How Long Should A TV Be On A Day?

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How Long Should A TV Be On A Day?

How Long Should a TV Be On a Day?

I’d say ideally the TV should be on only when you’re actually watching it, and off the rest of the time. That way it prolongs the life of the TV and doesn’t use excess electricity it doesn’t need to. Personally, whenever I watch TV, I only do so for around 2-3 hours then turn the TV off afterwards.


When it comes to home theater and even just entertainment at home in general, we often focus on getting the best out of our equipment, and rightfully so.

Whether it’s tuning the sharpness of your display for better picture settings, or adjusting the lighting in the room for the best picture quality, getting the most out of what you have can make all the difference in the experience.

But something we can sometimes forget the importance of is the proper maintenance of the equipment itself.

More specifically in this case, ensuring the longevity of your TV.

So how long should a TV be on a day?

Here’s what I think.


Things That Can Happen When A TV is Left Constantly On

It Could Shorten The Life Of The Backlight Faster

So the first thing that can happen when a TV is left on for extended periods of time is the increased chance of the backlight dying faster from constant use in LCD & LED displays.

Since these tvs use backlighting to display their picture, the more this light is used (the TV being powered on) the faster & more likely it is to dim.

Now how long this takes depends on a number of factors like the type of TV, build quality, the environment it’s placed in, and of course the original question, the amount of time it’s on a day (which we’ll get to in a bit)

But leaving it on constantly day in and day out, could have a compounding effect over time.


It Could Cause Pixels In OLED Displays To Dim Faster & The Blue Pixel To Dim In Both

Another thing that could happen, particularly in OLED displays, is the pixels dimming faster as a result of the panel constantly being powered on.

OLED televisions are different from their LED based counterparts since they don’t actually use a backlight — but rather organic materials that light up when exposed to electricity.

This is what allows them to achieve that contrasty & dynamic image that makes movie watching on them so captivating (definitely awesome in my opinion)

But constant use can also cause them to dim over time.

And although OLED & LED TVs utilize red, green, & blue pixels, it’s the blue pixel that’s also likely to experience problems first

This is because the amount of energy required for a blue pixel to emit light is a lot higher than than the others and so tends to burn out first over time.

However if constantly powered on, then the lifespan of that pixel may be shorter which could cause the screen to begin losing quality or even glitch.

That said, there have been advances in display technology though that might help with the longevity of the pixels.

Having the right color temperature setting could be a factor too with how things actually look on screen as well.


It Could Use More Electricity By Being Constantly On

Something else to keep in mind is the increased amount of electricity that a TV constantly on might use.

Of course most tvs now have all sorts of ECO and energy saving modes designed to accommodate for that very thing, though simply powering the television off when not in use can be helpful too.


It Could Malfunction If Left On In High Humidity/Heat

One potential scenario that could happen especially if a television is left in an environment with high humidity/heat is it could begin to malfunction.

Moisture and/or heat is bad for the internals of electronics, and being powered on in those kinds of environments wouldn’t really help.

So just ensure that wherever the TV is placed isn’t somewhere where there’s a lot of humidity & heat to ensure it continues to properly function and the screen doesn’t become blurry



Image Retention/Burn In Could Happen

Although this is an issue that primarily affects OLED tvs, leaving a static image on a TV for extended periods of time can cause that image to temporarily or even permanently remain on screen.

This is due to the pixels in that part of the screen having to work harder to display that same image than the others ones.

This could be anything from a video game UI to a news ticker.

Screen brightness tends to play a big part in this too, and the brighter the screen happens to be then over time the higher the chances might be for that to occur.

If it’s temporary, this is known as image retention, and may potentially resolve on its own.

You could also try using a soft cloth to clean the screen and/or playing particular display test sequences online that might help.

However if it’s burn in, that means it’s permanent which the only thing you can do at that point is prevent it from getting worse.

Luckily modern screens have gotten much better with preventing this and isn’t as prevalent as it use to be from what I’ve noticed — but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible either.

So definitely be mindful of having still images on a bright screen for long periods of time.


How Long Should a TV Be on a Day?

So with all of this being said, and getting back to the original question, how long should a TV be on a day?

Well the answer to that question is actually going to depend on you.

However long you watch TV per day is how long it should be on, at least in my opinion.

I’d say ideally the TV should be on only when you’re actually watching it, and off the rest of the time. That way it prolongs the life of the TV and doesn’t use excess energy it doesn’t need to.

Just keep in mind the length of time you use it daily might influence the total lifespan of the TV.

Some people find TV to be relaxing, and some even use it to fall asleep at night.

Though there’s the topic of how TV might affect sleep quality since there’s differing views on that — and the concept of blue light exposure when looking at a screen.

What I will say is that for me personally, whenever I do watch TV, I only do so around 2-3 hours and then turn it off when I’m not watching it.

Keep in mind though that when the TV is on, its fans are running too — and it might accumulate dust over time which could also affect your tv’s longevity.

Proper ventilation is important so your TV works properly, and the more dust that accumulates, the more heat that might be present since the dust would be blocking the vents.

Using a canless air duster to occasionally clear the vents can be helpful in that regard.

Properly maintaining your television and electronics in general is important so here’s a few ways to do that.

Home Theater Maintenance



Final Thoughts

In short, while there’s probably different viewpoints on the amount of time a day a TV should be on, I think it really depends personally — but when not in use, it should probably be turned off for longevity of the display.

That’s my take on things at least.

With that though, that pretty much wraps things up for this one.

Until next time, make it easy, keep it simple.

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