NICE AND EASY: Are DIRECTV remotes waterproof?

This could potentially be a very short article. No, they are not waterproof. They’re somewhat spillproof, meaning that they won’t fry themselves if a bit of water or soda drops on them. But try to use one in a swimming pool, and you’ll be buying a new remote.

That’s not the end of the story.

(Good thing, too — I have column-inches to fill.) The good news is that it’s fairly easy to waterproof a DIRECTV remote, thanks to the technology inside it. All it takes is a zipper-close bag or one of those dive bags people use for their phones, if you’re really serious. Your average DIRECTV remote will work as well in a bag like that as it works outside it, and it may even work just fine totally submerged. In bathtub tests, mine did.

Why worry about waterproofing?

With DIRECTV’s wireless Genie Mini, it’s easier than ever to wheel a TV out to the patio for a pool party. Even if you never do that, any home with kids is going to want to know that EVERYTHING is waterproof, right?

RF Technology rules

A DIRECTV remote will work even though it’s underwater or in a bag thanks to RF technology. While lesser remotes use infrared beams, DIRECTV’s RF remotes use radio waves. These are essentially the same radio waves that bring music to your car. They travel through walls and doors easily, and they’re not even really scattered by water or plastic bags. Infrared is a “line-of-sight” technology. Anyone who has had to point a remote “very carefully” will tell you that. With DIRECTV RF technology you can point the remote 180 degrees away from the receiver, or even high up above it or down below. I can’t tell you it’s going to work under 6 feet of water but I’d say it could, where I know infrared remotes wouldn’t.

Proper waterproofing

It doesn’t take more than a plastic bag to waterproof a remote. Unfortunately there aren’t any “lifeproof” type cases for the DIRECTV remote but there are plenty of large dive bags that work just fine and as I said, just your basic zipper-locking sandwich bag  will work just fine. Every home has them

Want a remote? Get 2

Probably the best thing about the branded DIRECTV remotes is that you get all the great functionality, at a price that’s generally lower than you would pay for a much less capable remote at a drug store. Choose the remote that matches the one you have, and you can buy plenty of spares for when you lose one, or “Accidentally” test it in a bathtub full of water to see what happens. (Yes, this happened to me.) The older rectangular remote will provide RF connection to your pre-Genie receivers and your HR34 Generation 1 Genie, while everything made since 2013 uses the peanut-shaped Genie Remote. If you pick the right one, you’ll get that super RF power I talked about.

Shop now for the best selection of DIRECTV remotes, only at You won’t believe the prices!

About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 8,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.