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Can You Put a Regular TV Outside? 3 Features To Consider!

Are you considering installing a television in your garden but unsure if you can use a regular TV outside? Concerned about spending more on an outdoor TV or choosing a regular TV with a cover to save money? 

This article compares both types of TV to answer the question “Can you put a regular TV outside?”. It also gives tips to help your investment last longer.

Can You Put a Regular TV Outside?

Technically, you can install a regular TV outside like any flat surface indoors, but experts do not recommend it. You should only use indoor TVs indoors. Using an indoor TV outside can cause damage to the TV over time.

Can You Put a Regular TV Outside
Can You Put a Regular TV Outside?

Differences In Enclosure Materials

Manufacturers design indoor TVs for indoor environments with shaded areas, minimal direct sunlight, and dry conditions. They're made of common plastic or metal frames and enclosures to keep production costs down.

In contrast, specialized outdoor televisions have sturdy designs built to withstand outdoor elements like water, dust, and weather. They feature robust, weatherproof enclosures made of durable materials such as aluminum or stainless steel.

Outdoor TVs are often certified with an IP rating. This score indicates their level of protection against dirt, moisture, and tampering. Standard ones usually have IP ratings above 54. Examples include Samsung The Terrace (IP55), SunBriteTV (IP65), Furrion Aurora (IP54), Séura (IP56), and more.

Differences In Resistance Features

Indoor TVs usually have cooling systems with open ventilation holes to let air flow in and out, helping to cool down the device. But, if these ventilation holes are placed in outdoor spaces, insects and dust can enter the TV's electronic circuits, causing damage.

But, outdoor televisions like Séura or SunBriteTV are often equipped with sealed weatherproof enclosures and insect-resistant screen coatings. These features help repel insects, preventing them from landing or nesting on the TV's surface and ensuring better protection against damage.

Differences In Brightness Level

Finally, the brightness levels of both types also differ. Outdoor televisions, specialized for outside use, have higher brightness levels to optimize viewing for outdoor environments. In contrast, even if you adjust the brightness of a regular television to a higher level, it still may not be enough for viewing. This is because it can be washed out by direct sunlight, leading to potential overheating and damage. 

About glare reduction, some outdoor TV models are also coated with an anti-glare and anti-reflective coating on their screens to cut glare and improve visibility.

indoor tv outdoors
TV screen can be washed out by direct sunlight

Do Outdoor TV Covers Work?

TV covers can work if they're an extra protective layer for your television Yet, for regular TV outside, the cover may not protect them from moisture in the environment.

A TV cover is a fabric cover (usually made of polyester) designed to wrap around the TV like a car cover. They can be good at keeping out dust because they're made to protect almost the entire outer surface of the television. Yet, some TVs are flush-mounted, making it difficult for the cover to cover their backside, which could still let moisture seep in.

Regular indoor TVs come with built-in cooling systems and ventilation ports to release heat while in use. If a cover is designed with ventilation holes that line up with or cover these ports on indoor televisions, it could disturb airflow and affect their cooling function. 

But, if the ventilation holes of the TV cover are placed away from the television's built-in ventilation ports, or if indoor TVs don't depend on external airflow for cooling, this issue may not be a concern.

How Long Will a TV Last Outside?

For an indoor TV, its lifespan depends on various factors. In theory, if you find an ideal spot with a shelter that can block direct rain, it might last around a year. But, besides rain, other elements like morning humidity, insects, and bee nests could cause damage. Those elements could make the television last only about 6-7 months. Even with protective measures like TV covers or enclosures, it may only extend a few more months.

But, durable outdoor TVs can last from 5 to 10 years or more, depending on conditions and care. With proper maintenance and protection, their lifespan could be extended further.

Do You Need An Outdoor TV For Outside?

Based on the above considerations, Heyo Smart recommends choosing a specialized outdoor television for your entertainment needs. These televisions are designed to withstand outdoor conditions, providing peace of mind without worrying about potential damage.

Outdoor TVs range in price from $1,500 to $10,000. Indoor televisions in the same category can cost anywhere from $500 to over $1,500. When considering the cost of protecting regular television, it's best to invest in a mid-range outdoor TV to save money. 

