How to Fix a No-Disc Error on a DVD Player

By Jeff Grundy

You've popped the popcorn, poured a glass of your favorite beverage and settled in to watch a movie, but when you press "Play" on the remote control, the dreaded "NO DISC" error appears on your DVD player. If you're lucky, you may be able to correct the problem by just opening and closing the disc tray on the player and trying again. If you're really unlucky, your DVD player might be defective. However, more often than not, a scratched or smudged disc or a dirty laser lens in the player is usually the cause of the error, and is something you may be able to fix in a few minutes.

Correcting Common Disc Problems

Step 1

Press the "Eject" or "Open" button on the DVD player to disc tray to determine if it opens easily and does not appear jammed or hindered. If the disc tray appears to open slower than usual or fails to open, the disc may not sit flush in the tray or otherwise be seated properly. Use your hand to pull out the disc tray slowly if it does not open on its own and then reseat the disc. Close the disc tray and press "Play" on the DVD player again to see if reseating the disc in the tray corrects the "NO DISC" error.

Step 2

Power off the DVD player, then back on again. Attempt to play the DVD disc normally. Sometimes, an error in the DVD player firmware may prevent the device from reading discs properly. When this occurs, resetting the player often corrects "NO Disc" errors.

Remove the disc from the DVD player. Use a lint-free cloth and some denatured alcohol or water to clean the disc and remove any dust or smudges that may prevent the player from reading it properly. Reinsert the disc into the player and press "Play" to see if cleaning the disc fixes the "NO DISC" error.

Cleaning the DVD Laser Lens

Step 1

Power off the DVD player and disconnect all cables. Use your fingers to open the disc tray door slowly and gently. Alternatively, insert a pin or straightened paper clip into the small "Manual Eject" hole next to the disc tray if the unit has one.

Step 2

Use a can of compressed air to blow out the inner area of the DVD player exposed by opening the disc tray. Use short bursts of air from the can to clean out any dust or residue that may be covering the laser lens and preventing the player from reading discs. Allow any moisture created by the canned air to dry a few minutes before continuing.

Reconnect all cables to the DVD player and power on the device on again. Insert the DVD disc into the tray and press "Play." If a dirty lens caused the "NO DISC" errors, using the compressed air to clean the inside of the tray area should have resolved the problem.