Thursday, January 3, 2013

Think Twice Before Purchasing an Element Electronics TV

So far I have owned two of the Element 26 inch TVs (Model ELCFW261) that I purchased from Walmart online, and both have had total failure of the control boards that allow the TV to operate with the remote or the control buttons on the casing. The first lasted only five days before failing, the replacement lasted 3 weeks. Not surprisingly, these units are no longer even listed for sale on the Walmart website. Whether that is because they are out of stock, or because Walmart realized there is a problem with those particular models, and pulled them from the online store, is not something the average consumer is ever likely to know.

However, based on personal experience, this problem is not limited to just this particular model. The Element 40 inch TV (Model ELDFW407) that I had purchased a few months ago in my local Walmart store has recently also started to act up with the same type of problems, although so far, instead of a total and permanent failure of the remote and control button functions, turning off the TV and letting it sit for a half day or so seems to allow it to start working properly once again. I have no doubt that eventually this 'fix' will no longer be effective, and I will have to deal with warranty issues on this one as well.***

The sad part is that these TV's, had they been reliable, are in all other respects, an excellent balance of picture quality, performance, and price. But the quality of the components used, and the high rate of failure (3 out of 3) indicates that Element has some serious QC issues in their production process.

I made a mistake in replacing the first defective ELCFW261 with an identical model, assuming that it was an understandable random defect. Now that all three Element TVs have exhibited the exact same problems, it appears to me that it is more likely that there is an inherent design flaw/defect with the electrical components that handle the remote and control button functions in more than one model of Element TV products. I will not be replacing them with another product from Element, and feel compelled to describe these events as a warning to potential purchasers that, based on my experiences, there is a high chance of getting a defective product when purchasing this brand.

I have no idea if the extended warranty that I purchased for the second 26 inch ELCFW261 can be transferred to a different product**, but I am certain I am not going to opt for a fourth Element product as a replacement at this point, since it now has become the second Element TV that I will have to return to Walmart in less than a month.

Next up, I'm sure I'm going to be finding out in the near future just how good the manufacturer's warranty and Walmart's Extended Warranty plan is on the 40 inch ELDFW407 that I purchased in the store.

**Walmart did inform me that Extended Warranty Plans are non-transferable, but they did promptly refund the price of the Extended Warranty that I had purchased for the ELCFW261 when I contacted them about it.

***The day after this blog entry was posted, the Element 40 inch TV  (Model ELDFW407) had a complete failure exactly as described for the two 26 inch models. I'll be updating this blog with details as to how expeditiously Element handles the warranty process.

To be clear, Walmart and it's employees have given excellent customer service throughout this whole ordeal, and are certainly not responsible for the quality of the products produced by Element.

All logos, trade names, trade marks, and photos of the same belong to their respective owners. The use of such material in this article falls under the Fair Use provisions of intellectual property laws.


  1. I got a 40" Element ELEFT406 for Christmas. It lasted 6 months before it just quit - no picture, no sound. It was purchased at Target. Since it was past the return time for Target, I contacted Element. They first told me to unplug it and leave it for several hours and then turn it on again. That didn't work, so they told me it had to be my own expense. Shipping is around $70 and because I don't have the original packing, I will have to pay to have it packaged, also. It also states in the warranty you will not get a new replacement, but a refurbished television. People - Stay away from the Element brand.

  2. I got a 40" Element ELEFT406 TV. It lasted 6 months before it quit with no picture, no sound. It was purchased at Target. As Bob Hall says above STAY AWAY FROM ELEMENT ELECTRONICS TVs. They are junk.

  3. Element Electronics TVs are scrap and their customer service terrible. Stay away from Element Electronics products. They are junk.

  4. This year, I purchased several Element Flat TV "32, I only used one month ( total hours maybe less than 20 hours), There is big problem: when watch TV program, it only allowed me to watch 20 minute or so, then immediately become fuzzy image.It is nothing to do TV cable signal. I did a lot of tests. same problem. When wait several hours , I was allowed to watch again. 20 minuites later, no image again. It looks overheating ignited stopping working. It is strange. I think the product Element has QC problem and unreliable. It is cheaper, I purchased from local Walmart ( Charlottetown , Prince Edward Island, Canada). I think this TV product should stop sale. Bad product. It can not survive in the competitive market!. Luke , July 27, 2015

  5. Exact same problem just happened to us. Lasted less than one day and remote control functions are not working nor are buttons on casing. 55" 4K Element tv bought at Target. We'll be returning. What a hassle.

  6. ours has been working fine for over 5 years, but in the last 4 or 5 months the screen is solid pink, solid green, solid blue, fuzzy green, pic INVERTED, or surprises us with a new one when we turn it on. After 3 - 20 attempts at turning it on and off it will work eventually, but it becomes frustrating after 3. Anyone else seen this?

  7. Here I am with a 40 inch model and I made it about seven months. It is stuck in the self test mode and none of the fixes I have found on the Internet work. Great.