How To Maintain Your Xbox 360

The Xbox 360 is a console designed by Microsoft Corporation. It is much more that just another game console, the 360 can be used as a media station to play most media types movies, music and if you have a Gold Xbox Live subscription then you can join in online games, listen to music online and do much much more.

The Xbox 360 is basically the same as your Home Computer and needs to be maintained properly in order to provide you with hours of entertainment.

Check those vents

Your Xbox 360 just like your computer generates a lot of heat. The more graphically intense a game is then more heat will be produced. The heat is a by-product of energy given off from the electrical components inside the console. Most of the heat will come from the CPU and it transferred safely away via the heat sync.

Check the ventilation holes regularly for dust and any blockages. Most of the heat on the old 360 consoles is blown out from the rear vents, as with the newer consoles the heat is blown downwards out of the bottom base of the console.

To remove dust from the vents use the nozzle end from your vacuum cleaner. Make sure that all the vents are as clear as possible, and try to best place the console so that the vents are not blocked or obstructed when the console is in use. This also applies to the PSU pack; you should make sure the vents are clean and clear. Never attempt to open or repair a 360 Power pack, the unit contacts lethal voltages (much higher than your average 240V) that could result in injury or fatality.

Keep your Lens clean

The laser lens in your CD drive is vital to its operation. A dirty lens head will cause issues when the drive attempts to extract data from the CD. This may lead to sudden crashes and freezes when playing and a loss of game data.

If you use your 360’s CD drive on a daily basis it’s recommended that you clean the lens every 1 to 3 months in order to maintain its efficiency. I would only recommend that you use a professional lens cleaning kit. The CD drive in your Xbox isn’t any different from the CD Drive inside your PC and this can be replaced if you encounter an issue with your drive.

If in the event you do need to replace the CD Drive always replace with the same make and model. If the same model isn’t available then you must consult tech support to avoid purchasing a CD Drive that is not compatible with the Xbox system.

Horizontal or Vertical

This is a question that has plagued Xbox 360 gamers since day one. There are pros and cons for both ways, and each gamer has their own preference. Let’s take a look why you should reconsider the way you currently have your Xbox 360.

#1 Vertical

Pros –  Having your Xbox 360 positioned vertically exposes the vent on the bottom of the console, thus allowing more air to pass into the machine.

Cons – If you’re accident prone or you have family or friends often using your Xbox 360, you may find that it is easier to damage your games or hardware by knocking your console over.

#2 Horizontal

Pros – Your 360 is far less likely to scratch discs or be accidentally knocked over

Cons – The downside to having your Xbox 360 in the horizontal position is that you are using one less air vent, which the system really needs to perform at its best. Sure the air to some degree flows into it, but it is a lot hotter as the small space underneath your 360 traps heat.

Controller buttons

So you have noticed that your controller buttons are becoming slow to react or stuck? Whether you know it or not, the difference between a clean free moving button and a clogged up grimy button on your Xbox 360’s controller can mean the difference between life and death in a FPS.

After a couple of months or so you will start to notice that the buttons on your 360’s controller will feel like they get stuck or in some cases stop working. Never fear! Simply get some tooth picks, a lint free cloth and a tiny bit of water.

Unplug your controller or remove the battery pack.

Blow quite hard on your controller buttons, trigger and D pad. You want to remove the fine dust that may have accumulated.

Take a toothpick and gently scrape out the dirt where your buttons, triggers and D-pad sink into the controller. This grime is the reason your controller is feeling slow to react.

Important! Make sure you do not get water inside the controller.

After you have removed all the dirt and grime, gently wipe your controller with a damp lint free cloth, removing any stains.

Let the Xbox 360 controller dry before replacing the battery pack or plugging it back into the 360.

Removing the Hard Drive

If your Xbox 360 has a hard drive you will notice that it can be a little fiddly to remove. Make sure you are gentle with it and when replacing DO NOT force it if it feels like it didn’t connect properly.

HDD’s just like any component can fail. To avoid data loss it’s a good idea to backup your files and data on your Xbox HDD. To backup your data simply attach a storage device (USB Pen Drive) to the Xbox and use this to copy the files and data over.

Once your files have been copied you can backup your files to your computers HDD for safe keeping. If your HDD happens to fail you can copy the data back onto the new HDD and avoid any discomfort from data loss.

Twisting leads

Just like you do with your computer, it’s important that all the leads running from the back of your Xbox 360 are kept neat and tidy. 360 owners often have failure of the HD switched or AV leads due to twisting and constant pulling. These leads while looking fairly sturdy are quite easily internally damaged.

When plugging in your leads don’t force them and ensure that you have are inserting them in the correct way up (If applicable). Using a cable tie to keep all the leads and cords securely together is also a good idea.