What To Do When You Can’t Find the Vizio TV Buttons

Generally speaking, Vizio TVs are very high-quality and a great choice for consumers looking to upgrade from their old TV system.

What To Do When You Can't Find the Vizio TV Buttons

One of Vizio’s design choices, however, causes confusion for some users. Many Vizio owners think their TV doesn’t have physical buttons because the buttons are generally located in an unconventional spot and are not readily visible.

In this article, I will show you how to find the buttons on your Vizio TV, and I’ll also explain some other options for controlling your set if you’ve lost track of your remote.

Let’s get started.

Where Are the Buttons on My Vizio TV?

Regardless of what it looks like, your Vizio TV has at least one button. You may have to do some looking in order to find it, however.

There are three locations where Vizio puts their buttons: a single button on the lower left backside of the TV, a set of touch buttons on one side of the TV, or a set of capacitive touch “buttons” on the lower front of the TV.

The capacitive buttons are like the on-screen buttons you might find on your smartphone; they don’t stick out or have a feel to them so you really have to know that they are there.

Depending on the model you own, you’ll see different button types and button sets. All button sets include the power button, which is necessary not only for turning your TV on and off but also for power cycling it in case it won’t turn on for some reason. Most models have other buttons for channel, volume, and input modes. Some models even have a small joystick for maneuvering through on-screen menus.

What to Do When You Can’t Find the Vizio TV Buttons

If you aren’t able to find the buttons on your TV, or you simply find them inconvenient to use, there are some other options you can take advantage of. Nobody wants to get up from the couch every time they need to change the channel. There is a reason that all TVs come with remote controls now!

Let’s take a look at several different options for controlling your Vizio TV, even if you have lost or broken the original remote.

SmartCast Mobile

If you want to control your Vizio using your smartphone, the easiest way to do it is by installing Vizio’s SmartCast Mobile. This is a very powerful app created by Vizio that offers a wide variety of options that make controlling your Vizio more intuitive and convenient.

It has all the options you need such as play/pause, volume up/down, and the option to turn your TV on or off. You can also change the aspect ratio, select input, and use all the other features that you would need a remote for.

It lets you browse movies, TV shows, music, and other kinds of content you usually stream on your TV. It lets you easily navigate through your library and supports many features such as voice control that will make browsing easier. The SmartCast app is available on both iOS and Android.

The only downside to the SmartCast app is that it only works on SmartCast-enabled TVs, which means that Vizio TVs from before 2015 don’t support it.

However, if your TV does support it, this app is an incredibly powerful and useful alternative to a regular remote.

Use an IR-based Smartphone App

Another option that will work on any Vizio TV is an infrared (IR)-based smartphone app. Many Android smartphones today come equipped with what’s called an IR blaster, a module that lets the phone send out infrared light pulses just like a regular TV remote control does.

Sorry, iPhone users — Apple has never installed an IR blaster on any of its phones, so your iPhone cannot emulate an IR-based remote control. So, if you’re an iPhone user, you’ll have to resort to one of the other methods in this article.

You can find out whether your Android phone is so equipped by checking the manufacturer’s website for the phone specs.

You can also do a simple visual check: the IR blaster will be a little black area on the top edge of your phone, possibly as small as a pinhead. If the visual check doesn’t definitively answer the question, you can install the Phone Tester app, a free utility that gives you a wealth of technical data on your Android phone. Just run Phone Tester and look in the “Communication peripherals” section. If it says that IR is supported, you’re good to go.

There is a large variety of IR remote apps available. One of the best specifically for Vizio TVs is VizRemote. However, almost any IR remote app should meet your needs.


VizRemote is an application that is built to recreate the feeling of traditional Vizio remote controls, making it ideal for users who have grown accustomed to the Vizio remote. This app is a bit older, which means it’s modeled after older Vizio remotes from around 2011 or 2012 and doesn’t feature shortcuts of any kind at the top of the remote.


It does, however, include nearly every other button you could ask for on a Vizio remote, including the ability to open the applications available on your television without any difficulty. The application doesn’t quite feel as good in the hand as standard remote controls. The lack of shortcuts is unfortunate and the design is a bit less modern than newer Vizio sets.

If you have an older set, though, you’ll probably appreciate the 3D setting built into the application, allowing you to toggle 3D on your set without diving into your settings.

Chromecast/Google Home

If you own Google’s Chromecast and Google Home, you probably already know how easy it is to control your TV without a physical remote. If you don’t, let’s go over how it works. When you connect your TV to Google Home, the only thing you need to control your TV is your voice.

There’s pretty much nothing on your TV that you won’t be able to control using just your voice. All the commands, browsing, and streaming content are in one place. Plus, it interacts with other smart home appliances like lights and speakers. This all makes it without a doubt one of the most convenient ways of controlling your TV.

Vizio Universal Remote

Lastly, you can always purchase a Vizio universal remote that will work on any model. If you prefer to use a physical remote, this is your best option. After you’ve done this, all you have to do is set it up. The process is fairly simple and doesn’t take much time.

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Turn on your TV.
  2. Press the TV button and hold it until the LED flashes (around 5 seconds).
  3. Find the programming code in the code list available on Vizio’s website.
  4. Enter the code, then press the power button.

If you don’t manage to get it right the first time, check if you’ve entered the right code. Once the TV starts responding, you’re good to go.

The Final Word

It can be tough to find the buttons hidden on your Vizio TV. Moreover, using the buttons on your TV isn’t a super convenient alternative to using an actual remote.

Now that you know where the buttons on your Vizio TV are, you know what to do in case your remote dies on you.

It would also be a good idea to consider some of the solutions that we showed you here, as they offer a very convenient way of controlling your TV. Choose the one that works best for you and enjoy streaming your favorite content on your Vizio.

Any other tips or suggestions for using your Vizio TV? Share them with us in the comments!

Read Next: Samsung vs Vizio TV – Which Should you Buy?

5 thoughts on “What To Do When You Can’t Find the Vizio TV Buttons”

Avatar Erlindo says:
I was having an easy time installing the Vizio TV until I got to the settings. They keep asking for my password of my network. I insert the password and it does not agree with the network. I couldn’t change to install for TV programming, it just wouldn”t do it.
Avatar arthur williamson says:
my visio tv will not turn replaced batteris in remote cannot locate on/off button on left and righ t backside?
Avatar Raewyn Stine says:
Been there done that have an android smart phone but there ate a ton of fishing apps that don’t work I have super highspeed internet my living tv and my phones wirk well everything is connected to the same internet my TV wad as well until Sunday. Habe had it for a month should I return it? And try again?
Avatar Brenda Browne says:
No visual on D39hn-DO tv just audio. Any suggestions?
Avatar Brenda says:
We have an old vizio and the IR remote sensor has gone out. Do you know of a work around other than buying and replacing the sensor? One if those IR extenders that plug into the usb or anything?

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