I have been having this annoying problem with my DVD burner… the tray won’t eject unless I use the pinhole release. After Googling, I noticed there are a lot of DW1640 and rebranded Sony drives having the same problem. However, no solution was found.
So today I decided to take a crack at it and see if I can figure out the problem. The drive is out of warranty anyway… and it still burns fast and solid.
After some testing, I realized the cause of the problem was the little rubber belt connecting two spin wheels that controlled the ejection and retraction of the tray.
I guess the elasticity of the rubber must have worn out over the years, and the wheels were left to spin freely.
The simple solution was to replaced the worn out belt with an elastic band.
I found an elastic band with slightly shorter circumference than the original, so it was a bit tricky to put on. I hooked up the small wheel first, then used two tweezers and pull the band around the bigger wheel.
Problem solved! and gave the old drive a few more years to live.