“My Vizio sound bar isn’t working whenever I try to plug it into my TV using HDMI ARC.”
Oh! I hear this problem a lot from other Vizio sound bar users.
Sure, it can be frustrating, especially if it happens often.
But don’t worry, fixing it is a piece of cake. So…
Read on to know:
- Where’s the HDMI ARC port on most smart TVs.
- When and how to update a Vizio sound bar software.
- How to hard reset a Vizio sound bar to fix connectivity errors.
- 11 quick ways to fix a Vizio sound bar HDMI ARC that isn’t working.
- And so much more…
Why isn’t my Vizio sound bar HDMI ARC working?
Your Vizio sound bar HDMI ARC isn’t working because the HDMI cable is faulty, or you’re connecting to a non-HDMI ARC port. It won’t work if you haven’t changed the TV’s audio output to HDMI ARC. Outdated software, electronic glitches, and power-connectivity issues can also cause it to happen.
Vizio soundbar HDMI ARC not working: 11 quick fixes
#1: Check if the sound bar is plugged in and powered ON
If your already-set up Vizio sound bar suddenly has stopped working…
Check if it’s plugged properly into the socket. And that the sound bar power cord is in good condition.
Use this checklist as your guideline:
- Is the power socket loose?
- Are the plug prongs burnt?
- Does the power cord have bite marks?
- Is the sound bar power cord bent near the plug?
- Do you see signs of wear-out in the socket case?
If you answer “Yes” to some or all of the questions above, make sure to address the problems immediately.
Suppose there aren’t any power-connectivity issues with your sound bar. Check if the device is powering ON.
To do that, press the POWER button on the sound bar.
Your device is ON if you notice a light blink from the center or the left side of the device.
Note: Give your device a few seconds to turn ON after pressing the POWER button.
Read also: WiFi vs Bluetooth Speakers: 3 Sound Quality Comparisons
#2: Ensure that you’re connecting to the right port
Note: If it’s your first time setting up your Vizio sound bar, pay attention to this. As first time users often overlook this matter.
Your sound bar HDMI ARC won’t work if:
- You’ve plugged the cable into a non-HDMI ARC port.
- The smart TV you’re trying to connect to doesn’t support HDMI ARC.
That being said…
Before connecting your sound bar to your TV, make sure to check whether your TV has an HDMI ARC port.
Usually, the HDMI ARC port is the first HDMI port available on the device. And it has an “HDMI 1 (ARC)” or “1 (ARC)” label on it.
Sometimes, it even has a green lining around the port. So that users can easily identify it among the others.
Similarly, you should also plug the other end of the HDMI cable on the HDMI ARC port of your sound bar. Just look for a similar label at the back of the device.
“What if my TV has no HDMI ARC port?”
Then, unfortunately, you can’t connect your Vizio sound bar to it using an HDMI ARC connection.
If this is your case, you may connect it to another compatible smart TV. Or choose a different audio output (e.g., optical audio cable) instead.
#3: Use another HDMI cable
“I’ve plugged the cable on both HDMI ARC ports. But my sound bar still won’t work.”
If that’s the case, then perhaps your HDMI cable is faulty. Or that the cable isn’t suitable for the connection.
Some obvious signs of a faulty HDMI cable include:
- Bent wires.
- Bite marks.
- Burnt plugs.
- Distorted plugs.
- Exposed wirings.
Suppose there are no visible damages on your HDMI cable. Here’s how to test if it’s faulty:
- Get a spare HDMI cable.
- Connect it to your sound bar and TV’s HDMI ARC ports.
- Then, set up your sound bar.
If your sound bar works without problems, then your initial HDMI cable isn’t working any longer.
And you should get a replacement as soon as possible. I highly recommend buying an HDMI 2.0 cable for higher bandwidth and quality.
#4: Change the TV and sound bar audio setting to HDMI ARC
After plugging your sound bar via HDMI ARC, you should change the audio input and output.
And that goes for both your smart TV and sound bar. Below are the guidelines on how to do it.
Note: The steps may vary depending on your TV’s brand and sound bar model.
To change the audio output on a smart TV:
- Press the MENU using the remote.
- Go to settings.
- Select “Audio.”
- Click “Audio Output.”
- Then, select HDMI ARC.
And to change the input source on a Vizio sound bar:
- Grab the sound bar remote.
- Press the input button.
- Then, select “HDMI ARC.”
Note: The input button has a box-with-an-arrow icon on it.
#5: Enable CEC on the TV
CEC (Consumer Electronics Control) is a control-setting available on most smart TVs. This allows you to control all your HDMI-connected devices using just one remote.
While this doesn’t directly affect the HDMI ARC connection of your Vizio sound bar…
Enabling it will automatically turn ON your sound bar as you turn ON your TV. And that helps eliminate the chances of your sound bar not to work.
To enable the CEC on your TV:
Note: The actual steps may slightly be different on your TV model. So, refer to your product manual for specific instructions.
- Press MENU on your TV remote.
- Go to settings.
- Proceed to “System.”
- Select “CEC.”
- Then, choose “Enable” or “ON.”
#6: Disconnect the HDMI cables
If that still didn’t work, try to disconnect and reconnect every HDMI device on your TV.
Sometimes, connected HDMI devices create interference among each other.
