My original 24" iMac DVD drive was jammed with a DVD inside. After reading LOTS of tips and tricks and trying them all, I still couldnt get the DVD out, and it was making a whining howling sound when I would restart, or change users on the computer. I decided to go for it and change the drive out.
The repair was straightforward. I am pretty much a novice. I had changed out (last year) the main drive on the computer - that being my first time opening ANY computer up. Directions were simple and accurate. This was even smoother, and with my 13 year old son helping, took under an hour.
Definitely use this website to ensure you are replacing your defective part with one that will fit! I had been ready to order a DVD drive from another site before I came across this one - and was impressed with the level of definition of exactly what drive I had, and exactly what part would replace it.
In the process itself - I recommend positioning something (or someone) to hold the computer screen up once you open it - propping it open saves you having to remove a couple more sets of cables. using the cloth gloves photographers use (from Aaaron's etc.,) was great when handing the naked screen. We didnt get any fingerprints. whiteboard markers were great for color-coding the different screw lengths (and their locations) if you worry about that sort of thing. It helps if your torx driver is magnetic too! Otherwise - pretty much a snap.