Video game consoles are prone to a number of misfortunes, like Xbox 360’s “red ring of death” or more recently the Nintendo Switch’s Joy-Con and warping issues. But none have the gross-out factor of one of the PlayStation 4’s most unique issues: roach infestation.
In an article on Kotaku, writer Cecilia D'Anastasio visited Patrick Che, the co-owner of an independent console repair shop in Manhattan, who pointed out a pile of filled black garbage bags in the corner of his store. “You see those bags?” Che asked D'Anastasio. “Those are bags full of roaches. Those are all dead by now.” Though roaches can burrow into any system on the market, it's Sony's latest console that seems to be their ideal destination.
The problem has become so common with PS4s that Che’s shop, XCubicle, charges a $25 “roach fee” to clean the little critters out of the system’s vents and circuit boards. So what makes the PlayStation 4 such an attractive home to roaches (outside of the fact that it kinda looks like a swanky skyscraper from the right angle)? Apparently the PS4’s vents are wider than other consoles, and since they’re placed right at the bottom of the machine, it makes it easier for roaches to crawl right in if the system is placed on the floor.
When the roaches go into the system, they nest on the circuit boards, pop out babies, and, well, melt into the console’s innards. With a system that gets as hot as a PS4, melted roaches and their feces (shudder) will likely turn your console into an expensive paperweight before long. And chances are that you’ll never even know a roach was inside unless you bring it in for repair.
At XCubicle, they see at least one roach-infested PS4 per week, with other repairmen estimating that around half of all PS4 consoles they deal with have some sort of roach issue. The fix for this isn’t so simple: A repairman will have to replace the power supply, clean the system of any roach remnants, and sterilize the whole thing before getting it back to you. There's no one way to prevent roaches from entering your system, other than keeping a clean home, putting your console high up and inaccessible, and placing it away from easy entry points. If that fails, you'll be stuck either buying a new PlayStation 4 or bringing the system to an independent repair shop, as Sony won't accept bug-ridden systems for repair.