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Cagri
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How can I repair the YLOD problem ( yellow light of death )

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I got this problem which occurred when I was playing gta4. The system froze and when I tried restarting the system the red light turned green then in a split second it flashed yellow and then the ps3 system just shuts down..

Is there anyway to fix this?

Edited by: oldturkey03 ( ) , Matt Newsom ( )

The ONLY way to resolve this and NEVER have this situation again is to get it REBALLED. Sony and other electronics manufactures have switched to using 'lead-free' solder. This type of solder is environmentally safe, but does not hold up to high heat like the PS3 generates very long. Only lead solder can since it can withstand high heat, it melts when temps reach beyond 400*, which no PS3 will ever meet unless put into a furnace.

jejejoey,

jejejoey - almost correct! they switched to lead-free - thats right (to anybody who cares ->google "RoHS" for more information about that topic). the melting temperature is exactly the other way. leaded solder melts earlier then lead-free solder. the lead-free solder is "harder" - and that's why it breaks. you can read more about it on wikipedia -> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Restriction...

markus weiher,

The YLOD is caused when the unit overheats causing solder on the board to actually melt and bridge or connect. Once this happens it shorts out the board causing the error you have now. The good news is that it can be repaired.

WiredExtreme,

Thank you for telling him what causes the problem, but he wants to know how he can repair it. If there are no free guides that you can point him to, then give him a brief description of what he needs to do. We have guides for disassembling the PS3, so you could easily point him towards one of them, and then tell him what to do at that point (reapply thermal paste, reflow solder, etc.).

David Hodson,

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Brett Hartt
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Hey, if you are still having this problem, iFixit now offers free guides to fix the YLOD, and also sells complete YLOD repair kits.

Good luck and let us know how it works out.

Product Image

PlayStation 3 Yellow Light of Death (YLOD) Fix Kit

Fix kit for PlayStation 3 (PS3) consoles with the "Yellow Light of Death" (YLoD) failure. Kit includes Arctic Silver Ceramique thermal paste, complete set of replacement thermal pads, ESD-safe spudger, 26 Bit Driver Kit, thermal paste spreader card, and h — 50+ available at 39.95 each.

i did the ylod repair as stated here on IFIXIT and had bought the kit that was recommended and it worked like a charm. I have a ps3 now that someone was throwing away. I highly recommend trying the guide.

69fordf100,

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csimgo
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I got the YLOD last night while playing MW2 and was frantically looking for help online. I read that this occurs when the heatsink and the GPU/CPU separates when the thermal adhesive melts from over heating. I found this link that might help. I'm going to give this a try and let you know how it goes. Hope this helps...

http://playstationlifestyle.net/forums/s...

Edited by: csimgo ( )

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Brett
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What I am to suggest is a risky way, and most likely not recommended!

I researched several things online to find out how I could fix this issue. From what I read, the most common solution was to "reflow" the motherboard. Since I am in Africa, with no warranty and any other options, I decided to go with the most extreme suggestion. To cook my motherboard.

Once again, do this as a desperate measure and assume that it will not work.

Striping your PS3 all the way down to the motherboard, you need to make sure you remove everything that is not completely built into the motherboard, to include the battery and extra thermal paste. After that, place it on a tinfoil pan into a preheated oven at 425 Degrees Fahrenheit for 10 minutes. After the 10 minutes, remove it and let it cool for 30 minutes. Reassemble the entire console and ensure you place new thermal paste on it. Then cross your fingers and try it out.

I was successful, as well as many others. But there have also been some with horror stories from others that melted some items. Before doing this jump on youtube and check out some videos like this.

It is VERY risky, but it worked for me.

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palokiller
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or use a heat gun. they sell them quite cheap...

cooking a MB... never heard of that, but might be worth risking. especially, when no warranty, or no other option...

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Chris C
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Reflowing the mobo in the oven would not be advised in my opinion due to the fact that the parts on the bottom can drop of since it is a double sided board.

I would use the heat gun reflow method. There are many videos on Youtube. Much easier, be sure not to overheat or bump the board while it is hot. Otherwise, you are pretty much doing the same thing that is done during manufacturing.

From what I have researched it seems to be issues with the BGA (Ball Grid Array) under some of the chips as well as poor heatsink compound.

Some people have had good luck with the reflow and new heatsink compound (artic silver is best).

Edited by: Chris C ( )

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str8sj4o8
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the only permanent fix is to reball the rsx bga chip. you might have to take it to a professional with a bga rework machine.

