Sunday, August 15, 2010


I purchased a Vizio 47" HDTV from Costco in 2008 (March 1st). Cost me $1,500. I paid cash. My youngest son likes to tell the story, as we were rolling it out of the store to put it in my car, that I looked like I could cry! I said, "Yes, because I just spent $1,500 of hard earned cash on a TV!" Costco extends the normal one year warranty an additional year, which is partly why I bought it from them. I actually loved the Vizio. In 2008 the new HDTV's were going for well over $2 grand. The Vizio offered pretty decent quality picture for a more palatable price. Until the "POP of Death!" changed my mind about the Vizio brand. Though to be honest and fair, I understand that other HDTV's had similar experiences.

2 years, 5 months and 4 days later, my TV experienced the "Vizio POP of Death!" It fried. From all my research, this somewhat common occurrence AFTER THE WARRANTY expired, is annoying and frustrating at the very least. When you shell over $1,500.00 for a TV, you expect it to last far longer than two years.

I still own a 19" Sears TV that I bought in 1979 that still works. Crappy picture, but it works after 30 years! I couldn't see putting my $1,500 big screen TV on the curb for the garbage guys to take to the dump.

IF you had a similar problem and you did some online research, you no doubt have seen the "How to fix the POP of Death Videos". Very funny (sarcasm). I wanted help, not some commentary or destruction of their TV by running it over with a truck, or slinging balls at the screen.

YOU MORONS! For less than $100, and a screwdriver you could of easily fixed your own TV.

But enough about my personal experience. More importantly is how I fixed it myself. Saving me tons of money, and it was really very easy. Easy enough that I truly believe anyone whom can operate a screwdriver can do it.

1. All my research and my gut instinct on how it died... a large POP!, white flash and totally dead, told me it had to be the power supply. Now, it can be very intimidating to think you could fix your own TV. But seriously it wasn't that hard.

2. Unplug the TV. I moved it to the ground level and tilted it so the front was resting against my soft couch (not to scratch the screen). By placing it at an angle it was easier to see the entire back.

3. This truly is the hard part. There are probably 30 screws (I didn't actually count them... but there were a lot!) along the top, both edges and along the bottom, with some across the middle and up and down the sides about ten inches or so from each side. The point is, there are a lot of screws to take the back off. Once your wrist is tired from removing all the screws, you should be able to easily remove the back of the TV. Obviously save the screws as you will need them to secure the back of the TV after replacing the power supply board.

Newer TV's are far less complicated than the old giant boxes that were the norm not that long ago. Everything is electronic and minimized these days.

4. It's easy to figure out which panel is the power supply, just follow where the electrical cord is plugged in and then the wires going from the plug to the power supply board (with my TV it was a pin connector). On my power supply, the pin connector was on the bottom left. The other 4 pin connectors ran along the right side.

5. The power supply was attached to the case with only 6 screws. Remove the pin connectors before taking the screws off. Remember or mark which pin connector went where.TIP: Take a digital photo of it for reference, so when you put it back together, you will connect them back up correctly.

TIP: when removing the pin connectors, DO NOT PULL ON THE WIRES. You can grab the pin connector by the edges and gently wiggle them off. But that can be a challenge, and there is a danger you may bend the pins if you wiggle too much. Gently wiggle each pin up slightly. Then take a small flathead screwdriver and where a gap is created after pulling the pin connector up slightly, you can easily pry the connector up further and easier with the flathead screwdriver.

6. Just do your research for the power supply you need. There should be markings or labels indicating what model number or part number the power supply board is. I found some sources on Ebay, but also was able to buy a used power supply board from

7. The power supply I bought was used, and I got for just shy $80 (including shipping). They guaranteed it would work, and it has a 90 day warranty. A brand new one was going for about $190.

8. Basically reverse procedure when you took it apart, to put it back together. Just be sure you carefully line up the pin connectors properly and not bend any. I plugged my TV in once I had the powers supply installed, before putting the back on. It worked! I re-installed the back (and tired wrists!) and VOILA! my TV was now working again.

I took a chance. I am not an expert in electronics, and decided it was worth paying roughly a $100 to see if I couldn't fix my $1,500 TV. In my case it was.

Good luck!