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Service Call pole mount Problems


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14 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   leeliam

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 06:58 PM

Had a service with a customer was complaining of pixelization. I get there and AMC channel 254 has severe pixelization along with a bunch of other channels. I walk outside and notice the ground block has those blue click on connectors and none of the connectors were compressed. I put in a new quad ground block, new connectors, and add a ground. I then repeak the dish and it fails the 119 odd on my AIM meter so I replace the Ka/Ku LNB. Repeak and walk back inside. Still has severe problems with pixelization.

I run a cold drop from the LNB straight through the front door and into the basement and still pixelizing. So from the cable going into the D12 to the LNB everything is brand new from my truck. I swap out the D12 and it’s still happening on the new receiver. I took out my cube and check the sockets and the all pass. So now I’ve basically rebuilt a 1 box Ka/Ku install and it’s still pixelizing.

I swap the system over to SWM and it’s still happening. I finally at this point have called my team lead about 5x and am completely stumped. We tried cutting the ground and swapping the power cable to another socket. Nothing and it’s the same problem on all three receivers throughout the house on an install that is 2.5 years old. It just started happening a few months ago.

Team Lead finally suggests putting in a new pole mount. I end up moving the pole 7 feet over and just pole pounding it into the ground without concrete and put the existing dish on the new pole. It works perfectly.

I’ve got to go back tomorrow and put the pole into the ground with concrete but, seriously what in the hell kind of demon service call and what could the pole have hit to cause problems with every receiver in the house. The install is 2.5 years old and they just started having problems a few months ago.

What could I have done to figure out the pole was causing problems. I tried using a voltmeter and it's not showing any problems, but I'm not the best with a voltmeter.

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#2 OFFLINE   Birdman79

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 07:33 PM

Maybe a car next door with a radar detector?

#3 OFFLINE   jdspencer

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 07:49 PM

Any electrical or electronic changes made in the vicinity of the old pole mount area? You said you used a voltmeter. Did you check for voltages between the pole and any other wiring around?
DirecTV since '96, Waivers for ABC, CBS, NBC, & Fox, HR23-700 & HR24-500/AM21, using ethernet based MRV.

#4 OFFLINE   BattleZone

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 07:53 PM

I agree, kind of. The fact that all receivers were having the same issue tells you it's almost certainly the dish. The fact that you replaced all of the dish components tells you that the dish location could be an issue, and the fact that things worked after moving the dish confirms that. I'd guess that there's something causing RF interference that the dish is picking up, and moving it was enough to get rid of the problem.

It's possible that someone set up a microwave link that is sending radio waves right over the house, and if there's enough bleed at the right frequencies, you're screwed.

Commercial & Residential Satellite System Design & Installation
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#5 OFFLINE   leeliam

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 08:02 PM

No changes or any other electrical work anywhere in the vicinity, ground and snow all around are unbroken. I don't think it would be microwave since channel 254 would be a different Freq between the SWM and Ka/Ku installs.

I knew it was the dish just never seen a problem with a pole. I moved the dish 6ft away and the problem cleared.

#6 OFFLINE   samrs

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 04:16 AM

Cuz, your AIM is stupid.

AMC comes from the 101 on a D12, along with a bunch of other channels.
The freq's haven't changed on that end since the FCC set them up a few years back.

When you go back out put the zip code in your AIM and select 18" ODU.
Use that azimuth and elevation in conjunction with your compass and inclinometer to search for a small obstruction, waving in the breeze.

If you don't find one I'll give you a few forum bucks towards a DBS Talk Club Membership. You will be able to get into the members lounge where they keep all the pics of naked chicks and the good jokes.

#7 OFFLINE   leeliam

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 05:58 AM

Houses in the area are only a few years old, there isn't anything above 20 degrees elevation. It was also happening on the HD receiver. They have an H23 and two D12s all seeing the same problem. I know the freq's and Sat's are different between the SD and HD versions. Plus when swapping it over to swim the 100Mhz band would be affected. 254 wasn't the only channel, just one of the worst.

Going back today to set the pole in concrete and tidy it up.

#8 OFFLINE   joe diamond

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 10:12 AM

Houses in the area are only a few years old, there isn't anything above 20 degrees elevation. It was also happening on the HD receiver. They have an H23 and two D12s all seeing the same problem. I know the freq's and Sat's are different between the SD and HD versions. Plus when swapping it over to swim the 100Mhz band would be affected. 254 wasn't the only channel, just one of the worst.

Going back today to set the pole in concrete and tidy it up.


I would be interested in how this one pays out. You have worked on their system....moving a pole and rebuilding the exterior wire. Now you are making another trip. On whose nickel is all this being accomplished? Tell me this is not a thirty buck service call.

Also, I would be curious to know if there was any change in performance with and without the ground wire attached; any arcing as the ground wire is connected? Just a thought.

