Imagine you just sat down to relax and watch a movie or stream your favorite show, only to find the Roku remote not working.
It is an aggravating situation since you need the remote to navigate the device. However, some easy solutions are available for this issue, and we are here to quickly give you a run-through of them.
This guide walks you through several troubleshooting steps that can get your Roku remote back up and running again. Let’s get started.
See also: How to fix Roku remote volume not working
How to Fix a Roku Remote That Isn’t Working
Let’s go over some of the most common problems and solutions that cause a Roku remote not to work.
Check Your Roku Remote Batteries
In the great majority of situations, the Roku remote is not functioning because the batteries inside it are either dead or are running on their last bit of juice.
This is not only the simplest explanation of why a formerly working remote is no longer functioning but also the most common.
If you have noticed a negative trend in the remote’s recent performance, the batteries are almost certainly the culprits.
With lower battery capacity, less power is fed to the remote, affecting its ability to perform its intended purpose.
Most Roku remotes take two AA batteries. A couple still requires a pair of AAAs. Most will have a sticker or an engraving on the back to relay the battery information.
Just hold down the speaker button and say, “Battery level.” Then it will show what percentage of the batteries are in your remote.
If your remote is low on batteries, replace them, and we are confident that the remote will be back in working order.
Re-pair Your Roku Remote
Many reasons can cause your Roku remote to lose its pairing with your Roku player.
- First, a system update could mess with the settings.
- Second, low power from faulty batteries could be the culprit.
- Third, a glitch might trigger the pairing to fail.
If a user alters the Wi-Fi network that the Roku is connected to or uses the remote to control a different Roku device, unpairing can occur as well.
Luckily, it is easy to pair a Roku remote with a Roku box or streaming stick.
To resync the remote’s connection, follow these steps:
- Unplug the Roku from its power supply
- After about 10 to 15 seconds, reconnect it, allowing the Roku to start up until it gets to the Home menu
- Using the pairing button on your remote (generally found somewhere near the remote’s battery compartment), hold it down for 5 seconds or until the Roku indicator light blinks.
Check for Infrared Interference
Some older Roku models utilize an infrared pointer which requires that the remote and the Roku can respond to each other via line of sight.
But if there is dust, dirt, or grime covering the IR on either end, the line of sight cannot be completed.
Ensure that nothing obstructs the IR connection between the remote and your Roku device.
Reset Your Roku Remote
The Roku remote is furbished with a particular trigger that is intended specifically for the remote’s reset.
If the remote is unable to pair to the Roku, you may need to restore your Roku to factory settings.
To reset your Roku remote, follow the steps below:
- Take the batteries out of the remote
- Either restart the Roku by unplugging it from its power source or go through the Settings menu to the System section, navigate to System Restart, and choose Restart from there
- If you triggered the restart via the Restart option, allow the Roku to complete the process. If you unplugged it, plug it back in after 10 to 15 seconds
- When the Home screen loads, put the batteries back into the Roku remote
You can reset remotes with a pairing button that are also chargeable by holding the reset button for 20 seconds after unplugging the Roku device.
This unpairs the remote and won’t attempt to re-pair it until the Roku’s power supply is detected.
Check Your Wi-Fi Connection
If none of the above steps worked, it’s time to check that your Wi-Fi is in working order.
Although the remote doesn’t need a connection to the device (although apps do require it to stream), you need to ensure that the local network is functional.
Your Roku remote will not work until you restore your local network connection.
Replace the Remote Or Use the Roku Remote App
If you have reached this far down in the steps, there is some chance that your remote may have incurred internal damage to make it non-functional.
In this case, you will need to replace the remote. Our best advice is to research your Roku model to find out what remotes are compatible and purchase one of those as a replacement.
While you’re waiting for your remote to arrive, you can use the Roku official remote app.
If you have a mobile device, you don’t need to spend money on replacing it at all. It has everything you need to control your streaming.
In some respects, it makes it even easier (like being able to access channels right from the app instead of navigating the Roku menu).
You can find the app on both the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store. It quickly detects nearby Roku devices, making it easy to pair your remote.
If you use more than one Roku in the house, you can toggle the app remote between the different Roku devices.