Wii: Sync a New Controller or Remote to the Console

Following these steps will permanently sync the bluetooth of a new controller to a Nintendo Wii console system.


Cyndi tweeted us the following question:

I just purchased my second Wii remote, but I do not know how to link it to the Nintendo Wii console. How do I sync the my new remote with my system?

In helping people setup their Wii, I have experienced this question a lot. Getting the new controller (which many people refer to as a “remote”) to sync correctly can be difficult. If you follow these steps, you should have no difficulties.

1. Turn on your Wii and let it finish booting up.
2. Take off the battery cover off the new controller.
3. Press the sync button on the new controller. All the blue leds will light up and blink.
4. Press the sync button under the SD card slot on the wii console.



5. The blue leds on the controller will stop blinking when you are done.



You must follow these steps for each individual new controller you sync with your Nintendo Wii system. If these steps fail, you can try these additional recommendations. Occasionally, a Wii controller with weak batteries will not sync correctly. If you are having a difficult time with syncing, try loading the remote with fresh batteries first. Sometimes, the Wii console is not responding appropriately. Remove the power cord for a 20-30 seconds and then reboot the Wii before trying to sync the controller again.

There is a myth about having to hold the sync button for 15 seconds. This is not true and is not required.

This article has been revised and updated with additional information. If you are still having problems, just leave your question in the comments below.

 

About David Kirk

David Kirk is one of the original founders of tech-recipes and is currently serving as editor-in-chief. Not only has he been crafting tutorials for over ten years, but in his other life he also enjoys taking care of critically ill patients as an ICU physician.
View more articles by David Kirk

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105 Responses to “Wii: Sync a New Controller or Remote to the Console”

  1. October 19, 2008 at 5:13 pm, Pugwash said:

    Thanks, exactly what I need to know.

    Reply

    • October 02, 2012 at 11:18 pm, charles said:

      > I have tried this and the lights just keep blinking on the remote and never stop. I changed the batts, and unplugged and re booted the wii…this control worked fine for a week…just went kapoop…any suggestions?
      Thanks my 5 year old was kicking butt on lego star wars 3 and is a bit aggitated :)

      Reply

      • February 18, 2014 at 3:31 pm, ROSANNE said:

        My controllers have been playing up a long time. Can t work it out. I one of them stopped conected. I checked the batteries. Still the same. Sometimes it worked. Thought it must be faulty. My frind brought another two contrllers in. They all worked together fine. Now none of the controllers work. All of the just have four blue lights flashing. I just read your demostration >above tried it with all the controllers. nothing, still the same help. COULD IT BE THE ARIEL ON THE WI STOPPED WORKING. DOUBT IT. WHY IS ONE WORKING SOMETIMES AND THE REST ARE NOT. STRANGE ROSE

        Reply

  2. November 30, 2008 at 3:41 am, mmhunter said:

    What do you do if the sync button on the Wii console is stuck in the console and you can’t push it anymore?

    Reply

    • September 27, 2010 at 7:11 am, Renemvalencia said:

      Did you get an answer to your question? I bought a wii with the same problem. can you let me know thanks

      Reply

      • May 13, 2012 at 10:23 pm, Shawtiee said:

        Thanxx i havent played it in almost a yearr thanxx so much

        Reply

  3. December 10, 2008 at 2:49 pm, Kathy said:

    After I sync my second controller the buttons work but it does not recoginize motion.

    Reply

    • July 27, 2012 at 4:15 pm, Danielle said:

      It didn’t work for me :(

      Reply

    • November 18, 2012 at 1:42 am, vino said:

      > I sync my remote the buttons work but nothing else

      Reply

  4. December 27, 2008 at 8:17 pm, bundy said:

    my remote was synced but quit working, i resynced it and it worked for about 2 minutes then quit. everytime i synce it again it only lasts a few minutes. i bought a new remote thinking that my controller was bad and the same thing happened for some reason none of my controllers other than the one will stay synced. any suggestions?

    Reply

    • July 03, 2013 at 10:30 am, Brianna said:

      Try restarting you wii- when it says “press a to continue”, that’s when you restart and press the sync buttons. Totally worked for me-hope it helps!

      Reply

  5. December 27, 2008 at 8:48 pm, jim said:

    thanks!

    nice tid bit of information missing that would have been nice to be included in package with the 2nd controller!