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Nick
24.8k

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open it to the mobo ion it and reflow it

look on youtube how to do it as i got a new ps3 when mine died an i dont care for BC so i got a 400$$ 80gb

Edited by: Nick ( )

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Tony
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My PS3 died too after nearly four years so no warranty comeback.

I followed This Video on how to fix it.

I didn't have a heat gun though so I searched a bit more on the internet and found this video from the BBC consumer affairs program Watchdog.

So I googled to see if anyone else had tried using an oven to do the repair. The general consensus seemed to be around 400F for 10 mins.

I didn't have a tray so I wrapped the motherboard in tin foil and stuck it in the oven (pre-heated to about 400F for 10 mins.)

I then let it cool down for 20 minutes and followed the video again for re-assembly.

Worked like a charm for me PS3 is working perfectly again.

sure it can work - but never ever place the boar on an aliminum baking tray - it will pretty fast bend and then you can try to find all the parts inside the oven ;-)

markus weiher,

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Ian Robinson
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I tried the hair drier method. Wroap the PS3 in a towel or jumper with an opening at the blu-ray side.Blast it with a hair drier on full for 5-10 mins. The whole console will get very hot and you may melt the trim but if you let the whole thing cool slowely then it should work well.

Did for me and if it YLOD again then you can blast it with the hair drier again. I've done it 5 times now. The fix doesnt last forever and I suggest you take the outer casing off and clean out all the dust etc to prevent further over heating.

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JanCGN
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My solution for the YLOD was to bake the motherboard at 120° C wrapped in Tin-Foil for 30 Min. and let it cool down for several hours. Also I used a better thermal paste. On the CPU the thermal paste looked cracked and dry. I think this was the main problem. After reassembling everything worked fine... wonder how long ;)

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Rob smooth rides
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you need silver lite paste to protect the chips and it has to be spead evenly, covering the whole chip or you will get air pockets in the paste, the hair dryer trick does work but i've done 5 consoles now for friends using a cardboard box seal at one end, use a decent hair dryer at full power moving side to side for about 15 to 20 mines, let it cool completely, add your silver lite paste and put the machine back together.

problem solved.

first time took me about 3 hours to do but now only takes just over an hour or so. very disappointed in sony for using rubbish materials in such a popular bit of equipment with the highest price tag of all the game consoles

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tayyab
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You can send it to the official Sony shop to get it repaired for around $200, although they give no guarantee that it won't happen again. If you can't afford to get it fixed for $200 there are also some guides that make the yellow light error fixed. I was told from my friend about this guide, he said it fixed his ps3, it's called ps3lightsfix and it gives a 100% guarantee of fixing the yellow light error. Here is a link: Spam removed

Edited by: oldturkey03 ( )

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jusstoun
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Like many others before me, my 80gb Metal Gear Solid PS3 early edition Fat console also got the YLOD this past weekend. (July 2013) After many hours of research I came across many of the answers listed on this page. I wanted a more permanent solution rather than a temporary fix and here is what I found out.

Obviously, if it is still under warranty, call Sony and they will repair it for free. No brainer. Only problem is you will lose all your saved game data as you will not be getting your old system back. But free is free.

If you try the heat gun solution, it will likely work, but like most will tell you, it won't last forever, especially if you play the system a lot. You need to baby it from here on out. Only playing for 1 or 2 hours and then shutting it down and letting it cool. You will need to ensure proper ventilation, probably put a fan back there to aid in the air flow. Make sure the PS3 is away from the wall, off the carpet, etc... The good thing here is if it works you can get your stuck disc out, and maybe backup your saved game data, and who know maybe get a few more months of it, but it will happen again.

Another option is to send it off to get repaired by a 3rd party such as Gophermods.com. Although I didn't use them, there are a lot of happy customers, and they deal specifically with the YLOD. Their website lists a YLOD fix for $79.99 and it includes free shipping and a 24hr turn around time once they get the unit. You get your stuck disc back and you keep your saved game data. They will also give you a 6 month warranty as long as you follow the recommended playing time after the fix. (2 hrs on, 30 min off - For like the 1st 200 hours of game play.) That service is for a reflow of the solder, and they have all the proper equipment and use an upgraded solder, but they will tell you it is not a permanent fix. They also do a reballing service, although I didn't see it listed on their website. I think it is like $130 or $140, but from what I understand it is a better fix but they have a wait list to get that done. I think you need to call them and ask for more details on the service to get a better idea of if it makes sense for your situation.

