Why projector image is flickering or shifts [8 Easy solutions]

Last updated by Nitish_Lakra on May 13, 2023

Projector Flickering

If you have a lamp-based projector. And your projector is suffering from flickering.

There is the most common reason why your projector bulb is flickering. Arc Flare, Arc Wander, or Arc Flutter. Or less common reason power quality issue.

This is not the only reason. Why you are facing projector flickering or image shaking?

We talk about the projector flickering in the two portions. First, why does flickering happen? And how you can solve flickering or shaking issues

Without being a technician. Most of the time. So let’s start our article. You can look at the below table. If you are in hurry.

Or you can read the whole article.



Eco Mode

Set to normal or high mode.

Damage bulb

Replace the bulb.

Electrical surges

Try different power outelets/Call electrician/Use surge protector.

Components have broken

Change the glass projector parts.

Ground Loops

Connect the projector and video source with same power source.

Frame Rate and Refresh rate

Increase frame/refresh rate.

Loose or Damage Cable connection

Get new cable & Tight the cable.

Color Wheel

Clean the colour wheel.

Read Also: How to enable HDMI CEC on your tv? 6 Easy steps.

What causes a projector to flicker? And How to fix projector flickering.

We are going to talk about the reason for the projector flickering and how it can be resolved.

Eco Mode

Generally, people use eco mode for the projection. So they can use the projector for a long time. Or their projector light source life can be increased. 

This step helps you to use the projector for a long time. But sometimes this projector mode becomes the reason for the screen flickering. For the projection. Your lamp should need a certain amount of power. 

And in eco mode. Your projector lamp is unable to get that amount of power. That’s why your screen is flickering. So how can you overcome this issue?

You have to move from the eco mode to normal or high mode. In your projector setting. Not for permanent. Don’t worry. Change this setting after some hours of use. And your issue will be resolved.

So that’s how you will deal with the flickering screen. Try this once. Then move for the next remedy of flickering.

Read Also: How to connect sony subwoofer to soundbar without remote [4 easy ways]

Damage bulb

There is an anode in your projector lamp. Which generates the arc. When the projector is plugged into the power outlet. With a long time of use of the projector. The projector lamp anode got faltered

And when the projector is plugged into the power source. Arc generated on the tip of the lamp anode. And that arc does not fall off the other anode

And the arc falls somewhere else. Which causes the issue. And you see the flickering screen or shaking image

And there could be one reason. The light source is used in the lamp-based projector. Have a plasma lamp. And there is gas inside the lamp.

Which makes things unstable. Also, the larger curvature slows down electrode degeneration. This means slowing down the current flow. More read here.

It happens in three different type Arc Wander, Arc Flare, and Arc Flutter.

Credit: fsu.edu

There are three ways. You can solve this issue. If the projector bulb or image is flickering. Because of this reason. 

You can change your projector power increase consumption mode. Or you can also try to change the picture mode. If all these things don’t work. 

You have to change your projector lamp. For that follow our comprehensive article on Projector bulb or lamp replacement.

Or get the laser projector. To deal with this type of issue.

Read Also: How to connect vizio soundbar to tv without remote [Quick Guide]

Electrical surges

An electrical surge is pretty common in the household. It’s happening because of electrical overload, faulty wiring, lighting, and a power outage/blackout. Read more about the reason for electrical surges.

So these are some reasons why electrical surges happen. And when you connect the projector with the power outlet. And you see a flickering screen. Which is very irritating. For everyone.

For this, you can try a different wall outlet. In your home. For the power source. Or if there is a problem with the electricity in your home. 

You should call the electrician. To solve this issue. The last thing you can do. You can use the surge protector. To solve this issue.

Components have broken

In the projector, there are various glass projection parts used in the projector. Which completes the projection in any projector. By reflecting the light towards the final destination.

If you have ever opened the projector. It might be possible. You accidentally touched the projector-sensitive glass projection part. 

And it hurts the glass parts of the projector. Or some dust collected over the glass projection parts.

To resolve it you have to change the glass projector parts. Which causes the issue. I will suggest that you should call a professional. Because you don’t want to hurt your projector more.

Ground Loops

Ground loops happen. When you plug the two different devices into the two different power outlets that share the same ground path. If you are using the projector with a separate video source.

And that device is connected to a different power source. From the projector. Then it is a hundred percent sure. You are facing a flickering issue. Because of the ground loops or earth loops

For that, you should connect the projector and video source device with the same power source/outlet/surge. So you can get rid of the flickering issue. In your projector.

Frame Rate and Refresh rate 

A low frame or refresh rate also causes the screen to flicker. So go to your projector frame rate setting. And check its frame rate. If it is low then. 

Change your projector frame rate. And increase the frame or refresh rate of your projector. It will help you to resolve the issue. 

Loose or Damage Cable connection

It’s also possible that you are using an HDMI or VGA cable that is defective. Or loose when you connect with the projector and the source device. 

So, use a good quality HDMI cable and check the cable. It is tightly connected with the HDMI or VGA port.

Color Wheel

Because of the regular use of the projector. Collect the dust inside the projector. All over inside the projector. But here we will only talk about the dust on the color wheel.

When dust is collected over the color wheel. It makes the screen flicker. Because the color wheel is part of the projector. Which converts a white light source projector into a different primary color.

You don’t need to get into too many technical things. But you should know if your projector is a DLP projector.

Then it could be the reason for your projector flickering. For that, you have to open the projector and clean the color wheel in the projector. 

For that, you can read this article. Or you can check out the video below. Read or see them carefully. Before you start disassembling the projector.

Why projector flickering when connected to a laptop or iMac?

When you connect the projector with the laptop. There are various reasons. Because of that, the projector screen flickered. 

It is happening because of the driver. Your laptop driver is not updated. So update your graphics card driver. Go to your manufacturer’s website. And try the most recent driver.

While connecting the two electrical devices like projector and laptop. Also, take care of the ground loops. Make sure you have connected your projector and laptop to the same power outlet.

And also check the cable you are using to connect the projector and laptop. And if you are using the iMac. Then soldering inside the iMac went bad. Or Graphics ports are loose.

Your iMac will work normally. But when you connect the iMac to the external screen, It might show some abnormal behavior.


Projector flickering is a very frustrating and hair-pulling problem. If you are facing this issue. These tips I have shared with you will definitely work. Try the theme one by one.

You can try these solutions on any projector like BenQ, Epson, or Optoma. Because all projector working processes are similar.

See you next time…

Further Reading.

  1. Epson projector still flickering.
  2. Is lamp flicker still an issue on current Sonys ?
  3. Phase flicker in liquid crystal on silicon devices
Categories: OnsME Blog


Nitish Lakra is a writer and editor with over a decade of experience in the publishing industry. He has written for numerous publications on a variety of topics including home theatre and projector. Nitish is passionate about educating and informing readers through his writing and strives to provide accurate and engaging content. When he's not writing, Nitish is enjoying the pc games, movies or cooking. My YouTube: @nitishlakra My Instagram: @nitish__lakra


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