Your monitor goes black at irregular intervals and then automatically returns to normal after a second.
It can happen anywhere from once to several times a day, and the worst part is, you can’t see any error codes that let you figure out the cause or resolve it.
Some users say they can see the mouse cursor during the mishap and others experience a completely dark screen.
Some report that their monitor’s LED starts flashing, and others say everything, including the monitor lamp, turns to a deadly black.
Regardless of the details, a random screen blackout can happen for many reasons.
Read on to identify which one is triggering yours.
Monitor Goes Black For A Second (Causes, Fixes)
1. Check Your Connections
If you’re lucky enough, the black screen snag is caused by a loose connection.
Turn off the PC, pull out the cables, and start inspecting them as your first step.
Examine the cords for apparent cuts, bends, corrosions, and other signs of damage.
If there’s no apparent defect, try pinching the cable at length to see if the internal circuit is short.
Make sure the plastic jacket is tight and unexposed.
Then, go to the ports at the back of the tower, scanning them for deformation or tottering.
You can also replace your cables with a spare or try your current cord with another device or port to see if anything changes.
Inserting another type of cable may also do the trick if that’s an option.
For example, connect your monitor via an HDMI cable if you’re currently on VGA.
Depending on the cause, you can then take your system to a repair shop to change its ports or buy a new cable.
If everything seems fine, proceed to the next techniques.
2. Test Your Monitor
Now, before you head on to more complicated troubleshooting techniques, it’s wise to test your monitor with another tower, or the other way around, borrow a friend’s monitor to test on your case.
This lets you rule out some of our solutions and get to the answer more quickly.
Also, try lowering your display brightness to see if your monitor functions disappear.
Sometimes, your monitor is too old, cheap, or inefficient to work for prolonged hours and at full capacity.
It becomes overloaded when you put too much stress on it.
Decreasing brightness is a good way to get rid of this issue.
3. Reevaluate The Cables
HDMI, VGA, DVI, and other video display controllers transfer video and/or audio signals.
If these signals can’t make their way to the monitor, your screen will go black.
That may be because you’re using a splitter, a cable that’s too thin or long, or simply a cheap one.
To rule those possibilities out, increase the cable’s AWG size, and ensure it’s no longer than seven feet.
Then, eliminate the adapters, receivers, or splitters from the circuit, and see if the problem persists.
4. Start The PC In The Safe Mode
Although not an ultimate solution, this technique serves as a diagnostic one to find the root of your problem.
Safe Mode is a boot option that removes non-essential apps, settings, and widgets to load the OS in the basic state.
If you don’t experience the stuttering monitor in this mode, it means you’re facing a logical issue and that you can skip the hardware-specific ones.
Here’s how to use it:
- Go to the Windows Settings through the Start menu.
- Choose “Update & security” and then “Recovery.”
- Tap on the “Restart Now” button below the “Advanced Startup” header.
- This will take you to a blue window, where you can choose among Startup modes.
- Press F4 to enter Safe Mode and wait until the PC reboots itself.
5. Change Your Video Card Driver
The second common culprit for an intermittent dark screen is your graphic card driver.
If they’re recently updated, maybe you’re on corrupt files, and if you haven’t done that for a long time, it means your drivers are obsolete.
In both cases, the driver stops responding to the monitor, shutting off the pictures every so often.
Try the following methods to see if this is your problem:
A. Update Your Drivers
- Right-click the Windows logo at the bottom-left corner of the screen.
- Select “Device Manager” from the drop-down list.
- Go to “Display adaptors” and press the left arrow to view a list of graphic drivers.
- Right-click and tap “Update driver…”
- Verify to proceed whenever prompted and restart your PC before you test it for black screen errors.
B. Reinstall The Drivers
If updating drivers didn’t fix your problem, remove them entirely and get the clean versions directly from the manufacturer’s website.
- Repeat steps 1 to 3 of the above method.
- This time, click on the “Uninstall Device” option.
- Now, visit the hardware’s manufacturer website, and type your specific hardware model plus your processor version (32 or 64 bits).
- Download the right driver for your graphic card, unzip it, and remember where you store it on the PC.
- Go back to Device Manager > Display adaptors > the video card.
- Right-click the device name and choose “Scan my computer for driver software.”
- Choose the saved file and proceed with the on-screen prompts.
C. Roll Back Your Driver
If you’ve recently updated the drivers and think the newer version is playing mischief with your monitor, try rolling the file back to its previous state.
That’s because some updates can give you bugs and glitches rather than fixing them.
Here’s how to roll back your graphics card driver:
- Repeat the first method up to step 3.
- Click on the driver and select “Properties” from the menu.
- While on the “Driver” tab, hit the “Roll back driver” button.
- Confirm, wait until the process completes, and restart your device.
6. Remove Potential Viruses
Trojans, malware, and viruses are common threats to any computer, and they can be responsible for almost all unexpected flaws, such as random screen shutdowns.
Install a capable security program and run a scan to see if you host any on your system.
You can either use your Windows Defender Antivirus or a third-party app.
7. Disable Conflicting Apps
Some external utilities clash with your graphics drivers, and as a result, they can turn your screen black every now and then.
Driver updaters, app removers, antiviruses, and graphics-based software such as Nvidia GeForce Experience and AMD are among the most common examples.
Try disabling them one by one to see if the glitch disappears.
- Navigate to the following route: Start > Settings > System > Apps and Features. (You can also search “Apps and Features” in the search bar to skip the navigation.)
- Look for the app you want to uninstall in the list.
- Select in and press “Uninstall.”
8. Factory Reset Your Monitor
Here’s the next potential error you want to check out: your monitor is physically healthy, but the settings aren’t right.
If this is true, you should be able to fix the issue with a simple factory reset.
Depending on the manufacturer, different monitors may take different steps to recover their factory settings.
