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Can You Use a Universal Remote on a Fire Stick?

Can You Use a Universal Remote on a Fire Stick?

It’s time to give up. Your Fire Stick remote is hopelessly broken. 

You’ve tried repairing it to your Fire Stick several times, but haven’t had any luck. 

As soon as you begin researching “how to dispose of a Fire Stick” you remember you have a universal remote lying somewhere around your house. Could this be the solution to your problem? 

Can you use a universal remote with a Fire Stick? How do universal and Fire Stick remotes work? How do you pair a universal remote to a Fire Stick? 

Keep reading to find out! 

Can You Use a Universal Remote on a Fire Stick?

Universal Remote on the hand of someone

Yes, you can use a universal remote on a Fire Stick. 

While some older universal remotes may not work with a Fire Stick, many newer TV remotes will. 

Because streaming sticks are so popular nowadays (and many consumers tend to lose their original remotes) many modern universal remotes will boast Fire Stick compatibility. 

However, you must ensure that your TV supports HDMI CEC, which will allow you to control your Fire Stick with your TV’s infrared universal remote. 

The universal remote will send commands to your TV via its infrared sensor. Then, your TV will process these infrared commands to control your Fire Stick using its HDMI CEC function. 

Most modern TVs will have this feature, but if your TV is on the older side, consider confirming it has HDMI CEC before purchasing a compatible universal remote. 

How Does a Universal Remote Work?

Universal Remotes on display

Universal remotes work with infrared. 

Take a look at the top of your universal remote. 

You may see a small, semi-sphere on the top of it. This is a small infrared light that sends messages to your TV via LED light.  

This LED light transmits binary code that tells your TV to perform specific commands, like turning on and off, or adjusting the volume.

Also, since it uses light, the remote must be pointed directly at the TV and often cannot be used if you’re standing more than a few meters away. 

Since all TVs have an infrared transmitter and are designed to receive and understand these commands, infrared remotes are universal and can be used with any TV. 

The Telegraph has a short but sweet video explaining how universal remotes work with every TV. Watch it below!

The science behind how a remote control works

How Does a Fire Stick Remote Work?

Fire Stick remotes wirelessly connect to your Fire TV via Bluetooth

The remote is fitted with a Bluetooth transmitter. So, when you’re setting up your Fire Stick, it locates the Fire Stick remote’s Bluetooth signal and connects to it. 

The great thing about Bluetooth remotes is that they have a wider range, so you can sit further away from the TV and still operate the controls. 

You also don’t have to point the remote directly at the Fire Stick for it to work. 

This is particularly helpful if you’re using a Fire Stick with a projector that’s set up behind you since it will respond to any buttons you press regardless of which way you’re pointing the remote. 

What Makes a Universal Remote Work With a Fire Stick?

Using Universal remote

Universal remotes use HDMI CEC to work with a Fire Stick.

While you can Bluetooth pair remotes to your Fire Stick through its settings, infrared remotes work differently. 

Instead, you will need to configure your TV’s settings and check whether or not your TV has HDMI CEC. 

This feature may be labeled differently depending on the brand. 

While it’s simply labeled HDMI-CEC on Hitachi TVs and CEC on Vizio TVs, some brands have crafted their own name for this feature. 

For instance, Samsung calls it Aynet+ and it’s labeled SimpLink on LG units. 

If you’re not sure what your TV brand’s HDMI CEC feature is called, look for a setting with the words “command,” “link,” or “sync” in it. You can also consult your manual or the brand’s official website for information. 

Universal remotes send commands to your TV via its infrared sensor, found on the front of your unit. However, configuring your TV’s HDMI CEC settings will allow your universal remote to control your HDMI input’s (i.e. the Fire Stick) commands via the same infrared sensor. 

3 Good Universal Remotes for Your Fire Stick

Three universal remotes

Here are our top three recommendations for the best universal remotes to use with your Fire Stick. 

While any newer universal remote should work with your Fire Stick as long as your TV has HDMI CEC, it’s important to find one that’s high-quality. 

All of the universal remotes mentioned below use infrared technology to communicate with your TV and state that they may be used with streaming devices. 

Note: You may see “will not work with RF streaming devices like Fire Sticks” in their product descriptions. However, this is only clarifying that the remote works with infrared rather than radio frequency. You may still use these remotes with your Fire Stick once you’ve enabled HDMI CEC. 

Philips Universal Remote Control

Philips Universal Remote Control Replacement for Samsung, Vizio, LG, Sony, Sharp, Roku, Apple TV, RCA, Panasonic, Smart TVs, Streaming Players,...
  • Stylish Finish And Ergonomic Design – This Universal Remote’S Brushed Electric Blue Finish Adds...
  • Multi-Device Control - Operate Up To 3 Different Audio And Video Components Such As Tvs, Blu-Ray/Dvd...
  • Best Remote Code Library – This Universal Remote Works With All Major Brands And Supports...

Last update on 2023-05-31 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API.

This snazzy, ergonomic control is the perfect addition to any colorful living room. It has specific buttons for controlling streaming devices, like Fire Sticks. 

The Philips Universal Remote Control is also lightweight and easy to pair to your TV. 

GE Universal Remote Control 

GE Universal Remote Control for Samsung, Vizio, LG, Sony, Sharp, Roku, Apple TV, TCL, Panasonic, Smart TVs, Streaming Players, Blu-ray, DVD, 4-Device,...
  • MULTI-DEVICE CONTROL - Operate up to 4 different audio and video components such as TVs Blu-Ray/DVD...
  • BEST REMOTE CODE LIBRARY – This universal remote comes pre-programmed for Samsung TVs and Roku...
  • Does not work with Roku streaming stick fire TV stick or other RF streaming devices

Last update on 2023-05-31 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API.