    Reply

  6. January 06, 2009 at 1:57 am, WizMedic said:

    Thanks for the information. Didnt think adding a 2nd controller would have me lk it up on the internet. But good thing your information was here. Thanks…..

    Reply

  7. January 11, 2009 at 6:50 am, d said:

    wow this site just saved my life.

    Reply

  8. January 16, 2009 at 8:50 pm, Mimi Kyle said:

    Thank you!!!! As the others have mentioned- LIFESAVER!!

    Reply

  9. January 20, 2009 at 1:07 am, Anonymous said:

    My Second contoller won’t sync up? Seems others have received the answer here?

    Reply

  10. February 02, 2009 at 1:59 am, Anon said:

    THANkS!!!!!

    Reply

  11. March 01, 2009 at 12:27 pm, james said:

    cool

    Reply

  12. March 23, 2009 at 11:22 pm, Chelsea said:

    Thanks so much for your info on how to sync my new Wii controller and Wii! It worked the first time!

    Reply

  13. April 15, 2009 at 1:22 am, Josh said:

    Do i have to push 1 and 2 everytime I go to play two player for the second remote. Why won’t th Wii just recognize my second controller automatically? Is it possible to do this or do i have to hit 1 and 2 everytime. thanks for you help…who ever you are.

    Reply

  14. April 19, 2009 at 1:30 am, SamJo said:

    AWESOME this really helped me!

    Reply

  15. May 03, 2009 at 12:23 pm, jadabell said:

    thanks, really helped, was exactly what i needed

    Reply

  16. May 17, 2009 at 3:02 am, SR said:

    My Wii controllers stopped working completely, they wouldnt sync, the lights would flash on then just stop flashing, and i couldnt get any connection whatsoever. I just about sent it back to nintendo, but i phoned the automated help line. Such a simple fix, if this ever happens, just unplug the power cord from the wii, let it sit for like 10 seconds, plug it back in and VOILA! LOL!! So silly, but hey, it got us!

    Reply

    • June 15, 2010 at 1:58 am, RandyWilliams1 said:

      I tried what you said with no luck. Any ideas? RW

      Reply

    • February 25, 2011 at 3:39 pm, Beth said:

      Thank you – this solved it all for me!!

      Reply

    • July 29, 2011 at 2:56 pm, Rjohnson6 said:

      I have 4 controllers and get any of them to sync

      Reply

  17. June 08, 2009 at 5:13 pm, chrissy said:

    I have added a second remote, but it still won’t work with any of my games. I have a wii fit, wii sports & mario kart. When I use mario kart I get to the starting line car goes forward but cannot turn the car, it won’t work at all with either of the other games,

    Reply

  18. June 20, 2009 at 6:47 pm, joe said:

    what if the controller will not sync up and it erased my original controller now both of them do not work

    Reply

    • June 24, 2009 at 2:20 am, sp said:

      thats eactly what happened to me

      Reply

    • March 27, 2011 at 1:15 am, Kristin said:

      Did you get your question answered because Im having the same problem?

      Reply

  19. June 24, 2009 at 2:19 am, sp said:

    but when i was setting up my wii fit it disconected. do i do the same thing

    Reply

  20. June 27, 2009 at 4:06 am, jerry_potts said:

    thank you!

    Reply

  21. July 14, 2009 at 4:19 pm, Anonymous said:

    My wii console dosent power on noting happening.

    Reply

    • July 14, 2009 at 4:49 pm, Anonymous said:

      What can i do to get the wii to power on, coz nothing is happening, found out the controll battery wass dead , can thaat cause console to not work.

      Reply

  22. July 14, 2009 at 5:01 pm, Anonymous said:

    wii console not powering on, what is the problem.

    Reply

  23. July 18, 2009 at 12:41 am, Anonymous said:

    Thanks…

    Reply

  24. November 21, 2009 at 11:38 pm, Christine said:

    Thank you!
    this just what i needed

    Reply

  25. December 06, 2009 at 7:56 am, Anonymous said:

    HELP needed!
    I pressed the sync button of the wii fit plus for more then 10 seconds. How can I restore the settings?

    Reply

    • June 28, 2012 at 2:15 am, Al said:

      > I pressed the sync for more then 10 seconds how do I get it restored?

      Reply

  26. January 12, 2010 at 2:26 am, Anonymous said:

    This actually worked! i was frustrated when i went to the Nintendo website because their information did not work but thank you for you help.

    Reply

  27. March 14, 2010 at 5:05 pm, Anonymous said:

    Thanks soo much, awesome!!

