Roku Live TV Not Working: How To Fix Explained

Having trouble accessing Roku Live TV channels? Fret not, we've got you covered!

Live TV channels, though not the most prominent of features on a Roku device, is, by all means, a very handy feature nonetheless.

And that's why I had to write this article after having experienced this issue myself on my Roku TV. Here's what I found out:

If Live TV is not working on Roku, check for network issues and power cycle Roku and the Router. Turn OFF VPNs and other network masks on the network. Next, ensure your Roku is running on the latest firmware. Then, removing and re-adding the errant channel. Factory resetting the Roku could also help.

Roku TV Live Channels not Working
Roku TV Live Channels not Working

Let's now take a brief look at the many instances in which Live TV fails on Roku:

ScenarioCauses and Fixes
Live TV channels not opening on RokuSoftware issue; power cycle Roku and check for updates
Live TV slow on RokuNetwork issue; check and refresh the Router
Live TV channels not working on Roku TVCable/antenna issue; check the cables and rescan channels on Roku TV
Other scenariosFatcory Reset Roku; contact customer support
Why Live TV fails on Roku

Let's now discuss in detail the different fixes for resolving the Roku Live TV not working issue:

Power Cycle the Roku Device

Roku Unplugged

Let's kick off the troubleshooting process by conducting a Power cycle test.

Power cycling helps clear temporary glitches and resets the device's software, refreshing its operation. It can resolve minor issues and improve performance by providing a clean slate for smooth functioning.

Think of it as a reboot but in a more meticulous way!

Roku fast forward not working and Roku HomeKit not working are a couple of issues that have had a direct impact from power cycling.

Here's how to do so:

1. Unplug the Roku device from the power supply.

2. With Roku TVs press and hold the power button for a couple of seconds. Repeat this step a few times.

3. Plug back in the power supply and turn ON the device.

Check for the issue now.

For Roku Streaming Stick users, unplug the device from the HDMI port on your TV to reboot it.

Check for Network Issues

Roku Next to Router

An unstable network disrupts Roku channels and Live streaming, causing buffering, pixelation, and connection drops, leading to a frustrating viewing experience and issues such as Netflix slow on Roku.

Running network diagnostics on a Roku device helps identify possible issues with the network like deteriorating network speeds, blooming latency, etc.

Roku itself features an inherent speed testing option. Here's how to access it:

1. Go to the Roku home screen, Scroll up or down to highlight "Settings" and press the right arrow button down.

Roku Check connection

2. Tap on "Network" and select Check Connection to run the speed test.

You are going to need at least a Good to Excellent range. If you have a weaker signal strength then, that should interrupt the playback.

Alternatively, you could rely on a dedicated speed tester to know a bit more about the networking parameters. and are some of the best speed-testing applications out there.

Also, remember not to overload your Wifi network by connecting a lot of devices.

If you see any disparity in networking parameters, try restarting your Router.

Power Cycle the Router/Modem

Router unplugged

If you're indeed experiencing network/wifi issues on Roku, consider refreshing the Router/Modem.

Power cycling the Router should do the trick.

Here's how to do so:

1. Unplug the Router/Modem from the power supply.

2. Press and hold the various buttons for a couple of seconds. repeat this step a couple of times.

3. Plug back in the power supply and power ON the device.

Run the speed test once again and check if the network has become stable. If so, connect the Roku back to the network and check for the issue now.

Disable VPNs and Other Network Masks

VPNs (Virtual Private Networks) and IP masks enhance privacy and security and provide anonymity to users at the cost of compromising various networking characteristics.

They achieve this by rerouting internet traffic through remote servers and masking the user's actual IP address.

Disabling VPN on Roku allows direct access to local streaming services, optimizing connection speed, and reducing latency. This leads to smoother and uninterrupted live TV streaming.

And so, if you can't access Roku Live TV, be sure to disable VPNs and other network masks on your Network. Here's how to do so:

  • Access your router's administration interface through a web browser. You can usually do this by typing your router's IP address into the browser's address bar (eg:
  • Log in to the router using the administrator credentials.
  • Look for the VPN and IP Mask settings on the router's configuration page.
  • Disable the VPN connection or turn off the VPN client on your router. ensure to disable IP masks and MAC address filters as well.
  • Save the changes.

After disabling the VPN, reboot your router and all devices connected to your network. Check for the issue now.

Some Smart TVs have built-in VPN settings or apps. Access the network settings or any such apps on these devices to disable the VPN connection.

Check and Update Roku

Regular updates for Roku are essential for enhanced performance, security, and to access new features.

Updates ensure a seamless streaming experience, fix bugs, and keep the device up-to-date with the latest content and technologies.

And so, when facing issues with Live TV channels or any other issue such as poor download speed on Roku, check and update the Roku firmware.

Follow these steps to do so:

1. Go to the Roku home screen.

2. Scroll up and select "Settings”.

Roku System Update tab

3. Choose "System" and then "System Update."

Roku Software Update check now

4. Select "Check Now" to see if there are any updates available.

5. If an update is available, click "Download" and let it complete.

After the download, the Roku device will automatically install the update.

The device will restart, and the updated software will be applied.

Remove and Re-add the Roku Channel

Roku channel is known to host issues from time to time, Live TV not working being one of them.

An obvious fix would be to remove and re-add the channel on your Roku device.

