How to use Insignia TV without Remote

How to Control Insignia TV Without a Remote [Complete Guide]

You really can’t beat Best Buy’s Insignia smart TVs for its super-affordable prices. Chances are, however, you might lose the remote. 

So the million-dollar question is: How do you make the most of an Insignia TV without the benefit of its remote?

Don’t worry, though, as we got you covered. In this post, we’ll show you how to control your Insignia TV without a remote; plus, we’ve included proven workarounds should your Insignia remote fail you, so better read up. 

How to Use Your Insignia TV Without a Remote 

First up, know the tips and tricks below have been proven effective in controlling and using your Insignia TV without a remote. However, some solutions may only work on some Insignia TVs, especially the newer models.

1. Use the buttons on your Insignia TV 

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps1
Time to Perform Fix10 to 20 seconds
Things NeededAn Insignia TV

The most straightforward way to control an Insignia TV without a remote is to use its built-in physical buttons. Most TVs, including your Insignia TV, have backup physical buttons for emergencies where their remote control dies or gets lost somewhere.

Use the buttons on your Insignia TV 

This way, you can continue to watch on your Insignia TV and use its essential functions to operate it. 

As basic as it may seem, this is especially true for older Insignia TVs since remote controls used to play a more supportive role instead of being the primary control option it is nowadays.

After all, most modern TV manufacturers believe physical buttons are less practical as TVs get slimmer and thinner in favor of better image quality and visual fidelity. Therefore, they’re losing space to put physical buttons on the newer Insignia TVs.

Fortunately, you’ll still likely find a physical button on your current Insignia TV. As such, you can continue using your Insignia TV using the sample physical buttons below until your replacement remote arrives.

Side Control Panel Buttons

If you own an older Insignia TV model, it likely has a side control panel with which you can operate the device. 

Side controller boards on older Insignia TVs often have power, mute, volume, channel, and input buttons so you can use them without a remote.

Side Control Panel Buttons

Therefore, your Insignia TV’s lost remote won’t matter since you can continue watching without missing out on any feature. After all, older TV model

Bottom Power Button

Regarding newer Insignia TVs, their only built-in physical button is likely a power button. It’s the most common physical button manufacturers use on modem TVs since it fits the button bezel, giving the device a better aesthetic and slicker design.

Bottom Power Button

Although it’s only a power button, it does have various functions since you can use it for volume, channel, and input control. However, you lose out on most of your Insignia TV’s features since it only provides the most basic control options.

Since you can continue using your Insignia TV with this button, it’s much better than having nothing with which to operate your device. Furthermore, this power button is, without a doubt, the best way to turn on your Insignia TV without a remote.

No Buttons 

Unfortunately, some Insignia TVs may not have any usable physical buttons. It could be specific to a particular model or due to hardware damage, causing the physical buttons on your Insignia TV to stop working.

But fret not; you can use the other control options in this guide to operate your Insignia TV without a remote. It’s your only recourse since Insignia doesn’t manufacture TVs with touchscreen capabilities.

2. Use a smartphone 

Difficulty Easy ●●○○○
Number of Steps9
Time to Perform Fix2 minutes
Things NeededAn Insignia TV
Any smartphone
A working internet connection

Since most smart devices use Bluetooth or WiFi technology, there are various other ways to control your Insignia TV without a remote. It’s inevitable. Wireless technology is constantly flourishing, giving birth to more TV control options.

A popular alternative control option is using a smartphone remote app. Since everyone has a smartphone, this action is a convenient and solid alternative whenever your Insignia TV remote dies, gets lost, or breaks.

IMPORTANT: Unfortunately, unlike other TV brands, Insignia doesn’t have a dedicated companion app for their smart TVs. 

There’s no need to press the panic button or lose sleep over this fact, though. You can install third-party apps from your smartphone’s app store compatible with your Insignia TV.

Nowadays, having a vast selection of third-party remote control apps on the Google Play and Apple App Store wouldn’t be surprising. What’s essential is you select a compatible app that works with your Insignia TV, whether via WiFi or Infrared.

You heard that right. There’s a remote control app specially suited for Insignia TV you can download and make the most of. 

Step 1: Open Google Play.


