How to Fix Dead Pixels on iPhone and iPad

You noticed there’s a black dot on your iPhone and you can’t wipe it away. Is it a dead pixel? Is there a way to fix dead pixels on an iPhone or iPad? What’s the difference between a dead pixel and a stuck pixel?

Once you spot a dead pixel, it’s impossible not to notice it every time you use your phone. It’s very frustrating!

Here are some things you can try.

Can You Fix Dead Pixels on iPhone?

No. A dead pixel can’t be fixed. The only way to fix a dead pixel on an iPhone is to visit an Apple Center and have them replace the screen. If your iPhone is under warranty, the replacement should be free.

It shouldn’t take more than an hour for them to replace your screen. Bear in mind you might need to backup all the data on your phone.

Dead Pixels Vs Stuck Pixel

A dead pixel is black and won’t light up with any colours. It can happen on any type of display and it can’t be fixed. It’s a hardware issue. The only way to fix it is to replace the whole display panel which can be expensive.

A stuck pixel won’t change colours. For example, it’s a pixel that’s red, yellow, or blue. There is a chance you can fix a stuck pixel by massaging the screen or displaying a video with flashing colours.

It’s also possible that the stuck pixel is a lost cause. Either way, it’s worth trying some of the fixes below.

How to Fix Stuck Pixels on iPhone and iPad

These fixes will work on any type of LCD display, whether iPhone, IPAD, Android, computer monitor, or TV. However, they won’t work on OLED panels.

In fact, it’s not a good idea to leave any static media running on an OLED panel because they have a risk of burn-in. OLED phones can get burn-in too.

Try JScreenFix

JScreenFix is an interesting browser-based tool. To use it, open the website on your iPhone or iPad and click the launch JScreenFix button. Next, you’ll see a box with quickly moving pixels. Drag the box over to the area of your screen where the dead pixel is located.

If you can’t find the stuck pixel, rotate your phone in landscape mode and launch the website in full-screen. I recommend using the Safari browser because Google Chrome doesn’t work well with iPhones.

To use fullscreen mode in Safari on iPhone, open a website, and tap the text icon on the top left corner and select Hide Toolbar. To bring the toolbar back, tap on the website address, and select the text button.

Leave the phone idle with the JScreenFix on for 20 minutes or so. Make sure to disable any auto lock features on your phone while the test is active. If you’re lucky, when the test is over, the stuck pixel should be back to normal. You might have to leave the screen refresher on for a few hours.

I prefer this method to reset pixels because the stuck pixel videos show quickly flashing colours which can be bothersome.

Massage the Pixel

Be careful with this method because there’s a risk you can scratch your screen or even damage more pixels. Use a microfiber cloth or another very soft material and gently massage the pixel on your iPhone screen.

While iPhones and IPads have very durable screens, it’s not a good idea to press too hard on them. If the pixel doesn’t change, don’t apply more pressure! Just move on to a different solution.

Turn Your iPhone or iPad Off for 20 minutes

Another easy solution is to simply turn your iPhone off for 20 minutes or more. If your phone isn’t powered on, the display won’t be receiving power, the excess electricity should be drained from the pixels.

Hopefully when you turn the iPhone back on the pixel will be unstuck. I would personally do more than 20 minutes, maybe a few hours, if you don’t need to use your phone.

Watch a Stuck Pixel Fix Video on Your iPhone

These videos will flash a variety of colours at a high speed in an attempt to increase the voltage on your display and potentially fix the stuck pixel. The idea of these videos and tools is to overstimulate nearby pixels in the hopes that they will fix the stuck one.

As mentioned earlier, I’m not a fan of these videos because the quickly flashing colours can trigger seizures in people who are sensitive. It can also just give you a headache.

If you want to try it, turn the video on, and don’t look at the screen. Here’s a 1 hour long stuck pixel video by Retinagameshow.

Wait it Out

In some cases, a stuck pixel will reset after a while. Once the screen is stimulated a bit with a variety of colours, the pixel might fix itself. Continue using your screen as you normally do and see if the stuck pixel disappears over time.

The Bottom Line

To summarize, there’s no way to fix a dead pixel (a black pixel) without replacing the entire screen. However, you can potentially fix stuck pixels by using JScreenFix, massaging the area, waiting it out, turning off the display, or viewing a stuck pixel video.

There’s a chance, even after all of this effort, that the pixel will remain stuck, although a little dimmer. In that case, I would recommend bringing your phone to a service centre to see if they can replace the entire screen for you.

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About S. Santos

I am a tech columnist and blogger by trade, but I'm also an avid tennis player. In my spare time, I enjoy reviewing gadgets and gizmos from the world of tech.

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