A common hardware problem with Sony PlayStation 3 is for the console to accept a disc (DVD, Blu-ray or game disc) but not spin it or otherwise recognize it, leaving you unable to either watch video or play disc-based games. If this happens with more than one disc and you can verify that the discs will play fine on other devices, this indicates a problem with either the PS3 motor or the laser that reads the disc.
A PlayStation 3 that accepts discs but does not spin or read them may have a problem with either the motor or the laser. If the issue is with the motor, you may hear the motor attempt to engage the disc once it has been inserted or you may not hear anything at all. This may be caused by either a motor failure or by a foreign object blocking the motor. If the issue is with the laser, the disc may load but the laser does not detect a disc and then does not spin the motor. This may be caused by an excessively dirty laser lens or a laser that has otherwise burned out.
Sony offers a one-year, limited warranty on new PlayStation 3 consoles, and some electronics stores may also offer an extended warranty, available at time of purchase. If your PlayStation 3 is less than a year old, or your console is more than a year old but covered under the extended store warranty, contact the store where you purchased your console. You may be able to get a replacement console under warranty.
Sony offers a repair service through its website for consoles that are still covered under warranty, as well as consoles that are no longer covered. At date of publication, the cost is $50 for shipping and the initial diagnostic; once the problem is diagnosed, there is an additional fee for parts and labor. Repair costs can vary greatly.
You may also choose to fix your PlayStation 3 console yourself, though this will void the manufacturer's warranty and should only be attempted if your console is no longer covered under warranty and you are comfortable working with specialized electronic hardware. There are various PlayStation 3 repair forums and YouTube videos available to help you troubleshoot and replace any parts that may be causing the non-spinning disc issue.
Before replacing your PlayStation 3 under warranty or attempting a repair, back up your saved data on your PlayStation 3 by either exporting your data to a USB drive or uploading your data to the PlayStation Network cloud server. If you do not save your backup data, you will lose all of your saved games and profile settings.
Michelle Mista has loved technology since her earliest days. She began her career as an IT professional in the Silicon Valley. Mista combines her love of technology and writing to write about technology for the non-techies.