LIRC integration for Home Assistant allows you to receive signals from an infrared remote control and control actions based on the buttons you press. You can use them to set scenes or trigger any other automation.

Sending IR commands is not supported in this integration (yet), but can be accomplished using the shell_command integration in conjunction with the irsend command.


To allow Home Assistant to talk to your IR receiver, you need to first make sure you have the correct dependencies installed:

sudo apt-get install lirc liblircclient-dev

If you are configuring on a Raspberry Pi, there are excellent instructions with GPIO schematics and driver configurations here. Take notice, the instructions in this blog are valid for Raspian Jesse where lirc 0.9.0 was included in the Debian package. In Raspian Stretch lirc 0.9.4 is included in the Debian package. The configuration is slightly different :

  • The hardware.conf file is not supported, obsoleted by a new lirc_options.conf file and systemd unit definitions.
  • The former single lirc service is replaced with the three systemd services lircd.service, lircmd.service and irexec.service. There is no counterpart to the 0.9.0 lirc service which covered all of these. Using a separate transmitter device requires yet another service.
  • 0.9.4 defaults to using systemd for controlling the services. This is not just start/stop functionality, systemd is used to implement new features and to address shortcomings in 0.9.0. However, traditional systemV scripts are also installed and could be used although this is less tested and not really documented.

For more information have a look at /usr/share/doc/lirc/README.Debian.gz where the update process is explained when you have updated from jessie to stretch.

Configuring LIRC

Now teach LIRC about your particular remote control by preparing a lircd configuration file (/etc/lirc/lircd.conf). Search the LIRC remote database for your model. If you can’t find it, then you can always use the irrecord program to learn your remote. This will create a valid configuration file. Add as many remotes as you want by pasting them into the file. If irrecord doesn’t work (e.g., for some air conditioner remotes), then the mode2 program is capable of reading the codes in raw mode, followed by irrecord -a to extract hex codes.

Next, you have to make a ~/.lircrc file that maps keypresses to system actions. The file has to be in the home dir of the user running Home Assistant, e.g., in /home/homeassistant/.lircrc if you’re running in a virtual env. The configuration is a bit tedious but it must be done. Use the prog = home-assistant for all keys you want to be recognized by Home Assistant. The values you set for button must be the same as in the lircd.conf file and the values you put for config entry will be the sensor value in Home Assistant when you press the button. An example may look like this:

    remote = SONY
    button = KEY_1
    prog   = home-assistant
    config = KEY_1
    remote = SONY
    button = KEY_2
    prog   = home-assistant
    config = KEY_2
    remote = SONY
    button = KEY_3
    prog   = home-assistant
    config = KEY_3

Test your LIRC installation before proceeding by running:

ircat home-assistant

and pressing some buttons on the remote. You should see them register on the screen if LIRC is properly configured.

Configuration Home Assistant

# Example configuration.yaml entry


The LIRC integration fires ir_command_received events on the bus. You can capture the events and respond to them in automation scripts like this:

# Example configuration.yaml automation entry
  - alias: "Off on Remote"
      platform: event
      event_type: ir_command_received
        button_name: KEY_0
      service: homeassistant.turn_off
        entity_id: group.a_lights

The button_name data values (e.g., KEY_0) are set by you in the .lircrc file.