Have you just found a giant box of old Nintendo Entertainment System (NES for short) games in your attic? Have you tried hooking up your NES just to find out that your games no longer work? Well they’re not dead… yet. Here’s a method on how to perform “CPR” on your games.
- Make sure that the A/V (red and yellow) cables are plugged in correctly, the power outlet you’re using is active, and the game works.
- Test a game and make sure that the picture is clear on your TV and the game is visible. This confirms that your NES is fine.
- Put the corrupt game into the NES and push “Power”. You may see a flash, but no color. This is good, as it means there may be life still in your game.
- Push down on the game to eject it while the console is on, put it back in and push power twice, then push reset many times, then the power button many times.
- Un-plug the NES and plug it back in with the NES power off. Then use a Q-tip and clean the contact points on the game cart (Do not blow into the system or game cart, this causes corrosion among with the fact it dose not do anything).
- Repeat the steps until you see some mush of pixels appear or just sound. This shocks the game’s internal circuit and “awakens” it.
- Put the working game in. If nothing happens after several tries, make sure everything is still okay.
- Alternate between the two games once you see pixel mush or you hear sounds. This makes the NES system read any game, despite of its status.
- Repeat steps until the game clears up: reset, power, clean cart, replug, and power.
- Don’t push too hard on anything, you don’t want to break it.
- Never use water on the games, as it may destroy components inside the cartridge, like a computer.
- Don’t mess up the good game, you might overdo the steps.
- If the above doesn’t work, try the following: Take a Q-Tip and dip it into rubbing alcohol. (Windex works well too) With the dipped side, run it over the connectors about 2 times per side. With the other side of the Q-Tip, dry off the connectors. This can also help your problem.
- Do not blow or spit into the cartridge.
- As you know, pushing the power button on and off might break your NES, but you may try as a last resort.
- Be advised that there may simply be no hope left for some games, if they are too old.
- Don’t use any of the materials incorrectly, this may cause damage to your NES, games or wires for the NES.
Things You’ll Need
- Working NES
- Working Game (optional but might help)
- Dead Game