LG is offering an extended 5-year warranty on its 4K G1 OLED in the US and UK, covering any problems that develop with its panel after the standard one-year warranty. In the UK the company says the extended warranty also applies to its Z1 8K OLED, which isn’t available to purchase in the US.
The extended warranty appears to be an attempt to upsell customers from LG’s popular lower-end sets like the C1 to its more premium G1 model. But it should also allay any fears that the new brighter Evo OLED panel LG is using in the G1 won’t last as long as its previous OLED panels. Or, as LG said in a statement given to TechRadar, “The warranty is designed to offer peace of mind to customers purchasing our flagship, more expensive OLED models.”
Of course, the big question is whether the extended warranty covers permanent image retention, aka “burn-in,” where parts of an image can remain visible after being displayed for an extended period. In response to Engadget’s question about this, LG gave this evasive response:
“LG’s five-year limited warranty program is in line with the company’s consistent communication regarding the low risk of image retention on LG OLED TVs, when used in normal viewing conditions… As with any self-emitting display, OLED TVs may experience temporary image retention under certain conditions, but permanent image retention, or burn-in, is rare under normal viewing conditions. Image retention is not a product defect.”
LG clarified its position in response to follow-up questions from The Verge. “The warranty covers image retention on the Z1 and G1 models if the TV has been used under normal viewing conditions,” a company spokesperson said in a statement. The warranty doesn’t apply if a TV is being used in situations like a commercial setting, where static images might be left onscreen for long periods of time (the famous example of this is a South Korean airport which had to swap out the OLED TVs it was using to show departure times).
Like other warranties, LG’s also comes with various exceptions, such as damage caused by power surges, acts of nature, or improper installation. But LG’s warranty should still provide some assurance that you’ll get a decent few years of use if you splash out on one of its more expensive TVs.
Update June 17th, 7:10AM ET: Updated with LG’s confirmation that the warranty covers image retention when used for typical home viewing.