High-Definition Multimedia Interface, also known as HDMI, is the standard for HD video and audio connections.
It combines video and audio data into a single high-speed connection, improving sound and picture quality.
The latest electronic devices, including TVs, PC monitors, DVD players, home theater receivers, and game consoles, have at least one HDMI port.
Setting up your TV to work with an HDMI cable reduces the clutter of running multiple wires between devices.
While HDMI connections are less complex, they are not exempt from malfunctions. Your TV may display a no signal message when you plug in an HDMI cable.
This tutorial explains why your TV says no signal when HDMI is plugged in and how to fix it.
Reasons Why Your TV Says No Signal When HDMI Is Plugged In
1. Incorrect Input Source
If your TV displays a no signal message after plugging in an HDMI cable, you’ve probably selected the incorrect input source.
Most TVs have several connection ports, with the latest models having up to three HDMI ports.
You must select the correct HDMI input source connected to an active external device such as a DVD player, Blu-Ray player, or home theater.
The ports have designated numbers that make it easier for you to identify the correct input source.
The quickest way to troubleshoot and fix no signal issues is to change the input source.
Here are the steps:
- Turn on your TV and the connected external device
- Check the connected HDMI port number on your TV
- Press the SOURCE or INPUT button on your TV’s remote control
- The input menu will appear on your TV screen
- Use the arrow keys on your remote to navigate to the correct HDMI input source
- Press the ENTER or OK button to confirm your selection
How to Change/Select the Input on Your TV
2. Loose Connections
Sometimes, HDMI signal issues might result from loose cable connections or intertwined wires, especially if you have more than one device connected to your TV.
Your TV will say no signal when HDMI is plugged in because of the poor connection quality.
Fortunately, fixing loose HDMI connections does not have to be hard, but you must first confirm that this is the case before proceeding.
Check the HDMI cable for loose connections and ensure it is plugged “all the way” into the correct port.
If you have multiple HDMI-connected devices, you may need to disconnect and reconnect them to fix the issue.
Here are the steps:
- Unplug all connected devices from the HDMI ports
- Unplug your TV from the wall outlet
- Unplug your source devices from the power outlet
- Wait for at least 60 seconds
- Re-plug your TV back into the wall outlet or power strip
- Re-plug the source device, one by one, into the wall outlet and TV HDMI port
- Select the correct input source
- Check if these steps resolve the issue
Note: The above steps will also power cycle your TV and source devices
3. Defective HDMI Cable
If your TV constantly displays a no signal message, you may need to replace the HDMI cable connecting your TV to the source device.
A defective HDMI cable is one of the main culprits of no signal issues, and replacing it can quickly solve the problem.
You can test your HDMI cable by using it on another device, such as a PC monitor or a laptop, with an active source device.
Alternatively, switch between the different HDMI ports to confirm if the cable is the issue and not the selected port.
You can also replace the cable you suspect is faulty with a different HDMI cable that you know is functional to see if there’s a difference.
Other signs that your HDMI cable is faulty include no sound, no picture, and an unresponsive remote.
Signs of a Faulty HDMI Cable
The quickest way to fix a defective HDMI cable is to replace it.
The good news is that HDMI cables are widely available and relatively affordable, so finding one shouldn’t be an issue.
4. Damaged HDMI Port
If you’ve tested your HDMI cable and it’s working fine but you’re still getting a no signal message when HDMI is plugged in, consider checking the port.
A faulty, damaged, or dirty HDMI port could be another cause of no signal issues in your TV.
A male HDMI port comprises several connector pins that connect to a female HDMI cable with holes.
The connector pins can bend or even break, eventually damaging the entire port.
An HDMI port can also attract dirt and dust if left unattended for long periods in dusty environments.
A dirty port might cause no signal issues when HDMI is plugged in.
Most TVs have several HDMI ports. You can switch to a different port to confirm whether the port in question is faulty.
Check the connector pins for bends and breakages. If you notice bends, you can use a tweezer to realign them gently into position.
You cannot repair broken connector pins and the only fix for this is to use a different HDMI port or purchase an HDMI-to-AV adapter.
For dirty HDMI ports, use a can of compressed air to blow the dust and clean the port.
How to Make Use of a TV with Damaged HDMI Ports
5. Disabled HDMI Connection Setting
If your TV and source device support HDMI Enhanced formats such as HDR, 4K, and 8K, you must enable the HDMI input setting on your TV to receive audiovisual signals from the source device.
Your TV will display a no signal message when HDMI is plugged in if this setting remains disabled.
Here are the steps to enable Enhanced HDMI on your 4K TV:
- Switch on your TV and source device
- Press the HOME or MENU button on your TV remote control
- Navigate to sources, and then source settings
- Scroll down to the HDMI input source you would like to enhance and press OK
- From the options menu that pops up, navigate to ENHANCED and press OK
- Exit the source settings
- Press the SOURCE button on your TV remote control
- Navigate to the appropriate HDMI input of the connected source device
- Press OK to confirm if Enhanced HDMI is enabled
How to Enable Enhanced HDMI on a Sony TV
Frequently Asked Questions
Question: What do you do when your HDMI says no signal?
Answer: First, ensure the source device is on before proceeding. Check if you’ve selected the correct HDMI input source. The HDMI cable should be plugged in properly. If this does not solve the issue, consider replacing your HDMI cable with a known functional cable.
Question: Why does my TV say no signal when everything is plugged in?
Answer: Your TV might say no signal even when everything is plugged in because of loose connections. Ensure all cables are in the appropriate ports and well connected.
Question: How do I reset the HDMI port on my TV?
Answer: To reset your HDMI port, turn off your TV and the source device. Next, unplug them from the mains. Wait for at least 30 seconds before re-plugging them back into the wall outlet. Remove the HDMI cables and switch them around before re-plugging them back into the devices. Turn on your TV and input device to verify if these steps resolve the issue.
Question: Why isn’t my TV connecting to the HDMI?
Answer: Your TV might not connect to HDMI because you’ve selected the incorrect HDMI source or the enhanced HDMI setting is disabled. It might not also connect because of a defective cable or faulty port. Try switching to a different port or replacing your HDMI cable.