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Maddy McCall Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 06:25 AM
Original message
Question about my Directv satellite dish...
Edited on Sat May-15-04 06:26 AM by jchild
For the first four years, I had excellent reception, even in storms. I would only lose signal when there were really bad thunderstorms.

Now the least little bit of rain causes me to lose signal. The signal meter isn't as strong as it used to be.

I am wondering if I need to align the dish again? It was installed by Directv when I first got it four years ago, so I have no idea how to do this. It's on a wooden pole in the ground, so I am thinking it has shifted and that is why my signal sucks.

How do I align the dish? Do I have someone in the house watching the signal meter while I fiddle with the alignment?

Thanks for advice! :-)
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robbedvoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 06:30 AM
Response to Original message
1. I once tried that - mine is out the window. In the end I had to call
someone.
On a different occassion I was able to though. If yours is on the roof, you need a counterpart and a cell phone I'm afraid.
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Tandalayo_Scheisskopf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 06:44 AM
Response to Original message
2. Alignment is good.
Also, check the coaxial cable and connectors. Vinyl or composite insulating covers have a tendancy to degrade when exposed to ultraviolet light, over time. Also, if at any point in the coax run, wind has caused it to rub or flex, you might have a split in the insulation or shielding. I would suggest that a new coax run might be a good idea, or just a whole new dish and coax.

Four years is a long time to stand outside.
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MadAsHell Donating Member (571 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 06:45 AM
Response to Original message
3. Its really pretty easy ...
If you can't see the tv from the dish you will need to have someone help you. You will need a small cresent wrench. I would mark the current position before you start, a felt-tip marker should work. You will find two adjustments you can make right and left by loosing the bolts on the clamp and rotating the dish on the mounting rod and up and down by loosing the bolts on the mount end(away from the dish) of the mount rod. I would start by doing the left-right adjustment (because it is easier). It will only take fairly small movements if you already have a signal. Just move it a little at a time until you get the best signal you can. If that doesn't get the signal strength you need you will have the do the same with the up and down. That adjustment is a little more of a hassle, but only because it is harder to hold the position once you loosen the bolts. The process is about the same move it up and down until you find the best signal. I would mark it again (maybe in a different color) in case the dish gets moved by accident or something.

Good Luck
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Maddy McCall Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 06:51 AM
Response to Original message
4. THANKS, everyone. I will try to align it myself when I have some help.
And when the rain subsides. Thanks for the advice.
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arwalden Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 07:14 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. I Have One Dish And Three Converters...
During a heavy rain, the Philips brand converts have no problem AT ALL. --- But the Hughes brand converter can't cope with the loss of signal. Weird, huh?

-- Allen
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Maddy McCall Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 07:27 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. I don't know what converters are.
Can you tell me? :-)
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arwalden Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 08:47 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. A Converter Is The Black Box That Goes BETWEEN The Satellite Line
and your television set. It *converts* the digital satellite signal into a signal that your TV can understand.

DirecTV installers offer many different brands of converters. They all perform the same function, but some are (obviously) of better quality than others and the style of on-screen menus & channel guides varies. Some offer title-search functions. Others offer personalized lists and age-appropriate lock-out controls.


-- Allen
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Maddy McCall Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 08:48 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. Oh. Mine is RCA.
Thanks for teling me what a converter is. I must seem really stupid. :silly:
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skrunch Donating Member (939 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-16-04 03:14 AM
Response to Original message
9. Dr. Dish to the rescue
From OnSat Magazine: www.onsat.com

Every time it rains, I get a loss of picture and sound. Ive heard about rain fade, but I lose it with just the slightest amount of rain. Cloudy days dont seem to be a problem. Where should I look to solve this problem. R. Swindelle, GA


You have a connector that is letting water inside it very easily.

Check all of your outside connections. If they all look good, make sure that you dont have some kind of break in your cable to the dish that is allowing water to become a problem.

Sometimes, wind and time will wear the insulation off a cable where it enters a pipe or wall if is not secure.

Before removing coax cable connections, unplug your satellite receiver from the wall electrical receptacle. Any cable fitting that has any water intrusion problems will fail eventually. Before they fail your signal strength may drop off a little each day unit it goes out.

All connectors should look clean and free of rust and corrosion. Some installers use a silicon type sealant or a white coax fitting paste. These sealants are very good but when you remove the fitting you should replace the sealant when replacing the fitting to assure a good reseal of the fittings. Do not use regular silicon. A special dielectric (nonconductive) sealant is required.

If you remove a fitting, it looks OK, but you think it was sealed with a die-electric sealant, contact your local satellite TV service technician for replacement sealant. If the fitting looked bad you can replace it with RG-6 or RG-59 fittings from your local hardware or electronic store. Take one of your bad connectors as a sample to make sure you get the right type of connector. If you are uncomfortable with stripping and crimping coax wiring, you should have a satellite service technician make the repair.

Poor or improperly installed fittings will fail and (or) result in several other operational issues. The fittings are critical to the proper operation of your satellite system.
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