Xbox 360 red ring of death: six steps to prevent your Xbox 360 from dying

Red Ring of Death Remedies: Here are 6 tips on reducing the possibility of an Xbox 360 failure, straight from the editors of GamePro.

The red ring of death.

The red ring of death.

With Microsoft's Xbox 360 one of the leaders in the current console race, it's a shame to hear more and more reports of systems overheating, or suffering from the fatal "Red Ring of Death." Collectively, the GamePro editors have lived through six or seven Xbox 360 failures, and the wait to get a replacement can be frustration, especially considering that the Xbox 360's library of great games continues to grow.

The secret is to practice preventative medicine and the staff of GamePro compiled a short list of tips that just could help you keep system failure at bay.

Here are GamePro's 6 steps to avoid getting the Xbox 360 Red Ring of Death:

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1. Keep it off the carpet!

If you have your Xbox 360 laying on the carpet, you're putting your system at risk. Playing with your console on carpet can suck in all sorts of dust and fibers and cut off the system's air flow. Instead, move your Xbox 360 onto a desk or table. Even a large book will help keep your system away from all the nasty muck that lurks in your carpet.

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2. Air flow is everything

You want a source of fresh air - a window, an air conditioning unit, a vent - to provide circulation around your Xbox 360 so it can blow out hot stale air. Don't keep your Xbox 360 cooped up in a cramped entertainment center, or you're asking for trouble.

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3. Clean it

With the Xbox 360's fans constantly spinning in that small case, it's pretty easy for dust, dirt and other garbage to block the system's ventilation. Every so often, you might want to take a few tissues wipe and away some of the nasty mess around the vent openings (being careful not to blow more debris into the console). Cigarette or cigar smoke will lead to a funky buildup, too, and may gunk up the fans.

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4. Let it chill

Marathon gaming sessions have a habit of stressing the Xbox 360, so if you hear your Xbox 360's fans churning, be sure to power down the console for a bit and give it a breather. Most importantly, always remember to power down your Xbox after you finish playing - don't leave it turned on day in, day out.

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5. Turn it upside down

In its standard vertical configuration, the Xbox 360's bottom vent is actually blocked. GamePro editor Sid Shuman realized that by flipping his Xbox 360 onto its other side - standing it on the hard drive - the system dissipated heat faster. Your mileage may vary, but it might be worth a shot if you get heat-related crashes.

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6. Buy a newer model

Obviously the least desirable option on this list, but worth investigating if you're a dedicated Xbox 360 gamer (or you just got a big raise). Newer Xbox 360 models, particularly the new 60GB model introduced in July of 2008, have better cooling systems and are less likely to give you the dreaded Red Ring of Death. Before your resort to this last-ditch effort, though, you should experiment with the other tips on this page - they may save your Xbox 360!

Tags XBox 360

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GamePro staff

GamePro

31 Comments

aaron

1

keeping your xbox from rrod

I use a 92mm 12 volt fan on the back of my xbox 360 on the gpu side keeps everything frosty cold.

Waldo

2

It never ceases to amaze me.....

It never ceases to amaze me how Microsoft get away with this. They build one of the worst consoles (for reliability) in the history of consoles, and people still think they are wonderful. I've heard of people who are on their fourth, fifth and even sixth 360 and keep coming back for more!

I've seen a mod that basically allows you to strip down your 360 and put it in a PC type case. Thats pretty bad. This article, though very good, is not a good indicator for the state of 360 hardware.

Will the 720 or whatever be any better? Probably not, MS know they can push out any old shoddy device and people will still buy it. So I wouldn't hold my breath.

Ask yourself this question: "If my toaster behaved like this, would I put up with it".

Anonymous

3

RROD

My 360 Elite just went RROD on me, whatever, happens to everybody right? the problem is that last fall I was REALLY bored one day and took the case off and customized it by cutting windows in the sides and painted it metalic blue but the the sticker with the serial # fell off and then was lost in the caos that is my house with 3 roommates. So now what do I do? Go buy another one? Those pricks at Microsoft aren't going to fix it so I'll just take it up the battyhole. THANKS MICROSOFT! if I see Bill Gates I will fight him!

Anonymous

4

When was "buy a newer model" ever an acceptable practice? You made a shoddy product and you just expect me to buy a NEWER model? HAH. No thank you. Once was enough and I'm not buying it again. Why not sell me a Game.com while you're at it?

Anonymous

5

7. Sell XBOX and buy a PS3

Anonymous

6

Step 7

7. Sell XBOX and buy a PS3

Anonymous

7

Step 7

7. Sell Xbox, buy PS3

amattei

8

Is this advertizing?

keep it clean and well ventilated?
what's new?

put it upside down (now this is new)
...up side down? how about the hdd wont it get too hot?
it needs ventilation too.

buy a new one...
(oh may..)
but not the cheaper, the 60Gigs one
what do i do with 120gigs HDD i bought, should i put it up side down too?

sorry i had to take it in a fun way but i have returned my X360 5 times.
i have come to realize that i am addicted to this console, and i got to tell you non of these things ever worked for me.

lady

9

Lmfao

The 360 is a piece of shit console. There's no way around that. Software wise, it's very impressive but hardware? Forget it. 360 fanboys better pray Microshaft builds a better console in the future or the media will eventually eat them alive.

I would have bought a 360 back in 2007 if I was an uninformed consumer who did little research. My PS3 may have been a paperweight in 2007 but at least it was a paperweight that lasted.

And with all the amazing games coming out, I can't go wrong with Sony.

Anonymous

10

You forgot the best way to avoid a RROD, buy a Wii or PS3. ;)

logicslayer

11

Really?

