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Re-aim Dish or get rid of Directv

Discussion in 'DIRECTV General Discussion' started by mogulman, Jul 18, 2010.

  1. mogulman

    mogulman Godfather

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    Mar 19, 2007
    I've noticed that since the new satellite went into service that we've been getting more skips/drop outs and rain fade is worse. Probably coincidence...maybe..

    Anyway.. I have an HR20 and an H21 hooked up to a Slimline dish. It was installed about 2 years ago as an upgrade from SD service.

    I've attached signal strengths from the 103 sats.

    Is this something that can be fixed by re-aiming my dish. If so... is there anyway for me to get this done without paying for it?

    I lost my job a few weeks ago.. I can't really afford to pay to have someone make this better. I've been contemplating getting rid of Directv to save money, and if this is going to cost something, then that might make my decision for me. I'll either go to bundled cable (with my internet) or just do OTA with my HTPC.

    I'm kind of handy myself, but I've tried aiming my dish (older dish) a few times in the past without really making anything better.

    BTW.. I've had service for about 8 years. I'm not under contract right now.

    Any suggestions?
     

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  2. Carl Spock

    Carl Spock Superfly

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    Sep 3, 2004
    In a recent thread, somebody recently got a free realignment which I think was defined as a $49.99 service call. The CSR said a subscriber is entitled to one free alignment per year.

    Can anyone confirm this?
     
  3. Manctech

    Manctech Icon

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    Jul 5, 2010
    It's called a loyal customer service call which each customer gets one a year starting AFTER their first year.

    Customers after the 90day-> 1year have to pay. After that it's 1 a year free.

    Ask for "Loyal Customer" credit.
     
  4. Carl Spock

    Carl Spock Superfly

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    Sep 3, 2004
    Whoa, you mean I wasn't full of crap? :eek:

    No one's more surprised than me.
     
  5. HDTVsportsfan

    HDTVsportsfan Active Member

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    Nov 29, 2005

    For once. :p

    J/K :)

    To the OP....the new satelite going up has nothing to do w/ your drop outs.
    It sounds like you might be in luck w/ a free service call. I hope your financial situation gets better.
     
  6. Renard

    Renard Godfather

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    Jun 21, 2007
    Seattle, WA
    Well, if it's about money, realign the dish by yourself, it is pretty easy, I moved several times and I don't have the protection plan, and I didn't want to deal with movers connection. my word of wisdom, take a small TV with you, a receiver, look for sat 103 ca, Cb, 99 Ca, without touching the screws, exert pressure on the dish (up and down), and look if the signals go up or down, do the same thing for right and left, then unscrew the bolts (but not too lose) and check signals for sat 103 and 99. 101, 110 & 119 should be all good once you have sats 99 & 103. I installed my dish that way, and i have good signals on all sat 95 to 100% on most sats. it takes time and patienc, but I am sure you can do it. I just re install my dish from scratch with a TV and the signal meters on the receivers, and I never had any problems. Obviously, you just have to tweak your dish so it should be way easier.
     
  7. mogulman

    mogulman Godfather

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    Mar 19, 2007
    Yeah.. It seems like the new sat shouldn't affect things, unless the channels I watch are on the new sat and my signal strength on that sat isn't as good.

    I'll try calling Directv tomorrow and see if they will do anything. If not, I guess I'll try aligning it one more time myself.
     
  8. paulman182

    paulman182 Hall Of Fame

    4,847
    8
    Aug 4, 2006
    Your signal strengths are stronger than mine and I haven't called.

    I'm interested to see what they do for you.
     
  9. The Merg

    The Merg 1*

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    Jun 24, 2007
    Northern VA
    The OP's signal strengths can still be a lot better then what they are. Call up DirecTV and see if they will come out for an alignment at no cost.

    - Merg
     
  10. mogulman

    mogulman Godfather

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    Mar 19, 2007
    Called Directv. They had me swap cables on my tuners. Reboot. Do a system test.... (wasted my time basically)...

    Then told me that in my area, there is nothing they can do unless the signal strength is in the 60s. Even if I was going to pay some $49.95 fee, they wouldn't send someone out because my signal was acceptable.

    I asked if I wasn't happy with the signal quality, because my picture drops out in rain, then what should I do.. cancel and go to cable? The rep said.. it's your choice if you'd like to cancel...

    So I guess that's it...

    I'm probably going to go out there and see if I can adjust the dish a little myself..

    Anyone know which things I should try messing with (up/down) left right... some kind of rotation?

    What signals are considered good or great on the 103 sats?
     
