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Tivo HD Reboots / Squaretrade

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by cooper243, Feb 16, 2014.

  1. cooper243

    cooper243 King of the '80s

    67
    0
    Dec 10, 2006
    Columbus, OH
    Hello,

    I have a Tivo HD with lifetime service that randomly reboots a few times a day. I bought this off of ebay and bought a Squaretrade warranty. They said I have to find a local repair shop, submit an invoice, and then they will reimburse me, minus the bench fee.

    I will be reimbursed up to $339. From what I have read, it sounds like the hard drive. My question is do I take this to an electronics shop or a computer shop?

    I appreciate your help!

    Joe
     
  2. HerronScott

    HerronScott Well-Known Member

    2,789
    29
    Jan 1, 2002
    Staunton, VA
    If it is indeed the hard drive, you can do this yourself but you have limited choices for getting someone else to do it that would provide an invoice for reimbursement.

    http://www.weaknees.com/s3-s4-repairs.php

    Note that I've never used WeaKnees so no personal experience.

    Scott
     
  3. unitron

    unitron Active Member

    16,389
    2
    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    You are very unlikely to find either an electronics shop or a PC shop with any experience whatsoever in repairing TiVos.

    Because it's an HD, you need to eliminate "capacitor plague" in the power supply as a problem before troubleshooting further, although if that HD is still running the original 160FGB hard drive it could easily have power supply problems *and* need the hard drive replaced.

    Do you have any experience opening up a PC and adding or replacing stuff?

    Have you ever soldered anything?

    Have you ever used a voltmeter?
     
  4. EGF

    EGF New Member

    2
    0
    Feb 18, 2014
    Problems with my Series 3 HD with external 1T drive started with "only 3 days data" message. The I had an #86 error. Following instructions, I rebooted. Ever since, it has been in an endless reboot cycle. Nothing seems to end it. Technical support at Tivo could not help. What are the likely culprits? Is this a matter for Weaknees? Any helpful advice would be appreciated.
     
  5. unitron

    unitron Active Member

    16,389
    2
    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    Unfortunately, the external drive is a possible failure point, but since it's an S3 HD (or any other S2 or S3 model), power supply trouble is so extremely likely that it must be ruled out by proving the supply is good, or eliminated by repairing the supply, before any other troubleshooting can be trusted, because problem power supplies can cause all sorts of strange symptoms.

    The good news is that power supply repair is a simple procedure involving about $10-$15 in replacement low ESR electrolytic capacitors rated for 105 degrees Centigrade/Celsius.

    Own any hand tools?

    Ever opened up a computer before?

    Have access to a voltmeter?
     
  6. cooper243

    cooper243 King of the '80s

    67
    0
    Dec 10, 2006
    Columbus, OH
    Thank you for the replies. I have built a PC before, but I have never soldered anything or checked voltage. I guess I can figure out how to check voltage. I didn't think about Best Buy Geek Squad. Maybe?

    Joe
     
  7. shwru980r

    shwru980r Active Member

    1,893
    1
    Jun 22, 2008
    I think the easiest thing to do is just purchase another Tivo HD without lifetime service, and swap out the hard drive and/or power supply with your lifetime tivo. I think the time and effort required to jump through the hoops that the warranty requires is not worth it.
     
  8. unitron

    unitron Active Member

    16,389
    2
    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    The folks at BB probably know less about the inside of your TiVo than you do.

    Let'em learn on someone else's unit.
     
  9. EGF

    EGF New Member

    2
    0
    Feb 18, 2014
    Thank you very much. I will try that first.
     
  10. buscuitboy

    buscuitboy New Member

    736
    0
    Aug 8, 2005
    Atlanta area
    If you are familiar with building your own PCs, you might be able to prepare and put in a new hard drive yourself. Basically, you need the following:

    • a SATA hard drive (250GB-2TB)
    • WinMFS program (free online).
    • Get the TiVO HD image from someone on this board (I think I got mine from unitron).
    • A Windows XP PC with an available SATA port

    connect the new SATA drive in the XP computer, run WinMFS and then restore the image to this drive as needed.

    I have done this several times with some series 3 TiVOs and it has worked great. I think you may also have to do a ‘clear and delete’ everything once you run it the first time. After that, should be good. Again, fully test its current hard drive to make sure its a hard drive problem.
     
  11. cooper243

    cooper243 King of the '80s

    67
    0
    Dec 10, 2006
    Columbus, OH
    So this situation is solved. I called Best Buy and they will only fix a tivo if you buy it through them. I called Tivo itself to see what they could do. For $84 I am getting a basic Tivo Premier, and for $200 I can get lifetime service. Since my warranty was for over $300, it will basically be free. I got the Tivo and Squaretrade is sending out the check Friday I believe. Essentially, I am just out what I paid for the warranty, but I get a newer tivo with lifetime.
     
  12. unitron

    unitron Active Member

    16,389
    2
    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    What becomes of the TiVo HD you memtioned in your original post?

    Are you required to send it back to TiVo?

    Are you required to send it to Squaretrade?

    Did TiVo specifically say that the $200 buys you a transfer of the lifetime sub, or just buys you a lifetime sub?

    There may be a lifetimed HD in there somewhere for anyone who can fix a power supply or replace a hard drive.
     
  13. buscuitboy

    buscuitboy New Member

    736
    0
    Aug 8, 2005
    Atlanta area
    I had a similar situation with a S3 (OLED). It was in a reboot loop. I replaced the drive, had the power supply checked out and caps replaced (by a shop), but nothing worked.

    I finally gave tivo a call and in the end, they offered me a refurb (500GB) Premiere for $79 and even transferred the lifetime for free (since it apparently had been on the S3 unit for less than a year). I had to send the old S3 back in order to get my $99 deposit refunded, but it all worked out in the end. I was satisfied with this and moved on.

    I still have another S3 (OLED) that is running fine and working great. I love it for its look and its front display (clock and recording status) that was unfortunately never fully offered on future TiVo units. It had some caps replaced and I put a new 500GB hard drive in it (with help from this forum) & like I said, its running great for now, but I wonder how much longer I have & if its days are limited.
     
  14. cooper243

    cooper243 King of the '80s

    67
    0
    Dec 10, 2006
    Columbus, OH
    What becomes of the TiVo HD you memtioned in your original post? Like the previous poster, I have to send it back to get my deposit.

    Are you required to send it back to TiVo? I think so.

    Are you required to send it to Squaretrade? No, Squaretrade did ask for a copy of my receipt from Tivo to show an exchange is taking place.

    Did TiVo specifically say that the $200 buys you a transfer of the lifetime sub, or just buys you a lifetime sub? I am not certain, that is a great question to ask Tivo. Because if it is a sub, I could eat the $100 transfer fee and replace the hard drive and hopefully another tivo.
     

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