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Any advice for rain fade?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV General Discussion' started by mikefour77, Aug 15, 2011.

  1. mikefour77

    mikefour77 Mentor

    Jan 24, 2011
    Long story short -

    Up until last week, we only ever lost our signal during lightning storms, and even then, once the storm passed, everything was okie-dokie.

    Now we are losing signal (getting the 'searching for satelite' error - 771 if memory serves me right) almost every time it rains. Just last week, we lost signal during three rain storms, and only one had any sort of associated lightning.

    We are running a SWiM system with 2 HR24s and one R22 under a DECA cloud with the associated cinema connection kit installed almost 2 years ago.

    Any ideas as to why rain fade would get so bad so quickly? LOS seems fine, trees have been trimmed, and signal strength seems to be fine (running 90 or above according to the receiver) so alignment doesn't seem to be an issue.

    Any advice is appreciated!
  2. MysteryMan

    MysteryMan Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

    May 17, 2010
    Changing weather patterns are a pain in the ass. I've experienced more rain fade this year then in all the previous years I've been a DirecTV customer. Damn storm clouds have been coming over the horizon as if they were aiming at my LOS.
  3. Alebob911

    Alebob911 Hall Of Fame

    Mar 22, 2007
    Do you have the PP? Might be worth a call and visit to check the alignment of the dish with a true meter. Might be lighting related. Could have taken a mini surge that is causing issues.
  4. celblazer

    celblazer New Member

    Oct 29, 2007
    Same thing here. I can tell which way a bad storm is coming from my LOS by a 771 error otherwise it can be raining frogs and I'm still watching TV :)
  5. FHSPSU67

    FHSPSU67 CE'er & Retired Engineer DBSTalk Club

    Jan 12, 2007
    Windber, PA
    Same here, I've never experienced as much rain or as many "searching for signal"'s. All transponder readings have been fine when the storms move out.
  6. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Dec 9, 2006
    One thing that might help is to check the size of the splitter you're using.
    While this isn't a "cure all", from your receivers, you only need a 4-way splitter, so if they installed an 8-way, you can improve the loss by changing to a 4-way.
  7. MysteryMan

    MysteryMan Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

    May 17, 2010
    Last month DirecTV sent out a tech to correct problems I was having with a replacement receiver. After he swapped out the LNB and switch he hooked up my new receiver. As he was doing that a storm blew over, preventing him from activating the receiver. Poor guy tried to get a waiver so he could move on to his next appointment bur DirecTV made him wait. Storm cost him nearly a one hour delay.
  8. BosFan

    BosFan Legend

    Sep 28, 2009
    Altoona, WI
    It has been a rough year here too. Last year I needed a realignment and it was bad enough but this summer I have the best numbers for signal strength I've ever had and have had twice the fade issues. :confused:
  9. harsh

    harsh Beware the Attack Basset

    Jun 14, 2003
    Salem, OR
    Bear in mind that the problem isn't the lightning. It is the associated clouds and the moisture that they are carrying that block/diffuse the satellite signal.
  10. mikefour77

    mikefour77 Mentor

    Jan 24, 2011
    I guess this is a bigger problem than just me. Maybe we can blame bigger clouds? :lol:

    Now that you mention it, they did install an 8 way. I assume I can pick up a 4 way at solid signal? With the SWiM, multiswitches don't work, right? I only ask because I have some old multiswitches lying around.
  11. WestDC

    WestDC Well-Known Member

    Feb 9, 2008
    You can set your program gudie to "show ALL Channels" I find that when I lose a HD channel I can switch to a SD version and continue watching it till the storm blows over.

    Unless you are watching a NON duplicated channel (example 561) then I switch to the sd weather channel. :D
  12. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Dec 9, 2006
    "Right" splitters only.
  13. NR4P

    NR4P Dad

    Jan 15, 2007
    Sunny Florida
    Are the 90 and above on the 99c, 103ca and 103cb sats? Those are the HD sats and that's what you need for minimal rain fade.
  14. mreposter

    mreposter Hall Of Fame

    Jul 29, 2006
    thanks for the tip, I never thought of
    switching to the SD channel to see if
    it had a better signal during storms.
  15. schlagle

    schlagle Mentor

    Nov 22, 2009
    Yep, I can't remember the last time I lost the SD feeds in a storm.
  16. dbalone

    dbalone Mentor

    Dec 16, 2008
    I am here in NC/SC border area and I can only remember rain fade maybe once in my first two years with Directv. This year I bet at least 4-5 times. Very heavy storms not only right on top of me but around me too.
  17. mikefour77

    mikefour77 Mentor

    Jan 24, 2011
    Excellent advice. I never would have thought of that one.

    Actually, right now there is a pretty good rain storm over Boston and we have good service. The meter readings are as follows:

    99c = low 58 / high 82
    103ca = low 71 / high 80
    103cb = low 69 / high 85

    So I guess that would not be good. For reference (although I don't know if this makes a difference, the 101 = low 82 / high 100.
  18. bigglebowski

    bigglebowski Legend

    Jul 27, 2010
    Im in the same area and have same experience other than I have only had DTV SWM LNB just over a year now so missed half of this season last year. During some of this weather in the last 2 months and I pull up signal meter and even 101 is in the dirt or zeros. I have avg 95s on the Ka sats when things clear up. Even when most of the rain passes over it still takes a bit for the cloud cover to roll by before you can watch a stable HD channel. I dont think it has lasted much more than 10 minutes under the total blackouts.
  19. davring

    davring Hall Of Fame

    Jan 13, 2007
    You do need to get the dish peaked for best results, I don't experience much rain fade, only occasionally and we get some very hard rain in the summer months, we call it monsoon season:)

    For comparison my readings are:
    103cb 94-98
    103ca 93-99
    99c 92-98
  20. RobertE

    RobertE New Member

    Jun 9, 2006
    Note that his readings are during a rain storm. Need clear weather readings for any valid comparison.

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