If that’s what’s causing the problem with your sound bar HDMI ARC…
Disconnecting every device is your best solution.
Here’s how to properly do it:
- Unplug every HDMI device on your smart TV.
- Wait for about 60 seconds.
- Replug the cable of your sound bar into the HDMI ARC port.
- Set up your sound bar with your TV.
- Once it’s connected, reconnect the other HDMI device one at a time.
Note: The sound bar must be the first thing you should reconnect with your TV after unplugging. So, follow the steps accordingly.
#7: Disable the sound bar’s Eco mode
You may also try disabling the Eco Mode on your Vizio’s sound bar.
Eco Mode turns off your sound bar after a certain time of inactivity. Usually, after 5 to 10 minutes of not receiving sound signals.
If you’ve left your sound bar idled for a long time…
And then it suddenly stopped producing sounds, this might be the reason.
To turn off the Eco mode on a Vizio sound bar:
- Press and hold the VOLUME DOWN buttons on the device.
- Press and hold the POWER button right after.
- Continue holding them for about 5 seconds. Or until you hear two low-tone beeps.
Note: On some models, the LED lights on the sound bar will stop illuminating to indicate that the Eco Mode is off.
#8: Update the sound bar’s firmware
If the abovementioned fixes didn’t resolve the issue…
Check whether your sound bar has a pending firmware update.
And if it has, make sure to install the update as soon as you can.
Here’s how to do it:
- Visit VIZIO.com.
- Input your sound bar’s serial number.
- Click “Get Firmware Update.”
- Download the firmware update file on the right side of the screen.
- Save it in a USB flash drive.
- Power ON the sound bar.
- Disconnect the power cord.
- Plug the USB flash drive into the sound bar.
- Reconnect the power cord.
- Wait for the update to install.
Note: The update process is complete once the LED lights have stopped illuminating.
If you need visual instructions on how to update your Vizio sound bar, watch this short video:
#9: Update the TV’s software
“I’ve already updated my sound bar. But it still won’t work.”
Then this time, try updating your TV’s software.
When your TV software is outdated, it may fail to receive and send connection signals. And that can be a reason why your sound bar HDMI ARC isn’t working.
So, update your TV to resolve any potential connectivity errors your smart TV may have.
Note: The process varies depending on your TV brand and model.
But here’s the general way to do it:
- Using the TV remote, press MENU.
- Go to settings.
- Select “Support.”
- Click “Software Update.”
- Then, tap “Update Now.”
If you want, tick the box next to “Update Automatically.” So, you don’t have to manually do it all the time.
Additional note: If the “Update Now” button isn’t displayed on the screen, your TV is up-to-date.
And so, you may try the other troubleshooting methods below.
#10: Power cycle the TV and sound bar
Power cycling, also called rebooting, restarts the system of your device. And that helps remove electronic glitches and software bugs. That may be causing connectivity errors.
Note: This won’t delete important data and custom settings on your devices. So, you don’t need to back up your files.
So, if you’ve already tried the fixes but with no luck, power cycle your TV and sound bar.
The process is the same regardless of which device you’d like to power cycle.
Here’s how to do it:
- Ensure that the device is turned ON.
- Unplug the device from the power socket.
- Wait for about 10 minutes.
- Replug the device.
- Then, see if the issue has been resolved.
If it didn’t, try leaving it unplugged longer for about 30 minutes or so.
#11: Hard reset the sound bar
If all things fail, hard reset your Vizio sound bar.
Warning: A hard reset deletes your files and returns the device’s setting to default. So, only do this as your last resort.
Since it deletes everything, it also resolves bugs and glitches that a simple reboot can’t fix.
And that helps your sound bar perform better. And connect with other smart devices without problems.
Here’s how to hard reset a Vizio sound bar:
Note: The buttons you have to press may vary depending on your device model. So, make sure to review your product manual as well.
- Press the BLUETOOTH and VOLUME DOWN buttons on the device.
- Hold the buttons for about 5 seconds. Or until the 12 LED lights flash three times.
Take note that you’d have to set it up again with your smart TV after hard resetting your sound bar.
People also ask:
How do I turn on the HDMI Arc on Vizio?
To turn on the HDMI ARC on a Vizio sound bar, change its input source to “HDMI ARC.” To do that, press the “Input” button on the sound bar remote, and choose “HDMI ARC” as the audio setting.
Also, don’t forget to change the audio output of your TV. Just go to Settings>Audio>Audio Output>HDMI ARC.
Note: Not all Vizio sound bars and smart TVs support HDMI ARC connection.
So, before attempting to turn ON the sound bar’s HDMI ARC, check if your device supports this type of connection.
To do that, look into the device’s ports at the back. And search for an “HDMI 1 (ARC)” label or similar.
How do I connect my Vizio soundbar to HDMI Arc?
To connect your Vizio sound bar to HDMI ARC, plug one end of the HDMI cable into the sound bar’s HDMI ARC port. And then, plug the other end into the TV’s HDMI ARC port.
When plugging the HDMI cable on your devices, make sure that the:
- Smart TV has an HDMI ARC port.
- Cable can support HDMI ARC connection.
- Cable isn’t faulty and has no visible damage.
For better and enhanced audio quality, opt for an HDMI 2.0 cable.
Check out: 7 Steps To Connect JBL Speakers Together