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Weather Issues

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by dminches, Apr 15, 2009.

  1. dminches

    dminches Godfather

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    Oct 1, 2006
    When I had my first dish put up in 1994 or so it was rare that weather affected reception. Now it seems like the majority of the HD channels are out when it is raining or overcast. Is the issue with the position of the satellites or is it the increased amount of information beamed for HD vs. SD? It is really starting to frustrate me. This has become a major difference between FiOS and DirecTV.
     
  2. Mertzen

    Mertzen Hall Of Fame

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    Dec 8, 2006
    The new ka signals used for HD are more sensitive to rain fade but a well peaked dish shouldn't see abnormal rain fade events in conditions like you describe.

    Post a set of signal strengths especially 103c and 99c and we can tell you if your dish needs realigning.
     
  3. dminches

    dminches Godfather

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    Oct 1, 2006
    The signal strength on 103(c) ranges from 20 to 40. On 99(c) it is 40-55. Are those below what I should expect?
     
  4. litzdog911

    litzdog911 Well-Known Member

    12,202
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    Jun 23, 2004
    Mill Creek, WA
    Those are way too low. Those readings should be up in the high 80-90s. Most likely your dish alignment is off a bit. Even very slight misalignment will knock down those HD satellite (Ka-band) readings.
     
  5. wolfman730

    wolfman730 Legend

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    Sep 10, 2006
    Your dish needs a re-alignment. Those signal levels are way to low. They should be at least in the 90 and above range.
     
  6. dminches

    dminches Godfather

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    Oct 1, 2006
    Thanks. My readings on 119 are in the 80s and up. I thought the other readings were normal. Time to call Directv. I assume they'll come out and do a realignment for free?
     
  7. gsslug

    gsslug Legend

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    Sep 13, 2006
    After high winds spun my dish around they charged me around $80. When it happened again it was going to cost another $80. But then they offered me a deal. Purchase the warranty service for $5.99/mo and they will fix it for free. So I did. Now it seems to be locked down tight as despite some high winds it hasn't moved.

    I wonder.............
     
  8. dminches

    dminches Godfather

    497
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    Oct 1, 2006
    I called and made an appointment for 2 weeks from now. Not only will the service call be free, but they have credited my account for 2 weeks programming since that was the first appointment available. I couldn't complain about that.
     
  9. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

    26,078
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    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    Oh yes you can complain about that. Call retention and complain politely and firmly. They can help. And make sure your dish has support legs on it. You should have at least two attached to the upright pipe that the dish is attached to.

    I live in Piscataway and have no problems with rain fade. Of course if there is a massive weather cell on top of you... But, normally, you will not experience it.

    Rich
     
  10. BattleZone

    BattleZone Hall Of Fame

    8,969
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    Nov 13, 2007
    Wow! 40 and below and you should be losing channels on a perfectly clear day. 70 is the absolute minimum threshold to be "acceptable", but there's no reason that you shouldn't be able to get at least into the low 90s on most transponders.

    99c and 103c is where all of the national HD channels come from. These are Ka-band satellites, which use higher frequencies from the sat to the dish than Ku-band sats do. The Ka frequencies are affected more by heavy, wet clouds and rain in the LOS than the Ku frequencies, and require much more aiming precision of the dish. Having said that, DirecTV designed the dish with a larger reflector to compensate by gathering more signal, so once your dish is properly peaked, it should be fairly weather-resistant. It must be terrible right now.
     
  11. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    Piscataway, NJ
    Here in sunny Piscataway, all my readings on those two are mostly in the 90s with a couple in the high 80s. You got an alignment problem, maybe.

    Is that the only HR that you have? If you have another one, can you swap them out a see if the sat sigs change?

    Reason I ask is that I've had HRs that wouldn't read sat sigs and the cause was the HR. When I swapped HRs the sat sigs came in as they should. I'm still using those same two cables without problems.

    Rich
     
  12. dminches

    dminches Godfather

    497
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    Oct 1, 2006
    I have 3 HRs and they all have the same reading.

    When they do the dish alignment can they read the signals while they are on the roof? I recall when I got my first dish I had to yell up to the installer what the readings were.
     
  13. timmmaaayyy2003

    timmmaaayyy2003 Hall Of Fame

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    Jan 27, 2008
    They will have a signal meter with them. Just make sure you confirm good signal at the recievers before they leave.
     
  14. dminches

    dminches Godfather

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    Oct 1, 2006
    That's for sure! Thanks.
     
  15. johnp37

    johnp37 Icon

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    Sep 14, 2006
    Central NJ
    Was this an install set up through Directv? If this installer was from a Directv contractor he should have had the proper(digital) alignment meters to do the job. I can't believe this bozo had to rely on the customer to relay readings from the receiver. When I installed my gear back in '96 from scratch with no knowledge of dish installs, just the manual that came with it, I knew I had to have some kind of meter to align the dish properly. I picked a cheap analog meter for $7 and got it done, perfectly. A lot more complex now.
     
  16. dminches

    dminches Godfather

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    Oct 1, 2006
    I was referring to an install that occurred in early 2000s. It was a contractor for DirecTV but he didn't have a signal meter that I recall.
     
  17. johnp37

    johnp37 Icon

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    Sep 14, 2006
    Central NJ
     
  18. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    My first 5LNB dish was installed by a nitwit that didn't know how to install a 5LNB (he told me that) and installed it as if it were a 3LNB dish. OK, at least he admitted it.

    Took until January thru April of last year to finally get the new (yup, had to have the first 5LNB replaced) dish properly aligned. This finally happened in April, I believe, after several failed alignment attempts. Seems ridiculous now, but that's what happened.

    From the end of January thru April, I followed installers every step of the way and made sure they were doing exactly what I wanted. I went up on the roof and watched them use the digital meter until I felt comfortable with the meter readings and finally got the damn thing properly realigned.

    These guys seem to work on a "quota" system. Seems like they have so many installs and repair jobs that have to be done during their work day, so they tend to hurry up. You (and I mean you) gotta follow these guys and make sure they do everything properly or they leave as quickly as they can.

    When you get the alignment, make them show you how to read the digital alignment meter. It's relatively simple. Then go up on the roof and watch what they do.

    Rich
     
  19. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    Piscataway, NJ
    John, you must get the same guys I do. Not many "good" installers in that group. And they are in too much of a hurry to get to the next job. Ever get one of the Staten Island installers? Nightmare.

    Rich
     
  20. johnp37

    johnp37 Icon

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    Sep 14, 2006
    Central NJ
    Yup, sure have, once or twice, and since I didn't want to deal with these morons again I fixed their screwup myself. I didn't do it myself in the first place since I have the PP. On the other side of the coin I have also had top notch guys who took their time to do it right.
     

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