    Reply

  28. May 02, 2010 at 8:34 pm, frenchky_007 said:

    I have a problem with the synchronization of my remotes to the console. I tried several remotes including the one at games stop shop but still my console does not sync. Itried the sync console button and everything possible but still no sync.

    Please help…….

    Reply

  29. July 03, 2010 at 2:17 am, Belte said:

    thanx

    Reply

  30. September 09, 2010 at 12:17 pm, Longyanpang said:

    I have just bought a new controller (for a 2nd player) and pressed the sync button but the 2nd blue light does not flash whilst it’s syncing and it doesn’t work. Can anyone help me on this please?

    Reply

  31. November 02, 2010 at 4:05 am, Carte ds said:

    My controller gets out of work easily, maybe it’s time to buy a new one.

    Reply

  32. December 06, 2010 at 6:17 am, Apple_90 said:

    i still can’t sync it!

    Reply

  33. December 07, 2010 at 2:54 am, Cavan13 said:

    i try syncing my wii remote but no lights no motion nothing what do i do? what do i do?

    Reply

  34. December 24, 2010 at 10:45 am, Bwalsh said:

    tks a mill cheers

    Reply

  35. December 25, 2010 at 8:14 pm, Guest said:

    hey thanks alot guys, site helped alot

    Reply

  36. December 26, 2010 at 6:21 pm, Shar_wills said:

    does anyone know how i can get my 4th remote to work ive synch’ed all of them but when it comes to playing the game it just wont let me….HELP

    Reply

  37. December 27, 2010 at 6:59 pm, Art-fan said:

    thanks!

    Reply

  38. December 29, 2010 at 3:00 pm, Aahtson said:

    how can i sync a bluetooth headset to my wii?

    Reply

  39. December 31, 2010 at 1:02 am, Chrismansfield said:

    Thanks for your help…gotta love the internet!

    Reply

  40. January 08, 2011 at 8:54 am, Brian Primett said:

    thanks, bought controller off ebay and thought it was faulty.

    Reply

  41. March 03, 2011 at 7:40 pm, Arnold R. Kok said:

    It works like a charm. Just synched 4 controllers in just the order I wanted. Just press the button on the controller first, then on the WII. Now after power off they stay synched, whilst synching through the menus only worked until power off.

    Thanks!

    Arnold

    Reply

  42. March 07, 2011 at 8:44 pm, Selfserveinc said:

    Life Saver!!!!! Thanks

    Reply

  43. March 10, 2011 at 1:42 am, Tflaf said:

    aarrrrgghhhh!!!! New controller. I get it to work until I try to actually play then it doesn’t recognize anything I do. The original remote works fine. Seriously what am I doing wrong? I followed to directions!

    Reply

  44. March 20, 2011 at 1:04 am, Nbonafiglia said:

    Thank you!

    Reply

  45. May 05, 2011 at 12:12 am, cindie said:

    my wii controllers just stopped working the lights just flash when i tried to sync them they just continue to flash. getting very frusterated with them i don’t know what to do. the batteries are brand new controllers are almost new. Please help

    Reply

  46. July 02, 2011 at 11:05 pm, guest said:

    my wii controllers un-synced themselves, and  i tried to re-sync them but even though i held both sync buttons for about 30 minutes, and the blue led’s  did not stop flashing what shall i do? 

    Reply

    • July 13, 2011 at 2:41 pm, Kimberlythooker said:

      Unplug your machine – wait 15 seconds.  Turn it back on.  Open the battery cover on the remote(s) then press and release the sync buttons like you are ringing a door bell.  First press and release on the remote, then press and release on the system. You can’t hold them down, and you can’t do them together. 

      Reply

      • July 13, 2012 at 3:34 pm, Heather said:

        Wow! I’ve been soooooooooo frustrated on getting my remotes/controllers to sync! Your instructions were dead on and clear! Holding it in and letting it go got me synced within a matter of seconds vs. the many minutes of frustration I’ve been going through! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!!!

        Reply

    • December 24, 2012 at 2:37 am, mathew said:

      30 second not 30 minutes

      Reply

  47. July 24, 2011 at 11:42 pm, ProudMommy77 said:

    THANK YOU! We’re new to Wii and this helped us so much!

