Few things can interrupt your Netflix night like your Roku remote disconnecting from your streaming box. The cause (and solution) depends on the type of Roku remote you have. Here, we’ll show you how to get the two devices to communicate again so that you can get back to streaming.
Determine which Roku remote you have
Whether you’re setting up a new Roku device or your remote and streaming device aren’t paired, the process of pairing them again will be the same.
Your first step will be to determine what type of remote you have: a simple Roku remote or a Roku voice remote. If your remote has a microphone icon below its purple directional keypad, then it is a voice remote. If not, it is a simple remote control.
Pairing a Simple Roku Remote
A simple Roku remote does not have a voice search button. With this type of remote, the first thing to do is verify that it is indeed not paired with your transmission box.
Simple Roku remotes need a line of sight to the receiver built into their box, as they use infrared (IR) light to communicate with it. So if something is blocking the beam, moving it out of the way might be all it takes to get the remote working again.
Assuming nothing is in the way of the remote and receiver, the next step will be to remove and then put the batteries back in the back of the remote.
Warning: If the back of your remote is hot, do not open the lid as this could mean that its batteries are corroded. Instead, place the remote control on a non-flammable surface and wait for it to cool down before opening it.
If that works, then you are all set. If not, try replacing the batteries and then point your remote at the receiver and try pressing a few test buttons. If the remote still doesn’t work, it could be faulty and you should request a replacement.
Tip: Another way to see if your remote is working is to use the selfie camera on your smartphone and point the remote. Press some buttons. If you see the remote control light blink while pressing then you know that it is probably working fine and that there could be a problem with your transmission box.
Pairing a rechargeable voice remote control
If you have a Roku voice remote that is not paired, there is no need to check for line-of-sight obstructions because these remotes communicate with their broadcast boxes via a dedicated wireless signal ( Wi-Fi Direct ).
If you are setting up a Roku voice remote for the first time, an on-screen guide will guide you through the process. However, if your voice remote has been unpaired on a system you already own, here is what to try.
First, determine what type of battery system your remote uses, whether it is rechargeable or standard AA or AAA.
If you have a rechargeable remote control, the first step is to make sure it is charged. To do this, connect a micro-USB cable to the charging port and plug the other end into an electrical outlet that contains a USB adapter. The green status light will blink until the remote is charged, at which point it will remain steady. If the light doesn’t blink when you plug in the remote, make sure it’s not your charging cable that’s at fault by trying another cable and adapter.
Sometimes charging the remote may be all it takes to get it working again. If that doesn’t work, you’ll want to reset the remote.
To reset the remote, make sure your TV is turned on and you’ve selected the port your Roku’s HDMI cable is connected to. Press and hold the pairing button located below the green status light. It should start flashing in about five seconds. Wait about 30 seconds while the remote control establishes a connection with your broadcast box. Once that happens, you will be guided through the pairing process via on-screen prompts.
Pairing a Roku Voice Remote Pro
If you’re trying to pair a Roku Voice Remote Pro in addition to the remote that came with your Roku, you’ll want to make sure the streaming box is running Roku OS 9.4 or higher. To do this, press the Start button on your remote and then go to Settings> System and select “System Update.” Then select “Check Now” and the system will search for and install the latest update if necessary.
If your remote isn’t working and you can’t do this, go ahead and try the pairing process anyway; if you have a recent enough version of the operating system, it will work. If not, it might be helpful to know that most Roku remotes are interchangeable. If you have another voice remote control at home, you can try to pair it and use it in the streaming box to download the necessary updates. Alternatively, the Roku app on your smartphone could get the job done, too.
Pairing a voice remote with regular batteries
If your Roku voice remote uses standard batteries, to pair it, first remove the back cover and take out the batteries. Also, unplug the power cord behind your transmission box, wait five seconds, and then plug it back in. Once the Roku home screen appears on your TV, put the batteries back in your remote.
Now, with the back cover of the remote still removed, press and hold the pairing button to the right of the green status light on the back of the remote and wait for it to start flashing. Follow the pairing dialog that will appear on your TV screen after about 30 seconds.
Try the Roku app on your smartphone
No matter which Roku you have, you can use the Roku mobile app for iPhone or Android to control it. If your Roku remote is broken, this can help you recover until you buy a new remote or get help from Roku Technical Support.