Monday, November 5, 2007

First-Ever Brand Repair Rates for Flat-Panel TVs

Since flat-panel TVs have been a relatively new product category, we haven't had any historical data to indicate what repair rates might be...until now. Consumer Reports has just issued what it deems the first-ever brand repair rates for flat-panels and rear-projection TVs, based on approx. 93,000 sets purchased between 2004 and 2007. The outlook? It's good!

Although many manufacturers might be banking on one technology coming out superior to the other, this isn't the case: there was no difference in reliability between LCD and plasma TVs, both of which had a very small 3% repair rate. Kudos to Panasonic, which took top ranks with just a 2% repair rate in both LCD and plasma categories.

Other highly-reliable LCD brands included Sony, Sharp, Samsung, Toshiba, and JVC; and in plasma, a gold star also goes to Pioneer and Samsung. Although they haven't been on the market for a full three years to qualify for the longevity tests, Consumer Reports says that the reliability of the latest Olevia and Sanyo LCDs, and Hitachi plasmas, looks "promising".

Rear-projection TVs, on the other hand, didn't rank so well. These sets required much more frequent repairs than LCD or plasma sets, with a repair rate of 18% that was mainly due to bulb replacements. Sony and Panasonic had the least repairs in this category with their rear-projo LCDs, followed by Samsung's DLP TVs.

As both LCD and plasma technologies continue to improve, we can only predict even better repair rates in both categories. Congratulations to all of the flat-panel TV manufacturers that came out on top. These reliability rates are just another notch in the belt to convince lagging consumers to switch over to flat-panel TV.

[Photo: Panasonic Canada's Barry Murray at the company's product showcase last year. Panasonic came out on top in terms of repair rates for flat-panel TVs, with the lowest percentage of repairs in both LCD and plasma categories.]


Lee_D said...

It's good to see real numbers behind the longevity and service claims that you hear annecdotally about flat panel.

Does anyone else remember how when flat panel technology was still very new, Extended Warranty prices were stratospheric? Ten grand for a TV, and $2500 for the extended warranty. Those were awkward sales pitches, I can tell you!

Lou said...

Consumer Reports:3% repair rate on LCD & PLASMA.Who are they kidding!Why not ask independent repair & service centers & find out what they think & what they know.