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Thursday, January 24, 2008

The Towel Trick - how to fix your Xbox 360 three red light problem.

Some of your might have heard of the towel trick when it comes to troubleshooting your Xbox 360.

It's pretty simple to do the towel trick


  1. You just wrap your Xbox 360 with a cotton towel
  2. Turn on your problematic Xbox 360 for ten minutes or so (without actually playing a game or anything) and then take towel off
  3. Wait 10-20 minutes for it to cool back down (if you switch it on at this point without waiting for it to cool down you'll get the ordinary overheating lights warning)
  4. Turn it back on and hope and pray that the three red lights of doom are gone!

Sometimes you get an extra 20 minutes of playing time, and sometimes you get a few extra hours.

It's believed that the reason this towel trick works is because on occasion one of the solder joints inside your xbox that connects one of the chips to the board becomes cracked.

When you overheat your Xbox 360 with the three red lights on, the solder sometimes melts and forms a proper connection again.

I must stress that this is a very TEMPORARY fix.

The dangerous part of this fix is that overheating any electronic device is never a good thing. The Xbox 360 has fans on it to COOL IT DOWN. When you purposely heat it up you run the risk of seriously damaging your Xbox. So try this at your own risk.

Don't say I didn't warn you, but hey, it was already broken right?

At this point you're probably thinking that an ordinary soldering iron would do the trick, but the way the solder is laid out is a ball/grid array, so a standard soldering iron won't work.

For a more permanent and money back guaranteed way to fix your Xbox 360 from the three red lights error Buy this ebook and save yourself a lot of hassle.

I used it myself on mine and it worked a treat. The instructions are easy to understand and it has videos and everything. It took me about 47 minutes to get mine back up and running, and I'm a complete noob at DIY.

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Interactive Media said...

The towel trick is a bad idea. It just makes it worse because it will soon come back and you try it again and again and it might melt the hardware. I saw a video on You Tube suggesting a good website for how to get it fixed for $50 or $60. I forgot the name, but I was surfing videos and saw how you can get it fixed without sending it to the manufacturer. Anyway, if you are going to make a guide, don't use the towel trick or other do-it-yourself risk thing. I'm having trouble with the red ring and I almost did the towel trick, but luckly I kept surfing and found that video. Hey, do you know the penny trick? Your warranty has to be up or you could ruin your warranty. You can try to keep pressing the CD button too, to try to fix it, but your warranty has to be up. But, I would recommend the penny trick if you are going to do it yourself, and the penny trick is found on You Tube. By the way, I hope you do not have this in your guide, but some guy on You Tube said if you squish your 360 on the top part, it will work. Well, he's wrong. I tried, but it did nothing. Can you help me out with my 360? I hope I have not ofended you guys. All I wanted to point out was some of the do-it-yourself remedies, like the towel trick, don't work. It needs to be removed. I don't want to ruin my 360, or anyone else to ruin theirs.

souless said...

I also had the three red light problem on my xbox 360. I took my 360 apart, replaced the thermal compound, and added the pennies. I turned on the consel after completing the step by step video and no lights were present. The next day I turned my xbox back on and poof Now instead of 3 lights I had 2. Im confused because the xbox was only on for maybee ten seconds and had been off all night. So there is no way it could be overheating. Also now my xbox's fan unit spins at max speed right away on start up. I dont know what is wrong with my xbox, however I will say that I read the book a few days later, my friend had a copy and it didnt explain anything other than what I had already done myself. I havent used the towel trick and just might do it. CAUTION, once you attempt to fix bye bye waranty. So talk to microsoft first. If any one can help with my problem that would be appreciated

xbox3603redlights said...

how exaclty do you do the towel trick?o.o

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