A few weeks ago my beloved xbox 360 succumed to the infamous RROD problem that has plagued as much as 50% of the older Xbox 360 version. I was half expecting it to happen and I was surprised it took that long for it to develop the issue. Anyway, since funds are limited I finally decided to purchase one of those X-clamp fix kit from Ebay that I’ve read so much about. There is no absolute guarantee that it will permanently fix the problem but I had nothing to lose. Well $10 at most!
Got the kit in the mail today after rolling out of bed at noon and decided today was as good as any to attempt this fix. According to tutorials the whole process shouldn’t take longer than an hour for a newbie like me. I’ve opened my 360 a few times before so I knew that side of it will be a breeze, not so. It seems I’ve broken most of the tabs at the back of the console and it was making it impossible for me to remove the outer shell. This set me back at least 30 minutes trying to figure out if I should just completely dismantle this console by force. I got frustrated and just pulled it up as far as it would go until I heard a SNAP! oh well.
I had my notebook next to me while I was doing this and was aided by a video tutorial from I-Hacked.Com presented by a blonde female which was kinda odd but whatever. I removed all the screws with my Torx 8 & 10 and removed the heatsinks on both the GPU and CPU. I cleaned them both but I must admit, it wasn’t a mirror finish but clean enough for the old and hardened thermal paste not to get in the way. I applied new Artic Silver paste and applied it evenly before putting the new screws and washers through the hole then tightening them with my fingers. At this time, I didn’t use a screwdriver to tighten them because I read about the “baking process” and it recommends to just secure the heatsinks until the very end.
According to the tutorial I had to overheat the console by turning it on without the fans and wait for a 2 red lights to appear. I plugged my console in and immediately I got the 3 Red Lights on..hmmm. At this stage I was a bit confused whether that’s the result I was looking for. I decided to ditch that bit and went back to the kitchen, this time I used a hair dryer seated about an inch from the CPU heatsink. After a few minutes I removed the hair dryer and touched both the heatsinks, HOT! I quickly set the hair dryer to the cool setting and just gave the motherboard a once over.
I flipped the motherboard over and proceeded to tighten the screws. How tight? well according to various tutorials, tight enough not to break the motherboard or warp it. I think I may have tightened mine a little too much because there is now a slight bow in the middle but not enough to cause issues I thought. Before I completely closed up the console I decided to plug the AV & power cable in and test it.
IT WORKS! Happy green lights on the 360.
Not exactly sure how long this will last but I’m happy enough to breathe some life back into my console, I have about 50 games that I didn’t want to go to waste.
So there you have it the X-Clamp fix works and it only cost me ten bucks.