Your Xbox One Controller Not Working? This is an annoying problem that many Xbox owners face. While today’s wireless controllers are more convenient than the wired controllers in previous systems, they present their issues.
In this troubleshooting guide, we’ll show you how to fix your Xbox One controller when it won’t connect, sync, or turn on properly. By the end, you will be back in the game. While we’re focusing on the Xbox One here, most of these tips also apply to the Xbox Series X and Series S because they’re so similar.
1. If Your Xbox One Controller Doesn’t Connect
If you’re having trouble connecting your Xbox One controller to your console, there are a few common issues you’ll need to look out for.
Do you already have eight controllers connected to your console? While you probably don’t use those many, the maximum number of controllers supported by Xbox One is eight. After this point, you cannot connect any more controllers.
Hold down the Xbox button on the controller and choose Disable Controller from the resulting menu to disconnect one or more of them. Then try connecting the new controller again.
Also, keep in mind that you can only pair the controller with one Xbox One system at a time. If you go to a friend’s house and pair your controller with their Xbox, you’ll need to pair it with yours again. This also applies when you connect your Xbox One controller to a PC and then try to use it on your console again.
See the “If your Xbox One controller is flashing” section below for more information on this.
2. If Your Xbox One Controller Keeps Disconnecting
What If Your Xbox Controller Pairs But Keeps Disconnecting? This can ruin a great gaming session and is extremely frustrating to deal with.
Keep in mind that this is a common battery-saving feature for the Xbox One controller if you don’t use it for 15 minutes. This won’t happen when you’re playing games, but it can come into play if you’re primarily using your Xbox One as a media center.
You have to move a stick or press a button from time to time. Otherwise, you’ll need to reconnect it later by pressing the Xbox button.
However, if you’re having a problem disconnecting your Xbox controller, it’s probably happening a lot more often than every 15 minutes. If so, there are some troubleshooting steps you can try.
It is important to confirm that your battery is charged when you experience this problem. Press the Xbox button to return to the Home menu, then find the battery icon in the upper-right corner. If they are low, replace or charge them if necessary.
Interference can also lead to frequent disconnections. According to Xbox Support, the Xbox One controller has a wireless range of about 19 to 28 feet. If your controller doesn’t stay connected, try moving closer to your console.
You also need to remove obstacles between the controller and the console, such as laptops, metal shelves, and so on. If your Xbox is inside the entertainment center, try moving it outside the unit to get a better connection.
3. If Your Xbox One Controller Is Flashing
If you press the Xbox button on your controller and it blinks or blinks, this usually indicates that your controller is not paired with the console. As mentioned above, this can happen when you connect the controller with another system. But it can also be due to various issues.
If your controller doesn’t pair using the buttons, try using a USB cable to pair it. Simply plug the cable into your console’s USB port and connect the other end to your controller, then press and hold the Xbox button on your controller for a few seconds.
If this does not solve the problem, you will need to restart your console. To turn it off completely press and hold the power button on the front of your system for 10 seconds. Then press it again to turn it back on. After one power cycle of your console and controller, you should be able to pair them without blinking.
If it continues to flash and then turns off, then your controller may have a hardware problem. Try a different controller with your console and see if you’re having the same problem, or test your controller with a friend’s Xbox or another device such as a PC.
If you are unable to use the controller under any circumstances, contact Xbox Support. In the meantime, keep in mind that you can also press and hold the Xbox button on your controller for several seconds to turn it off. This can help save battery life if it keeps flashing during troubleshooting.
4. If Your Xbox One Controller Doesn’t Turn On
If your Xbox controller won’t turn on, don’t worry. This is another common problem that has the same solution like the one above.
When your Xbox One controller won’t turn on, first make sure the battery isn’t drained. If the battery is low, the controller will not turn on at all. Remove the back cover and replace the two AA batteries, then try again.
If changing the battery doesn’t work to turn on your Xbox controller, try this:
- Turn off your Xbox One completely by pressing and holding the Power button on the front of the system for 10 seconds.
- Unplug the power cable from your console and leave it unplugged for a few minutes.
- Use a USB cable to connect your controller to a system you know is good (if the first one doesn’t work try another).
- Plug your Xbox back in and turn it back on by using the System Power button. Do not press anything on the controller until the Xbox starts.
- Try pressing the Xbox button on your controller at this point to see if it works.
General Xbox One Controller Connection Tips
We’ve covered specific Xbox controller issues above. However, if your Xbox controller is still not working, here are some other common solutions to try.
Update Xbox Controller Firmware
Your Xbox One controller actually has its own firmware that occasionally receives updates. While it often doesn’t receive these updates, corrupted or outdated firmware can cause disconnection issues.
If your controller is working, you can update it by pressing the Xbox button to open the guide while your system is on. Go to Profile & System > Settings > Devices & Connections > Accessories.
Select your controller, then select the three-dot button and tap the Firmware version to check for updates.
Remove Connected Xbox Accessories
Sometimes Xbox One accessories attached to the controller or console can introduce connection problems.
If you have an external hard drive, keyboard, or similar device connected to your Xbox, try disconnecting it, and then reconnecting your controller. Do the same for the stereo headset adapter on your controller, if you have it.
If you’re trying to sync your controller using a USB cable, be sure to use a high-quality cord. Poor quality or damaged cables may not work properly.
Try connecting another controller to your Xbox
As with most troubleshooting, you can try different tools to help determine where the problem lies. Try connecting another controller that you know works on your Xbox system. Check that its battery is also charged.
If this controller is working properly, then the original controller is the problem. But if both are causing problems, then the problem is probably more with your console. You may need to contact Xbox Support in this case.
Restart Your Xbox One
We mentioned above, but it bears repeating: Be sure to restart your console when troubleshooting controller problems. By default, you only need to press the power button on the front of the system to put it into sleep mode, so be sure to hold it down for at least 10 seconds for a complete shutdown.
Sometimes a quick restart is needed when an Xbox One controller is not working.
Try connecting with a USB cable all the time
If you find that your Xbox controller connection problems go away when using a USB cable, your best bet may be to use your controller as a wired device to avoid future issues. You can buy a longer cable like the MATEIN 15ft Micro-USB Cable, so you don’t have to worry about it sitting far from your system.
It’s not ideal, but it’s better than spending the money on another controller.
What to do if your Xbox One controller still isn’t working?
If nothing else works, visit the Xbox Device Support page. Sign in with your Microsoft account, if you haven’t already registered your console, and you can follow the steps to replace your controller. If Microsoft isn’t replacing it, you’ll need to look for a deal on a new controller instead.
Hope one of these tips has fixed your Xbox One controller issue. Whether your controller won’t connect, flash, or won’t turn on, one of these tips should get you back in the game.
And now that you have a working controller, you can enjoy the best Xbox ever again.