    Reply

  48. July 29, 2011 at 2:54 pm, Rjohnson6 said:

    no luck unpluggin the power cord for me and I got grandkids coming

    Reply

  49. November 25, 2011 at 5:25 pm, Prab said:

    help by Kimberlythooker worked exactly for my situation, thank you

    Reply

  50. December 21, 2011 at 9:28 pm, Catherine said:

    Thank you:))

    Reply

  51. December 29, 2011 at 9:55 am, Eric said:

    We have three controllers. Two work and the third quit working. I tryed to sync it, but when I push the sync button, the lights blink once and then it shuts off. It was working fine the last time we used it. We purchased a new controller, it sync’d fine, but then the same thing happened to the new one. Did we just get a bad controller? Please help.

    Reply

  52. January 01, 2012 at 2:35 pm, Erin said:

    thanx soo much this helped me !

    Reply

  53. January 03, 2012 at 5:08 pm, Sue said:

    I have my remote sync’d to the game, but nothing is working except for the + and – buttons. how do I get the rest of it to work? I unplugged my game for 20 seconds and re sync’d the remote, but I still can not get anything else to work. Not even the on/off button. HELP.

    Reply

  54. January 22, 2012 at 3:41 am, Harold said:

    The winter track game displayed that i have add an additional controller??
    What is an additional controler?

    Reply

  55. February 06, 2012 at 9:33 pm, Vicki said:

    Thanks, this worked like a charm!!

    Reply

  56. March 14, 2012 at 8:18 pm, Paul said:

    thank you. it was very helpful

    Reply

  57. April 14, 2012 at 7:54 pm, Gladys Barnes said:

    David Kirk
    My husband and I plus a few friends have been trying to SYNC a remote that was giving to us about a year ago. We have been able to SYNC it off and on since then and have actually used it to Wii bowl with. It has not been an easy task believe me! We all get frustrated.
    I found your website this morning and followed everything you suggested. I have the LED lights blinking on that one remote we are having problems with. I have the SD slot to the console opened and press the red button along with the little button on the remote, nothing happen. The LED lights keep blinking.
    I have disconnected the power cord for 20 seconds and still nothing happens. I have turned everything off and started from scratch several times and nothing happens.
    We have one remote control SYNC’d and working find. We use that as the lead/#1 remote. But we can’t get more than one remote to work except once in a great while. When we turn the Wii Console and TV off we lose the SYNC.
    Please let us know how to fix this problem.

    Reply

  58. May 17, 2012 at 6:50 pm, teamdade miami said:

    Thank u sooooo much

    Reply

  59. July 07, 2012 at 12:47 pm, Adriana said:

    Thanks

    Reply

  60. July 15, 2012 at 12:11 am, Ryan said:

    I mistake I made was to hold the sync button on the wii console and wii remote while syncing. I was able to sync my remote somehow but then all my other remotes stop working. I did some research and found that holding the sync button on the wii console for 15 seconds erases all previous wii remote syncs. Moral of the story is DO NOT HOLD THE SYNC BUTTON. All you have to do is press the button on the remote once and then press the button on the console once and it does the rest. Hope this helps!

    Reply

  61. July 20, 2012 at 7:11 am, Roxy said:

    Thanks soo much.. worked perfect to sync extra controls.. so easy with your help.. thanks

    Reply

  62. July 22, 2012 at 4:11 pm, Dave said:

    Brand new Wii. Two controllers. I’ve gone through all of the proper setup steps. Both controllers work with MarioKart. But in Wii Sports Resort only one controller works. I select Add Player, Go to Home and go through porper setup steps. Both controllers work there. Once I re-enter Wii Sports Resort, the number 2 controller stops working. I can make either of the two controllers number 1 and it works fine. Whichever controller is number 2, does not work in Wii Sports Resort.
    Any solutions?

    Reply

  63. August 15, 2012 at 5:15 pm, wii chipping said:

    A Wii Chip will invalidate your warrantee fully, but to set up the best wii chip you
    have to get your complete console aside and solder it in.

    If your searching at having the best wii chip for your Nintendo Wii, I strongly
    propose making use of the HomeBreWare soft mod.

    Reply

  64. August 18, 2012 at 7:47 am, fjhgufrdgviunvgji said:

    THANK YOU HEAPS YOU SAVED ME AND MY BROTHERS/SISTERS??????? LIFE :) :):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):) ;) :D ;D ;O :O

    Reply

  65. August 23, 2012 at 5:01 pm, rahim said:

    Thanks i tried lot but can,t
    Just read ths and its so simple 123
    Thanks

    Reply

  66. August 28, 2012 at 4:07 am, ALEXANDRA said:

    THANKS SOO MUCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply

  67. September 15, 2012 at 2:59 pm, Alison May Edie said:

    Thank you so much! We were racking our brains trying to figure this out and getting very frustrated, at least I was. Sigh of relief!

