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Xbox Troubleshooting: Try This First Before Repairing Your Xbox

Jan 31, 2008
If you've owned an Xbox 360 for any amount of time, you probably know of the much dreaded red ring of death. Since it's introduction in 2005, this machine has been plagued with problems and they are guaranteed to crop up while you're playing a game. This ring of death is shown by three red lights located around the power button. This problem may require repair before you can continue your gaming.

Try these suggestions before attempting repair:

Restart the console.

If this doesn't help, then the problem may be due to a loose cord or cable. First, any power cords and cables that can be disconnected should be removed. Unplug the power cord from the wall. All cables and cords should now be reattached to the console. Now connect up the power and switch the console back on.

If the above suggestion doesn't work, turn off your Xbox, disconnect the power cord, and remove the hard drive. After plugging in the power cord, turn on the console. If console doesn't display the three red lights error, turn it off and disconnect the power cord from the wall. Now you can reattach the hard drive, plug the power cord back into the wall, and switch the console on.

If this didn't work, you may have a heat related problem. If the internal chips get too much heat exposure, they will shut off. Sometimes the thermal shutdown will be accompanied by the three red light error. This can definitely happen if you've had several thermal related shutdowns before.

Switch your Xbox off and give it some time to cool down if you believe that it is experiencing too much heat. Clear the cooling vents of all obstructions and place your Xbox in an area that is open with lots of ventilation. Keep it away from all sources of heat. Clean out dust and debris from the inside of the console. Cool off your console with a small fan. Remember to keep the power brick cool, so do not place it on shaggy carpeting.

This article dealt with all of the measures for coping with the ring of death that doesn't involve repair. If your problems still persist, repairing your machine is the next step. The warranty of any Xbox with the ring of death failure has been extended for three years beyond the date of purchase by Microsoft. If your console has been opened, then the warranty is void. Expect to get your repaired Xbox back from Microsoft after several weeks of delay. If you're too impatient with Microsoft's delays, a quicker but more expensive option is to send your console to a repair shop. Finally, you can take matters into your own hands and repair it yourself using one of the available guides.
About the Author
Marc Sandford is a gaming enthusiast and writer. Get more Xbox troubleshooting information about repairing the Xbox 360 3 Red Lights of Death.
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