TVs have come of age; you can now enjoy quality pictures and audio thanks to digital technology.
But as much as digital TVs are more advanced, they are not exempt from the age-old signal issues.
Your TV might lose signal for various reasons, and dealing with it can be frustrating if you don’t know what to do.
This guide explains why your digital TV has signal issues and what you can do to improve the reception.
1. Poor Reception
Your TV will struggle to maintain signal strength because of reception issues, leading to a “No Signal” message intermittently popping up on the screen.
Why Do I Get a “No Signal” Message or Pixelated Screen?
Some causes of poor reception are avoidable, while others are inevitable. For instance, extreme weather, such as heavy downpours and hailstorms, can cause reception issues, forcing your TV to lose its signal. You may have to wait for the conditions to improve to resume watching.
Incorrect tuning, loose cables, and physical obstacles are some of the avoidable and correctable causes of poor TV reception.
What Affects the Antenna Reception?
You can improve your reception by realigning your antenna or installing an amplifier. Get rid of all obstacles along the path to your digital receiver, and ensure all cables are firmly in the correct ports.
Lastly, assess your TV’s signal strength and quality to determine if you need to adjust your antenna or install a booster.
To check your TV’s signal information, simply:
- Open a channel with signal issues
- Press the MENU button on your remote
- Go to Settings
- Select Help or Support
- Choose Self Diagnosis or Signal Diagnostics
- Select Signal Information to view signal strength and quality
How to Check TV Signal Strength on a Samsung TV
2. Electromagnetic Interference
Appliances like microwaves and gadgets like baby monitors may interfere with signal transmission, leading to a blank screen or poor pictures.
The quickest way to deal with electromagnetic interference is to ensure the gadgets are not close to your TV or digital receivers.
Moreover, turn off all unused electrical devices and appliances.
3. Poor Connections
Sometimes your digital TV might lose signal because of poor connections or low-quality coaxial cables.
Whether you are using a satellite box or an over-the-air antenna, the connections from the input source to your TV must be firm and in the correct ports. If not, your TV will likely have signal issues.
Does the Type and Quality of a Coax Cable Affect Your TV Reception?
Fortunately, fixing loose or poor connections is not hard. You only need to disconnect all cables and reconnect them one by one.
Check all cables for bends and damages, and ensure they are firmly in the appropriate ports to prevent signal issues.
Replace damaged or defective cables with known functional ones to stabilize your TV’s signal.
4. Faulty Equipment
Your TV might have signal issues because of faulty or damaged set-top boxes and receivers.
Unless the damage is apparent, it might take time for you to realize your equipment is the cause of the problem.
Even though it is possible to repair a damaged set-top box, replacing it is the ideal solution to prevent further issues.
However, if your set-top box is acting up because of glitches, consider rebooting or resetting it.
Here are the steps to reboot your cable box:
- Unplug the power cord from the wall outlet or the back of the device
- Wait for at least 30 seconds
- Reconnect the power cord into the wall outlet
- Turn on your cable box and check if this resolves the problem
How to Reboot a Cable Box (or any DTV Box)
For a broken or damaged antenna, consider replacing it with a new higher gain antenna to improve the reception and prevent signal issues.
5. Improper Antenna Installation
The main advantage of using an over-the-air antenna is that you can watch local channels without paying monthly bills.
However, you must install the antenna correctly to prevent signal issues. Improper antenna installation can cause signal issues.
How to Mount and Install an Outdoor TV Antenna
6. Service Outages
Sometimes your digital TV might lose its signal because of a service outage in your area.
While many TV providers usually inform their customers of outages and scheduled maintenance, some outages occur unexpectedly.
You can call your cable or satellite TV provider to find out more about the service outage and how long it would take to fix it.
How to Boost Your Digital TV Signal
Learning how to improve your TV reception can help you avoid or fix signal issues. Here are a few tips;
Ways to Improve Your TV Reception
1. Install a Signal Amplifier
Poor reception often results from weak signals caused by bad weather, latency issues, and interference. If you reside far away from a broadcast tower, you may experience signal problems on your digital TV.
Installing a signal amplifier or booster can help solve the problem. However, ensure you pick the correct amplifier since some models amplify everything, leading to signal overloads.
Antenna Signal Amplifiers Explained
2. Use an Outdoor Antenna
Consider using an outdoor antenna and installing it higher up to improve your reception. An outdoor over-the-air antenna can pick up TV signals better than an indoor option. Besides, they are less prone to interference or obstruction.
3. Remove Splitters
Your TV may have signal issues if you are using one antenna for multiple TVs with a splitter.
As the name implies, a splitter splits your TV signal into two or more, weakening the signal strength.
The more TVs connected via a splitter, the weaker the signal.
4. Adjust Your Antenna
Whether you are using an indoor or outdoor over-the-air antenna, you must orientate it to face the direction of the broadcast towers.
Visit a site like antennaweb.org to find TV station maps indicating where to point your antenna.
How to Properly Point an Antenna for Best Reception
Frequently Asked Questions
Question: How do I stop my TV from losing signal?
Answer: A proven way to stop your TV from losing signal is to ensure all cable connections are firmly in the correct ports. If you use an antenna, position it strategically near a window and direct it toward the broadcast transmitter.
Question: What is affecting my TV signal?
Answer: Electromagnetic interference and physical obstacles are the main culprits affecting your TV signal. These include trees, metal roofs, hills, wall insulations, and equipment such as microwaves, hair dryers, computing devices, and cordless phones.
Question: How do I check my TV signal strength?
Answer: You can quickly check your signal strength through your TV’s Help or Support menu. Press the home or menu button to access the support or help menu and navigate to signal information.
Question: What causes poor signal strength?
Answer: Poor signal strength can emanate from bad weather conditions, electromagnetic interference, latency issues, signal overload, improper antenna installation, damaged mast, and loose cable connections.
Question: How can I boost my digital TV signal?
Answer: The quickest way to boost your digital TV signal is to install a TV antenna amplifier. You can also reposition your antenna or receiver to reduce electromagnetic interference and avoid obstacles.