You’re all set for a long gaming session. You finally have the time and are ready to sit back and play your favorite Xbox games until the sun comes up. Your heart sinks when you pick up your Xbox controller and see it blink.
Don’t worry, there’s no need to panic. This is not a catastrophic event, but an easily solved problem. This article covers some of the most common reasons your controller is blinking, along with a solution for each.
How to fix an Xbox Series X controller that keeps blinking
A flashing Series X controller is caused by one of two different factors so the problem can be easily diagnosed. The usual culprits are either weak or dead batteries, or it has been disconnected from the console. Or it can also be a combination of both. We’ll cover these and other possible situations, so it doesn’t matter which of these scenarios causes your controller to blink, they’re all easy to fix.
Check the controller batteries
Weak or completely empty batteries could be the reason your controller is blinking. If the batteries are low, it means that your controller’s signal is also weak. You can replace the batteries or plug in the controller and wait for it to be fully charged.
When replacing the batteries, use only alkaline AA batteries marked LR6. These are rechargeable; however, they are not charged in the controller. You must charge them according to the manufacturer’s recommendation.
Follow these steps to install new batteries in your controller:
- Hold the controller upside down with one hand.
- With your thumb on the other hand, press the battery cover and push in the direction of the arrow.
- Once the cover is removed, replace the batteries, paying attention to the “-” and “+” symbols to ensure they are installed correctly.
- Replace the battery cover by sliding it back into place.
It is important to ensure that the batteries are installed correctly. Also note, check that the battery contacts are not bent, misshapen or corroded.
You can check the battery strength of your controller by pressing the Xbox button and looking at the top right corner of your screen. There you will see a battery icon indicating the current battery strength.
Check the range of the controller
Your controller may be too far away from the game console. Try to get closer to see if it stops blinking. Another possibility is that other devices are interfering with the connection. Microwave ovens, wireless routers and other devices can block the synchronization process. Inspect the play area for anything that could cause interference.
Too many connected devices
Have you recently had a gaming party with your friends where they linked their controllers to your console? An Xbox console can accommodate up to eight different controllers. If you have more than eight controllers synced to your console, you’ll need to unpair one or more controllers to connect yours.
Unpairing a controller is a simple process. To do this, follow these instructions:
- Press and hold the “Sync” button on the front of the controller until the Xbox button starts flashing.
- Wait until you feel the controller vibrate twice.
Make sure your controller is properly paired
Another common cause of a blinking controller could be that it is no longer paired with your console. If you’ve taken it to another gamer and paired it with their device, you’ll need to re-sync your controller to your console. There are two ways to pair your controller.
The first method is to connect your controller to your console with a micro USB cable. A wired connection like this will pair your controller immediately. This ensures a more secure connection and you have fewer problems with your controller.
You can also pair your controller wirelessly. To do this, follow these steps:
- Turn on your controller by pressing and holding the “Xbox” button until it flashes. If it stays lit, your controller is already paired.
- If the light is not solid, locate and press the “Pair” button on the front of the controller.
- On the Xbox Series X console, press the “Pair” button. This is located on the front of the device, just above the USB port.
- You have 20 seconds to press and hold the “Pair” button on the controller.
- The light will blink as it searches for the console. Once paired, the Xbox light will stay on.
Try updating your Xbox firmware
Your Xbox controller will automatically receive updates approximately every six months. However, if your controller is flashing and you’ve tried all the other suggestions we offered, updating your firmware might be the solution. Here’s how to do it:
- On your controller, press and hold the “Guide” button.
- Press the “A” button when prompted on your monitor.
- Select ‘Update controller’.
- Once the update is complete, choose ‘Next’.
Restart your Xbox console
If all else fails, turn off your controller. Turn off your console and unplug the power cord. Wait a few minutes before plugging in the console power cord and turning it back on. Turn on your controller. Sometimes a simple hard reset is enough.
Contact Xbox Customer Support
If you’re still having issues, try contacting Xbox Customer Support. If your console is still under warranty, they may be able to help you get it repaired or replaced.
A blinking Xbox controller is trying to tell you something
A flashing controller is trying to get your attention and alert you to a problem. It is usually weak batteries or because the controller is no longer paired. Charging or replacing the batteries is usually sufficient. If not, re-pairing the controller to your console may resolve the issue. Make sure there are fewer than eight controllers paired and there are no other wireless devices nearby that could cause interference.
Has your Xbox controller started blinking? Did you solve the problem by using one of the recommendations in this article? Let us know in the comments below.