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7 Easy Steps To Connect Chromecast To An Old TV (2023)

How To Connect Chromecast To An Old TV

My friends like to call me sentimental.

Because I’m never the type to get rid of things so quickly.

Case in point…

My decade-old non-smart TV. 

I’m not planning on discarding it anytime soon.

In fact, I even got to make it smart. All thanks to Chromecast, of course.

And you can do it, too…

Continue reading to find out:

  • 7 simple steps to connect Chromecast to an old TV.
  • How to easily know if your TV actually supports Chromecast.
  • 3 effective fixes if you encounter an error while trying to use Chromecast.
  • And a lot more…

How to connect Chromecast to an old TV – 7 steps

Just a few clarifications before we get to the steps.

Yes, Chromecast can work on older, non-smart TVs. In fact, it’s an excellent tool to turn your TV into a smart TV.

But just how old are we talking about here?

Well, according to Chromecast manufacturer Google

Chromecast requires a TV with a built-in HDCP version 1.3 or higher.

Now, you’re probably thinking…

“What exactly is HDCP?

And how would I know if my TV has it?”

To answer the first question, HDCP stands for High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection. Intel was the company behind its creation. With major TV brands later adopting this technology.

And in a nutshell, it’s a means of preventing the illegal copying of digital content. Such as movies or music.

Intel released the first version of HDCP in February 2000. While version 1.3 came out in December 2006.

And so, to answer the second question…

You’d know if your TV has it if it came out in 2007 or later.

In other words, TV models from that year onwards are compatible with Chromecast. Even if they’re not smart.

“So does that mean Chromecast won’t work on 2006 or earlier TV models?”

It can actually still work. Some have even successfully connected Chromecast to TV models from as far back as the late 90s. 

However, it’s not a guarantee for every TV brand. And even if it works, your TV’s much more likely to experience glitches. Such as a scrambled video or a distorted sound.

So bear that in mind when trying to use Chromecast on a pre-2007 TV.

Moving on, the steps below are for TVs with a built-in HDMI port.

But don’t worry. In the Bonus section, I’ll also provide steps for TVs with only a VGA or RCA port.

And with that, let’s get to the steps.

#1: Plug the power adapter into your Chromecast

When you buy a Chromecast, it’ll come with a power cord and an adapter.

So the first thing you should do is to plug one end of the cord into the adapter. And plug the other end into your Chromecast.

#2: Plug the Chromecast into your TV’s HDMI port

Ensure that you note the HDMI port number where you plugged the Chromecast. You’ll need to know it to switch your TV to the correct input.

#3: Plug the power adapter into an outlet

With the Chromecast now connected to your TV, it’s time to power it on. So, connect it to a wall outlet or a power strip.

#4: Switch your TV to the correct HDMI input

To view the Chromecast content, you must go to the correct HDMI input.

Just press the Source or Input button on your remote. And switch to the HDMI input where you connected the Chromecast.

#5: Pair the Chromecast with its remote

Wait until you see the Start Pairing screen on your TV. A remote control icon should appear on your TV.

Once you see it, press and hold the Home and Back buttons of the remote.

When the remote’s LED light starts blinking, release the buttons.

The remote icon on the TV screen should light up. Indicating that the pairing was successful.

You might also want to know: Chromecast Remote Not Working: 5 Easy Ways To Fix It Today

#6: Download and set up the Google Home app on your phone

It’s available on Android and iOS. You’d need the app to be able to cast contents to the Chromecast.

After installing it, follow these steps on how to set it up:

Step #1: Launch the Google Home app on your phone.

Step #2: Sign in with your Gmail account.

Step #3: Create a Home for your device. Basically, you’ll just have to type in a nickname for your home. And enter your home address.

Step #4: The app will then ask you about the kind of device you’re setting up. So select Chromecast.

Step #5: Wait for the app to discover your Chromecast device. Once it finds your device, tap it.

Step #6: A QR code should then appear on your TV screen. Scan it using the app.

Step #7: Select the location of your Chromecast.

Step #8: Connect the Chromecast to WiFi. Just select your home WiFi from the list. And enter your password.