I also looked at just buying a new system from the store. But with PS4 systems coming out in less than a year I didn't really want to waste the $$. A new 250gb PS3 was $250. I really only need my PS3 to make it another year, as I anticipate buying a PS4 6-8 months after launch. Hopefully all the major bugs will be worked out by then. You can also save some cash by looking at buying a used system from Gamestop or on eBay. I personally don't like that option as there is no telling if your buying a system that has also had the YLOD but someone fixed it using the blow dryer. Buyer beware.

Finally I just called Sony Customer Service (# found in the PS3 manual) and talked with a representative. She stated that I could trade in my PS3 80gb fat player for a new or refurbished 250gb PS3 for $129. (There may be different deals for different systems, i.e. 40gb, 60gb) I was past my warranty, but Sony is obviously trying to right a wrong with the YLOD problem. It kind of sucks paying $600 for my initial unit and not even having it last 5 years and then pay another $129 on top of that, but like I said, I was out of my warranty, and Sony didn't really have to do anything. She said the only drawback was that I would lose all my saved game data unless I had backed it up on the 'cloud' system and that the new systems were not backward compatible with PS1 and PS2 games. She said that they would return my game that was stuck in the player, and they would pay for the shipping by sending me a shipping box with a UPS label already on it.

It all depends on what is important to you, but for me, getting a reliable PS3 system going forward was more important the the saved game data I was losing. I was getting my game back, and I didn't have to worry about the solder problem coming back to get me in the next 2-3 months. I asked the Sony rep if I could try the heat gun fix to get my game out and possibly back up my system, but she said if I caused more damage to the system, then Sony could void the agreement that we just made and would not give me a new system. If you've already done it, I wouldn't bring it up, but I'm sure they are checking the systems when they come in.

Getting the YLOD is devastating, but with a little patience and a cool head, you can find a number of solutions that are available. It's unfortunate that so many had to experience this problem, but all the on-line comments helped me figure out what to do. I just wanted to put it all in one post to hopefully help out the next person.

Good Luck

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khaled0710
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'''Unfortunately everything I read hear about fixing the YLOD on a PS3 is 100% wrong !! first , YLOD has nothing to do with the CPU so heating the CPU is a big mistake that everyone is doing, YLOD is a bad connection between the GPU chip and the motherboard regardless which model a fat or a slim, second using any kind of Flux makes things worse , when using flux first it has to be the proper kind of flux for BGA packages, more important it has to be a very thin layer and distributed equally, clearly that can not be done by using a liquid flux or by just flooding under the chip with flux, when you do that you will be just making a layer of unmixed flux with solder that actually makes an extra isolation layer between the solder and the chip or the solder and the board and most probably both, the reality is that there are two kinds of repairs non of them can be done at home, they have to be professionally done in order to achieve a real repair not just a try and error or hit or miss. the first one is a procedure called reflow which means totally melt the solder that attaches the chip to the board, supposedly this will allow the bad connections to be soldered and the console will come back to life, The reality is this procedure is rarely works and if it works will be very temporary and will only last for few hours , days or weeks at its best so why is that? simply the GPU chip or the graphics chip is the one that gets hot the most ( heat ) the motherboard material is cupper and with air coming into the console for cooling ( oxygen ) that will make perfect conditions for oxidation , cupper when oxidized will form cupper oxide which is a non conductive material and that what causes an isolation and bad connection between the chip and the motherboard, that layer of cupper oxide will prevent good soldering when a real reflow is applied and that is why it doesn't last for too long that if it works at all so in order to get a good soldering and a real long lasting repair the cupper oxide isolation layer has to be cleaned up and removed from the soldering pads and in order to do that the chip has to be removed from the motherboard , the old solder has to be removed from both the chip and the board, the soldering pads on both have to be cleaned from the cupper oxide and make sure they will accept soldering again before applying a new layer of solder to the chip and reattach it to the motherboard again a procedure that is called reballing and that is the real and long lasting repair for the YLOD and all other problems caused by bad connections between the video chip and the motherboard like no video , pixilation, freezing , no hard drive activity, no synchronization between the controller and the USB ports and many other symptoms. Reballing specially for the PS3 GPU chip is not an easy task, it requires very advanced machines , very accurate thermal profiles and a lot of hands on and training and high skills, very few places are able to do that on a high success rate that grantee that you will send your console to really get repaired and not to be permanently damaged, Reballing is like a heart surgery to the console so you have to choose carefully a very reputable place to do it for you, the same procedure is used to fix all kind of electronics that use BGA packages like laptops, graphics cards and even desktop computers and all in one and it is also the same procedure used to fix RROD in xbox 360 , the best place I know is ps3specialist.com and it is the one I recommend. Don't try anything else if your console is valuable to you or you have important data you care not to loose.http://www.ps3specialist.com/playstation...

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