Just got my 4th 360 today. I don't think there is much you can do (without voiding the warranty)to prevent your XBOX from failing. I have spent nearly $1000 on XBOX 360s alone. I am afraid that this may be my last one. I don't think I am going to continue paying for poor quality assurance.

I have a PS3 which I rarely play on. I had so much hope for the PS3 and it has really let me down. I don't have much of an excuse to keep it around anymore.

I will be going back to PC gaming after this. Yeah I won't have any close friends to join me in that arena but they can continue to play on these shoddy XBOX 360s.

Liers.

12

stop lies about 360!

Wow. stop the lies, Xbox its not that bad console. in fact... i always fall asleep on my room and let the 360 turned on. NOTHING happens. and i do it almost daily.

anyways i keep my console in a fresh place. to prevents any failure.. who knows is if true xD

Anonymous

13

I kept my 360 on a cookie cooling rack (not joking) on a hard wood table near an air conditioner in summer. I never played it for more than an hour to avoid it overheating. I turn it on one day and first thing it does is freeze up and RROD.

None of these tips will stop it from happening. You need to fix the X-clamps to keep the board from warping from heat. This will void your warranty and isn't a permanent solution.

Best way to avoid RROD is to avoid the 360.

Anonymous

14

Strange, I have a 360 and it has never RROD, my roommate also has one that has never RROD, our buddy has one and never a RROD. Maybe it's how well we take care of it, the only person i know who has got it has the first generation, but more importantly has 4 kids that tear that thing up! That family has also destroyed two different big screen TV's. I guess they are just unlucky.

Anonymous

15

Yeah I guess the millions of other people who have had the RROD are just all unlucky!

It's not like it has been documented that Microsoft cheaped out on parts.
http://gizmodo.com/5015483/microsofts-1-billion-xbox-360-recall-problems-caused-by-chip-cheapness

Yep, just ol' fashioned bad luck! Millions of people getting unlucky in the same exact way with the same exact machine!

Anonymous

16

Ever heard of a warranty? Dumbass

Killer_pwned89

17

Former xbox 360 fan

I used to love the xbox 360 idk if id call myself a fan boy cuz i thought also the ps3 was amazing and i loved it...........untill a yr ago i went threw 7 xbox 360`s!!!!!!!! 3 of them i bought after my last one died got it back sold everything bought a 60gb ps3 omg i had one be4 but had to sell it i didnt relize how much i missed haveing one and the games are just geting better and better loveing it screw 360 get a ps3 u will feel more safer at home now :)

Anonymous

18

Ive owned 2 different 360's since they first came out and ive never had a single rrod or any lockup issues period. I just did 1 minute of research and found out the latest mobo ver and picked up the newest box that was at the store, and keep it in a ventilated area and clean it up once and a while.

My laptop overheats though, and you dont see me become a mac fanboy because of it.

Anonymous

19

Everyone seems to forget what a piece of crap the PS2 was when it came out. I went through 3 of those because the disc tray failed. It's computer hardware guys. There is going to be some amount of failure rate. Get over it.

Anonymous

21

You guys are all gay Xbox 360's are the best thing that happened to me and mine never quit working your all just little babies go cry some where else

tazguy1985

22

I owned my xbox 360 for 8-9 months before it RRoD on me, i had only ever played it a few times as i am busy most of the time with work, i had it in a well ventilated area on top of a tv cabinet and cleaned it regularly.

Today was actually the day it RRoD but tomorrow I'll take it back to the place i bought it from and get it replaced with another one, hopefully this one lasts longer...

Protos Omega

23

Dead 360

I have had a 360 Elite for just over a year (being 1 year 1 month), and it only came with a 1 year warranty.

In it's later life, I noticed that games started glitching up, and even sometimes freezing.

Now, I loved my 360, but since I have been through 2 Xboxs that both broke, and now my 360 with a RRoD, I cannot justify paying for a repair job on it.

Sure, there are games on both 360 and Xbox that I own and absolutely love (including Star Ocean 4, Lost Odyssey, Halo 3, Panzer Dragoon Orta and Crackdown), but I cannot justify getting another Microsoft branded console, just because my first one died.

I have owned SNES, N64, Dreamcast, GameCube, and PS2, and have never ever had a hardware console, but they have all been Japanese machines.

Looks like I may have to go with the PlayStation 3, although I may not be able to play 360 LAN anymore, at least I will feel secure with PS3 hardware

Anonymous

24

You're a dumb @$$ it's happen ot a lot of people just be glad it hasn't happen to you instead of being a dick

the crack xbox freak

25

Reply to the cry baby

Get a life you little cry baby BRAT!

Anonymous

26

Damn It I Got My 360 A Year Ago Today I Played It And It Froze So I Shut It Off Cuz I Got Scared Cuz It Cant Go Down On Me Now Im Gettin Left 4 Dead 2 4 Xmas

Anonymous

27

DIY You Pansies

My XBox gets a lot of use in a very hot location. Good thing I have enough practice and patience to take it a part, fix it and put it back online in under an hour. If you like something well enough, you man-up. Biyatch!

EatsOldOreos

28

Anybody ever tried keeping it on a chill pad like for a laptop? Worth a shot.

P.S. Look up the towel trick on youtube if you have rrod.

Tam

29

PS3 is garbage, it doesnt even have Fable :|

And besides the ps3 also suffers heat related issues just as much and so does the wii btw ;)

so you argument is mince

defcon1

30

ive had my elite for awhile and i keep it on a milk krate and it stays cool

tommy

31

i have the black 120gb elite console and i leave this thing on all the time and it also sits on carpet and inside my entertainment center...it never really gets that hot though..i do install the games i play the most though so im guessing thats probably a big help..but anyway the longest ive ever left this thing on was when we were glitching on call of duty black ops to see how many levels there was on zombies and we let it go for 7 days straight out in my garage and nothing at all happened..

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