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Can Any TV Be Used Outdoors?

Can Any TV Be Used Outdoors?

When there's good weather on the horizon, it means it’s time to start spending plenty of time outdoors again, whether you have a gazebo, decking, a patio, or a nice seating area.

One potential way to maximize your outdoor living space is to add a television or potentially an outdoor theater set up.

Having a screen outside can be extremely versatile, whether you want to watch the big game with friends, play music videos at a party, or just want to watch a movie under the stars, adding a TV to your patio is certainly something to consider and can help give your outdoor space that luxurious feel.

You may have heard of dedicated TVs for outdoor use, however, these are typically more expensive than your standard TV.

So what about saving yourself a lot of money, and simply using a standard television outdoors?

Well, there are a few things to understand about televisions before you decide to mount your standard TV in your outdoor space.

Why Can’t I Use My Regular TV Outdoors?

The biggest challenge you’ll face if you attempt to use a standard television outdoors is the conditions in which the TV is able to operate in.

All television manufacturers will provide you with the weather ratings of the product, telling you exactly what humidity and temperature your TV is best suited to be used at.

Additionally, manufacturers regularly recommend you to keep your TV out of direct sunlight, as the UV rays can damage your TV’s display.

You may be thinking that you have the perfect spot for your television outside of the reach of these conditions, but ultimately using your television anywhere but the environment it was initially designed for will mean that your television will age at a quicker rate, meaning that you’ll be replacing it within a matter of months.

However, not all hope is lost as there are quite a few options if you’re still looking for a TV for your outdoor space.

What Are My TV Options For Outdoor Use?

Outdoor Televisions

Of course, the most obvious option is to go with a television optimized for the outdoors.

There are various brands that deal in outdoor TV's - some of the big brand names make their own outdoor TV while some other companies treat "regular" TV's with hydrophobic processes to make them suitable for outdoor use and able to get wet.

For example, Weatherized TV's takes popular LG and Samsung models and applies a proprietary treatment process to them, which allows the TV to be mounted outdoors.

The important thing to think about with outdoor TV's is whether your TV will be placed in a high exposure setting or an under patio setting.

High exposure outdoor televisions undergo a more rigorous treatment process, so they will tend to be more expensive.

Outdoor TV Enclosures

If you really wanted to try to save a buck, you could maybe get away with putting any old TV into an enclosure.

They’re available in a range of sizes depending on what suits you best, and are widely available too. You could also make one yourself if you are really on a budget.

Relative to outdoor televisions, getting a regular TV plus an enclosure can be cheaper.  However, it's really important to note that most enclosures, especially cheaply made ones, won't truly keep the elements out.

Whether it's rain, snow, or simply moisture in the air, you should make sure your enclosure is truly weatherproof if you want to go this route.

Outdoor Projectors

If your outdoor television consumption is predominantly at night, then an outdoor projector/movie theater is a great option to consider.

When broken down, they’re small, and therefore portable, and can easily be brought back inside once you’ve finished watching.

The projectors usually project on to a large inflatable screen, which helps give that special one-of-a-kind viewing experience.

Projectors aren’t a solve-all however, if you want to watch television or movies during the day, and your screen isn’t in shade, then it can be hard to see, so they’re best suited for evening or night time screenings.

Furthermore, finding room for such a large screen can prove problematic if you have a particularly small patio space, or no available walls to attach the screen on to.

Ultimately, a projector is a great option for those looking for the drive-in movie experience at night, but they are less ideal for daytime viewings, or for people who have particularly small outdoor spaces.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, no, you cannot use any TV outdoors, as using a standard indoor television outside could lead to your permanently damaging it, as well as voiding your warranty.

You might be able to get away with an indoor TV outdoors if it's in a very good enclosure, but most enclosures that are truly weatherproof will also be expensive.

Indoor TVs aren’t built to the standard of outdoor TVs and will suffer from issues as a result of the temperature, the humidity, as well as UV rays from being subjected to direct sunlight.

Overall, if you really want to have that outdoor movie screening experience, if you’re looking to incorporate a screen into your outdoor space, then you really should consider one of the three options listed above.

Each of them has their own pros and cons, with the main issue seemingly being expense, but all of them make great options and will last a lot longer than using an indoor television outdoors, and in the long run, will pay for themselves with the amount you’ll use them.

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