CDs and DVDs have been around for quite a long time. Discs can be used to play games and watch your favorite movies or music. They are sometimes needed in the Windows installation process itself.
As you continuously use your computer’s disk drive, it might sometimes get stuck. However, that does not mean you should rush and replace the disc drive.
Drive release mechanisms are sensitive and might not work as expected. Your disc drive might also get stuck because of corrupt drivers or hardware defects. Luckily, these are problems that you can effortlessly fix on your own.
Would you like to use a disc on your computer but the disk drive tray cannot open? Here are a few tips and steps you can take to troubleshoot a stuck disc drive.
Eject using your OS
If your disc drive does not open after pressing the eject button, you probably have a damaged eject button. Therefore, instead of using the physical button, you can use your operating system to eject the disc drive. Please remember that this method only works if your computer is powered on and working as expected.
If you’re running Windows, you can eject your disc drive by:
Step 1: Open File Explorer by looking for it in the Win + X menu.
Step 2: Click on This PC on the left panel to expand it.
Step 3: Find the optical drive from the list of drives connected to your computer
Right-click on the drive and select Eject Using Mac
If you’re using Mac, the process is similar to that on windows:
Step 1: Find the disc icon
Step 2: Right-click on it
Step 3: Choose Eject
If the disc drive tray opens, its button is defective, and you should opt for a new drive.
Force eject the disk drive
If you cannot eject the disk using your operating system, you can eject it physically. This does not mean using a screwdriver or credit card or forcefully pulling the disk drive tray out. However, you’ll need a toothpick, bent paperclip, or a needle to force eject the disk drive. Computer disk drives have a small pinhole that you can use to eject a stuck disc drive. To do this:
Step 1: Straighten out the paper clip to be at least 2 inches
Step 2: Find the small hole on your disc drive. It is sometimes near the eject button or above and under the drive bay door.
Step 3: Stick the paper clip into the hole and gently push until the drive opens
Step 4: The drive will slightly open. You can gently pull it until it is fully retracted.
You can then remove the disc from the drive and gently push it back in. If the drive opens, you should keep your CDs clean to avoid future problems.
Check for software and driver problems
If the disk drive was working perfectly, then suddenly gets stuck, it could be a software or driver problem. You might have installed a program on your computer that prevents your disc drive from opening. Ensure that no locking software prevents your disc drive from working as expected. If you’re not sure what program to uninstall, you can try restoring your system. A system restore will revert the changes made and uninstall recently installed programs.
Alternatively, you can also check for driver incompatibilities. Missing or corrupt drivers could prevent your disc drive from opening.
To solve the issue, you can try reinstalling or updating your CD/DVD drivers by:
Step 1: Press Win + X
Step 2: Click on Device Manager.
Step 3: Expand the DVD/CD-ROM drives option.
Step 4: Right-click on the optical drive listed.
Step 5: Click on Update Driver software.
Step 6: Alternatively, you can click on Uninstall and restart your PC. Windows will detect the missing driver and automatically reinstall it.
Check for faulty cables
Even though it might sound obvious, your computer’s disk drive can only open when the computer is powered on. If you’re using the eject button to open a disc drive to a switched-off computer, you should connect the power cables and try again.
Your disc drive could also fail to open when the power cable to the CD-ROM is loose, faulty, or disconnected. You should check to ensure that the power and the data cable are firmly connected. This is also a problem if you’ve connected an external disc drive to your computer. To internally check for faulty cables, you’ll have to open your computer and check each cable connected to the disk drive.
Replace the drive
If, after trying everything, nothing works, you can consider replacing the disc drive. Disc drives are relatively cheaper, and you’ll not have a hard time finding a quality disc drive. If you have problems with an internal drive, you can consider buying an external drive. Replacing a disc drive on a computer is a straightforward process. Even though it might be challenging to replace a disc drive on a laptop, you can still manage it.
If the disc drive on your PC cannot open, you should not use excessive force to open it. Instead, you can use any of our tips to fix the problem. You should also ensure that you use high-quality CDs to prevent your disc drive from getting stuck. Warped, broken, and damaged discs can cause problems.