    Reply

  68. November 18, 2012 at 1:44 am, vino said:

    I synced my remots but only the buttons work

    Reply

    • November 18, 2012 at 1:34 pm, David Kirk said:

      You have to turn on your sensor bar.

      Reply

  69. November 27, 2012 at 2:49 am, dj said:

    thanks , eve

    Reply

  70. January 05, 2013 at 3:33 am, Angela said:

    Thank you so much! This fixed the problem with the older remotes and newer console. Our boys (ages 5 and 7) were very glad that we didn’t have a defective new unit, and were most anxious to get playing.

    Reply

    • January 06, 2013 at 12:54 am, David Kirk said:

      Awesome! Enjoy it!

      Reply

  71. January 06, 2013 at 1:47 pm, Amanda said:

    This worked for me to add the second controller. It shows on everything except the resort games…every time we try to play anything with 2 players in the resort it tells me to go back to the home menu and add a remote.

    Reply

  72. January 25, 2013 at 1:42 pm, Cozzy said:

    IT SOOO HELPED ME AND MY KIDS! THEY ARE NOW OCCUPIED

    Reply

  73. February 03, 2013 at 9:20 pm, hiwiaa said:

    It does not work I did everything you said and i did not work

    Reply

  74. February 16, 2013 at 8:37 pm, Marie said:

    I followed your instructions to sinc 2 new controllers to our wii system, but they zwont let me start the wii sports game?

    Reply

  75. February 22, 2013 at 3:29 pm, Cheri said:

    I recently bought two new original wii controllers as we got Mario kart for Christmas and wanted to play it as a family, but we can no sync the two new ones to the new game. They sync to all the other games we have. Can you help us with this?

    Many thanks

    Cheri

    Reply

  76. March 06, 2013 at 1:51 am, Noreen said:

    I have tried all the above but I still can’t get it to work.

    Reply

  77. May 02, 2013 at 7:01 pm, everett said:

    MOST important tip is to take the working one OUT OF THE ROOM then press the sync button again for the second remote!!!!

    Reply

  78. May 03, 2013 at 4:44 pm, Alex Davila said:

    my remote was synced but quit working, i re synced it and it worked for about 2 minutes then quit. every time i sync it again it only lasts a few minutes. i bought a new remote thinking that my controller was bad and the same thing happened for some reason none of my controllers other than the one will stay synced. how can i fix this issue

    Reply

  79. September 27, 2013 at 11:15 pm, Jenny said:

    Hi I have no problem sync my wii , but after I hack the consul it stop sync. Can anyone help me sync my wii after I hack it?

    Reply

  80. October 23, 2013 at 11:15 am, Sarah said:

    Hi,,I just purchased a new WiiU.For set up at the beginning I try to sync between WiiU console and WiiU game Padang press those 4 symbols whiich shows on TV but the message on the game pad screen keep saying cannot connect to WiiU console!

    Reply

  81. December 28, 2013 at 1:19 pm, Pauline said:

    I synced the second controller no problem, bit won’t drive the car forward in Mario Kart it will only go backwards. Its a brand new controller, any ideas?

    Reply

  82. January 03, 2014 at 11:16 am, Alana said:

    help! nothing will sync to our wii, what shall i do ive tried everything?

    Reply

  83. January 06, 2014 at 1:40 pm, mike said:

    It does not change my problem which is when playing tiger woods I set it for right hand and it operates left hand and plays left hand when setting left hand is it the game or the controler

    Reply

  84. January 07, 2014 at 6:54 pm, Dayna said:

    I have tried this, but it blinks for about 30 seconds, then I lose connection to my original remote. I can reconnect my original remote back simply using this method, but it does nothing for my new remote. It just blinks at me. Thoughts?

    Reply

  85. February 11, 2014 at 12:56 pm, Johan said:

    Thanks. This worked perfectly for my four remotes (Two original and two second hand).

    Reply

  86. April 15, 2014 at 6:26 am, Jarod said:

    I clean out my disic and hold the console and wii red boton to sink and wii not work plese help!!!!!

    Reply

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