Note: Use the Apple App Store if you have an iOS device.
Step 2: Search for a remote control app compatible with Insignia TVs and install it.
Note: You can try any app if it can connect to your Insignia TV.
Step 3: Open the remote control app.

Step 4: Follow the setup instructions to prepare the remote control app.

Step 5: Select your Insignia TV remote type.


Note: Some apps may only have a single remote control option.
Step 6: Wait while the app downloads the selected Insignia remote control.

Step 7: Connect your phone to your Insignia TV’s WiFi network.


Note: Your Insignia TV and the remote control app can’t detect each
other if they use different WiFi networks.
Step 8: Switch to infrared mode if your Insignia TV isn’t a smart device.

Step 9: Press any button on the remote control app and respond to the pop-up based on the result.


Note: If it works, you can continue using the app to control your Insignia TV. If not,
press the buttons until the app works, or check its settings menu and make some changes.

3. Use a universal remote 

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps1
Time to Perform Fix5 to 10 seconds
Things NeededAn Insignia TV
Any universal TV remote
A PC or smartphone
A working internet connection

Aside from a smartphone app, you can use a universal remote control to operate your Insignia TV without a remote. Universal remotes are cheaper than a replacement Insignia TV remote that you can use with other house TVs.

You can also choose from a massive selection of universal remotes by visiting the Amazon web page. Shopping online for a universal remote is excellent since you can browse for one that will work on your Insignia TV and receive it at your doorstep.

Since universal remotes go for as low as $6, you can order multiple pieces you can keep if one breaks during use. Also, purchasing a universal remote for specific Insignia TV models should work without performing an initial setup.

Here’s a table containing setup codes for Insignia TV if you bought a universal remote that requires one. Your universal remote should also come with a manual that lists some usable setup codes for Insignia TVs.

All-in-One CodesOne-for-All Codes4-Digit Codes
015001030103
009101890189
013302170133
002901350116
010301670217
011600540456

Note: Refer to your universal remote’s manual if the codes in the table don’t work on your Insignia TV.

4. Use a streaming device’s remote 

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps1
Time to Perform Fix5 to 10 seconds
Things NeededAn Insignia TV
Any streaming device
A streaming device remote
A working internet connection

Another way to control your Insignia TV without a remote is using a streaming device’s remote instead. Since streaming devices have a separate remote, you won’t have any issues using your Insignia TV without its original remote control.

With this, you can continue enjoying your favorite TV shows and movies on your Insignia TV without getting a replacement remote. It’s plausible until your streaming device’s remote control also stops working.

You can use a Chromecast, FireStick, Roku, and Apple TV streaming device on your Insignia TV. We recommend using an Amazon FireStick or Roku streaming stick since they have a low starting price compared to other streaming devices.

Use a streaming device’s remote 

Streaming devices are handy since you can use them on all Insignia TVs, granted that they have a working HDMI port. Otherwise, it would be best if you resorted to the alternative option below or the troubleshooting tricks afterward.

5. Use a USB keyboard or mouse 

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps1
Time to Perform Fix5 to 10 seconds
Things NeededAn Insignia TV
A USB keyboard or mouse

Finally, we suggest using a USB keyboard or mouse to control your Insignia TV without a remote. These control options are excellent since a keyboard and mouse combination makes navigating the Insignia TV menu and typing significantly easier.

We recommend using a wired USB keyboard and mouse since they’ll work much faster after plugging them into your Insignia TV’s USB port. Wireless keyboards and mice are unreliable since not all Insignia TVs have Bluetooth capabilities.

Use a USB keyboard or mouse 

Therefore, using the wired variant is ideal due to their plug-and-play nature, and they’re less intimidating to set up. It’s important to note that you don’t have both devices since even the USB keyboard should be enough to operate your Insignia TV.

How to Fix an Insignia TV Remote 

Now, your defective remote may just need a little tune-up to get going. Luckily, below are quick and simple ways to fix your faulty Insignia remote if you have no other ways to control your TV. 

With these solutions factored in, you should be able to continue using the original remote to control your Insignia TV and enjoy watching your favorite shows again.

FIX 1. Check and replace the Insignia TV remote’s batteries 

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps4
Time to Perform Fix20 seconds
Things NeededAn Insignia TV remote
Two AAA batteries

If you don’t want to use your Insignia TV without a remote, check its batteries to see if they have some juice left. You can insert the batteries into another electronic device to confirm their remaining charge.

