How To Replace a Burnt Projector Polarizer (Our Opinion)

Projectors are really good for watching TV shows, and movies at home on a massive screen without needing to take up a lot of space. But, after some time the polarizer can get burnt and needs replacing. Here’s how to do that.

As a general rule, replacing a burnt projector polarizer isn’t worth it. There are 3 polarizers in a projector – a red, green, and blue polarizer. Each polarizer is made of unique material and is especially positioned and installed. It’s best to buy a new projector as it costs about the same.

Each projector is constructed a little bit differently. The user manual for a projector will have instructions for replacing the lamp and cleaning the fans. 

However, these are relatively minor repairs, the polarizer on the other hand is much different and requires special skills and knowledge to replace it correctly.

This is a video on Identifying bad polarizer – Repair Process

This article will explain everything you need to know about why it usually isn’t a good idea to replace a burnt projector polarizer. As well as, everything you need to know about a burnt projector polarizer and other common problems you can have with your projector.

Is It Worth It Replace A Burnt Projector Polarizer?

How much is a replacement projector polarizer, how do you locate the right polarizer to replace it, how do I access the polarizer to replace it? These are all important questions to answer whether it’s worth it to replace a burnt projector polarizer. Here’s what I found.

On the whole, a replacement projector polarizer costs around $100, but it can be very difficult or impossible to source the right part for your projector. You can get excellent projectors for around $150 nowadays, so it’s generally worth it to buy a whole new projector.

I recently put together the highest-rated budget projectors and a good explanation about what to look for when getting a budget projector, you can read it here: best budget projector for the money.

If your projector is very high-end. For example, if it’s worth new today more than $500 today, then I would say it’s a good idea to have it repaired. But, I recommend having a specialist repair it by sending it back to the manufacturer.

You will need to have a specialist replace the projector polarizer, but that might not be the only issue, and the bill to fix just the projector polarizer can make it more worthwhile to get a whole new projector.

Is The Repair Covered For Free Under The Warranty?

Electronics for the most part contain a warranty, and a projector is no different. However, each manufacturer of projectors has different criteria about what is and isn’t covered.

For example, Panasonic offers a 3-year warranty. But, the warranty will also expire after 20,000 hours of watch time. Depending on what comes first. Doing some quick math will be around 2 hours a day of displaying the screen for 3 years.

When your projector is on standby and not projecting an image or a video it doesn’t count.

Other brands like BenQ offer anywhere from a 90 day to a 3-year warranty. Therefore, I can’t say for sure whether repairing a burnt polarizer is covered by the warranty. However, some sources have said the average lifespan for a polarizer is around 20,000 hours.

Therefore, most projector companies are of the opinion that a worn-out polarizer shouldn’t be covered by the warranty. But, if it burns out on its own due to no fault of your own then it can be covered by the warranty.

In my opinion, you should contact the company who made your projector first to see what their stance is on polarizer repairs.

How Much Does It Cost To Repair A Projector?

Now that you have a good idea about when it makes sense to repair your projector polarizer or not, you may be wondering how much it costs on average. Here’s what you need to know…

On average an assessment for a projector repair will cost around $50 to $100. After the assessment, the technician will know what to fix, how long it will take, and how much it will cost which varies based on what’s wrong with your projector.

But, as a general rule, if a projector is worth more than $500, it’s cost-effective to repair it rather than buying a new one. 

Now that you know whether to repair or replace your projector when the polarizer is burnt, I’ll now explain some other common issues that can come up with your projector. As well as, what to do when they happen.

Projector Turns On But No Picture

A common and typically easy to fix issue is that when you turn on your projector you don’t get any pictures. Here’s how to fix it…

As a whole to get the picture to display you should power down your projector and leave it off for a few minutes, and then power it back up. If it’s still not working then your receiver might not be on the right output. 

It should be on the HDMI port that your projector is plugged into. For example, if you plugged it into the HDMI1 port, your receiver should be set to HDMI1. The source – also called the video input – can be changed by pressing ‘source’ on your receiver remote, or by pressing the source button on your receiver.

The cable connecting your projector to your receiver could also be a bit loose and isn’t sending any video signal. As you may know, your projector can also be plugged into a laptop or a computer. 

In either case, check each of the connections is pushed in all the way. Another possibility is that your HDMI cable is faulty. If you have a spare one lying around, you should swap out your current HDMI cable and see if that fixes it.

If you still can’t get it to display, many projectors will have error lights and step-by-step instructions about fixing common issues with your projector in the user manual and on their website. Take a look at what information is available for your projector.

On top of that another common reason why you don’t get any picture is if your projector lamp is blown.

How Do I Know If My Projector Lamp Is Blown?

A projector lamp will typically last around 1,000 hours to 4,000 hours depending on when your projector was made. But, when it’s blown and needs to be replaced how can you tell?

Generally, the resolution and quality of the ‘screen’ will get worse over time prior to it blowing. You will notice the video/image quality goes down and down before it breaks. You might also hear a pop before it suddenly stops working.

A lot of projectors will also have a lamp status feature which can have a small light on the projector that changes color or blinks when the lamp is blown. You can also get an error message that displays on the screen to tell you that the lamp is almost broken or needs to be replaced.

Should You Replace A Blown Projector Lamp

A blown projector lamp should normally only be replaced if the projector is worth a lot. For example, if the projector is a long-range projector used in a lecture theater. 

For fairly inexpensive projectors for your home, it’s typically more cost-effective to buy a whole new projector rather than replacing the bulb. 

If you have a particularly popular model, it might be easy to source a bulb online on ebay or Amazon. And the user manual for most projectors has step-by-step instructions about how to replace the bulb.

This is a sample video on How to Change a Projector lamp


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