A simple guide to reprogram or reset your Amazon Fire Stick remote.
The Amazon Fire Stick remote, especially the new 3rd generation version, is designed to be sleek and functional but in some ways, it might be too sleek. Its minimalist design means it is not always obvious how to complete more complex functions.
How do you reprogram your Fire Stick remote to do other things, such as control your TV? How can you remap the remote if Netflix, Hulu, and the other shortcuts Amazon has chosen aren’t your preferred apps? How do you reset your remote if it’s not working or you want to restore the “factory settings?”
We answer these three questions in our simple guide below.
How To Program Your Fire Stick Remote To Work With Your TV
Taking control of your TV with your new Fire Stick remote is pretty simple, and may happen automatically if all the settings on your Fire Stick and TV are already set to allow this to happen. Of course, if you are reading this article you might be one of the people without those settings!
If you have a TV that is compatible with the Fire Stick, which means that it has an HDMI port, you can probably also take control of it with your remote. This will be done either through IR blasting or CEC (Consumer Electronics Control) but your TV probably doesn’t use these labels in its menu system. Every brand of TV has its own name for this functionality, from SimpLink to Anynet to Bravia Sync.
Whatever it is called, you need to make sure that this function is switched on both within your TV and your Fire Stick settings.
To enable it on your TV you will need to head to the settings menu and find the equivalent of IR/CEC. If it is eluding you, a quick Google should reveal the name, but it should be somewhere in the Systems menu. When you find it, just make sure that the relevant toggle is switched to “allow.”
You will then need to do the same thing on your Fire Stick. Head to the Settings menu and choose Display and Sound. Here you should find a menu option for HDMI CEC Device Control; make sure it is switched on.
By doing this, you are allowing a device connected to your TV via your HDMI–in this case, your Fire Stick–to control your TV. Since your remote is linked to your Fire Stick, it should now work.
If you have the generation 3 version of the remote, you should have power and volume buttons on the remote itself and you can use them to control your TV. If you have an older version of the remote, you won’t have these buttons and the only way to control your TV is to use voice commands.
How To Remap Your Amazon Fire Remote
The newest Fire Stick remotes come with designated buttons to power up your favorite apps with a single click, but if the apps they have selected aren’t the apps you use most often, these buttons are pretty useless.
You can reprogram these buttons to do other things, though, with the remapper app. This will require sideloading the app via Downloader. You can read our complete guide to sideloading apps via Downloader here. Follow these instructions to download and install the remapper app from AFTV. You will also find instructions on the same website for how to reprogram buttons.
Bear in mind that this solution is far from “neat.” If you want to reprogram a button, you need to uninstall the app that the button is already linked to. This means if you want to reprogram the Netflix button, you need to permanently delete Netflix. You will also have to uninstall the apps that you want to link the new buttons to and reinstall them via an alternative method.
If you do want to personalize your remote, you may be better off using a universal remote that is compatible with Fire Stick. Many universal remotes aren’t compatible with Fire Stick, but the Sideclick Universal Remote with Fire Stick attachment is a good choice.
How To Reset Your Amazon Fire Stick Remote
If your Fire Stick remote isn’t working the way it should after you have been using it you can take the age-old advice of all IT support desks and try resetting it. This should be possible to do even if your remote seems completely dead; just make sure you have fresh batteries in your remote so that it has the power to connect to your device.
The first step is to unplug your Fire Stick from both the HDMI port and its power source. Leave it unplugged for a minute or two to ensure that it has powered down completely. Then plug it back in.
As this is a hard reboot, it might take a few seconds longer for your Fire Stick to load than normal, but it should connect to the internet and load all of your apps automatically, as usual.
Now take your remote and hold down the home button while pointing it at your device. Make sure there are no serious obstacles between the remote and device for the best performance. Wait until the light on the remote flashes orange, and then release. This should take no more than 30 seconds.
After this time, you should see a message on the screen telling you that your remote has synced. Once your remote has resynced, you should find that it is restored to “factory settings.”
Troubleshooting: Reset Fire Stick Remote When It’s Not Working
If you don’t manage to reset your Amazon Fire Stick remote using the process above, you might think you are in trouble, since you have no way to control your TV. Don’t worry! You can grab your smartphone and use it to take control for the time being.
Download the Amazon Fire TV app from the Google Play Store (or whatever app store you use). Open the app and log in to your Amazon account, which should be the same Amazon account that your Fire Stick is logged into. Both devices should also be on the same Wi-Fi network.
If the app is on the same account and same Wi-Fi, the app on your phone should automatically look for your Fire Stick to pair up with. If not, choose New Devices to force the search. When the Fire Stick receives a ping from your phone, it should display a four-digit code on your screen. You need to enter that code into the app to enable pairing the devices.
After this, you should see what looks like the Amazon remote on your phone screen, and you can use this to control the device.
From here, you can try and connect your existing remote manually in the Controller and Bluetooth Devices menu. Here you will find Amazon Fire TV Remotes and Add New Remote. Once you have selected these you will be prompted to hold down the home button on the remote again to try and pair.
If this final attempt doesn’t work, you will need to get a new remote. Fortunately the full Amazon 3rd generation remote can be purchased separately on Amazon and isn’t too expensive.
You can follow our remote setup guide to get this new remote working.
How To Reprogram Fire Stick Remote: FAQs
Can I remap the Fire TV remote buttons?
There is no simple way to remap the Fire TV remote buttons. You can sideload a third-party remapping app, but Amazon has worked hard to make sure this is difficult, so there are lots of workarounds and compromises to get working.
Can I control my Fire Stick with a universal remote?
While most universal remotes won’t work with Fire Stick, there are some that will either work with a specific Fire Stick attachment, an affordable option, or a home remote hub. These sophisticated remotes can cost upwards of $200, though.
The Fire remote is designed to be sleek and user-friendly, but it is only user-friendly as long as you use it exclusively how it was designed to be used. If you want to reprogram the remote, this is actually quite challenging. There are different things you can do depending on what you want to achieve, and you will find some advice in this article.
If you aren’t happy with how your remote is working after you try and reprogram it, your best option is to reset your Amazon Fire Stick remote by following our simple steps.
Do you have advice for getting the most out of an Amazon Fire remote? Share it with the community in the comments section below.