  11. jdspencer

    jdspencer Hall Of Fame

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    Nov 7, 2003
    I'd like to know what the signal strengths are on 99c and 101?

    Also, check the cables and connections. Broken insulation and/or corrosion can hurt the strengths.
     
  12. Carl Spock

    Carl Spock Superfly

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    Sep 3, 2004
    mogulman, I'd never recommend anybody lie to a CSR...

    ...but your numbers are in the 60s. You were mistaken. Many of them are in the 50s. A few are in the 40s. In fact, I think you posted your numbers here. Or was it here? I can't remember.

    ;)
     
  13. bixler

    bixler Hall Of Fame

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    4
    Oct 14, 2008
    PA
    ;);)
     
  14. nn8l

    nn8l Legend

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    Sep 7, 2007
    I called in with numbers in the 50's and it didn't matter. I was told unless I called when I'm getting a 'searching for satellite' message they can't send anybody out. I have the protection plan and have been with D* since 2002, and before that I was with Pegasus, which I guess doesn't count. Between the loss of signal and the audio dropouts on the local NBC and ABC networks (counted 2 to 3 per minute Saturday), I'm happy I'm out of contract.
     
  15. dennisj00

    dennisj00 Hall Of Fame

    9,690
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    Sep 27, 2007
    Lake Norman, NC
    These responses are interesting since the installer that brought my HR24 (and SWiM/Deca) said he couldn't get the 24 authorized without all signals 90+.

    Are there different standards for different areas of the country?
     
  16. cavman

    cavman New Member

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    Jul 10, 2009

    We were getting "searching for signal" almost every time it rained to the point that my wife said "let's go back to cable".

    My satellite numbers were mostly in the low 90s so I couldn't understand why I was having rain fade with even the slightest drizzle.

    Called into directv and they ran my situation up to "case management" (believe me, I am not important or a big shot in any way at all) and was set-up for one of their "top experts" to check out our situation.

    So here's what is weird and I would love the views of any/all ofnthe experts here.

    The guy looks at my dish and says it is angled down too much. He says it isn't really "locking onto the satellites" and is getting "the sides of the signal which appears to be a high number but really isn't". Therefore, this 90+ signal strengths I was showing were false.

    I nodded (although I really didn't know what to think) as he replaced my control arm and the LNB and pointed the dish up higher in the sky. He was checking signals with a handheld device that had the 4 cables from the dish feeding into it.

    When he was satisfied, we went inside and turned on the tv and all signals were in the mid 80s.

    I asked if that was good, to which he replied "these are good numbers. " and then something like "I don't believe any signals in the 90s. These 80s are 'locked' onto the satellites better so you shouldn't have any rain fade anymore."

    Is this guy telling me the truth or pulling my chain? Is it possible to catch the "side of the signal" which could suffer from rain fade more easily even though the signals show in the 90s most of the time?

    Confused
     
  17. mogulman

    mogulman Godfather

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    Mar 19, 2007
    Ok.. Here are the results of me trying to tune it myself. Are those good numbers? I couldn't get it any better. I tried adjusting the two Elevation and AZ bolts. Didn't mess with anything else.
     

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  18. paulman182

    paulman182 Hall Of Fame

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    Aug 4, 2006
    I believe there are higher standards for installs than for systems already in service. They want the signals nice and strong upon installation to avoid issues for as long as possible. Once installed, they don't seem to want send someone out unless you're really having problems...hey, again, that avoids issues for as long as possible! Same goal.
     
  19. cavman

    cavman New Member

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    Jul 10, 2009

    We had some big storms roll through KC earlier this evening and the signal NEVER went out. My wife and daughter were pumped. As mentioned earlier, we previously lost signal at even the slightest hint of rain despite having signal strengths in the 90s.

    So I guess there was truth to the fact that our 90+ signal strengths were false positives and were catching the "edge of the signal" rather than being locked onto the Satellite.

    Thanks to DirecTV, Chris the installer and Nathan (my liaison in customer service). Great work guys. Very happy.

    To the OP, have them come out and do a professional test of your dish aiming, if they won't waive the $50 (which they probably will if you complain or threaten that your wife is telling you to go to cable), then I still think the $50 could be well spent.

    HUGE improvement for us, despite having signal strengths that are now (only) in the 80s (vs 90s previously).

    Best of luck to you.
     
  20. njfoses

    njfoses Legend

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    Sep 14, 2007
    Atlanta
    90+ signal being a false positive and catching the edge of the signal? Signal in the 80's is better now than the 90's? Never heard this before? Anybody care to elaborate?
     

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