How To Upgrade TiVo With A New Hard Drive: Get 638 Hours Of Recording Time

Before I replaced the hard drive on my TiVo I had 90 hours, 41 minutes of recording time, when set on basic quality.

After installing the new hard drive, I now have 638 hours, 33 minutes of recording time, when set on basic quality.

Tivo Hours 1 Tivo Hours 2

Before begining to explain the process of installing a new hard drive, I need to disclose that I have no training or experience in computer repair.  And, you should defer to the instruction that come with the new hard drive if there are any discrepancies between this post and the instrucitons.  That being said, this was very easy to do.

As I mentioned, I had never worked on a computer before, and I had never replaced a hard drive.  The entire process took me about 20 minutes, from unplugging the TiVo from the television to plugging it back in.

The TiVo was a Series 2 TiVo DVR, module24008A.  The upgrade was to a 500gb Seagate DB35 hard drive, ordered from

This is what was contained in the package:

  • Instructions
  • New hard drive
  • 2 tools (L-Keys)

Tivo 1

Here are the step-by-step instrucitons on replacing the hard drive:

Unplug the TiVo and wait at least five minutes.  Open the TiVo.

Tivo 2

Use one of the provided L-keys to remove the five screws from the back of the TiVo.

Tivo 3

Slide the top back, and up, to remove

tivo 4

Use one of the L-keys to remove the two screws holding down the hard drive.

tivo 5

Remove the wide gray cable from the hard drive.

tivo 7

Remove the power cable (the red, yellow, and black wire) from the hard drive.

tivo 8

Remove the hard drive.  In the picture, the old hard drive is placed behind the TiVo.

tivo 9

Use one of the L-keys to remove the four screws holding the old hard drive in the bracket.  Keep the screws, you will use them to hold the new hard drive in the bracket.

tivo 13

This is the old hard drive on the left, and the bracket with the screws on the right.

tivo 14

This is the old hard drive on the left, the new hard drive on the top, the package the new hard drive comes in on the right, and the bracket on the bottom.

tivo 15

Use the L-key to connect the new hard drive to bracket, using the four screws that were previously removed.

tivo 16

Slide the new hard drive, and the bracket, back into the TiVo.

tivo 17

Affix the hard drive bracket to the TiVo using the two screws that were removed before.

tivo 18

Plug the wide gray cable into the new hard drive.

tivo 19

Plug the power cable (red, yellow, and black) into the new hard drive.

tivo 10

Replace the top of the TiVo and replace the five screws.

Tivo 3

You are finished.  Just plug the TiVo back in and it is ready.  When I first plugged it back in, the TiVo did not start.  I unplugged it and plugged it back in.  It worked.

You will have to go through the entire setup process.  The down side of replacing the hard drive is that you lose all of the programs you had recorded, your season passes, and your channel setup.  You do not, however, lose the information about your account.

Now, to decide what to record to with 630 hours to play with.

Note: After opening up my TiVo I found a large amount of dust and dirt inside the machine and clogging the fan.

tivo dirt 1

tivo dirt 2

I cleaned this using compressed air

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.  After doing this, the TiVo runs cooler and quieter.

yojoe (in TiVo mode) out

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