Top positive review
103 people found this helpful
Works SPECIFICALLY for dirty lenses ONLY
on April 28, 2014
I bought my Wii 1-2 years after launch, which is around six years ago at this point. I SPECIFICALLY had the problem of a dirty lens, which causes the Wii to have a single, SPECIFIC problem: it can no longer play dual-layer disc games, a category which includes the very popular Super Smash Bros Brawl. Chances are, if you're reading this review right now, it's because your Wii will no longer play that game. I knew that the Wii had a dirty, NOT DAMAGED, lens because it still played all Gamecube and single-layer Wii games just fine. I bought this product, used it as directed, and voila, my Wii is working like new.
A couple of things that you MUST consider before purchasing this item:
1) If your Wii CANNOT read ANY games at all, chances are that your lenses is OUTRIGHT DAMAGED, not merely dirty. There are too many misguided reviews that do not make this distinction. THIS PRODUCT CANNOT REPAIR A DAMAGED LENS, PERIOD. If your Wii cannot read ANY games, it means you need to replace your lens, which in turns means you are better off replacing it due to the comparable cost. I would STRONGLY suggest either upgrading to the Wii U, which is fully backwards-compatible with all Wii games and accessories AND upscales them to 1080P, or purchasing a new Wii Mini. If you rely on your Wii for Gamecube backwards compatibility, however, please note that the Wii Mini and NEWER model Wiis (the ones bundled with Mario Kart Wii and newer) DO NOT have this capability anymore. My suggestion would then be to purchase a separate used Gamecube for those needs, as you can find that system for a low price these days. If you purchase a used Wii, please be aware that this problem is nigh inevitable to happen to you again at some point. Please consider #2.
2) Wiis are notorious for having dirty lenses because of the design of the system. The disc slot is always open and exposed, meaning that, even if you are meticulous with your discs, dust and dirt can still get trapped in the disc drive easily. Furthermore, the Wii does not read CD or DVD formats AT ALL, which means that ANY disc cleaner OTHER than this product will NOT work. Typical disc cleaners have a disc with built-in brushes that you "play" as either a CD or DVD. If you try to run those products in your Wii, the disc will never be "read," which means that it will never spin enough times to actually work.
3) I tried Youtube-guided DIY methods first, like taking a CD you don't want anymore and taping a microfiber cloth to it. None of these methods worked for me. This official product worked on the very first try. YMMV.
4) This product is technically discontinued by the manufacturer, so you are paying a premium price. At this point, you can only buy it off resellers for around $20. The official Nintendo store lists the item as out of stock, probably for good. Because of this, you must ensure that you only have a DIRTY and not DAMAGED lens using the descriptions outlined. Paying $20 and expecting something to fix your broken lens is a waste and you might as well put that money towards purchasing a new unit.
5) This product includes six total pads, one attached to the paddle and five refills. The instructions say that you can continue to use a pad until it is visibly dirty, so it isn't like you only get six tries and that's it. The Wii lens does seem to be very sensitive, as after using it I detected a SINGLE HAIR that had to be removed and nothing else. That single hair stopped the Wii from being able to read dual-layer discs.
6) The pad is aligned to the paddle in a very specific location and includes a nub that you lay the pad over. That nub is actually what sticks out of the paddle to clean the lens, with the aid of the pad and applied alcohol solution. It seems like a very low-tech solution due to the design of the Wii itself, but trust me when I say that it would be almost impossible to replicate the exact placement of the cleaning pad without the actual product.
7) Even though it only comes with six pads, what is really valuable is having the paddle and the placement of the nub. You can easily find DIY replacements once you run out of pads and alcohol.
8) This kit DOES NOT work on the Wii U. That system has its own method of cleaning the lens. And yes, that system doesn't read CDs, DVDs, or Blu-Rays either.
I hope I have given you the relative information and cleared up some misconceptions that are out there. Please feel free to respond, as I know many of you folks are awesome parents trying to fix your Wiis for your kids. Thanks for reading!