Joe

Edited by joe diamond, 31 January 2011 - 10:13 AM.
typo


#9 OFFLINE   veryoldschool

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 10:29 AM

Interesting problem.
What would have been interesting to know was what the CNR was before the move.
The two aspects of the signal are strength and carrier to noise ratio.
Relocating the dish suggests "noise" was the problem.
A.K.A VOS

#10 OFFLINE   leeliam

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 06:27 PM

I also cut the ground wire to check if that could have been the problem before moving the dish to a new pole. No change.

Yes the 2.5 hours of work are part of the service call pay. I'll have to go back and do the pole mount in concrete for nothing additional. I could ask for, and probably get, some extra pay. Honestly though it all evens out in the end. I had a job today where the customer was watching DirecTV and I was just there to verify the self-move was done correctly. Had to replace the SWM LNB, repeak, and ground the system and it took 45min. Next job customer was moving out of the house and taking his receivers with him and his parents were replacing the exact boxes. Walked in and activated, checked the system and walked out.

I believe in Installer Karma. The less I bitch about work the more likely the next job is amazing. Helps that my boss knows when I have a bad day and takes care of my route the next day to help out. Big SWM installs in areas that are mainly prewired homes. They know when a tech spends extra time to get an install up to code instead of just running and gunning it and faking the way through an IV retest.

Although where I work the management takes care of the tech so not all HSPs may be the same.

#11 OFFLINE   TBlazer07

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 08:45 PM

Do you guys use a post digger to install the poles? It must be a heck of a job digging the holes for the poles (especially in the cold parts of the country during winter). Can't imagine how they do it out here in the NE.

#12 OFFLINE   joe diamond

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 09:31 PM

Do you guys use a post digger to install the poles? It must be a heck of a job digging the holes for the poles (especially in the cold parts of the country during winter). Can't imagine how they do it out here in the NE.


I like a long nursery spade and a moon shaped edging tool for kicking in the cable. You don't have a lot of room for specialty stuff...+ the hole ends up being bigger than what a post hole digger will do.

Digging frozen soil isn't worth the trouble. When the soil thaws there is a good chance something will heave. Then you're back where you started.

At some point each season they start using sled mounts or just putting everything on the roof.

Joe

Edited by joe diamond, 31 January 2011 - 09:31 PM.
typo


#13 OFFLINE   joe diamond

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 09:36 PM

I also cut the ground wire to check if that could have been the problem before moving the dish to a new pole. No change.

Yes the 2.5 hours of work are part of the service call pay. I'll have to go back and do the pole mount in concrete for nothing additional. I could ask for, and probably get, some extra pay. Honestly though it all evens out in the end. I had a job today where the customer was watching DirecTV and I was just there to verify the self-move was done correctly. Had to replace the SWM LNB, repeak, and ground the system and it took 45min. Next job customer was moving out of the house and taking his receivers with him and his parents were replacing the exact boxes. Walked in and activated, checked the system and walked out.

I believe in Installer Karma. The less I bitch about work the more likely the next job is amazing. Helps that my boss knows when I have a bad day and takes care of my route the next day to help out. Big SWM installs in areas that are mainly prewired homes. They know when a tech spends extra time to get an install up to code instead of just running and gunning it and faking the way through an IV retest.

Although where I work the management takes care of the tech so not all HSPs may be the same.


I too believed in the installer Karma,

But the last few installer gigs I have had required the police...the courts....extended waiting to get paid if at all. I just parked it.

Joe

#14 OFFLINE   leeliam

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Posted 01 February 2011 - 04:04 AM

I've been pretty lucky so far working the for HSP has been great. The hours are a bit rough and when it slows down we can't kick a job because the dish has to go on a pole.

But honestly the roughest part is not being able to trench cable. I can get a pole in the ground with a drill and a post hole digger/extra cement. However the cable sitting on top of the ground for 2 months is what most people don't like.

#15 OFFLINE   joe diamond

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Posted 01 February 2011 - 11:46 AM

I've been pretty lucky so far working the for HSP has been great. The hours are a bit rough and when it slows down we can't kick a job because the dish has to go on a pole.

But honestly the roughest part is not being able to trench cable. I can get a pole in the ground with a drill and a post hole digger/extra cement. However the cable sitting on top of the ground for 2 months is what most people don't like.




Yup,
That can be dangerous. After giving my phone number and a quote for coming back to dig it in I suggest putting lumber on the cable run. It will minimize tripping and may even be a longer term solution. In only on case in several years I just refused a winter job because I couldn't do a driveway bore in winter and they wouldn't go along with any cable above ground for a month.

Glad the HSP thing is working for you where you are. Around here it has been a constant parade of similar whores with different lipstick. After awhile nobody will talk to them....the quote is..." insufficient local personnel..."

Joe




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