FAQ #57 - My screen has gone all funny (weird colours), what do I do?

Originally written by Sam H


Signs

The typical sign you will se is the colours on the monitor going all funny, you may also notice that the picture on the monitor is looking a bit fuzzy


What causes it?

This sometimes happens to monitors and is normally caused by a magnetic field from a magnet or more commonly the electro-magnetic field from computer speakers and other electronic devices near the monitor.


How do I fix it?

Most modern monitors will have a feature in the function menu that says 'Degauss', simply use that to rid the screen of those funny colors. If your monitor does not have this feature or the degauss function does not do a good job then I would recommend taking the monitor into a computer store or and electronic repair shop and they will use a degaussing wand.


How can I stop it happening again?

The first thing would be never put magnets near the monitor or computer, however the most common thing that causes it are computer speakers that aren't magnetically shielded. If your computer speakers are situated close to your monitor try moving them away so they are not so close to the monitor. If it still happens then you may want to consider buying a new pair of speakers, as chances are your current pair aren't magnetically shielded. Make sure that when you are buying new speakers that it says that they are magnetically shielded to prevent interference with monitors.


A few more points:

1. Degauss problems are typically "wrong" colours; all colours will still be present and the effect will often vary according to position on the screen.
This is NOT the same as the loss of one of the 3 colours -
No green gives purple picture, red and blue OK
No red gives sea green picture, blue and green OK
No blue gives yellowish picture, red and green OK
- over the whole screen.

2. Degauss problem can often be caused by power outages - or loose power plugs, which is much the same.

3. Before calling in the paid help, try this - turn off the monitor (no indicator light, or unplug from mains), leave it to get cold for two hours, then turn it on again (may need to do this several times).
Some - mostly older monitors - have the classic "degauss at switch-on from cold" type degauss circuit.

4. If the degauss circuit in the monitor is faulty, it may sometimes CAUSE the fault, rather than FIXING it !

-- contributed by RayTheTech


NOTE: The degauss function can/will wipe floppy disks that are sitting within 2-3 inches of the screen.
-- contributed by robsonde


Don't forget that sometimes one of the pins in a monitor cable can die, leaving you with twisted colours, I've had this happen to me - not pretty.
-- contributed by Chilling_Silence



Original FAQ available from here.