Today I’m going to show you how to fix the DLP projector flickering colors on the screen error.

(With step-by-step)

And today, I’m taking apart of my Acer X1230P projector as an example to show you the steps:

If your DLP projector is flashing colors like this case, you may check these fixing steps out.

And hope this guide will have some value for you.




Above all, we have to exclude other reasons and confirm the flickering color is caused by the dirty projector color wheel.

So How:


First of all, check the cable connected to the external device. And confirm it isn’t intermittent.

If the external cable’s plug is not firmly enough, just plug it tight. Moreover, you can replace another cable to try.



Press the AUTO POSITION button on the remote control.

Some computers output out-of-spec signals on rare occasion. Adjust the Signal menu.

When the input signal is a WXGA video signal, confirm the setting selected in WXGA in the options menu.

When the input signal is other than a WXGA video signal, select OFF in WXGA in the Options menu.


Confirm it caused by the dead lamp.

If your projector flickering brightness on and off,  the broken projector lamp lead to this error.

The solution to fix this is replacing a new spare lamp to check.




Up to the present time, if the projector flickering on the screen is not fixed, after checking the above situation, you may consider taking out of the projector and cleaning the projector color wheel and its sensor.


But before diving it the process, we should know how does the projector color wheel look like and why is it flickering.


What Is The Projector Color Wheel


The projector color wheel in DLP projector plays the role of color separation and processing. The color wheel is only designed in single-chip DLP and two-chip DLP projectors. And the three-chip DLP projectors aren’t built with a color wheel.


How does the projector color wheel look like:

Projector color wheel


There is a very thin metal layer vacuum-coated in the surface of the projector color wheel. With different projector technology, the color wheel is coated with red, green, blue, white and even yellow.

There is a variable speed motor in the color wheel.

The motor drives the rotation of the color wheel to achieve separation and filtration. Therefore, with the effect of the color mixing, the projected image appears with a different color.


Nowadays’ projector color wheel is not only including the color red, green and blue panel.

The projector manufacturer, in order to improve the color and sharpness, also add the white yellow and pink color panel to the color wheel.


What Causes Your Projector Image Color Flickering


The projector color wheel is the main part that the light shines through and gives you the color on the screen. As the canal point of the light path of the projector bulb, the temperature here will reach as high as 80-90 degrees.

Over times passed, the dust builds up inside of the projector, and the color wheel will be aging. Specifically in the dusty and wet projecting environment.

That is the main reason to stop the projector color wheel working properly. Finally, you will see the flashing color on the screen or even shut down automatically.

In order to get it to work correctly again, you have to clean the dust from as many places as you can, particularly the projector color wheel and its sensor.

Or even have to replace a new projector wheel when the old one is corroded.


Tools needed to clean the projector color wheel

  • Some Philips screwdrivers that fit for different size of the screws.
  • Projector lens cleaning tissues which are used for camera lens cleaning. Because it is a good idea to clean as more parts as possible when you taking apart from your projector.
  • A vacuum cleaner. The ideal one is that has some decent sucking power.
  • Heat Sink Paste. Because the projector DMD chip is very closed to the color wheel. We will take the time to replace the aging thermal pad in the DMD chip. So that will prevent another trouble happening on the screen – Projector White Dots or Projector White Spots.
  • Some more patience and memory. To cleaning the projector color wheel, you have to remove some parts of the projector.


Now let’s begin with the processes:




Step #1: Turn Off  The Projector and Unplug The Power


Turn out of your projector if you have it on.

Always remember let the projector cool down before unplugging the power cable.

The ideal step is to let the projector fan stop and leave it at least 10 minutes after shutting down the projector.

This step will protect your projector lamp against explosion.

And after that, put your projector onto a clean desk. So that will prevent dust comes into the projector again.


Step #2: Taking Apart Of The Projector

Un-install the projector lamp


To take apart of the projector, let’s remove the projector lamp first.

Undo the two screws of the lamp cover.

After you’ve done this, pop the flap open. And you will find the lamp inside.


fix projector flickering step one


And the lamp set hold screw:


Undo the lamp screw



Next, remove the projector lamp from the projector and keep it in a safe place.


Remove projector lamp


Remove The Projector Surface Cover


In our Acer X1230P projector, there are 5 screws on the bottom of the projector. Screw them out.


find the projector bottom screws


Bonus Tip

Keep the screws in the different container when you uncork the screws. Because you have to disassemble at least 4 parts of the projector, and each part is tightening with different size of screws.

For example:

Put the lamp cover and holding screws in one small box.

At the same time, mark it as the lamp’s screws.

While they are projector bottom cover screws, note it as bottom screws.

This step will prevent screws from mixing up or losing.

Pry the surface cover of the projector through the edge with a plastic opening tool.


(If you don’t have one, I suggest you get the electronics toolkit that including the opening tool.)

open the projector surface cover


After opening the top cover, the projector inside looks like this:


Projector top case opened




The next process is disassembling the other covers confined on all sides:


remove projector cover surrounded


In our Acer X123P projector, the surrounded covers are removable.

But not all the projector models, actually, has been designed like our unite. You have to check it carefully before taking this process.



Step#3 Disassembling The Main Parts Of The Projector


Now, we step into the projector inside.

In this step, we are going to dismantle the projector fans, mainboard, and lens system.

Must be remembered:

The ideal steps to clean the projector fan to fix the projector colors flickering problem is disassembling the fewer parts the better.

Needless to say, in our case, this thought is not working.

Just because all of the parts are connected to each other.

For this reason, we have to remove the projector fan, disassemble the projector main board and the lens system.


Let’s get into the full processes:


Generally speaking, there are two projector fans designed inside of the projector.

One is for cooling the projector lamp and the order is for the mainboard.

Here you can see there is a plugin connected to the mainboard.

Unplug it and pull these two fans upward.


Remove the projector fan


Undo the projector mainboard screws.


Undo the projector mainboard screws


The other two screws on the left side of the projector.

Normally, there are five to six pieces of screws locking the mainboard with the lamp supply board.


Left side mainboard screws


And also undo the screw that locks the mainboard with the lens engine system.


Mainboard screw with lens system


Unplug the projector color wheel and DLP board plugin:


projector color wheel plug


Open the projector mainboard gently.


Here we don’t have to totally disassemble the mainboard and the lamp power supplier.

Because we will reinstall every part to get the projector function later.


Open the projector mainboard


By all means, always remember:

The fewer parts we disassembling, the less difficult to reassemble the projector.

You are not especially an expert on repairing electronic device.

So don’t forget this tip when you are doing the same cleaning work in your projector.

Step #4 Disassemble The Optical System And The Color Wheel


Now, it is time to go to the heart of the projector – Optical System.

This part controls the light, native resolution and the colors appeared in the projector screen.

And this will be the most important accessory we must take care of.


Find those three or four screws that locked the optical system on the base of the projector.

projector optical system


This is what the projector optical system looks like:


Projector Optical System


In this area, we are going to take down the color wheel to clean it, confirm if its speed worked well, and also replace the DMD chip thermal pad.


In the back side of the Optical assembly, there are two screws holding the projector color wheel housing. Undo these and loosen the fasteners.


Undo the projector color wheel screws


Unlock the last screw that holding the color wheel on the optical system. Then you will get the wheel down.


projector color wheel screw holding on the optical system

Once you have removed the projector wheel, and check if the wheel is broken or missing any color pannel.

If yes, you may need to replace a new one to fix the flickering problem.

And when you see the wheel is in good condition, ensure the wheel turns somooth.

After that, clean the color wheel sensor and put it back to try.