Can an outdoor LCD enclosure protect outdoor TVs?
No matter if you’re putting an outdoor TV in your backyard, the best solutions is an outdoor LCD enclosure that provide security and safety all year round. These can be used in outdoor digital signage applications or just in your own back yard.
In the early days, many people who could afford to put a TV in their backyard went for the expensive, waterproof TVs that could be left outside all year round, but as soon as the technology of LCD displays became affordable and within everyone’s reach, the protective TV housing appeared on the market allowing home owners to put a TV in almost every backyard in America and Australia! Why not, when the weather is good, we want to spend time with our family and one of the best ways is outdoors, entertaining. Now anyone can afford to put a TV in their backyard, is no longer exclusive for the wealthy, reported LCD Enclosure Solutions Inc.
Then we saw a rise in digital signage and it suddenly started sprouting outdoors, in locations that we thought impossible before, this is due to the protective, digital signage enclosure, these are similar to the home TV housing but are designed to accommodate sunlight readable screens, even in direct sunlight. The unique thing about these units, is that they can be mounted upright or landscape, to fit any dynamic advertising opportunity. Now we see bars, restaurants deploying these outdoors, so customer scan see the menu and bar list before they go into the building. Digital signage outdoors is growing year on year and who knows where it will end.
The units are made from metal, welded to provide a weatherproof solution, then the units are pickled, taking any scale off, so the powder paint can adhere to the metal casing. The housing is then fitted with a cooling and heating system so the hardware is kept at the right temperature irrelevant what the outside temperature is, so it could be snowing or baking hot! The door to the unit is locked with specifically designed locks not locks that can be accessed easily, otherwise the door may as well be left open! The hardware will be damaged, stolen or even hacked!
Dependent on the location, you will also have to think about how you are going to mount the housing, some outdoor display enclosures comes with external mounts so they can be mounted to third party wall mounts and stands, without having to buy expensive brackets that only fit that manufacturers unit. These have to also be heavy duty as the total weight of the unit complete with a screen inside is 110lbs and that will need some support! To the structure or wall the outdoor digital sign is being installed on has to be substantial to support the sign, the last thing you want is the screen falling to the floor!
Cabling the outdoor LCD enclosure simple, if mounted on a wall, the cables can be concealed within the wall, or if mounted on a pole outdoors, the cables, for power and data can be fed through the pole and into the protective housing through the waterproof cable grommets. Some protective housings do not have this facility and recommend that you drill into the plastic housing base, on the basis rain cannot go upwards, but in heavy thunder storms, we have seen the plastic housings fill will water, causing the displays and advertisement player to fail.
Securing the digital signage enclosure is essential, to ensure the life of the display is as long as possible. Selecting an outdoor LCD enclosure with the wrong locks is as back as selecting an outdoor TV housing without any locks!
The best protective enclosures are fitted with high security locks, the units that have any other locks, such as compression locks are vulnerable and can be opened easily by rudimentary items found in a child’s kindergarten pencil case. And this is the last thing you need when you have planned your advertising solution and campaign, to find the displays stole! Who will pay for the replacements?
Cooling and heating is another vital essential within these units, as this is what the display and ad player will rely on to keep them in the best shape possible. Too hot and the screen will blacken and fail, to cold and the heat from the display will cause condensation within the housing and the advertising hardware failing. The better solutions have an integral cooling and heating system that are set to operate 24×7, this ensures the hardware is at the right temperature at any time of the day, without an engineering having to visit site. Any other solutions that do not have both heating and cooling fitted as standard, needs to be given a wide birth, as this is an accident waiting to happen.
Things to watch out for, when selecting an outdoor LCD enclosure.
Stay clear of protective plastic enclosures, as in the heat when the display is running and the door is locked (who would leave it open anyway…) the heat inside the housing is stored in the plastic body and when the sun goes down, the heat is then released into the housing, causing the display to have condensation build up on the internal components, rusting. It is only a short time until the TV fails to work, especially when these units have only a small packet of silica gel to absorb moisture inside the TV box. Over a short period of time, the silica gel becomes saturated and the supplier recommends that you put the sachet in the oven to dry out, who is going to do this on a regular basis?
Air curtains are used in some protective display housings, to circulate the air around the window in the enclosure door and the display screen, if the gap is too small from the display to the window, the hot air is trapped and caused blackening of the screen, this is why an air curtain is offered – as the gap is too small. If the air curtain is not taken, the screen will fail however the ownership is then down to the buyer for not purchasing the air curtain. Air curtains are usually found on very thin enclosures or ill designed units where the gap is just to small from the front of the display to the viewing window. Now you know some inside secrets for providing the best in an outdoor LCD enclosure.