How to restart your Apple TV without leaving the couch

Maybe you need to restart your Apple TV. Perhaps something didn’t load right, or the whole thing is acting screwy. It happens. The Apple TV is just another iOS computer after all. And while unplugging your Apple TV is one valid option, that means getting off your couch. And what do TV lovers hate more than unnecessary exercise? Nothing, that’s what. Happily for you, my lazy friend, you can restart the AppleTV using the remote. If you can find it.

How to restart your Apple TV

There are three official ways to restart the Apple TV. You can unplug it, as mentioned above (just make sure to wait for at least six seconds before plugging it back in). But you can also take a more civilized approach.

Civilized approach number 1: Settings

The first method is to head to your Apple TV’s Settings. The precise path varies depending on which Apple TV you have. If it’s a 3rd-gen Apple TV or older, then go to Settings > General > Restart to restart it.

If you have a 4th-gen Apple TV, or Apple TV 4K, then you’ll find the restart option under Settings > System > Restart

Civilized approach number 2: The remote(s)

The Siri Remote is like a teeny, tiny iPad
The Siri Remote is like a teeny, tiny iPad.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Yes, you have to use the remote for the previous method too, but this one uses the remote without on-screen interaction.

To restart your Apple TV with an old aluminum or white remote, press and hold the Menu and Down buttons together, until the light on your Apple TV flashes. It will restart.

If you have a Siri Remote, and you can work out which way up to hold it, then press and hold the button with the screen icon, and the Menu button simultaneously, again waiting for the light on the Apple TV to flash before releasing.

And you’re done. Now just sit back and relax, and wait for the restart to complete. I assume that you’ll need no help with this part of the process. Oh, and did you know that you can use the Siri remote to open a bottle of beer? You’ll probably break it, but who cares?

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