reset this time to restore itself to its original state and default settings.

Remember that you must only perform this factory reset after none of the other solutions have solved the issue. After all, this action will wipe your Samsung TV entirely, which removes all its stored information. 

WARNING: A factory reset erases your saved files. Ensure you have a copy of these files, your TV preferences including, so you won’t lose them for good.

As such, we highly suggest that you consider this method only as your last resort. Once the factory reset is done, you must reconfigure your Samsung TV and set up its Smart Hub again.

Use a remote control to perform a factory reset on your Samsung TV

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps8
Duration5 minutes
Step 1: Press the home button on the Samsung remote control to open the
            Smart Hub.

Step 2: Scroll left/click Settings.

Step 3: Scroll down/click General.

Step 4: Scroll down/click Reset.

Step 5: Type your Samsung Smart TV PIN and hit Done to continue.

Step 6: Click Yes to restore the Samsung Smart TV to its default factory settings.

Step 7: Give your Samsung Smart TV time to shut down and complete its reboot.
Step 8: Set up the Samsung Smart TV and configure its Smart Hub settings by
            following the on-screen instructions provided.

Use the SmartThings app as a remote control to factory reset your Samsung TV

Difficulty Easy ●●○○○
Number of Steps13
Duration5 minutes and 40 seconds
Step 1: Open your smartphone’s Google Play Store/Apple App Store app.

Step 2: Go to your app store’s search bar.

Step 3: Type/search “SmartThings app.”

Step 4: Download the SmartThings app on your smartphone by clicking the
            Install/Get button.

Step 5: Run the SmartThings app on your smartphone by clicking the Open button.

Step 6: Click the + symbol in the upper-right corner of the app’s home screen.

Step 7: Click Add device.

Step 8: Click Scan nearby.

Step 9: Select/click your Samsung TV.

Step 10: Type the PIN code seen on your Samsung TV display screen and hit Done.

Step 11: Click Done again after completing the setup.

Step 12: Select/click your Samsung TV.

Step 13: Operate your Samsung TV using the remote control on the SmartThings
              app.


Note: Simply follow the factory reset instructions in the section above while using the SmartThings app as the remote control.

13. Check if your Samsung TV’s backlight is working

Even if your Samsung TV generates images on the display screen like normal, everything will appear dark if the backlight isn’t working. This is the result of the faulty LED strips in the backlight, which is why they aren’t producing any light.

Before opening your Samsung TV, you can test whether it displays images normally and if only the backlight is faulty. After confirming your suspicions, you can disassemble your Samsung TV and replace the broken LED strips with new ones.

Note that the process is a bit technical. In this regard, the step-by-step instructions should help you.

How do you check the backlight on Samsung?

Perform the flashlight test on your Samsung TV to ascertain if images are displayed on the screen and only the backlight isn’t working. This test can be done by pointing and shining the flashlight on your Samsung TV while it’s turned on.

By shining your flashlight into the dark or black screen of your Samsung TV, you should be able to make out images on the display screen if only the backlight is faulty. For better results, you should shine your flashlight at different angles.

How do I fix my TV backlight?

After confirming if the backlight is faulty, you can open the back panel of your Samsung TV to access its internal components and circuitry. Please note that you’ll need replacement LED strips to change the busted ones currently installed on the TV.

However, if your Samsung TV is still covered by its warranty, it’s best to contact Samsung Support so you can send your TV to their service center for repair. If you’re lucky, they might even ship you a new unit as a replacement instead.

If you’re not confident with your technical skills when handling electronic appliances, you can enlist the help of a friend to make things easier. You can also send it for an out-of-warranty repair if you don’t mind spending the extra cash.

Replace the faulty LED strips on your Samsung TV

Difficulty Easy ●●○○○
Number of Steps15
Duration20 minutes
Step 1: Place your Samsung TV facedown on a flat and smooth surface or work
            table.

Step 2: Remove/lift the back panel by unscrewing it with a screwdriver.

Step 3: Disconnect the ribbon cables linked to the scan drive boards.


Note: We suggest snapping a photo of the inside of your Samsung TV so you have a guide when putting everything back together.
Step 4: Push down some rivets connected to the chassis to release them.


Note: Some rivets might be hidden below the boards.
Step 5: Flip your Samsung TV over and detach its bezel.

Step 6: Release the scan drive boards, lift them, and tape them to the screen.

Step 7: Use suction cups to lift the display panel and remove it from the chassis.

Step 8: Remove the filter frame from the chassis.

Step 9: Tape the filter sheets together.

Step 10: Remove the tabs securing the reflector sheet to the chassis.

Step 11: Remove/lift the reflector sheet.

Step 12: Disconnect the power cable on the LED strips to remove them.

Step 13: Install the replacement LED strips and connect them to the power cable.

Step 14: Reassemble your Samsung TV by putting everything back together.

FAQs about Samsung TV

How to turn off ECO Sensor on my Samsung TV?


Go to System > Eco Solution > Eco Sensor and select off to turn off the ECO sensor on your Samsung TV. Doing so will stop your Samsung TV from automatically lowering the brightness level of the display screen.

How to enable Intelligent Mode on my Samsung TV?


Go to Settings > General > Intelligent Mode and turn it on to activate the Intelligent Mode on your Samsung TV. While enabled, energy efficiency features such as brightness optimization, brightness reduction, and motion lighting are turned off.

How do I increase the brightness of my Samsung TV?


Go to Settings > Picture > Expert Settings > Brightness and increase its value also to increase the brightness level of your Samsung TV. You can perform this action if you find your TV display screen to be dim or dark.

How long will the screen on my Samsung TV last?


15 years is the maximum lifespan of the screen on your Samsung TV. Depending on factors such as the weather, power quality, and unit design, the lifespan of your Samsung TV might be much lower.


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