XBox Disc Tray Won't Open

By Helen Sterling

Updated September 22, 2017

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You’re ready to play a new game on your Xbox, but the disc tray won’t open. Before you smack the machine to open the tray or grab a screwdriver to pry it open, take a deep breath and look for a less aggressive approach. You can resolve most instances of the disc tray not opening by yourself, saving the expense of taking the console for service. Sometimes you may need service from Microsoft to resolve the issue.

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Examine the faceplate of the Xbox to make sure it is not loose and blocking the disc tray, particularly if you’ve just unpacked a new Xbox. Reposition the faceplate if necessary. For new Xbox consoles, check for and remove any clear tape securing the disc tray in place.

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Press the eject button on the Xbox console if you’ve been using the controller to open the disc tray. If the eject button works on the console, the problem may be with the batteries in the controller or the wireless connection between the controller and the console.

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Find the manual eject button on the console if the eject button does not open the tray. The manual eject button is a small pinhole located either on the front panel under the tray or to the left of the eject button. Unplug the Xbox from its power source before continuing.

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Straighten a small paper clip. Insert the paper clip in the manual eject button pinhole. Angle the paper clip to the left and press the manual eject button. If successful, the tray will open partially. It may take several attempts to accomplish this.

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Pull gently with your fingers to open the tray fully.


Smaller paper clips work better than larger ones.

Some Xbox consoles have two or more small pinholes beneath the tray. If you cannot insert the paper clip in one pinhole, try one of the adjacent pinholes.


If the manual eject button does not open the disc tray, the Xbox will need professional attention. Do not try to pry open the disc tray.

If a disc has become unseated and is loose in the disc tray, lay the Xbox horizontally and press the eject button. If the disc prevents the tray from opening, the Xbox will need professional attention.