By Debbie Davison
TV reception has always been a problem in cabin country. It simply isn’t feasible for broadcast providers to place towers everywhere. Find out how you can fight bad reception.
Reception seems to always go hand in hand when talking about television. The strength of your reception greatly affects the number of channels you are able to browse and also the quality of each. If you are one of those adversely affected by this, don’t fret. I’ve outlined ten tips that can help you solve your TV reception problem.
1. Improve the visibility of your antenna. You can do this by clearing nearby trees or repositioning it. Sometimes, all that’s needed is a decent mount and a mast to bring it to the elevation it needs to become efficient.
2. Double check the antenna. If it’s already at a decent height and has a clear line of sight to the nearest broadcast tower, there may be a problem with its installation. It would be best to have it checked by an expert antenna specialist. They’ll be able to fix all sorts of problems.
3. Check if the antenna is oriented in the right direction. It should be pointing to the nearest or strongest transmitter in your area. Likewise, it should be correctly oriented as either horizontal or vertical to match the signal’s polarity.
4. Retune your receiver. If you are in a location with multiple transmitters, the receiver might be tuned to the weaker signal. Retuning the receiver disengages it from the current transmitter and prompts it to search for a closer, stronger one.
5. Check for damaged cables. There may be things or junk close to the cable that can potentially damage your TV wirings. A tear in the covering could potentially affect the signal quality. This is because the shielding helps ward off unwanted interference.
6. Upgrade your coaxial cable. You should be using RC6 cable whenever possible since it has shielding properties that protect the signal from outside interference. Regular cables also do this but only at an extremely basic level.
7. Check if the set-top box is getting adequate ventilation. The signal strength is impacted by how well the box can convert the analogue signals to digital. Heated parts are not able to work just as well and become less-efficient. That’s why this and several other electronic devices like computers always have fans in them and require decent ventilation.
8. Improve your setup. If it’s a viable option, try to make your TV cable connections shorter. A shorter distance from the antenna to the television would mean that signals arrive in good time and are less subjected to interference during transit.
9. Go for digital-ready TVs. If you’re using an old analogue TV, you should consider switching to those that support digital formats directly without the need for a box. By eliminating the box, we are eliminating the analogue-digital conversion step which could cause distortion or sync issues. Without it, the signal remains untouched and is delivered in its entirety.
10. Regulate the use of signal splitters. If you find that the signal is better when not split, better not use it altogether. Signal splitters help you deliver the signal to multiple televisions but each endpoint will not be getting the optimal quality due to this.
Most of these steps are pretty simple and can be done on your own. However, if you feel that climbing the roof or replacing the antenna is too much, you can always hire professionals to do it for you.