Xbox 360 red ring of death

Xbox 360s suffer from a well known heat related issue that seems to affect them just after the 12 month warranty period runs out. Microsoft took a lot a heat (pardon the pun) about the issue when it first came up and eventually relented and admitted it was an issue. In response, they now offer an extended 3 year warranty for any console that suffers what has been nicknamed the “red ring of death”.

I have five XBOX 360s in our household. All are mainly being used as Media Center Extenders. (I know this sounds excessive but at A$289 a pop, its actually a cheap media management and sharing solution compared to buying digital HD PVRs, DVD players and recorders… and it works!!). So I wasn’t surprised when last week one of them died with the red ring of death after being in service for 2 years and 9 months.

I logged a support call for my console on the local support website. It came back and said my console was out of standard warranty but actually reminded me about the 3 year warranty for the red ring of death and and referred to a phone number to call if I had that specific problem.

To my surprise, the number was open on Sunday afternoon (!!) so I gave them a call. I told them the issue, gave them my serial number and they logged a service call for me and told me an Email would arrive with shipment instructions and that at the end of the process I would get 1 month free on Xboxlive gold. Cool!

An email arrived within minutes explaining how to pack the console and where to send it – it was free. They even provided a pdf label to print and cut out. How easy! I just needed to provide my own box, padding and packing tape.

Dropped the box off at the post office. NEXT DAY (!) I received an email saying my console had arrived and was being repaired and expected to be returned in 3-4 weeks.

It was returned in 3 weeks with a written apology and a 1 month Xbox live subscription.

So far, this has been a very painless and cost free exercise. I know it’s bad that Microsoft made defective XBOX 360s in the first place but at least they have now admitted it AND created a free and painless process to have the consoles repaired.

Good work Microsoft!

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