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TiVo Repair and Troubleshooting: TiVo Overheating and Shutting Down

Your TiVo: Symptoms you may be experiencing

This section will help you diagnose and repair one or more of the following symptoms: (1) Your TiVo functions powers up and gets to the main TiVo screen, and, after awhile, shuts down with a message stating that the TiVo's internal temperature is too high and that the TiVo is shutting down, or (2) your TiVo gets the same message before even getting to TiVo (or DIRECTV) Central and the message appears even if the unit is cold (i.e., it appears even if the unit has been off for hours).

Fix my TiVo! - Solutions

There are a few possible causes for this problem. If you have the first problem (getting the message after the TiVo has been on for awhile), then you might have a defective fan. (All TiVos have fans, even if you can't see them on the back.) Alternatively, you might be operating your TiVo in an environment that is simply too hot. For example, if your TiVo is at the top or bottom of a big stack of electronic components, it might not be ventilated well. Here are some suggestions:

  • Purchase a new TiVo fan from weaKnees, or another TiVo upgrade provider.
  • Put an object (such as a hockey puck) under each of the four corners of your TiVo to raise it. Air typically circulates from underneath the unit, so the more airflow you have down there, the better.
  • Move your TiVo to a location outside your entertainment cabinet, or keep it separate from your other components.
  • Purchase a laptop cooler fan and place it underneath your TiVo for added ventilation.

If your TiVo gives you the overheating ("internal temperature is too high") message before it ever reaches TiVo Central, even if it is running cold, then you have an entirely different problem. In this case, you might have a bad temperature sensor on the motherboard, but more likely, you have a bad TiVo power supply. This is particularly common in the TiVo DIRECTV DVR HR10-250, but also impacts standard definition DIRECTV DVRs with TiVo.

In very rare cases, overheating messages on cold units can be produced by a bad temperature sensor. If that is your problem, or if you don't want to try to replace a power supply yourself, then you should consider a flat-fee TiVo repair. Alternatively, if you have a standalone TiVo, you can find TiVo's support here.

More Information about this problem

If you happen to have an HD DIRECTV DVR HR21-Pro (HR21P) that is overheating, that is a known problem and requires a motherboard repair.

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