I bought a new Wii U a few months ago. I most often play Mario Kart Wii (in Wii mode) and have been noticing an increasing amount of of controller lag.

I know that the Wii isn't known for lagless controllers, but this isn't typical .1 or .2 second lag for all input. We'll be playing fine for twenty minutes, then all of a sudden the Wii will have one of these "fits" where all controller input lags and becomes extremely choppy. Pausing the game and waving the Wiimote slowly in front of the TV reveals that the Wii is picking up inputs only 3 or 4 times a second. (i.e., the hand icon stands still and jumps back and forth in a choppy manner.)

Re-syncing/resetting the Wii U stops the problem, as does waiting it out sometimes, but it makes many games completely unplayable when you suddenly lose control. What can I do to fix this broken Wii U?

  • What can I do to fix this broken Wii U? I don't know; maybe go back to wherever you bought the Wii U and ask if your warranty's still valid? That's what I usually do, when I get the feeling something's not right. I did this when my DSi's R-button no longer worked. Had to wait a week, but eventually the result was satisfying.
    – Nolonar
    Apr 13, 2013 at 19:44
  • 1
    there might be anoter device trying to use the bandwidth, find all bluetooth and wifi devices (it's in that band that the communication happens) and shut them off and see it that helps Apr 13, 2013 at 21:43
  • 5
    Turn off your Microwave
    – Robotnik
    Jul 10, 2015 at 1:26
  • I've had similar issues in the past; for me it was not lag, it was the environment. Things to keep in mind: any reflective surfaces between the sensor bar and the wiimote may cause the wiimote to track the reflection of the sensor bar as you move the wiimote around (such as the glass/polished surface of a coffee table). Sometimes the Wiimote may also mistake light fixtures for the sensor bar (I had an issue with a halogen floor lamp with 3 bulbs). Dec 20, 2015 at 13:36
  • You can also browse Nintendo's support site here.
    – wcarhart
    Aug 9, 2016 at 20:28

2 Answers 2


You have significant wireless interference.

The Wii Remotes use a Bluetooth wireless connection, which is a 2.4 GHz frequency. The problem is that many other devices use this same frequency including wireless phones and wifi.

The Wii U GamePad uses wifi technology in its own way, and you could test its effect on the controllers by entering Wii Mode as TV Only, leaving the GamePad off.

Other things to try would involve unplugging wireless phones, keeping cellphones away from you, making sure no one is downloading or watching something via wifi.

Short of playing within a faraday cage, you will never be free of competing wireless signals. The Wii U can handle some noise, but it can be difficult to manage if neighbours' signals are out of your control.


There are three things that could be happening.

  1. Your sensor bar or Wiimote is broken. If ALL the controllers do it, it's probably your sensor bar.
  2. You're sitting (or standing) too far away from the sensor bar.
  3. Your Wii U GamePad is intercepting your Wiimote's signals. The GamePad has its own sensor bar inside of it, and I've experienced the exact same sort of thing with my Wiimotes. All you have to do is turn the GamePad away from you to block the infrared signals.

Hope that helped!

  • 3
    Mario Kart Wii doesn't use the IR sensor during a race, so if they're having lag then it can't be because of the sensor bar.
    – George T
    Mar 26, 2015 at 15:27
  • Which brings it to either faulty controllers (slim chance if it's happening with every controller..) or you're getting interference on the wiimote's frequency (I don't know what that is off the top of my head. Although I'm sure Google knows) Aug 11, 2015 at 21:27
  • Wiimotes are Bluetooth. They can be picked up and paired to a PC via a Bluetooth dongle.
    – Nelson
    Jan 27, 2016 at 12:27
  • The infrared has nothing to do with this, you can emulate a sensor bar with 2 candles.....he/she may have a faulty bluetooth chip.
    – Dupree3
    Jan 27, 2016 at 13:16

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .