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(3 Steps) How To Scan For Channels On Samsung TV [2023]

How To Scan For Channels On Samsung TV

Perhaps you’ve had enough of your streaming services. 

Or maybe you’re having connection issues.

So you decided to watch TV the old-fashioned way. 

Without the internet. 

But now you’re wondering.

“How do I even get channels to appear on my TV?”

Don’t worry. We got you covered.

Continue reading to find out:

  • 7 steps to easily scan for channels without a remote.
  • What devices you’ll need to get the most TV channels.
  • 3 possible causes of channel scan issues and their fixes.
  • Where to find the buttons for the channels on the TV itself.
  • And this is just the beginning…

How to scan for channels on Samsung TV?

To scan for channels on Samsung TV, go to Settings, then Broadcasting, and select Auto Program. For older models, you do that by going to Channel and then Auto Program. You would need either an antenna or a cable box as well before you can scan. You may use both to get the most channels available.

 3 steps to scan for channels on Samsung TV

Just a note before we begin our guide. 

For these steps to work, you’d need at least either of these 2:

  • Cable box for cable channels.
  • Antenna for Over-The-Air (OTA) channels.

And if you want to get the most channels. You may use both. 

Already have an antenna or a cable box with you? 

Great! Let’s begin.

#1: Connect your antenna or cable box to your Samsung TV

The first step is to connect your antenna or cable box to your Samsung TV

For this, you’d need a coax cable

Antennas and cable boxes usually come with this type of connector. But you may also purchase online if you don’t have one.

Where to connect your antenna or cable box

Before we dive into how to connect. It’s important to know where to connect first. 

All Samsung TVs have at least one slot for a coax cable.

For newer Samsung TV models, they have 2. 

  • ANT 1 for antennas.
  • ANT 2 for cable boxes.

These are typically found at the back of your Samsung TV. They’re labeled so it’s easy to find.

In addition, you may also use Samsung’s One Connect box.

“One Connect box? What’s that?”

It’s a device where you can connect various audio-video components. 

It has ports for the following:

And you can plug it into your Samsung TV using a single cord. This is actually a great device to have for decluttering cables.

How to connect your antenna or cable box

  1. Grab one end of your coax cable. You’ll notice there’s a pin in the middle. 
  2. Carefully attach it to the coax cable port. Either in your Samsung TV or One Connect box. 
  3. Tighten the coax cable’s collar. You do that by turning it clockwise.
  4. Connect the other end of the coax cable to your antenna or cable box.
  5. Again, make sure to tighten the coax cable’s collar. 

Note: Are you using a cable box? If you are, make sure to turn it on before we go to the next step.

#2: Change the input source to TV

Make sure to set your Samsung TV’s input source to TV. 

You won’t be able to scan for channels if your selected input source is HDMI, AV, or others. 

There are two quick ways to do that.

One way is via the following:

  1. Press the Home button on your remote.
  2. Navigate to Source. 
  3. Select TV. 

An even faster way is this:

  1. Press the Source button on your remote.
  2. Select TV.

#3: Start scanning for channels via Auto Program

With your antenna or cable box connected. And your input settings are correct. It’s now time to scan for channels. 

Here’s how you do it:

  1. On your remote, press the Home button.
  2. Go to Settings.
  3. Navigate to Broadcasting and click it. For older TVs, this may appear as Channel.
  4. Click the Auto Program option.
  5. An Auto Program message should pop up. Select Start.
  6. Select your preferred option for scanning. Air, Cable, or Both. Air, if you want to scan through your antenna. Cable, if you want to scan through your cable box. And Both. If you want to scan through both your antenna and cable box. 
  7. Your Samsung TV should start scanning. Wait for it to finish.
  8. Click Close.

That’s it! You should now be able to enjoy all the scanned channels. 

For a visual guide, you may refer to this Youtube video:

Of course, you may repeat this process. Especially if you think there are channels you should be getting but didn’t.

Samsung TV channel scan not available: 3 causes & fixes

#1: Incorrect input source

As we pointed out in our guide, if your Samsung TV’s input source is incorrect… 

You’ll have issues scanning for channels.

In particular, the Broadcasting or Channel option would be grayed out. You won’t even be able to select them at all. 

How to fix it:

Simply go to the correct input setting. 

To do that:

  1. Press the Source button on your remote.
  2. Select TV.

“I just did that. How come Broadcasting is still grayed out?”

Then you might want to do a soft reset on your Samsung TV. 

A soft reset simply means shutting down and rebooting your TV. But it won’t affect your files such as account details. Or any of your custom TV settings. 

Here’s how you do that:

  1. Press and hold the Power button on your remote. 
  2. Wait until the TV’s system shuts off completely.
  3. Wait for about 30 seconds to a minute.
  4. Press the Power button again to turn on your TV.

#2: Faulty coax cable

Faulty Coax Cable

Your coax cable is crucial for scanning channels. After all, it’s what connects your TV to your antenna or cable box. 

A faulty or incorrectly attached coax cable may also cause problems. 

How to fix it:

First, make sure to properly connect your coax cable. 

It has a screw-like collar. See to it that you twist it clockwise. Twist it several times for a more secure attachment.   

If, however, you suspect it’s a faulty coax cable? Then, look for a replacement. If you have another one at home. You may try using it. 

They’re readily available for purchase online. 

#3: Defective antenna or cable box

The antenna and cable box are what make it possible to receive channels. 

But, just like any device, they’re also prone to glitches. And the usual wear and tear. 

So it’s also possible. The reason you’re not able to scan is that your antenna or cable box is defective. 

How to fix it:

Cable Box

For a cable box, you don’t have to call tech support just yet. A lot of cable-box-related issues are also fixed by a simple power cycle. 

It will depend on the manufacturer and model of your box. 

But the process should be similar to this:

  1. Turn off your cable box. 
  2. Unplug it from the power outlet. 
  3. Wait for about 30 seconds.
  4. Plug it back in and power it on.

If it doesn’t do the trick? Then you may contact your cable provider’s tech support. They should help you troubleshoot it. They’ll also be able to replace it if it’s really defective. 


What if it’s an antenna issue? It’s possible that it’s struggling to get a signal. 

So one good solution is to try to move it around. Make sure that nothing’s getting in the way of it. 

Still not working?

Then it’s best to contact its manufacturer. Your antenna should come with a warranty. So if it’s a manufacturing issue? You’ll be able to get a free replacement. 

You might also be interested in: Samsung TV Loud Popping Noise: 7 Steps To Fix It

People also ask:

How to scan channels on Samsung TV without a remote?

To scan channels on Samsung TV without a remote, simply locate the buttons on the TV itself. Look for the Settings button, then navigate to Picture and select Broadcast. Then select Auto Program and choose where you’d like to scan from.

You know what’s one good thing about Samsung TVs? 

There are also buttons on the actual set. 

This should allow you to change various settings. Even without the use of a remote. 

There are three possible locations for your Samsung TVs control buttons. 

Here they are:

  • On the back of the TV.
  • Under the front of the panel on the side.
  • Under the front of the panel in the middle.

Samsung TV buttons are also grouped into two: Control Menu and Control Stick

Control Menu buttons usually consist of:

  • Return.
  • Source.
  • Settings.
  • Power off. 
  • Home or Smart Hub.

Meanwhile, the Control Stick has the follow buttons:

  • Center button.
  • Up and Down buttons.
  • Left and Right buttons. 

You may try to locate these buttons first. 

Found them? 

Great. Now we can start scanning channels.

Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Click the Settings button on your TV.
  2. Using the Control Stick arrows, navigate to Picture. 
  3. Select Broadcast. Or Channel for older models. 
  4. Select Auto Program.
  5. Choose your preferred scanning method. Air, Cable, or Both.
  6. Wait for the scan to finish.
  7. Click Close. 

Of course, these steps may vary. Depending on how old your Samsung TV is. And depending on the model. 

We highly suggest that you also refer to your TV’s manual as a guide. 

And if you no longer have the manual? Here’s an easy way to find a copy online:

  1. Locate the model of your Samsung TV. It’s usually at the back portion of the TV.
  2. Go to Google.
  3. Type in Samsung TV +  its model name + manual. 

You should be able to find a PDF file copy of it. 

Further reading: Samsung TV Remote Not Working: 9 Quick Fixes