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How Can I Fix the Color On My TV?
By Swanni

Washington, D.C. (March 18, 2014) - Editor's Note: TV's Answer Man, aka Swanni, takes your questions regarding how to best use the latest products and services in TV technology. If you have a question about TV technology, ask TV's Answer Man by sending an e-mail to

Q. The picture on my HDTV is off, particularly the color. The color always seems a bit faded. I've tried adjusting the color setting on the set but it doesn't seem to help. The colors still don't seem to look real. Any suggestions? -- Dave, Hagerstown, Maryland.

Dave, you were right to try adjusting your TV's Color setting. Sometimes, a set will come from the factory with the wrong setting, making the color look either faded or too strong. In fact, it's always wise to check the settings of a new TV to ensure that all picture specs are working properly. For more information on how to do this, click here.

But if changing the settings doesn't help, there could be something else wrong with the set. And here are three things you can do to solve the problem.

1. Make sure the TV's cable connections are secure.
Your set may be connected to a cable or satellite box using a combination of coax cables and HDMI cables. Look at the back of the set -- and your cable or satellite box -- to make sure all cables are properly connected and not loose or torn. Even if one cable has an issue, it can affect your TV's picture. If your TV is connected to an off-air antenna, make sure that connection is secure as well.

If this doesn't fix the problem, then:

2. Re-set your cable or satellite box.
Your picture will look weak if your cable or satellite set-top is having a problem sending a clear signal to your set. Unplug your set-top, leave it off for about 15-20 seconds and then plug it back in. Once it powers back on, turn on your TV to see if you notice any improvement. If not, try connecting a different set-top, such as a DVD or Blu-ray player, to your TV. If that picture looks bad, too, then you know it's not the cable or satellite box.

If #2 doesn't work, then:

Connect your cable directly to your TV.
Disconnect the cable coming from the wall that's now going into your cable box (this won't work with satellite) and connect it to the coax cable port on the back of the set. (Usually labeled, 'Antenna In') If the picture still doesn't look any better, the problem could be with the set itself.

Before asking for repair help, however, I have one more idea: Pick up your TV's remote, hit the Input button and look at the picture when you switch to each Input setting (HDMI 1, HDMI 2, etc.). It's possible that you have the TV set on the wrong Input setting so look at the picture when you switch from setting to setting. If you don't see an improved picture on any of the Input settings, then it's time to get a TV repair professional.

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Phillip Swann is president and publisher of He has been quoted in dozens of publications and broadcast outlets, including CNN, Fox News, Inside Edition, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, The Financial Times, The Associated Press and The Hollywood Reporter. He can be reached at or at 703-505-3064.

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