Here’s the most common way you can do it:
- Locate the control buttons at the rear, side, or on top of your monitor.
- Press the main menu button.
- Use the up and down arrow controls to swap between the displayed options.
- Surf the menu to find “Factory Reset” and select it. (It can be somewhere in the Advanced Settings, Other Settings, etc.)
9. Tweak The Power Options
If your black screen recovers in a fraction of a second, maybe it’s because you moved the mouse, pressed a key, or did anything that wakes it.
If this is true, it might have gone dark just for a power-saving feature.
Head on to the following sections to disable it.
- Press the Windows icon on the keyword or bottom-left corner of the screen to open the Start menu.
- Search your Control Panel there and open the app.
- Hit “Power Options” and then “Choose when to turn off the display” from the left pane.
- This leads you to a new window where you can choose a power plan.
- If it’s set to “Power Saver,” clear the checkbox beside it and choose “Balanced” instead.
- Now, click the blue link next to this option that says, “Change Plan Settings.” Note: This link is available for all the existing plans, so notice which one you hit.
- You’ll see two options on the new page: “Turn off the display” and “Put the computer to sleep.”
- Set them both to “Never.”
- Type “screen saver” in the search tool so you can open this section: “Change screen saver.”
- “Click the expandable box under the “Screen saver” header and set it to “None.”
- Press OK to verify your choice and restart the PC, so the changes take effect.
10. Try The Wake-Up Key Shortcuts
If there’s no serious damage to the hardware, OS, or your system, this quick fix can refresh your screen, making the random blackout go for good.
Just squeeze the Windows logo key, Shift, Ctrl, and B together.
If the command works properly, you’ll hear a brief beep sound from the internal speaker.
Then, the screen dims, blinks, or displays a prompt.
11. Install The Latest Windows Build
A Windows update eliminates incompatibilities, bugs, and errors in the system.
If that’s causing your issue, take the opportunity to update your Windows.
- Open the Start menu and hit the cog icon to enter Settings.
- Choose “Update & Security” in the grid menu and then “Windows Update” from the left pane.
- Click the gray button saying, “Check for updates.”
- Your PC will take care of the rest; just confirm whenever prompted.
12. Restart Your Windows Explorer
As you possibly know, Windows Explorer is a graphical interface on your OS that lets you manage your files and folders.
However, some of its graphics features are pretty resource-heavy and can put a strain on your CPU and working memory.
As a result, your PC may get down to a snail’s pace and act weirdly when it comes to displaying things.
Therefore, it’s worth trying to restart this tool and see if the headache goes away.
- Press Ctrl + Alt + Delete simultaneously to open your Task Manager. (You can also search its name in the Start menu if the shortcut doesn’t work.)
- Scroll down the list of apps to spot Windows Explorer.
- Right-click on it and press “Restart”.
13. Get Down To Your PSU
The PSU or Power Supply Unit is a small box that converts the main current into a suitable voltage and then feeds it to different PC components.
If this part is broken, it fails to transmit the right current to your monitor.
This may cause your display to blink, shut off, or go dark for a few moments.
This has nothing to do with your battery and can happen even if you’re directly connected to the wall.
To get started, remove the piece, and run your PC without it.
If the issue seems gone, make sure your PSU fans run smoothly and that it’s not overheating.
Then, inspect its physical appearance for cracks, corrosions, etc.
Replace the associated wires and if nothing changes, send the whole thing for repair.
The expert may also suggest buying a new PSU, so be ready for that possibility.
14. Look For Power Interference
Power issues aren’t limited to energy-saving settings and the power supply hardware.
They may sometimes arise from an external factor, such as electricity outage, local and house wiring, etc.
Use a power outage tracker or call your local power company to see whether or not there’s an electrical incident in your neighborhood.
Alternatively, you can use a UPS to check if the issue persists on the emergency power.
This apparatus keeps you connected with an acceptable voltage level and is free of any interruptions or failures.
You can easily rule the power interference possibility out if you still face the same issue.
Another trick is to turn off the lights, kitchen appliances, and other energy-intensive devices to see if the black screen is still showing randomly.
15. Check Your GPU
A GPU (graphics processing unit) is a specialized computer chip used to speed up the creation and exhibition of images.
It won’t jolt me to see if it’s causing display issues: It might have lost its functions due to long-time usage or just become loosely connected to your monitor.
Whatever the case, you first need to disable this circuit from the system to ensure it’s the main cause:
- Type “Device Manager” in the Windows search tool and open the app.
- Expand the “Display adapters” category and find your GPU’s name from there.
- Right-click and choose “Disable device.”
- Restart your computer and work with it for a few minutes to see if the issue persists. If it seems to solve the issue, proceed to the following tricks to recognize what’s wrong with your GPU.
16. Cool It Down
If they seem below par:
- Vacuum the internal dust and service the fan.
- Add an extra cooling system.
- Renew the thermal paste.
- Take your GPU to the repair shop.
- Buy a new piece.
17. Disable Overclocking
Overclocking compels your device to render multimedia files faster than normal.
Although this is meant to boost performance, this process can sometimes take its toll on your display experience and have an opposite effect.
Use the same tools mentioned above to figure out your GPU core clock.
If you see that it’s far from perfect, disable overclocking in your computer.
Here’s an extra guide on how to check your GPU for possible glitches.
18. Use A Third-Party Assistant
External repair tools can be your best friends when it comes to fixing a system-specific mishap.
They can find and eliminate duplicate files, repair corrupt registries, get rid of annoying bugs, and simply put, breathe new life into your computer.
Just make sure to find a reliable platform that doesn’t mess things up rather than solving them.
That’s because these settings are very sensitive, and if not changed wisely, they can make your PC completely inoperable.
Here are a few recommendations: