How to remove jammed DVDs stuck in your TV/DVD player

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A jammed DVD stuck in your TV/DVD player, or indeed in your DVD player, is frustrating, especially if it contains your only copy of a personal movie. Luckily, there is a simple solution using a paperclip. If conventional fixes don’t work, you might have to consider taking drastic action to gain access to the jammed DVD.

Switch off the unit and unplug it from the socket. Use the emergency disc eject hole, which is the name for the small hole in the tray door, according to DVD engineer Mark L. Chambers. Poke the end of a straightened paper clip, or similar, into the hole and it might free the tray. Note that this procedure works whether or not the unit is switched on, in most cases.

Open the tray carefully, if possible, using manual pressure, if using the emergency disc eject hole has not been successful. Push the tray gently in the front centre of the door, as this sometimes releases the tray. Push the disc gently into the tray if you can see part of it sticking out above the tray door, then try using the emergency disc eject hole again.

Unscrew the TV/DVD player housing and remove it if the DVD remains jammed. Lift out the DVD, which may be trapped between the top edge of the tray and the bottom edge of the casing.

Remove completely or lift out of the way any obstructing components if you are unable to reach the DVD having unscrewed the housing. Note that you may have to remove or move the circuit board, motor and laser read head.

Unscrew the DVD unit itself if removing obstructions has not helped you gain access to the jammed DVD. Pull it out of the TV/DVD player and unscrew any brackets or other mountings that are preventing access to the DVD. Rive the unit open if all else fails where the DVD is more valuable to you than the unit itself.

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