I bought a Panasonic TC-P54G10 in late November of 2009 and now the TV has developed vertical pixel-width lines in an approximate 2 to 3 inch area from left to right. I would say that the TV has at most 500 hours of use on it since I purchased it. The TV has a build date of Sept 2009.
A few days ago, I was watching a TV show with my dad when he accidentally hit the power button and instinctively hit it again to turn the TV back on. Then after watching the TV show for about 10 or 20 minutes, I noticed some vertical lines about a 1/3 from the right edge of the screen. I changed the channel and then tried another input but the lines were still there. I walked up closer to the screen to examine it and there were about 20 lines, a pixel-width each, which stretched from the top to the bottom of the screen. It's sort of hard to describe what the pixels looked like exactly. When viewing the TV from farther back, the affected area looked a little darker or like a slightly different tint. From up close, I remember that the pixels were not a uniform color; they seemed to be different colors depending on the colors in the area, but the pixels obviously weren't displaying the colors they were supposed to. The lines were all in the same area on the screen (about 2 to 3 inches wide). There were other lines of pixels which were operating normally in between the faulty lines of pixels (ie. there wasn't a solid block of random color on the screen). I turned the TV off, waited 10 seconds, and turned it on, but the lines were still there, so I turned it off again. The next day, my dad told me that he had turned the TV on again that night (I wasn't there) and he saw that the lines weren't there at first but then appeared again and may have been worse than before, so he turned it off.
My dad says that Panasonic probably won't do anything for us as the limited warranty expired in late November 2010, but I still want Panasonic to fix the issue for us. I did a quick search for implied warranty laws and it seems that in my state (Massachusetts) there are such laws which may protect us. I'm no lawyer, but it said that the manufacturer's statement, which said that the implied warranty would last as long as the limited warranty (1 year), would be unenforceable. I don't know how we would convince Panasonic of this, though.
I feel absolutely ripped off right now (especially since we didn't even use it that often). It's like the TV was made to develop problems after a year. The lines weren't that noticeable, but I have a feeling that the whole affected 2-3 inch area of the TV may go completely if I keep using the TV. What should I do? What would be the best way to go about getting Panasonic to repair or replace the TV? Should I make the case that my dad caused the problem by turning the TV on and off quickly? I've noticed that when I turn the TV off, it takes a second to shut off the display, and then about five seconds later it makes a clicking noise. I've always taken that clicking noise to mean that the TV was completely off. Is it possible that my dad (just by hitting a button twice on the remote, which isn't that out of the ordinary and should not be harmful to the TV) gave the TV a surge of electricity while it was shutting down and messed something up? Would this help or hurt my case with Panasonic, who could say that this would qualify as "misuse" or "misadjustment of consumer controls" (although I would entirely disagree)?
Lastly, if Panasonic won't help, what would be my next course of action? Should I unplug the TV for ten minutes and then plug it back in and turn it on? Could this cause any problems? I'm thinking that the TV may forget how many hours it's been in use for, and so would provide the wrong amount of voltage and royally screw itself up. This seems unlikely as the same thing could happen after a power outage, but who knows? It seems like Panasonic doesn't know how to create a reliable product.Update: Problem solved below.