Unfortunately, the Xbox 360 video game console has a number of technical problems that are so common as to be nearly identified with this video game itself. The so-called “red ring of death,” in which three red lights flash on the console, is the most common and famous problem this game console has.
“General hardware failure”
The ‘red ring of death’ is basically a reporting mechanism that lets the user know that there is a technical malfunction of the hardware or a ‘core digital failure’. It is very possible that receiving this indication means that a ‘fatal error has occurred’. This technical failure rate is reported to be far more common than the electrical goods industry in general, desipte Microsoft’s initial claims of a 2-3% failure rate when the games console was first launched, which would have been within regular industry parameters.
In July of 2007, the vice president of Microsoft’s Interactive Entertainment Business Division publicly acknowledged the consul’s problems and promised a three-year warranty extension for every Xbox 360 console that has previously experienced the “red ring of death.”
What causes the red failure lights?
Could be any of a large number of reasons. A prominent source, long suspected to have been a team leader in the Microsoft Xbox360 development team, says that it could be anything; parts, material problems, system design, pretty much anything.
The source has said that this was as a result of inadequate testing by Microsoft and poor management decisions overall. In fact, some have said that as many as 68 of every 100 test units were found to be defective upon testing.
What causes Xbox 360’s failure?
One of the most common causes of the “red ring of death” is that the machine simply overheats. When the fans can’t keep the mechanism cool enough, thermal plates in the mechanism overheat, which can therefore cause problems. As of October 2008, a new motherboard configuration called Jasper was introduced for newer Xbox 360 models; this is said to produce less heat than previous models, and the redesigned plug, too, should reduce failure rates.
What do to if the ‘red ring of death’ strikes
If you have an Xbox 360 and you have the “red ring of death,” Microsoft has said that it will automatically extend warranties to three years for this particular problem. However, the warranty only applies to you if you have owned the model originally; this is not honored for secondhand models. If you have an extended the Microsoft warranty, they honor your loss with one month of an Xbox live gold subscription card while your system is being repaired. If you do not have the extended warranty, you can get out of warranty repair service for a fee; that repair service has its own one-year warranty.
The last option, and it should only be used as a last option, is to try repair the Xbox yourself. This will invalidate your warranty and could well damage it beyond repair so it is an option that you should think about carefully and only use as a last resort.