In most cases, it is only when your Xbox One controller stops syncing that you realize how important it is. Without a controller to interface with it, your gaming console is nothing more than an expensive piece of techno-art.
Sure, you can use Xbox Smartglass or connect a mouse and keyboard to it, but that won’t afford you the full Xbone experience. You may as well play Xbox 360 games on your PC. But you don’t have to do anything that drastic. You can solve Xbox One sync button and controller issues without contacting a Microsoft specialist. The following guide will show you how.
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What to Do When Your Xbox One Sync Button Stops Working?
Unlike Xbox 360 controllers, Xbox One controllers use Bluetooth. This allows them to be compatible with the ever-popular Xbox Series X. However, this also means that you may run into pairing issues. Usually, when the Xbox One controller experiences any connectivity issues, it will start flashing and disconnecting.
However, there are rare occasions when your Xbox-One controller will simply refuse to sync/pair without any indication of what is causing the issue. This may lead you to believe that there is something wrong with the Xbox’s sync button.
However, just because your controller seems to be fine, doesn’t mean it is. Thus, in order to ascertain the cause behind your sync problems, we first need to confirm that it’s not actually controller-related.
Thus, essentially, we need to figure out which point in the connection is malfunctioning. Is the issue related to your controller or the actual console sync button? So in this guide, we’ll explore troubleshooting methods that address both issues.
Make Sure You Are in Range
The Xbox One’s wireless controller range is 6-9 meters (19-28 ft). Make sure you’re not too far from the console when you’re trying to sync your controller to it. Again, the sync button and pairing function may not be the issue here. You may be simply too far for the Xbox to detect your controller.
Check for Interference
As we’ve stated previously, your Xbox and its controller use Bluetooth to interface with each other. As such, they can be susceptible to interference from other devices that emit radio waves in the same range and frequency.
Thus, if you have any other Bluetooth-enabled devices near your Xbox, you should relocate them before attempting to use the sync button again. To play it safe, we suggest that you move any devices that emit Wi-Fi or cell phone signals too.
Remove All Peripherals
If you have any other peripherals such as keyboards or mice connected to your Xbox One, remove them. Even if the said peripheral is connected via USB, it may still interfere with your Xbox One’s sync function.
Make sure that all USB ports are clear and you have nothing else connected to your Xbox. Once that’s done, try syncing your controller again.
Completely Restart/Power Cycle Your Xbox One
In the same way rebooting your computer can solve most operating system-related issues, rebooting your Xbox One can solve console sync issues too. Again, software-related errors may be behind your Xbox’s sync button problems. Sometimes, power cycling may also solve some hardware failures. Nevertheless, to fully reboot your console do the following:
- Press the power down button until your console turns off
- Unplug the Xbox One from the power outlet
- Wait ten seconds and plug it back in
- Turn the Xbox One back on by pressing the power button
Once this is done, try resyncing your controller to your Xbox One using the Xbox One’s sync button.
Temporarily Disconnect Your Headset
The logic behind this solution ties slightly into the previous ones. If you have any headsets (wireless or wired) connected to your Xbox One controller, try disconnecting them before you attempt to sync.
Headsets – especially wireless headsets – can interfere with a controller’s ability to connect to your Xbox one console. Again, in a situation like this, your Xbox sync button may not necessarily be the reason you can’t sync – it may be tied to your controller.
Ensure That Your Controller Is Not Connected to Another Device
If you have multiple Xboxes in your house, your Xbox One controller may already be synced to one of them. This may also be the case if you’ve previously connected your Xbox controller to a PC.
Nevertheless, try checking if your controller is not already synced to another device before you attempt to sync.
Under normal circumstances, the Xbox controller should have a persistent white light to indicate that it is synced. While the Xbox One may allow for eight simultaneous controller connections, the gamepad can only connect to one device at a time. And thus, while it may seem as if your sync button is behind your connectivity issues, it’s actually because your controller is already connected to another device.
Power Cycle/Restart Your Controller
If restarting or power cycling your console didn’t work, maybe applying the same solution to your controller will. To power-cycle your Xbox One controller, do the following:
- Press and hold the Xbox logo button until the controller powers off
- Remove the battery pack
- Wait for a minute
- Replace the battery pack and turn the controller back on by pressing the Xbox logo button
Once you’re done power cycling your controller, you can try resyncing the Xbox One.
Check Your Controller’s Battery Pack
Controllers with built-in battery packs can be considered an advantage Sony’s latest consoles have over Microsoft’s.
Sometimes your Xbox One controller’s battery pack isn’t connected correctly. If the contacts between the controller and battery pack aren’t interfacing correctly, this may cause the controller to turn on and off. Furthermore, sometimes this ebb and flow are almost imperceptible, and you may not notice it at first.
Nevertheless, first, ensure that your battery pack is connected. If you’re fairly certain that your battery pack is connected, ensure that it has sufficient power. Try charging or replacing the batteries with fresh ones. In doing so, you may find that your battery pack is faulty and needs to be replaced.
Once you sort your battery issues out, you can try connecting your controller again. If this step doesn’t work, it means that the likelihood of your sync button being behind your pairing issues is high.
Connect Your Controller to Your Xbox Via Cable
As a last resort, until you can find an official Microsoft Xbox One technician, you can temporarily connect your controller to your Xbox One using a micro-USB cable. All you need to do is run the cable from your controller to one of the USB ports on the Xbox One console. This will help you bypass any syncing issues, whether related to your controller or the sync button.
Factory Reset Your Xbox One Console
On rare occasions when some software fault may be behind your Xbox One’s malfunctioning sync button, you can factory reset it to return it to default settings. Since you’re probably incapable of connecting your controller wirelessly, you’ll need to connect it via USB (see the solution above).
Of course, this assumes that your controller is fully functional too. Once you have your controller hooked up, you can factory reset your Xbox one using the following steps:
- Press the Xbox logo button
- Select Profile & System >Settings
- Select System
- Select Console Info
- Select Reset console
- Select Reset and keep my games & apps
The Xbox One will then erase all operating system data and restart. If your sync button still isn’t working after the factory reset, you can try working through the process again. But instead of choosing the Reset and keep my games & apps option, you should choose the Reset and remove everything option this time.
If none of the above solutions worked for you, then the reason your sync button isn’t working may be due to a hardware-related fault. While you can try to fix it yourself, we do not recommend this. It will most likely void your warranty.
Furthermore, if you don’t know what you’re doing, you could cause more damage and make things worse. Instead, we suggest that you initiate a service request with Microsoft Device Support. If your warranty has expired, you’ll need to pay for the repairs out-of-pocket.
Nevertheless, which solution worked for you? Were you confused by any of the steps in this guide? Leave a comment down below. We’d love to hear from you. As always, thank you for reading.