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A very strange issue

Discussion in 'DIRECTV Installation/MDU Discussion' started by kensikora, Apr 14, 2012.

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  1. kensikora

    kensikora New Member

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    Oct 28, 2010
    I have a problem and a question.

    I have a 16 port SWM with an 8 way splitter on one leg and on the other leg I go to to a 2 way splitter which one side goes to one receiver, the other side goes to another 2 way splitter with a receiver on each side.

    Here's the problem. Every day between 5:30 and 6 PM, all of the TVs on the 2nd leg "stop working" according to the customer.

    I was able to go there today and this is what I saw:

    1. There were pictures on all three sets but no sound on 2 of them.

    2. When I unplugged the coax from the 2nd port on the SWM 16 to inspect it, when I plugged it in I saw a definite power spark jump to the connector. This also occurred when I was looking at the connection on the 1st 2 way splitter.

    So, my question is:

    1. Is there supposed to be any voltage at all on the SWM 16 ports?

    And has anyone ever heard of this issue with it happening at 6 PM?

    It's a new one on me.

    :lol:
     
  2. Davenlr

    Davenlr Geek til I die

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    Sep 16, 2006
    I believe the receiver sends voltage down the coax. Not sure if it disables that voltage when it detects an SWM or not. Never checked.

    If its from the shield, you might have a ground issue. Other than that, Ive never heard of just the sound going off but the picture remaining at the same time every day. Do they have a series link start recording something on one of the boxes at that time every day? Might be related.

    Is the system internet connected? Possibly something with the CCK when the router grabs a new lease every 24 hrs? Just throwing things out there.
     
  3. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Dec 9, 2006
    How is the SWiM-16 being powered?
    The two options are the center PWR and SWM1/PWR.
    SWM2 shouldn't have any.
    With the splitters, these should narrow down the only receiver that can be sending a voltage, as most only have one power passing leg.
    The H/HR24s shouldn't be powering anything, "but" the earlier receivers will for a DECA. Sounds like these don't have a DECA and one may be sending the voltage.

    None of this should have much to do with the problem though.

    Sometimes there are other things on the circuit that are turned on and cause strange things like this.
    One Christmas it was only the third set of lights that would do it.
     
  4. kensikora

    kensikora New Member

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    Oct 28, 2010
    The receivers are not dvrs, just hd receivers one year old so nothing is recording ever.

    I'll check the ground.

    This is at a timeshare so one possibility is that around 6 PM "everyone" comes in and watches the news.

    The SWM 16 is center powered. It's the same setup I have in 3 other buildings, except the splitter configuration is a bit different in each.

    I checked all the cable ends for stray crossover.
     
  5. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Dec 9, 2006
    Sounds like it should be simple and you'll verify things. Also make sure all open splitter ports are terminated, as that too can cause strange things.

    If these "pictures" were moving [video], then this isn't a SWiM problem.
    Something is going on in the receivers.
     
  6. kensikora

    kensikora New Member

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    Oct 28, 2010
    To make it more complicated and to address the receiver issue, the customer told me that the tv in bedroom A was working, bedroom B wasn't and the living room wasn't working on Friday night. He described pixelation.

    When I was there on Saturday at 6, I turned on the living room tv and got picture, moving with no sound. I turned on bedroom A and got video with no sound but in bedroom B I got picture and sound.

    Again, this symptom is consistent at around 6 PM daily. No issues during the day. They are an older couple that own it and they are in bed early so they didn't know when it comes back on.

    I have no open splitter ports on Port 2.

    I think I'm going to switch them to Port 1 on the SWM and put the other receivers on Port 1, ie, reverse the Port 1 and 2.

    Also, there are spare receivers so I'll swap them out as well.

    Any other suggestions are appreciated.
     
  7. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Changing SWiM ports isn't going to make a difference, "but" is good to do so you'll know what isn't the problem.
    A receiver swap is the next, and then I would progress to the AC circuit these might be sharing.
     
  8. kensikora

    kensikora New Member

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    Oct 28, 2010
    I had to leave the property and the last thing I tried was swapping the port on the SWM 16. I had hoped that was helpful and waited 3 days before calling the customer. It sounded encouraging as he said there was no issue for 2 nights and on the 3rd he was "out" for 30 minutes, again starting around 6 PM or near.

    Ok, so, I hoped and waited until the end of the week and "It's baaak". Randomly says dish not found or pixelated at around 5:30 or 6 PM.

    I'm thinking a bad cable since all 3 tvs are on that one coming from the SWM to them. So, next step is replace that.

    By the way, I had replaced the receiver before and that didn't help.

    I'll let all know the results (could take a week to get down there).

    Ken
     
  9. allenn

    allenn Icon

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    Nov 19, 2005
    Georgia
    Could this be low voltage on the PI? Just thinking about the time of day.

    When I was having 771 messages, I talked to a D* Tech; and he said PIs do not like low input voltage. In my case, it turned out to be a heat saturation problem which was corrected by replacing the PI and installing the new one correctly.

    Best wishes!
     
  10. kensikora

    kensikora New Member

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    Oct 28, 2010
    I'll try a new PS242000A as well, thanks for that tip!
     
  11. ndole

    ndole Problem Solver

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    Aug 26, 2009
    When you're experiencing voltage arcs on the 2nd leg of the SWiM16, that tells me that there's probably a grounding issue coming from the IRD location. I'm wondering if the TV's are picking up voltage from a poorly wired outlet, or some other house common ground voltage. If the IRDs are connected to the TV's with HDMI, this is how that would travel from the TV to the IRD. And that could and usually does damage the HDMI in either/both the IRD and the TV. Maybe this is the cause of your intermittent video/no audio.

    To be on the safe side (liability and otherwise), use an outlet tester at each IRD location, and use either a voltage pen or a VOM to check the house ground. There shouldn't be any reading there.
     

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