Wii Remotes Only Flash Then Don't Turn On

by Carrie Burns ; Updated September 22, 2017

Wii remotes may require occasional re-syncing. If your Wii remotes flash lights when you press a button but then turn off again and never show a cursor on the screen, you most likely need to sync them with your system. You may need to start over with all of your synced controllers, especially if you are trying to use a third-party, or non-native, brand controller for your Wii.

Turn off your Wii using the “Power” button on the front of the console.

Unplug your Wii’s power cord from the wall. Wait a few seconds and plug it back in.

Turn on your Wii using the button on the front of the console. Until your Wii remotes are working again, you will have to power the system off and on using the button on the front of the system.

Press and hold the “sync” button for 15 seconds. The round, red “sync” button is under the small white flip-cover on the front of the console. This step will clear any paired controllers, meaning you will have to re-sync all of your controllers, even the ones that may still have been working when you began troubleshooting.

Remove the battery cover on the back of the first Wii remote you want to sync and press the red button below the batteries. The blue lights on the front of the Wii remote will blink once the red button has been pressed.

Press the red “sync” button on the console again, this time releasing it. When the blue lights on the Wii remote stops blinking and one of the four lights remains lit, the remote is synced.

Repeat Steps 5 and 6 for each controller you wish to sync.

Call Wii customer support at 800.255.3700 if your controllers still will not turn on after following the sync procedures.

About the Author

Based in Austin, Texas, Carrie Burns has been writing professionally since 2004, primarily ghostwriting corporate white papers and reviewing local theater productions. She has also spent time devising new works with cutting-edge theater ensembles. Burns holds a Bachelor of Arts in theater from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.