Follow these steps to remove and re-add channels on Roku:

1.    Removing a Roku Channel:

  •  Go to the Roku home screen using your remote.
  •  Navigate to the channel you want to remove.
  •  Press the "Star" (*) button on your remote while highlighting the channel to open the options menu.
  •  Select "Remove Channel" from the options menu.
  • Confirm the removal when prompted. The channel will be removed from your Roku device.

Restart the device before adding back the channel.

2.    Re-adding a Roku Channel:

Roku Channel Store
  • From the Roku home screen, select "Channel Store".
  • Navigate to "Search Channels" and enter Roku.
  • Select the channel from the search results.
  • On the channel's details page, choose "Add Channel."
  • Confirm the addition when prompted. The channel will be re-added to your Roku device.

Check for the issue now. You could also perform this fix for other channel issues on Roku TV.

Factory Reset Roku

Lastly, let's factory reset Roku.

A factory reset helps Roku devices by reverting them to their original out-of-the-box state, erasing all settings, preferences, and installed apps.

Doing so resolves various software issues, improves performance, and provides a clean slate, ensuring a fresh start and optimal functioning for a smoother streaming experience.

Issues that have had a direct impact from factory resetting Roku include Roku TV ethernet port not working, and audio issues on Roku TV among others.

To perform a factory reset on your Roku device, follow these steps:

1. Using your Roku remote, press the "Home" button to go to the Roku home screen.

2. Scroll up or down to highlight "Settings" and press the right arrow button.

Roku Factory Reset tab

3. In the Settings menu, select "System" and then choose "Advanced system settings."

4. Select "Factory reset".

5. Enter the Special code onto the field and confirm the selection.

6. The Roku device will initiate the factory reset process. It may take a few minutes to complete.

7. After the reset is finished, your Roku device will restart and display the setup screen, as if it were brand new.

Select Roku models also feature a dedicated Reset button. For my Roku Ultra, it's on the back of the device.

Roku Reset button

If you want to reset Roku this way, press and hold that Reset key for 10 seconds and wait for the factory reset to complete.

Issues with Live TV on Roku TVs: How to Fix?

Now, most of the above-mentioned fixes apply to issues with streaming Live TV channels digitally on a Roku.

But what will you do when you encounter issues with Live TV channels on a Roku TV, specifically with traditional OTA channels?

Channel reception issues are quite common in traditional TVs, and that trend has been pretty consistent with the successive generations as well.

But more often than not, these issues can be attributed to the means through which content propagation takes place, a.k.a with cables and antennas.

With that said, let's take a look at how to tackle issues with OTA channels transmitted through cable and Dish inputs.

Check the Cables and the Antenna

Coaxial and Composite inputs

OTA channels are usually propagated to TVs through co-axial inputs via Antennas or cable inputs. Nowadays, HDMI has also emerged as a viable input for OTA reception.

And so, when you experience Live TV channels issues, the conventional ones that is, look no further but the ports, the cables, and the very mode through which they are made available.

Patchy reception, lines on display, and AV sync issues, among many other problems, can all be attributed to issues with cables, Anetanns, or the cable box. TV ports also share the blame for the same.

If in doubt, check the condition of the cables. Crooks, kinks, wear and tear, can all affect the effective propagation of signals.

Change the cables post-haste if you notice any irregularities. Ensure a proper fit at the port ends.

Also check the condition of the ports, both at the TV end and the output end.

In case of issues with the Antenna or the Cable box, contact your TV provider for further assistance.

Rescan the Channels on Roku TV

Once you ensure proper cable etiquette, it is time to check and rescan the channels, especially Live TV channels on your Roku TV.

Here's how to do so:

1. Open the Settings menu and select TV inputs.

2. Select Live TV.

3. Then choose Set Up input.

Exit out the settings tab and switch the input to Live TV.

Final Thoughts

Troubleshooting Roku Live TV issues might seem daunting at first, but armed with the knowledge and step-by-step solutions provided in this article, fixing this issue is not a problem.

From power cycling your device to checking network settings and updating channels, these techniques are designed to restore seamless streaming bliss.

However, in the rare event that all attempts to fix Roku Live TV problems prove unsuccessful, don't lose hope.

Roku's support Team is always ready to assist you with specialized support and expertise.

So, whether it's a simple glitch or a perplexing problem, never hesitate to reach out to Roku's customer care.

With their help, you can keep your Roku Live TV running smoothly, enabling you to savor every moment of your favorite shows and channels without any interruptions. Happy streaming!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How can I access Roku Live TV? 

Roku Live TV is available through the "Live TV" tile on your Roku home screen. It provides access to free live streaming channels and Live TV from select streaming services with a supported subscription.

Why is my Roku Live TV buffering frequently? 

Frequent buffering on Roku Live TV can be due to a slow internet connection, network congestion, or low Wi-Fi signal strength. Try moving closer to the router, optimizing your network, or contacting your internet service provider for assistance.  

Can I watch local channels on Roku Live TV? 

Yes, Roku Live TV offers access to free live-streaming channels that may include local news and regional content. Additionally, some subscription-based services may provide access to local channels depending on your location and subscription package.

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About Doug Stevenson

Hey! I'm Doug, My passion for tech started by fixing phones and computers for my friends and family.

I started Blinqblinq to give reliable tech advice to anyone who needs it, for free! If you have questions on anything tech-related, feel free to contact me.

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Doug Stevenson

Hey! I'm Doug, My passion for tech started by fixing phones and computers for my friends and family.

I started Blinqblinq to give reliable tech advice to anyone who needs it, for free! If you have questions on anything tech-related, feel free to contact me.

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