My RCA vcr/dvd player did the same exact thing. I opened it up and tried it again with the cover off----it worked perfectly. Seems as thought the cover might have been pressing on the inside unit top and possibly binding the slide movement. There is a bearing assembly there that might be involved.
I reassembled the cover and had a partial recurrence of the problem. Then, as I punched the open button I slapped the case sharply on top, and the side came out. You might open yours and see if there is anything physically causing some mild binding Good Luck!!
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try unplugging it for about 2 minutes to clear some memory and try it again. the tray motor may be shot or skipped a tooth on the gear and not hitting the switch. you may need to take the cover off and physically do it.
You have to open the cabinet ..with the power off!! with tray open look at the laser it should be in the cd home position..move the laser toward away from the spindle motor or turntable.you should see a switch with a cover over it,it may be black or white or clear..the is your laser home switch..with your finger or small screw driver gentely push the switch towards you or bend it towards you.with the cover off.plug the unit up.Watch the laser as it moves away from you towards the cd spindle, it it stops and the tray moves in, and the cd mech chucks .you should see the laser turn on and see the objective lens move up and down..if it does not..and it continues with your original problem the you have to retime the tray and loading gear..try this first..
Don't take the cover off. Open the door and use a small flat instrument to depress the tray release buttom (it is indented on the lower right hand side of the tray. If there is a disk remove it. Turn off your system and the tray will close. Restart you system and see will the trat open.