This will be cost-effective in the long term compared to buying protective equipment like enclosures or covers.

Do Outdoor TVs Need To Be Covered?

Outdoor TVs are made for outside use and come in different types: full-shade, partial-shade, and full-sun. They don't need extra protection when placed outside. Full-sun televisions are made for direct sunlight and are usually tougher against sun exposure, while the others are for shaded areas. They might be tougher than indoor TVs, but not as tough as full-sun ones.

These televisions in direct sunlight do not need a cover. Yet, televisions in partial or full shade may enjoy one. This is especially true if they are exposed to a significant amount of sunlight or other hazards. Using a cover adds an extra shield, keeping the TV safe from various outside factors and ensuring it lasts longer.

TV enclosure
TV enclosure

How To Protect a TV Outside?

Weatherproof Shield

You'll find a range of weatherproof shield options available at different prices to safeguard your television. The most budget-friendly choice is the TV cover we discussed earlier. If your TV will be in a shelter or a dry area, a TV cover will protect it well. These covers are lightweight, easy to store, simple to remove, and much cheaper than other options.

Additionally, there are alternatives like TV enclosures or TV cabinets. These options offer features like weather-resistance and bug-resistance, but they do come at a higher cost than covers. Also, they may be a bit trickier to take apart compared to the cover.

Theft Protection

Aside from weather and other conditions, protecting your investment from thefts is crucial. Start by ensuring your television is mounted to a sturdy surface using tamper-resistant mounts or brackets. Choose a location that's not accessible to potential thieves, such as high on a wall or within a locked enclosure. 

Additionally, consider installing locking devices like security cables or enclosures to further deter unauthorized removal of the TV. These devices act as a barrier, preventing thieves from detaching the television from its mounting surface or stand. By implementing these strategies, you can help safeguard your television and enjoy peace of mind knowing it's protected against theft.

pole mounted bracket
Pole mounted bracket

Regular Maintenance

To maintain the optimal condition of your outdoor TV, it is important to clean the screen and enclosure using a soft cloth and mild detergent to remove dust and debris without damaging the finish. 

Take the time to inspect the television for signs of damage, such as cracks or water ingress, and pay close attention to seals and gaskets that may degrade over time. Ensure that all cables and connections are secure to prevent signal loss or power issues. 

Keep ventilation ports clear of obstructions to prevent overheating and maintain optimal performance. In the event of any significant issues, consult a professional technician for inspection and repair. 

Heyo Smart, a trusted outdoor TV mounting service, offers a maintenance guarantee to ensure your investment stays in top condition. With our maintenance guarantee and these simple maintenance tips, you can safeguard your television and enjoy years of reliable entertainment.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How To Watch TV Outside Without Cable?

To watch TV outside without cable, try streaming services like Netflix or using a digital antenna for local channels. Televisions with smart features or compatibility with streaming devices like Roku or Chromecast offer extra options for out-space entertainment.

Can You Leave a TV Outside In The Winter?

While those products are designed to withstand some elements, extreme cold temperatures and moisture can still cause damage. It's recommended to take precautions such as using weatherproof covers or enclosures to protect the television from snow, ice, and moisture


So, can you put a regular TV outside? Well, the decision to use a regular TV outside depends on various factors. This may include the outdoor environment and the level of protection needed. While it's technically possible to install an indoor TV outdoors, it's not recommended due to the risk of damage from different elements. 

Specialized outdoor TVs are designed to withstand these conditions.. Investing in a mid-range one proves to be more cost-effective in the long run compared to using indoor TV outside with more protective measures. Opting for an outdoor television ensures peace of mind and reliable out-space entertainment for years to come.

At Heyo Smart, we're not just pioneering smart living – we're setting the standard. Our mission is to revolutionize modern living by providing top-notch home automation installation services across North America. Our aim? To revolutionize your daily life with comprehensive automation solutions prioritizing comfort, safety, and energy efficiency.

Partner with Heyo Smart to optimize every aspect of your home life. We pride ourselves on collaboration, diversity, and a commitment to continuous improvement. Join us on the journey toward a more connected, intelligent future.

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