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I can honestly say I have been quite happy with it and its performed pretty well with very few problems and is still going today.
First of all congratulations on getting so many years of heavy use (2002 - 2012) on your JVC VCR.
I have a HR-S3911U and a HR-S5912U from the same era and my 3911 has seen a million miles and both my units are still going strong. I did experience a similar problem with my HR-S3911U but instead of the eject function my problem was with a sticking guide-pin. I did a have similar ejection problem with one of my 1985 Super Beta Hi Fi machines. Really it sounds like the exact problem as you describe. What I did was I opened up the unit and watched carefully - it was just a sticking moving part. My JVC guide-pin problem was just sticking as well - after a gentle push into place the guide pin has not stuck since. I don't suggest using any grease unless you really have to. I suggest you open the unit - if you have a video camera video tape the ejecting and play back in slow mo to see if you can catch the problem. Sounds like a sticking moving part which can be common on any VCR.
..couple times its had issues with dirty heads as i would get a message appear on screen.
I'm very surprised that in the past you had "dirty heads" messages pop up on screen as I have never seen that message on my JVC machines and I do use them a lot and very rarely clean the heads. Proper tape storage is very important. Trying not to use the same tape over and over again also helps keeping the tape path reasonably clean.
I think it could benefit from the heads being cleaned. I don't even really know what are the heads. Is it that big round drum? One thing I did notice is that when I load a tape, it straight away wraps the tape around that drum and the drum spins away and just idles there constantly rubbing on the tape before i have even pressed play. I have left tapes in there for days and days, so I assume this cant be good having that thing spinning away on the tape for such a long time?. I am not sure if this is normal or not but I wont be leaving tapes inserted in the VCR long periods now.
The heads are tiny little things inside the big round drum. I will show you if you post a picture of your unit with the cover off.
The tape staying wrapped around the drum with the drum spinning is normal but the drum should stop spinning five minutes after you load the tape as long as you don't touch play, rec ,ff or rewind. This is called a "long pause" (the tention is a little eased and is not rubbing hard as a normal pause would) and the long pause is there so the unit will immediately start playing or recording if you push play or rec within 5 minutes of loading the tape. If the drum does not stop after 5 minutes of sitting idle then your VCR has a malfunction and you should not leave tapes in the machine idling.
I am concerned about your heads clogging up - that is not normal unless you don't take proper care of your tapes - is there very high humidity in your area? That could cause problems.
Sorry I posted this in a hurry but will go into more detail later if need be.
Try a VHS Cleaning Tape Cassette. Follow it's instructions. If no better result it's not worth throwing away money on having repairs done but better put toward, if you can afford to, buying: Option 1. A VHS/DVD player (combo as these are known) and plug that into the Emerson AV input. Option Two: A VHS/DVD twin recorder combo deck - and plug that in. Then start on copying any VHS tapes you cherish to DVD on this device. Option Three: Forget the Emerson except for just using as a TV and buy a new TV with DVD player built in - the latest type of combo. (I'm having to guess whether you've just used tapes to watch or record and watch)
The elctromagnetic tape may be jammed inside. Open the front access to the VHS and inspect for some jams such as toys (if you have kids). You can try grabbing the VHS tape with something while pressing the eject button. Sometimes it needs some assistance to overcome the jam. Good luck!
It is possible that the Tape mechanism is struck and so is shutting off the power to the unit. Since the power is shared it is possible that the cut off to the set is due to the error in the VHS player.
So in this case you will need to remove the VCR and get theentangled or the stuck up cassette from the player so as to reset the error. Also if there is a mechanical issue to the player must be checked.
The Video portion of the set requires a belt and possibly a drive pulley. When the tape is inserted, the deck moves it forward then back and if it can't because it has lost its drive due to a belt broken stops dead. Hence "Emmegency mode".
Remove power to the set - unplug the wall outlet. Remove the screws that attach the back cover. Remove the cover. Remove the cables that connect to the VHS drive to the TV main board. Remove the mounting screws that attaches the VHS drive to the set. Remove the VHS drive. Manually turn the take-up gear which is near a motor to allow the tape to mechanically eject the tape - do not force.
Steps to view a video tape: 1 - connect the vcr to the tv using the appropriate cable - in your case a S-VIDEO one. 2 - select the S-VIDEO as a source in the tv menu. 3 - press PLAY on the vcr's case to start playing the tape. ROLFMAO
Take dvd/vcr combo aparts.Turn on the power to the machine,one hand move around the inter eject vcr port for those sensors,the other hand just keep pushing the eject button,keep doing this until the tape eject and come out.