HOUSTON - Gaming consoles are always hot holiday gifts. But more people are having them repaired this year, perhaps to avoid paying more for a new one during this period of high inflation.
And as we learned, one of the things that can cause consoles to fail will surprise you. It's roaches.
We stepped into a uBreakiFix shop in Houston. Hands were busy on gaming consoles, not playing them, but repairing them.
"Lots of consoles for all different brands, could be PS4, PS5, PS3, XBOX's from new and old generations, Nintendo Switch," listed Enrique Gonzalez, a uBreakiFix store owner.
Repair services report a twenty percent increase in people bringing in gaming consoles to be fixed.
Why? Supply chain slowdowns and inflation could make new units even harder to find and more expensive this year. Some folks are finding it cheaper to buy a broken PS5 on eBay and have it repaired.
"A repair is usually no more than $200, some are no more than $100, some are $20, some are $80," said Gonzalez.
Common problems? Extra wear and tear while gamers have been at stuck home in the pandemic. And HDMI port problems from transporting them with the cords still plugged in.
"People like to bring their devices everywhere, so they’re kind of rough unplugging the HDMI cord," said Gonzalez.
Plus overheating because of dust, and yes, roaches can get inside.
"They get attracted to those condensed spaces, and it’s very hot, so it’s an attractive place for them," he explained.
But the internal power supply can fry the roaches into the components, causing the console to malfunction.
"We have to close it up immediately because at that point the insects have damaged the board," said Gonzalez.
So to extend the life of your console, don't let them overheat, don't leave them on the floor or in tight spaces, and keep them clean of food that can attract pests.
"When they want to unplug something, make sure they unplug it gently. Turn off the console first," Gonzalez added.
Having them cleaned once a year helps to keep them working properly. You can score big savings by making your console last for years to come.
Roaches can get into computers stored in tight spaces, too, so keep them in open areas.