Alternatively, you can install new AAA batteries on your Insignia TV remote. If your Insignia TV remote works with the new batteries, the old pair has already run out of power.

Your Insignia TV remote will last based on the quality of the AAA batteries you install inside it. Therefore, it’s best to use high-quality and high-power AAA batteries instead of cheap ones.

Step 1: Open the Insignia TV remote’s battery compartment.

Step 2: Take out the Insignia TV remote’s batteries.

Step 3: Insert two new AAA batteries into your Insignia TV remote.

Step 4: Cover the Insignia TV remote’s battery compartment and check if it works.

FIX 2. Power cycle the Insignia TV remote 

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps5
Time to Perform Fix60 seconds
Things NeededAn Insignia TV remote
Two AAA batteries

Like your Insignia TV, its remote control can suffer from residual electrical charges that may cause it to stop working. As such, you must subject it to frequent power cycles to discharge them immediately.

Doing so should help prevent device malfunctions and pairing issues between the Insignia TV and its remote. With this, you won’t have to control your Insignia TV without a remote.

Step 1: Follow the previous steps to remove your Insignia TV remote’s batteries.

Step 2: Hold the Insignia TV remote’s Power button for 30 seconds.

Step 3: Press all the buttons on your Insignia TV repeatedly for 15 seconds.


Note: You must press every button firmly and at least once.
Step 4:  Return its batteries.


Note: Don’t cover the battery compartment; you don’t need to reopen it if the solution fails.
Step 5: Press the Insignia TV remote’s Power button.


Note: Cover the battery compartment if your Insignia TV
responds to the power button. If not, keep repeating this method.

FIX 3. Reset the remote 

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps1
Time to Perform Fix20 to 40 seconds
Things NeededAn Insignia Fire TV remote

If you have a faulty Insignia Fire remote, you can reset it to correct any issues causing it not to work on your TV. You can reset the Insignia Fire TV remote by simultaneously holding its back, left, and menu buttons.

Reset the remote 

Doing so should return your Insignia remote to working condition. It’s important to note that resetting Fire remotes varies between models, with some requiring you to hold the menu and home buttons instead.

We suggest checking your Insignia TV’s user manual for information about resetting its remote control.

FIX 4. Re-pair the remote 

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps2
Time to Perform Fix60 seconds
Things NeededAn Insignia TV remote

Another solution we recommend is redoing the pairing between the Insignia remote and the TV. This action will help fix connectivity issues that cause your Insignia TV remote’s WiFi or Bluetooth pairing to fail during use.

You can only re-pair your Insignia TV remote by power cycling or resetting it first. Doing so should undo its pairing with your Insignia TV so you can pair both devices again afterward.

Step 1: Follow the previous steps to reset your Insignia TV remote.


Note: Power cycle it instead if it’s not an Insignia Fire TV remote.
Step 2: Hold the Insignia remote’s Home button for 30 seconds until it pairs with your TV.

FIX 5. Soft reset the Insignia TV

Difficulty Very Easy ●○○○○
Number of Steps4
Time to Perform Fix1 minute and 10 seconds
Things NeededAn Insignia TV remote

If everything fails, you can soft reset your Insignia TV instead of its remote control. After all, wireless pairing is a two-way street, which means your Insignia TV is as likely a culprit as its remote control.

Furthermore, Insignia TVs are prone to minor system bugs and glitches like any other TV brand and model. As such, it makes sense to suspect it for causing the pairing issue with the TV remote control.

Either way, the soft reset will benefit your Insignia TV whether or not it fixes the problem with the remote control. Resetting your Insignia TV will refresh its system memory, improving its processing speed and overall performance.

Thus, it’s an excellent method for fixing performance-related issues on your Insignia TV. After all, the remote control may be working, but the Insignia TV is unresponsive due to various system and performance problems, causing its screen to freeze or lag.

Step 1: Turn off your Insignia TV and unplug it.


Note: Unplug the power cable without turning the Insignia TV off if it’s unresponsive.
Step 2: Hold the power button for 60 seconds to discharge and soft reset your Insignia TV.

Step 3: Plug in and turn on your Insignia TV.

Step 4: Use the Insignia remote to check if the TV will respond.

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