Common Causes for Digital Signage Failure

Posted by: Richard Williams | Posted on: | 0 Comments

With quite a high initial outlay, digital signage is never cheap to install and planning a return on this initial investment is vital before embarking on any digital out of home (Dooh) campaign.One thing that can really scupper the best thought out digital signage strategy is the failure of units once they are installed. Having to replace screens can dramatically alter the running costs of a digital signage campaign and if screen failure becomes a common occurrence, any return on investment may get more and more difficult with each added failure.

Ensuring the devices do not fail and that you get the maximum from the initial investment can drastically increase the chances of getting a ROI and making the entire campaign a success. Here are some of the most common reasons LCD screens and other devices fail in a digital signage campaigns.

Over Heating
Over heating is perhaps the most common cause of LCD and plasma screen failure. So many different components inside a modern LCD screen are vulnerable to excessive heat. Capacitors are the main culprit in an overheating failure and are very susceptible to heat build up as are invertors and many other components.

Preventing overheating is crucial for digital signage systems both indoors and out. Ensuring airflow and somewhere for the heat to disperse such as vents or louvers is essential to prevent overheating and ensuring the unit will continue operating. All digital signage or LCD enclosures should contain fans or other air flow systems to provide this heat dispersal.

Lack of weather protection
Outdoor digital signage can often fail because of a lack of protection from the elements. Waterproof LCD enclosures should be manufactured to a recognised standard such as NEMA 4 or IP54 to ensure protection against rainfall and other hostile elements such as dust.

Consideration also has to be given to cold temperatures. Whilst heat is an electronic devices main enemy, extreme cold can be just as damaging as any internal humidity or condensation can freeze in causing expansion and damage to components. Any outdoor digital signage placed in sub zero temperatures needs some sort of heater system in the signage or LCD enclosure.

Back Light failure
LCD flat screen TVs are commonly back–lit by cold cathode fluorescent lamps (CCFL) which are often the cause of failure. Usually CCFL’s go when there is a fault with other components such as the inverter, capacitors or power supply. However, more LCD screens are being produced with back-lit LED systems that not only are far more reliable, they also use a lot less power and produce far less heat.

Deliberate Damage
Sadly, vandalism is a common cause of screen failure and ensuring any public or outdoor digital signage is protected against deliberate attack is important to prevent failure. Shatterproof screens and solid steel LCD enclosures are the best method of defending against such attacks.

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