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A timed screensaver is an excellent option for preventing image burn-in and other issues—until it isn’t. A screensaver becomes more of a pain when it’s popping up left and right, even when you’re just sitting there, watching live programming or streaming a show.

If the aggravation of ill-timed screensavers on your Samsung Smart TV is happening to you, it could be caused by an associated cable box, other device connections, outdated firmware, video source, ambient mode, or the sleep timer. 

AdobeStock_498226178 Stylish room interior with modern TV mounted on wall, cabinet and decorative elements

Screensavers only exist to protect the life span of your smart TV. And they can be visual eye candy for those who like something on in the background. They aren’t supposed to be a thorn in your side while trying to watch your shows or while you’re gaming.

6 Fixes To Samsung Smart TV Screensaver Keeps Coming On

1. Make Sure Your Firmware is Updated

Not updating your firmware can cause all kinds of problems, especially when you get two or three updates behind. The apps you stream with are being updated to match the firmware on your Samsung.

So, if your Samsung isn’t updating, this creates a widening degree of separation and, eventually, problems.

For most Samsung TVs, the firmware should automatically update when connected to the internet. But, for whatever reason, the TV might be having problems doing so or the feature is turned off.

Whatever the case, you can at least check the firmware and see what its current status is. Keep in mind that not all Samsung TVs are exactly the same, so the below run-down might not be perfectly aligned with how your Samsung TV works. Think of it as more of a guide.

  1. Press the ‘Home’ button on your Samsung Remote
  2. Locate the little gear symbol (Settings) and select it
  3. Select ‘Support’
  4. Select ‘Software Update’
  5. Select ‘Update Now’

You’ll only see the ‘Update Now’ option if the system detects a newer firmware version than the one you currently have. Once you update it, restart the TV by simply turning it off and turning it back on again.

2. Disable the Screensaver

Image burn-in mostly went out the window when they quit manufacturing plasma TVs. It can still happen but it’s usually rare and, when it does appear on the screen, temporary. Unless you pause programs for long periods of time a lot or watch a lot of programs that feature logos in the corner of the screen, you probably don’t need a screensaver.

  1. Press ‘Home’ on your Samsung Remote
  2. Go to and select ‘Settings’
  3. Select ‘System’
  4. Select ‘Advanced Settings’
  5. Select ‘Screensaver’
  6. Select the ‘Turn Off’ option

If, at some point down the line, you start to see residual image burn-in, feel free to turn the screensaver back on. Go with it just as a trial basis to see if previously turning it off rid you of the issue. You can also change the timer within the same screensaver menu.

All the timer does is activate the screensaver if nothing is going on with the screen or you haven’t pressed a button for a set amount of time. The TV detects that period of inactivity and activates the screensaver.

3. It Might Be an Issue with an External Device

By ‘external device’ we mean something like a Playstation or Xbox game console, a cable box from DirecTV, or just a standard Blu-Ray player. Those devices may or may not have their own screensaver options or they may be interfering with what your TV considers to be inactivity.

For instance, let’s say you are skimming through streaming apps on an Amazon Firestick.

While you’re doing this, you are interacting with the TV using the Firestick remote and the Firestick that’s plugged into one of the HDMI ports on the Samsung.

In other words, you aren’t doing anything with your Samsung TV because the control and the video source are all Amazon Firestick. Your Samsung TV thinks you aren’t doing anything, so it throws up the screen saver.

The best way to rid yourself of this is to turn off the Samsung screensaver as described above. If you prefer to use a timed screensaver, you can do so with the Amazon Firestick or just about any other device you plug into one of the ports on the back.

In fact, when you set up things like Roku devices, Chromecast, or Firesticks, they essentially become the driving mechanic behind everything you do. The Samsung TV merely becomes the conduit. So it makes sense to use the screensaver settings on the device you are using only.

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4. Factory Reset Your Samsung

If it looks like none of the above factors are doing the trick, a factory reset is often a good go-to option. Of course, doing so will reset it to the TV you originally pulled out of the box. All of your streaming apps will need to be downloaded again and you will have to sign into them again as well.

  1. Press the ‘Home Button’ on your Samsung Remote
  2. Locate “General’ and select it
  3. Select ‘Reset’
  4. The default PIN (unless you’ve changed it) should be 0000
  5. Enter the PIN
  6. Select ‘Reset’
  7. Select ‘OK’ to confirm

A Samsung TV is more complicated (in general) than a calculator but not by much. All that means is it won’t take long for it to go through the factory reset process. Maybe a few seconds. Once it’s done, start the setup process again, just like you did when it was brand new.

5. Smart TV Picture Mode

For whatever reason, this is an oft-repeated issue behind the sudden screensaver problem that crops up with some users. The Smart TV Picture Mode tends to trip that screensaver and the solution is to change the picture mode until it stops doing it.

The two shouldn’t be associated with each other. Nevertheless, here we are.

  1. Press the ‘Home’ button on your Samsung Remote
  2. Select ‘Picture Mode’
  3. Pick whichever one you want, so long as it’s not the one you’re currently on
  4. Select ‘Test’ to determine if you like it
  5. Select ‘Apply’ to make the change permanent

This works surprisingly often. If the screensaver is popping up fairly frequently, you should probably know by now how long it will be before it pops up again.

Once you change the picture mode and go beyond that typical timeframe, without the screensaver kicking in, you’ll know it worked.

6. Updating Your Apps

Just like the Samsung TV’s firmware, the apps should be set to update automatically. That’s usually the default setting.

One way to determine if the apps are at fault, try switching to a streaming app that you don’t normally watch and see if the screensaver problem persists.

If not, go back to the apps you are struggling with and check to ensure they are updated. Apps don’t work well with firmware that’s not updated and the reverse is true as well.

Final Thoughts

While it’s not the end of the world and it certainly doesn’t mean your Samsung TV is failing, a screensaver that pops up on its own, all the time, is an aggravating situation.

If it’s prevalent, it could ruin the whole viewing experience altogether.

On the bright side, one or more of the six solutions listed above should get you back on track once more. Samsung TVs are some of the best in the world and they sell like hotcakes for a reason.

Hopefully, the solutions here work for you and you can once more enjoy your Samsung TV experience.