Here’s How To Tell If Your Roku Remote Batteries Are Dead

how to tell if roku remote batteries are dead

If your Roku remote isn’t working properly, there is an easy way to tell if it might be the batteries—or if it’s being caused by something else.

All you need to do is follow these steps:

  1. Open the lid to the battery compartment, take the batteries out, and wait about 10 seconds.
  2. Swap their positions, so that the battery on the left goes into the right slot and the battery on the right goes into the left slot.
  3. Press the home button on the Roku remote.
  4. Click on Settings and then select Remotes & devices.
  5. Select the remote you’re using from the list (it will most likely be named something like “Voice Remote).
  6. Select About and then check the battery level.
  7. If the battery level is below 20%, then your batteries are likely to be dead (or almost dead) and will need to be recharged or replaced.

The upside of following these steps is that you will most likely get a few more minutes of use out of the remote. This can be great if you’re trying to finish watching a show or if you don’t have spare batteries nearby.

Why This Works

It may seem strange to simply reverse the locations of your batteries, but there’s some actual science behind it.

The reason this works is that most devices don’t draw the exact same amount of power from both batteries at the same time. Usually, one of the two batteries will drain faster and can cause your remote to stop working, even when there is a charge left.

Swapping the batteries can help give you a little more juice, at least enough to check the battery levels and maybe even enough to finish watching your show.

Roku remotes have a built-in way of monitoring battery level, so checking the level in the app is a great way to see if your batteries need to be replaced.

What To Do If Your Roku Remote Keeps Draining Batteries

With typical usage you should expect to replace your Roku batteries ever 3-6 months.

But there are some situations where you might find yourself with dead batteries every few weeks, or even every few days.

This is usually the result of a firmware issue that is causing your remote to constantly reconnect to WiFi, draining the battery.

There are two ways to try to fix this issue, and neither involves replacing the remote.

Update Your Roku Remote

Roku routinely releases updates for their devices, including their remotes. If your remote is having trouble maintaining a connection, not only will it drain the battery, but it may prevent the remote from updating in order to fix the issue.

Follow these steps to manually update your remote:

  1. Turn on your Roku and navigate to Settings.
  2. Select System and then select System Restart.
  3. This will restart your Roku and push an update to both your streaming device and any remotes that you have paired.

After the update is complete, I recommend checking the battery level by going to Settings, selecting Remotes, and then selecting About.

Write down what the battery level is after the update and then check it again about 2-3 days later. If the update solved the issue, the battery level should stay roughly the same.

So for example if you updated your remote and the battery level was 80%, if you checked it again a couple of days later, it should still be about 80%. If it’s dropped more than 5% or so, you may need to try the next troubleshooting step.

Change Your WiFi Channel

Most routers will automatically choose a channel the first time that you set it up. They are pretty smart about it and will pick a channel that has the least chance of interference.

That said, things can change over time causing that channel to become less reliable. If you’ve added a lot of new devices—or even if your neighbor has added devices—that channel could start encountering problems.

So if your Roku remote keeps churning through batteries, try manually selecting a different channel. You can download a WiFi analyzer app from the Google Play or Apple App store, or just pick one and see if it helps.

Roku recommends using wireless channels 1, 6, or 11 if you’re in North America.

The exact process will depend on which service provider you get your internet from. Here are some helpful links for the two most popular service providers:

Quick Roundup

In general, your Roku remote shouldn’t need new batteries more than once every few months. If you find yourself replacing them more often than that, you might need to update your system manually.

Replacing your remote can help if you’ve run out of other options, but if the issue is WiFi related, then you might find that the new remote churns through batteries as well.

That’s why I recommend following all the steps in this article with your current remote before buying a new one (or contacting support to replace your remote). That way you can hopefully save some time and money.

If you do decide to get a new remote, it’s best to order them directly from Roku in order to guarantee that they’re compatible with your setup.

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