Introduction: Testing a Remote Control

In this day in age, almost all of our entertainment systems and device can be controlled by remote controls. TVs, iHomes, and some video game system have them to control the devices and make our lives more convenient. These remotes suffer from two major downfalls however, the ability to get lost every three minutes and they break fairly easily. But is it really broken or does it need new batteries? It the entire remote dead or just a couple of buttons? In this guide I will help you troubleshoot your faulty remote to see whats going on.

Step 1: Supplies

In the troubleshooting method that I will describe you only need the faulty remote and a digital camera. This camera can be on your phone, a camcorder, your computer, or a regular digital camera. With these you will be able to see if your remote is working properly.

Step 2: Locate Problem Areas

If you know that certain buttons of your remote just aren't working correctly but the majority of your remote is working just fine, you are already troubleshooted part of the way and have removed faulty batteries as the source of your problem. If none of your buttons are working, then it still could be a battery issue. Try replacing to see if the problem corrects itself. To continue troubling troubleshooting it's time to break out our cameras.

Step 3: Troubleshooting

Almost all remotes utilized infrared LEDs to send a beam to our electronic devices. While these waves are invisible to our naked eyes electronic cameras have no trouble seeing them. We can use this to our advantage to see if our infrared LED is functional. To test this, turn on your camera on whatever device you're using and point the lens directly at the top end of the remote. Push your buttons in your affected areas and see if you can see a light in your camera. If there is a light, the infrared LED and button is working just fine. If it does not, test another button to see if that one works. If none of these buttons on the remote are sending a signal to the LED there is either a connection issue or the LED has burned out. By doing this, you can see if the problem is with the led or with the individual buttons themselves.

Step 4: Finished!

At the end of the troubleshooting, you now know if you have led, button, or battery issues with your remote. If either of the first two are present, it may be time to get a replacement. If its just a battery issue, you've lucked out. Get some new batteries in it and enjoy your entertainment. Sadly, there is nothing I can do to troubleshoot disappearing remotes so you are on your own with that one. Thanks for reading and I hope this guide has helped release some of your remote based frustration.