Is My Projector Broken Or Do I Just Need A New Lamp?
We get calls every day at allprojectorlamps.com from people that have problems with projectors made by Hitachi, Sanyo, NEC, Epson, Infocus, you name it. They want to know if the problem they are having with their projector is caused by their projector lamp, or is it another problem with their projector.
The modern multimedia projector is a fairly complex piece of equipment with a variety of parts that could suddenly stop working, including the projector lamp. If your projector or DLP TV stops working and you have never replaced your lamp and the machine has flashed warnings about replacing the lamp for several week; chances are you need another lamp.
These projector lamps do not have a filament, but light is created by an arc between two electrodes that ignite the gases in the arc tube. Over time your projector lamp will become dimmer. At some point it will become so weak that the ballast will be unable to ignite the gases in the arc tube. The ballast will continue to try to ignite the lamp until the arc tube gets so hot that it shatters inside your projector. Here is a good indicator that your projector lamp needs to be replaced: broken glass in your projector.
These lamps do contain mercury and mercury is a recognized toxin. Care should be taken when cleaning up the broken pieces. Every state has its own laws regarding the disposal of these lamps. You can visit http://www.epa.gov/epahome/state.htm to find out the proper way to dispose of these lamp types in your state. Many lamp distributors such as allprojectorlamps.com and projectorlampz.com will accept old lamps for proper disposal if a new lamp is purchased.
For this reason you should avoid pushing your lamp to the limit. When your projector starts flashing a “change lamp” warning, you should start looking for a bulb replacement. Your projector does not have an uncanny knowledge of the condition of the bulb, but it does know how many hours the projector lamp has been used. Your projector is programmed to flash the lamp warning when the lamp gets close to the rated life of the lamp. Yes, some lamps will last for a good while past the average rated life, but why not get a new lamp and use the old one as a spare?
Failure to reset the timer on your projector or DLP TV:
In some projector models, such as some Infocus projectors, the projector will shut down until a new lamp is installed. Once a new lamp is installed and the projector timer is reset, the projector or DLP TV will resume working. The projector manufacturers such as Infocus, Sanyo, Sharp and Panasonic do this because they do not want the lamp to burst in the projector. If you heed the warning of the projector or DLP TV and replace the lamp as instructed, you will need to reset the timer. If not, the projector may shut down automatically as scheduled. Reset the timer every time you replace the lamp.
Projector door not closed properly:
Your projector lamp operates at extremely high temperatures and many fail-safe’s have been built into the projector to eliminate possible fire hazards. One way the projector manufacturer, and this includes every manufacturer from 3M and Ask to Viewsonic and Zenith, is to not allow the projector to start unless the lamp door is sealed properly. If you forget to close the door, replace the screws or tighten them properly on your projector or DLP TV. The machine will not work. If your projector or DLP TV does not work immediately after replacing your lamp, please check the door and make sure it is closed correctly.
When I turn on the projector I hear the fan but the lamp does not come on.
If all other parts of the projector seem to be working, but no light come from your projector. It may be time to replace the bulb in your machine. There may be other issues with your projector but more often than not, it is time to replace the bulb.
My projector works intermittingly.
If your projector lamp works for a while and then the machine shuts down, works for a while and then shuts down. You probably have a problem with another component of the projector. The projector lamp has no moving parts. It simply reacts to the input of the power supply and ballast. Some projectors are designed to turn off it gets too hot. This is to avoid a potential fire risk. If the lamp lights up at all, it’s usually a good lamp.
“Lamp didn’t strike” message.
If you just replaced your lamp, and you get the “Lamp didn’t strike” (Infocus) or similar message. Make sure that the lamp is properly seated in the projector. Under normal conditions the lamp is automatically seated correctly when the projector lamp door is replaced, however some models allow a little wiggle room and the plug does not connect with the lamp securely. Pull your lamp out and try seating it again. If you continue to have the same problem, you probably have a bad projector lamp.
I am getting lines on the screen.
Vertical and horizontal lines or bars on the screen are not caused by a defective lamp. This is normally some other component of the projector that has nothing to do with the lighting system. You should contact the manufacturer of the projector who will be able to better diagnose the problem. It is sometimes associated with a bad motherboard.
The image on the screen appear out of focus or blurred.
If your projector shows a blurry image, check the condition of the lens. Sometimes when a new lamp is replaced, dust is dislodged from inside the projector and can coat the lens. If you try to focus the projector or DLP TV you may find that you can see the dust particles on the image. Clean the lens with the appropriate cloth and the problem should go away. This is not a sign of a defective lamp.
AllProjectorLamps.com specializes in replacing lamps for all models of projectors and DLP TVs. Our 30+ years of experience are available to you free of charge by calling us at 866-470-9877.