How to Program a Universal Remote: A Quick and Simple Guide

How to Program a Universal Remote: A Quick and Simple Guide
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If you are a person whose house is filled with countless electronic appliances, the chances are that there is an equal amount of remote controls too. These can make things extremely confusing especially when you are using multiple devices at the same time. Thankfully, a universal remote in such cases is a blessing, but how to program a universal remote?

People are often hesitant to buy a universal remote mainly because they think that the setup process requires you to be a scientist. However, this is not the case at all. Programming your universal remote can be an easy thing to do.

If you are amongst the clueless people, then you have landed on the right page. We will tell you exactly how you can program your universal remote to use it with ease.

How to Program a Universal Remote: A Step-by-Step Guide

Universal remotes from brands like RCA and GE are quite common. So, we decided to write a step-by-step guide for these remotes. If you don’t have the same brand, it is fine since the process will still be sort of similar.

Before we start with the guide, grab your universal remote and ensure that you have put new batteries in it. Also, ensure that all of the devices and its components are synced properly and all hooked up. There is nothing worse than you trying hard to set up your universal remote just to realize that some devices or components are not even connected.

RCA Remote Control

Now that you have everything ready and in place, it is time you program your RCA remote control.

  1. Switch on the device or the component which you want to set the remote up with.
  2. Hold and then release the button which corresponds to the device which you are trying to program. For instance, if you want your universal remote to control the Blu-ray player or the TV, then press and release the Blu-ray button or the TV button. When you do this, the on-and-off button will light up and will remain lit.
  3. Now, press and hold the on-and-off button and the component button at the same time. The light of the on-and-off button should switch off and then turn back on.
  4. Once the light turns back on, you can let go of the buttons. The light will again continue to remain illuminated.
  5. Now, you can hold and release the play button on your RCA remote. If you notice the component or the device that you are programming does not turn off after a couple of seconds, continue to hit the play button again and again after a couple of seconds until you notice it switching off.
  6. Next, you need to hold and release the reverse button. Wait for a while to see whether the component or device is turning back on. If it doesn’t, press it every couple of seconds until it does.
  7. Hold and release the stop button in order to save the programming you have done for the component or device in the universal remote’s memory.
  8. You can repeat all the above steps if you want to program another component or device to the remote.

Make sure that you are pressing all the buttons correctly. Failing to do so will end up with you messing up the whole syncing process. This is one of the primary reasons why people are apprehensive to buy a universal remote.

GE Remote Control

As you can see, RCA remotes are quite easy to program with your device. A universal remote from GE pretty much works the same way. You can either program it manually by entering the codes or by using the code search feature.

Programming by Manually Feeding in the Codes

  1. Remove the battery, and you will find a stick that has the model number. Note whether it is V1, V2, V3, or V4. Download the right list of codes for your remote model from the Jasco website.
  2. Switch on the device or component you want to program the remote with.
  3. Press and hold the setup button for a few seconds till it illuminates.
  4. Thereafter, press the corresponding button of the device. This depends on the device you are currently programming.
  5. Find the code from the list and input it. This will either be a three-digit or a four-digit code.
  6. Once you have entered the code correctly, the light will turn off.
  7. To check whether you have successfully programmed your device in the remote or not, hit the power button to check if it switches off.

Programming Using Code Search

  1. Search the model number as mentioned earlier and then turn on the device you want to program in the remote.
  2. Hold the setup button and press the corresponding button for the device.
  3. Hold the power button and wait till the device switches off. If your remote is a V2, V3, or a V4 and you want to program in a DVD player, hit play and wait till it starts to play.
  4. A couple of seconds later, hold the play or power button one more time. Now the device should switch off. If it does not, do it again till it does. Remotes that are V2, V3, and V4 do not need you to press the button constantly. It should automatically send the command every few seconds.
  5. Press the OK or the enter button if you have a V1 remote so that you can lock the code in.
  6. Hold the numeral “1” button on the remote immediately within a second so that it can lock in the code for a V2, V3, or a V4. You will know you have entered the code successfully when the indicator light on the universal remote turns off.

Either of these processes is easy to accomplish. Be patient if it does not connect right away, and repeat the process again.


If you know how to program a universal remote, you will finally understand its appeal. As you have realized, the process isn’t rocket science. While it may really take a couple of tries, you will eventually get the hang of it. Just make sure that everything is connected correctly before you even start the programming process.

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