#7: Finish setting up the Chromecast using the remote

Step #1: Using the remote, select the device you’ll be using to play audio. It could be any of the following:

  • TV.
  • Receiver.
  • Soundbar.

Step #2: Select the brand of your TV. 

Step #3: Next is a volume check. So you’ll need to press the up and down volume buttons to see if they’re working.

Step #4: Check if the power button is working.

You’ll need to press the remote’s power button to turn off the Chromecast. And then press it again after 8 seconds to confirm that the button’s working.

The Chromecast OS will then finish the setup. 

And you should be able to use your Chromecast afterward.

Now, if you’d also like a visual guide on how to set up Chromecast, watch this:

That video guide above will work on an old or new TV.

Bonus: How to connect Chromecast to a TV without an HDMI port

While Google built Chromecast primarily for TVs with HDMI ports…

There’s a simple workaround if your TV only has either a VGA or RCA port.

And that’s by using an HDMI to VGA or an HDMI to RCA converter. 

Both devices are really affordable. You can buy a good HDMI to VGA such as Benfei for only $10. And a reliable HDMI to RCA such as TaiHuai for only $15.

Now, if you already have either…

Just follow these steps to connect a Chromecast to your HDMI-less TV:

Step #1: Connect the power adapter to the Chromecast.

Step #2: Plug your Chromecast into your HDMI to VGA or HDMI to RCA converter.

Step #3: Connect your converter to your TV.

Step #4: Plug both the converter and the Chromecast into a power outlet.

Step #5: Switch your TV to the correct input. The right input should be AV if you’re using an RCA port. And for a VGA port, it should also be VGA.

From here, you may follow the steps in the previous section for pairing the remote. As well as for downloading and setting up the Google Home app.

Does Chromecast work on all TVs?

Chromecast works on all TVs with an HDMI port. And those with a built-in HDCP version 1.3 or later. In other words, Chromecast will work on TV models from 2007 onwards. For older TV models, it may still work. Though it’s much more likely to be prone to glitches and malfunctions.

Now, even if your TV has HDMI and HDCP…

You may still encounter errors when using a Chromecast.

But don’t worry when it happens. There are several easy fixes for that. 

Restart your WiFi connection

Restart WiFi Connection

The foremost reason for a Chromecast malfunction is a poor network connection.

Chromecast needs a stable WiFi network to work properly.

So if you’re having connection issues…

The best thing to do’s to power cycle or restart your modem and router.

Just unplug them from the outlet. Then plug them back after 30 seconds.

Reboot your Chromecast

As with any electronic device, your Chromecast may also experience temporary glitches.

And a quick solution to that would be to reboot it. Here’s how:

  1. Unplug your Chromecast’s power adapter from the outlet.
  2. Disconnect the power cable from your Chromecast.
  3. Wait for 1 minute.
  4. Reconnect the power cable to the Chromecast.
  5. Plug the Chromecast back into its power source.

Perform a factory reset on your Chromecast

If you’re still getting errors after power cycling your modem and Chromecast…

You may consider performing a factory reset.

Doing this will restore the device to its default settings.

Now, the way to do it will vary depending on your Chromecast version. But I’ll be providing the steps for all variants.

How to factory reset a 1st to 3rd gen Chromecast

  1. Open the Google Home app on your phone.
  2. Press and hold your Chromecast’s tile on the app’s home screen.
  3. Select Settings.
  4. Select More.
  5. Select Factory Reset.
  6. Tap Factory Reset again to confirm.

How to factory reset a Chromecast with Google TV

  1. From the Chromecast’s TV menu, click Settings.
  2. Navigate to System and select it.
  3. Click About.
  4. Select Factory Reset.

How do I know if my TV supports Chromecast?

You would know if your TV supports Chromecast if it has an HDMI port. And if it has a built-in HDCP 1.3 or later. You may check the back or side of your TV to see its ports. And you may refer to the TV’s manual to check if it has HDCP.

Now, if you no longer have your TV’s manual with you…

You may simply visit the manufacturer’s official website. You should be able to find a copy of the manual there.

But even without checking the ports or whether your TV has HDCP…

A good rule of thumb is if your TV came out later than 2007, it’s likely Chromecast-compatible.