The GE Universal Remote Control works with the most well-known TV brands and comes in several metallic colors with backlit buttons, so you can program your TV in the dark. 

It’s very reasonably priced and can be paired to your TV in a few simple steps. 

One for All Smart Control Universal Remote 

Last update on 2023-05-31 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API.

This universal remote is a bit pricier than the other options, but for a good reason! It also comes with an app, so you can control which devices your remote is paired to straight from your smartphone!

The One for All Smart Control Universal Remote is sleek and stylish, and will make navigating your Fire Stick with a universal remote a breeze.  

How To Pair a Universal Remote to a Fire Stick?

Using universal remote by hand

Pair your universal remote to a Fire Stick following the steps below.

Controlling your Fire Stick with a universal remote may seem complicated, but it couldn’t be easier. 

All you need to do is configure your TV’s settings. 

Every TV brand’s instructions will differ slightly. 

We’ve included instructions on how to enable HDMI CEC for the three most popular TV brands. 


LG TV in display

How to turn on an LG TV’s HDMI CEC (Simplink). 

Step 1: Click your remote’s Menu button. 

Step 2: Open your LG TV’s Settings

Step 3: Click on All Settings.

Step 4: Press General. 

Step 5: Go to Simplink and toggle it on. 


Sony TV in display

Let’s learn how to enable HDMI CEC (Bravia Sync) on a Sony TV.

Step 1: Open the Menu. 

Step 2: Head to your TV’s Settings. 

Step 3: Open Preferences. 

Step 4: Click on Setup. 

Step 5: Scroll down and select Bravia Sync Settings. 

Step 6: Toggle Bravia Sync Control on. 

Step 7: Go to Bravia Sync Device List and ensure your Fire Stick is listed there. 


Samsung TV and remote

Enable HDMI CEC (Anynet+) on your Samsung TV in a few short steps. 

Step 1: Go to your Samsung TV Menu

Step 2: Click on the Settings icon. 

Step 3: Open Anynet+ (HDMI-CEC). 

Step 4: Turn Anynet+ (HDMI-CEC) on. 

Take a Bath Productions on YouTube has a great video below outlining how to enable HDMI CEC on a Sony and Samsung TV. Watch it below!

How to Program Any Universal Remote to Work With Amazon FIRE TV Stick

Tip: Some TV brands (like Samsung) will require you to select the HDMI CEC input when using a universal remote for your streaming stick. You can change your TV’s input by clicking the remote’s Input or Source button and choosing HDMI CEC from the list. 


Is using a universal remote not for you? Try these alternatives instead! 

You can still use your Fire Stick if your TV doesn’t support HDMI CEC or you don’t feel like investing in a new universal remote. 

Instead, you can navigate your Fire Stick using your smartphone or buy a replacement Fire Stick and pair it to your TV. 

Amazon Fire TV App

Amazon Fire TV App

Why buy a new remote when you have a smartphone?

You can control your Fire Stick with the Amazon Fire TV app, available on the App Store for iPhones and iPads, and the Google Play Store for Android smartphones and tablets. 

Follow these steps to pair your Amazon Fire TV app with your Fire Stick. 

Step 1: Download the Amazon Fire TV app on a compatible device. 

Step 2: Reboot your Fire Stick by unplugging it from your TV for a few seconds before plugging it back in. 

Step 3: The app should detect your Fire Stick and display its name in the list of available devices. Select your Fire Stick device. 

Step 4: You will see a four-digit code on your TV. Enter this code into the Amazon Fire TV app on your smartphone or tablet. 

Your device should connect to your Fire Stick, allowing you to control it through the app’s touchpad, buttons, and voice command feature. 

Watch the video below demonstrating how to download, pair, and use the Amazon Fire TV app. 

Use your PHONE as a Amazon Firestick REMOTE / Lost Firestick Remote / Universal Firestick Remote

Order a Replacement Fire TV Remote

Fire TV Remote Replacing

You can order a replacement Fire TV remote  on Amazon which can be paired to your Fire Stick without the original remote.  

Please only buy replacement Fire TV remotes from Amazon’s official storefront. 

To do this, you must first download the Amazon Fire TV app since you will need to navigate your Fire Stick’s Bluetooth settings. 

Step 1: Open the Amazon Fire TV app and go to Controllers & Bluetooth Devices. 

Step 2: Then click on Amazon Fire TV Remotes. 

Step 3: Go to Add New Remote. 

Step 4: Select your remote from the list of available Bluetooth remotes. Follow any additional on-screen prompts. 

Once they’re successfully paired, you will be able to navigate your Fire Stick with your new Fire TV remote. 

Wrapping Things Up

Using universal remote to control a tv

Universal remotes can’t only control any infrared TV, they can also control your Fire Stick! 

Connecting them to your Fire Stick is as simple as enabling your TV’s HDMI CEC feature, giving your remote access to your Fire Stick’s commands. 

Remember, every TV brand’s HDMI CEC feature is labeled differently, so consult your user manual to find out what to look for on your TV. 

You may also need to select HDMI CEC as your TV’s input. 

If using a universal remote isn’t your style, try getting the Amazon Fire TV app instead. This app can also be used to pair a replacement Fire TV remote to your Fire Stick without the original remote. 

What’s your experience using a universal remote with a Fire Stick? Do you prefer navigating your Fire TV with the included Fire TV remote, universal remote, or the Amazon Fire TV app? 

Let us know in the comments below! 

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