If the Roku simple remote not working and you’ve already replaced the batteries, we can provide the most unique and unconventional solutions.
Troubleshooting a remote typically resembles a battery check and the IR line of sight, but there is much more, so continue reading this guide!
To address issues with a simple Roku remote, perform a power cycle on the device and replace the batteries with a fresh pair. If you still encounter the same fault, check the IR line of sight with the TV and perform a hard reset on the Roku remote control.
Let’s keep unwrapping!
Why is the Simple Roku Remote Not Working?
There could be multiple causes leading to the sudden functionality disruption of the simple Roku remote control.
The key to resolving the complication faster is reviewing all factors and potential environmental causes that could block the remote’s signal or cause it to malfunction.
Here’s what could prevent a simple Roku remote from working:
|Roku Simple Vs. Roku Standard Remote|
|Remote Function||Roku Simple Remote||Roku Standard Remote|
|TV Line of Sight||✔️||❌|
Many users don’t know the difference between a standard Roku remote supplied with most Roku products and a simple remote.
A simple Roku remote is not voice-activated and communicates with the TV via IR. Hence, it must be pointed toward the Roku at all times.
Roku Simple Remote Not Working – 7 Working Solutions!
1. Correct the Line of Sight
As mentioned, the simple Roku remote does not have an in-built voice function and works via IR with the TV receiver via IR.
Misunderstanding the functionality of the remote or mistaking it for a Wi-Fi-activated remote may prevent you from using it properly.
Point the remote directly towards the front panel of the Roku device if it’s a TV or the surface of the streaming stick/cable box.
Check if there will be any output displayed on the screen of the connected TV device.
While interacting with a TV or streaming player using a universal IR remote such as the simple Roku remote control, there must always be a clear line of sight.
Note: Do not cover the Roku remote or the TV/receiver with anything!
2. Reset the Remote’s Power Supply
There could be a shortage in the Roku remote’s power supply, leading to IR issues or the functionality of the hardware and buttons.
To determine if the batteries of the remote are starting to wear out, you should attempt the power cycle process before replacing them.
How to Power Reset a Simple Roku Remote?
- Open the battery compartment of the remote.
- Remove the batteries inside the compartment.
- Hold the “OK” remote button for 5-10 seconds.
- Re-insert the batteries of the remote back in.
- Close the compartment and test the remote.
If the remote doesn’t work after reinserting the batteries, the batteries are due for replacement.
Insert a fresh set of two AAA batteries inside the Roku simple remote and check if that will resume functionality.
Note: Verify that the new batteries are inserted correctly in the remote’s compartment.
3. Clean the Communication IR Bulbs!
Another possibility is that the IR of the Roku remote is obstructed by dust accumulation on the frontal communication IR “eye.”
In that case, the next step is to clean the remote thoroughly to ensure that no debris is preventing the remote from communicating with the TV’s receiver eye!
Here’s how to properly clean the surface of the Roku remote control:
- Apply rubbing alcohol to a soft cleaning cloth.
- Remove the batteries of the Roku remote control.
- Use the cloth to clean the frontal remote panel.
- Hold the “OK” button for 15-20 seconds afterward.
- Use the cloth to clean the entirety of the remote.
- Wait until the remote dries and reinsert the batteries.
Tip: It’s also recommended to clean the IR receiver on the Roku TV.
4. Soft Reset the Receiving Device
The issue could always be with the receiver rather than the Roku remote control.
Simple Roku remotes can establish a connection even with non-Roku TVs due to their ability to work with IR.
Hence, if your receiver TV is frozen or hung, it’s likely that your remote signals will not register.
Follow these steps to reset the power of any TV or streaming device:
- Locate the physical power button on the device.
- Then, turn off the streaming device or the television.
- Unplug the playout device from the power supply.
- Wait for 60 seconds while the device is unplugged.
- Re-attach the power cable of the unit back into power.
- Turn on the playout device and test the Roku remote.
Note: The soft reset is also effective against overheating and power-related issues!
5. Eliminate Environmental Interference!
The IR signal is strongly susceptible to interference caused by surrounding objects and wireless devices.
Even sheer sunlight shining on the surface of the receiver device could disrupt the IR signal from the simple Roku remote and cause weird behavior and/or unintended commands.
Causes for Physical IR Interference:
- Large furniture blocking the line of sight.
- Objects placed in front of the TV/remote.
- Improper elevation angle for the signal.
- Obstruction on the TV or remote’s “eye.”
Causes for Wireless IR Interference:
- Bluetooth devices near the TV.
- RF transmitters or baby phones.
- Wi-Fi routers or signal transmitters.
- Direct sunlight shining on the TV.
When dealing with any type of interference, both IR and RF, the essential factor is to avoid installing transmitting devices near the TV.
Hence, relocating all electronic devices away from your TV setup is crucial to evade the formation of harmful signal interference.
Note: Remember that RF (Wi-Fi) remotes are also susceptible to wireless interference!
6. Hold the Compartment Reset Button
Very few simple Roku remotes have a factory reset button in their battery compartments, allowing the user to reset the software of the remote.
Since there are plenty of simple Roku remotes released throughout the years, there is no way of telling unless you manually check.
Open the battery compartment of the Roku remote by carefully lifting the cover and checking for the “Pair” and “Reset” buttons.
If the remote has a reset button, hold it for 10-15 seconds.
Once the remote is reset, take out the batteries and place them back in to reset the power again.
This should restore the remote’s functionality and fix any underlying issues.
Note: If the reset button is a pinhole, use a sharp and thin object, a paperclip, for example!
7. Test the Remote’s IR Functionality
If nothing else worked, perhaps it is time to inspect whether the remote’s IR blaster is functional.
After replacing the batteries and attempting all viable solutions, if the remote had simply stopped working, you might have to start considering purchasing a brand-new remote.
How to Test IR Blaster on Roku Simple Remote?
In case you didn’t know, human eyes can’t see an IR light, while your smartphone camera can!
To test the remote’s IR, you will need the following:
- Your smartphone’s camera.
- Fresh Roku remote batteries.
- A shaded spot in your home.
Follow these instructions to test the IR blaster of the Roku remote:
- Open the “Camera” app on your mobile device.
- Then, ensure that the front camera is selected.
- Point the remote’s “eye” towards the camera.
- Keep pressing any buttons on the remote.
- Check if there will be an IR light on the camera.
- If the remote is functional, the IR blaster will flash in violet light on the camera
- If the remote is not working, there will be no light appearing upon button presses.
If your Roku remote turns out to be faulty, and no IR signals are being sent even with a fresh set of batteries, it’s time for a replacement.
We recommend first getting in touch with Roku Support to see your options or taking the remote to the merchant to claim your warranty-best of luck!
Hence, whenever a Roku simple remote not working, start with the power cycle process on the remote and then replace the batteries.
If the issue persists, check for wireless or physical interference and perform a factory reset to the Roku remote.
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Kevin has over five years of experience working in various Tech startups and providing Technical solutions. He has contributed to many Tech publications and websites.