Any advice for rain fade?

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

  1. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Dec 9, 2006
    I'd say you will have done all you can and have to leave the rest to mother nature.
  2. Dr_J

    Dr_J Icon

    Apr 15, 2007
    Run the system test under the system setup and make sure you're getting a dish alignment error message. If you do, then you're good to go. If not, then wait for a rainy day when the signals are down and run it. When I called in for my recent dish realignment, they had me run the system test while on the line, and a diagnostic code pops up that you have to give them.

    You MUST say that you're getting the 771 "searching for satellite" message at the time you call, even if you're not. I learned the hard way over 4 years ago that they won't send anyone out if you're not getting that 771 message, so you have to say you are. If it's raining out, you have to say it's clear, or they still won't send anyone out because it will be a "weather-related" signal loss. After I told the CSR I was getting the 771 message, he had me run the system test, which gave the dish alignment error message. My 99 satellite signals were in the 40's to the 60's, and my 103 signals were in the 60's and 70's, and now I've got the best signals I've ever had in 12 years after the realignment.
  3. Steve

    Steve Well-Known Member

    Aug 22, 2006
    I would definitely have them come out. I have 7-100s and 2-99s on my 101, and all 90's and above on 99c, 103ca and 103cb, and I still have had the worst year of my 10 years with D* with lost recordings to rain fade, cloud cover, hail... you name it! And I'm about 20 miles north of Manhattan, as the crow flies, so further south than you.
  4. jangell2

    jangell2 Godfather

    Apr 6, 2004
    Is this really an option? I thought there were standard DTV dishes and no choices. I wonder if DTV would do this as a free upgrade if I complained about all my rain fade.
  5. RobertE

    RobertE Active Member

    Jun 9, 2006
    Not only will they NOT do it for free, they won't do it period. You would either need to MacGuyver your own dish, or spend the several hundred dollars on the Alaska/Hawaii dish. Even if you went with the AK/HI one, you will have ZERO support. Why? Because no HSP in the 48, will carry those parts, with very few exceptions. You will be will across the do it yourself & support it yourself line.
  6. Carl Spock

    Carl Spock Superfly

    Sep 3, 2004
    1) Buy a book

    - or -

    2) Watch something on the DVR during storms.

    I, too, have experienced more frequent rain fade this year than in the past few years but I can also remember it being this bad many years ago.
  7. BattleScott

    BattleScott Hall Of Fame

    Aug 28, 2006
    I would certainly have the dish checked, alignment is probably the most likely culprit and it's not unheard of for the intial install to be done in a somewhat "less than optimum" fashion. BUT, another thing to pay attention to is the track of the storms. The dish is pointed towards the southern sky so any rain clouds that pass south of you are going to have the worst effect on signal. In my location that is the typcal pattern of any severe weather that comes through. The moisture that comes out of the gulf of mexico is usually the driving factor and causes the storms to track from the SW to the NE almost always causing brief signal losses. However, this year the prevailing pattern is that the very few storms are coming from the NW and heading SE or many time from W to E and we have had very few interuptions.
  8. oldfantom

    oldfantom Icon

    Mar 13, 2006
    Move to Texas. The drought we are in is supposed to last for at least another year.
  9. P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

    Jul 25, 2002
    W.Mdtrn Sea
    I know one standard (DTV Hawaii/Alaska) 1.2m option; other one - your hands and little thoughts and experience to build it.
  10. mikefour77

    mikefour77 Mentor

    Jan 24, 2011
    Alright.... this might be a silly question, but when I was looking at my setup to swap out the 8 way with a 4 way, I noticed that the current set up does not actually use the 'in' on the 8 way. Instead, my setup looks like this:


    The PI is located between the dish and the 8 way, and the input on the 8 way is not used. Please note that one of the two lines to each HR24 are not used. They only exist from my previous legacy setup.

    So, clearly my system works, but I am confused as to how it works since the input on the 8 way is not used. If I swap this out for a 4 way, should I just hook it up to the input?

    Apologies in advance for my apparent confusion.
  11. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Dec 9, 2006
    This could explain "a whole bunch" of your rainfade.
    The SWiM/dish is feeding into an output of the 8-way, which has ~ 24 dB of loss to the other outputs, but does "eventually" get the signal there.
    The first thing to do NOW!!! is move the cable from the PI going into port #1 to the INPUT.
    How does Rom White put it "you can't fix stupid" :lol:
    So while changing over to a 4-way from an 8-way will boost the levels by about 5 dB, connecting the #$^%$% cables right in this case will boost it about 10 dB.
  12. trh

    trh This Space for Sale

    Nov 2, 2007
    NE FL
    Not such a silly question.
  13. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Dec 9, 2006
    This would also work and you can add the 2-way where you need another receiver:
  14. mikefour77

    mikefour77 Mentor

    Jan 24, 2011
    Ya know, I spent about 20 minutes in my basement last night, staring at the damn thing, trying to understand how the system worked if you bypassed the input. So clearly, I am not too crazy.

    Cable will be switched tomorrow (my wife is currently watching TV). Then we shall see how the levels look and take it from there.
  15. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Dec 9, 2006
    "Levels" may not vary but a few points, as these are bit error rates, but "system reserve" [power that you can't see] will improve about 10 fold, which is where rainfade comes in [or in this case comes in less].
  16. mikefour77

    mikefour77 Mentor

    Jan 24, 2011
    Thanks. The 2 way between the receiver and the BB DECA is where it is due to the location of the existing wiring and the router.

    As long as that part does not poorly affect the system as a whole, it would be much simpler to leave that as it stands. I really don't want to try to add another cable.
  17. mikefour77

    mikefour77 Mentor

    Jan 24, 2011
    Excellent!! Thanks again for all your assistance.
  18. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Dec 9, 2006
    For those that don't know "dBs" here's a poor explanation:
    The power out of the SWiM at the dish is say 1
    The receivers can work fine with 1/1000th of this power.
    The 8-way and your longest run should give the receiver about 1/400th, but with it connected to the output instead of the input, the receiver is getting maybe 1/900th of the signal, which means as soon as the signal "to the dish" drops 1/100th, is give you 771 errors.
    Now this isn't exactly how it all works, but is to give you the idea of it and how "system reserve" comes into play, as if the receiver only needs 1/1000th but is getting 1/400th, it can drop 2.5 times before the receiver reaches its minimum signal level.

    Think I'll stick to dBs :lol:

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