It was five in the morning when it first happened to me. But then it got weirder. The volume started going up.
Why did my Vizio TV turn on by itself? This is scary. Do I have a ghost? Or is it something else?
Although I imagined a creepy haunted TV, the truth is, it’s nothing like that.
So why does your Vizio TV turn on by itself? Let’s go through some of the reasons this happens below.
Why Does My Vizio TV Turn On by Itself?
There are a few reasons why your TV might turn on by itself.
And if you’re like me and thought your new TV came with a ghost, you can relax. It’s nothing that frightening.
A few reasons your TV turns on by itself are:
- The power button on your remote control is stuck
- You have a “wake up” timer set
- HDMI-CEC settings are on
- A connected input device might have turned your TV on
- Perhaps your TV is hacked?
Let’s go through these bullet points one by one and see how this can cause your TV to turn on by itself.
1) Stuck Power Button
It happens to all controls. Sometimes the corner of a button gets wedged under the remote’s surface.
If this occurs, it’s most likely pressing itself on and off, which will cause your TV to turn on randomly.
If you’re looking at your remote control and see the “Power” button is not stuck or wedged under its surface, perhaps grime has gotten inside, under, and around the power button.
Essentially, when there’s enough grime underneath your power button, it may turn the TV on.
First, ensure your controller is not stuck to fix these issues. You can release it by using a pin or toothpick to un-wedge it.
You may also use a toothpick to clear any grime from the power buttons surrounding it.
However, if there’s a lot of grime under the button, a toothpick may not suffice. If this is the case, you’ll have to unscrew the control and remove the rubber button padding.
Ensure the batteries are removed before using any type of electronic air compressor to remove grime.
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2) A “Wake-Up” Timer is Set
Many new TVs have a sleep timer and a wake-up timer. This is very useful if you find TV programs stimulating enough to wake you in the morning.
Although, if you have an older TV (e.g. from before the year 2000), chances are it will not have a wake-up timer.
I know this because even though my TV turned on by itself, it was the first thing I checked. My TV had a “Sleep Timer,” but no “Wake-Up” timer. It only served to freak me out even further.
If your TV has a Wake-Up timer, make sure to switch it off so you can continue to sleep through the night.
3) HDMI-CEC Settings Are On
HDMI-CEC settings allow connected devices to function as one unit while connected to your TV. For example, it allows you to use one remote control if you have a DVD player connected to your flatscreen.
Although this is a handy feature (because who likes having multiple controllers for one TV), sometimes, having this feature on allows your TV to turn on by itself.
This is especially common for Vizio TVs.
If you have a Vizio TV and want to check your settings, head to your general Settings tab. Navigate to System. Next, go to CEC, then click on OFF.
Your TV will no longer turn itself on. Well, it won’t if this is the root cause of the problem.
If it isn’t the reason, keep reading to find other reasons your TV turns on by itself.
4) A Connected Input Device Turned on Your TV
It is said that when a connected device crashes, the power surge that causes that crash gives your TV enough power to turn it on.
In other words, checking all of your connected devices, including routers, video game consoles, and soundbars, is essential to determine if this is the cause of the situation.
Check for bent cables and blackened outlets and replace any hazardous materials.
5) You’ve Been Hacked
It’s a scary thought to think someone can lurk through your TV and cause mayhem. Although this might seem scary, someone hacking your TV doesn’t have a lot of advantages over your network.
For example, a hacker cannot access any of your personal computers, smartphones, or tablets. However, they do get access to your TV and its apps.
If you’ve been hacked, a major area of concern is their ability to watch you through the TV’s camera. However, many TVs don’t have cameras, so chances are, this isn’t a big deal.
But if I were a hacker and wanted to annoy someone, I would turn their TV on every night as they slept. I could change their wake-up timer. You could even periodically turn it on and off and give someone a mental breakdown.
If this is the case, unplug it, and presto! You’ve solved your issue.
If you want to continue using your TV, update any drivers that improve your security. If that doesn’t fix the issue, you might have to take it in for a system repair.
Or you can try factory resetting the TV yourself.
If I were you, I’d just buy a new TV and make sure I didn’t accidentally stumble onto the dark web for my future firmware updates.
So, Was it a Ghost?
My old TV did not have any HDMI ports. So it wasn’t that. It was a CTR TV that didn’t have internet accessibility. So, for all I know, it was a ghost.
However, newer TVs are haunted by more modern problems like firmware issues, HDMI-CEC settings gone bad, and stuck power buttons on your remote control.
It most likely is not an old spooky Victorian ghost trying to wake you from your slumber. In the worst-case scenario, it might be a hacker.
Nevertheless, always check your devices and your inputs, and never download firmware from any place that is not a legitimate site.
We hope this article helped you understand how your TV sometimes turns on by itself.
Have you had any weird situations where your TV turned on by itself? We’d love to know about it. Leave us a comment.
James Quintanilla is a technical copywriter. Although his experience allows him to write on many topics, he loves to focus on tech and travel. As a freelancer, James has worked on projects with Pointer Clicker, Lonely Planet, and the Travel Channel. When he’s not writing or planning his next adventure, he’s watching a scary movie.