TV Remote Won’t Work After Changing Batteries? (Why+Fix)

It can feel frustrating not to find your remote working when you want to watch your favorite show on TV. You might have changed the batteries, but still, the remote might not be working. In this article, you’ll know why.

Your TV remote will not work if you position the batteries in the wrong alignment. Try reinserting the batteries in the right alignment, then check the remote. If this isn’t the case, you might have dropped the remote, and it might have undergone some damage; thus, you might need a replacement.

If your TV remote is not working even after changing the batteries, you are at the right place. In this article, I will explain all the possible reasons why your TV remote might not work.

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Why is my TV remote not working?

TV remote not working is a common problem people have faced for ages.

The first thing that comes to your mind when your TV remote doesn’t work is that the batteries might not be working.

So, you might have changed the batteries.

But, still, your remote doesn’t work!

Here are all the possible reasons why that might happen:

1. Damage

If you had dropped your TV remote or someone else in the family had dropped it, the remote might have undergone some physical damage.

If you notice any cracks or signs of breakage, your remote will not work.

You will need to replace the remote if this is the case.

You can find the remote on Amazon or check the official site of your TV brand.

2. Dirty battery terminals

If the battery terminals of your remote are dirty, the batteries will not work, so your remote will not function either.

You must clean the battery terminal to fix this.

  • First, take the batteries out of the remote.
  • Take a soft cloth piece and an alcohol solution.
  • Dip the cloth in the solution and clean the terminal.
  • Once clean, you can then put the batteries back in place.

Try using the remote by pressing any button and checking if it’s working.

3. Wrong battery placement

If you don’t place the batteries correctly, the remote will not work.

If unsure, take the batteries out and put them back again.

You will find the indications inside the battery terminal.

Follow the instructions and place the batteries with the right +- sign ends at the right sides.

4. Faulty batteries

Even after changing the remote control batteries, your remote will not work if the new batteries are bad or faulty.

To confirm this, try using the batteries on any other device and see if it works.

If not, you know your batteries are bad, and you need to exchange them or get new ones that are not faulty.

5. Defective remote control buttons

If your remote control is not working right, the reason might be that the control pad buttons are defective.

Let me explain how you can fix this.

  • Remove the batteries from the battery terminal.
  • Now use a screwdriver to remove the screws of the remote control.
  • Gently separate the remote into two.
  • Dip a clean cloth or cotton to clean the rubber buttons section and the circuit board of the remote.

This should fix the problem.

6. Too much distance

Are you using the remote from a distance?

Sometimes, if you use the remote from too far, the TV will fail to catch the indications of the remote.

Try reducing the distance between the TV and the remote when you use it the next time.

If distance were the issue, this would solve the problem.

7. Software glitch

Sometimes, your remote control might be working fine.

But, if there is an internal software glitch, your TV remote will fail to function properly.

Here are a few things you can do if you doubt this:

  • Unplug the TV from the electric outlet and leave it like that for a minute. (2 minutes for android TVs)
  • Plug the TV and check if it’s working.
  • You might also need to update the software of your TV. If your TV has an internet connection, you can update the software by selecting the settings option.
  • You’ll need to update the software manually for a TV not connected to the internet. For that, download the updated software file on the computer and upload it on a USB flash drive. You can then insert it into the TV to update the software.

Note: The process may vary depending on your TV model, so you can refer to the user manual or call customer support for assistance.

8. Obstacles between the TV and the remote

If there are any obstacles between your TV and the remote control, it won’t function properly.

Something might be placed in front of the TV sensor that blocks the remote signal from reaching the TV.

Check for the obstacles and remove them from the way.

And try using the remote after this.

9. External devices are connected to the TV

Have you checked if there are other devices connected to the TV?

This is rarely the problem, but if some other device is connected to the TV, it might prevent the remote from controlling it.

Check for devices like:

  • HDMI devices
  • Headsets
  • USB drives

Also, check the cables to ensure there’s no other influence.

If you find any of these, try removing them carefully and then using the TV’s remote control.

10. Check the set-top box remote

If your TV is connected to a set-top box device, you may need to use its remote control.

You might find yourself in situations where the sound is mute or set to 0 from the set-top box remote, and even after using the TV remote, you don’t see a difference in the sound.

You might think the remote is not working, but that is not the case here.

You will need to change the sound from the set-top box remote first.

So, before concluding that your TV remote is not working, check if the set-top box remote has anything to do with it.

Final words

The TV remote not working is a frustrating experience, especially after you’ve replaced the old batteries with new ones. There can be many reasons behind this issue, though.

You might not have placed the new batteries correctly, or the batteries might be faulty. There might be obstacles between the TV and the remote control, or the remote might have undergone some physical damage.

I have explained all the possibilities and the fixes above. Go through them and check everything before going for a replacement or getting a new remote for your TV.

Also read: 14 Ways To Fix TV Has No Sound But Not Muted


What do you do if your TV doesn’t respond to the remote?

If your TV doesn’t respond to your remote and you do not find any signs of damage, software or external issues, or battery problems, perform a factory reset.

Note: The reset process can vary depending on the brand and model of the TV, so check the user manual for accurate instructions.

Here’s an overview:

  • First, disconnect the TV from the electric outlet.
  • Leave it like that for at least a minute or 2 minutes for an android TV.
  • Plug the TV back and switch it on.

And then check if the remote is responding to the TV.

How do you hard reset a remote?

Hard setting a remote is not as difficult as it sounds.

Ideally, you should hard reset the remote when it doesn’t work even after you insert new batteries.

Here is how you do it:

  • Take the batteries out of the remote control.
  • Leave it like that for 5-10 minutes.
  • Insert the batteries after that.

This will hard reset the remote, and you can try using it to see if it works.

You can try this even with old batteries because sometimes the batteries are not the problem.

Why does hitting a remote make it work?

It is common to see people hitting their TV remotes when they stop working.

As a child, even I saw my parents doing it, and that got to me too!

And the best thing about it is that it often works.

If your remote control isn’t working, try hitting it, and it might start working again!

But, as always, I got curious and wanted to know why this works almost every time.

Sometimes, the connections inside the TV remote become loose, or a layer of oxidation forms inside it.

This layer prevents the current flow, due to which the remote control doesn’t work.

When we hit the remote or shake it, the layer gets disrupted, the batteries sit better in their place, and the remote starts working again.

But it won’t work every time, especially if there is any other problem with the device.

However, you should not hit or smack the remote too hard, which can lead to physical damage.

If your remote doesn’t work even after hitting it, consider checking all the issues I’ve explained in the article and identify the correct problem and fix it.

Reference: LG Official ManualSamsung Official Help.

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Jeniffer Smith

Hi, I am Jeniffer Smith, a housemaker and blogger, and I grew up in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts. I have been researching and fixing appliances and other things around the home and kitchen from a young age to help my single mother. Every time something went wrong, I couldn't rest until I fixed it. And ever since, I have enjoyed fixing things around my home, and I am always ready to help my friends and family with advice and hands-on help. Since we were always looking for affordable ways of fixing things, we rarely hired experts and tried to fix most things ourselves. That interest brought me to write for this blog, as I realized my knowledge could help many people trying to fix things around their homes on their own without spending hundreds of dollars.

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