Why is my TV reception bad?

Are you experiencing poor TV reception? Frustrated by fuzzy, pixelated, or distorted images? Several factors can contribute to bad TV reception, disrupting your viewing experience. There is no doubt this situation can be very annoying, but the good news is that generally, the problem is a simple one that can be quickly and easily rectified by the homeowner. You can start by trying a few simple steps, along with referring to the manufacturer’s manual you would have received with your television for troubleshooting tips. By understanding the common causes and implementing the suggested solutions, you should be able to improve your digital TV reception significantly.

This information page aims to help you understand common causes of poor television reception and provides tips on how to improve it

Common causes of poor TV reception

  • Signal Strength and Quality: Weak or low-quality signals are a primary cause of bad TV reception. Signal strength can be affected by the distance from the broadcasting tower, obstacles like tall buildings and hills, and interference from other electronic devices.
  • Antenna Issues: A malfunctioning or improperly installed antenna can lead to reception problems. Make sure your antenna is correctly positioned and oriented toward the nearest broadcasting tower. Damaged or outdated antennas may also need replacement.
  • Cable and Wiring Problems: Faulty or damaged coaxial cables and connectors can degrade signal quality. Check for any loose connections, bent pins, or frayed cables. Using high-quality cables and connectors can make a significant difference in signal transmission.
  • Interference: Electronics such as microwaves, cordless phones, and Wi-Fi routers can interfere with TV signals, causing disruptions. Ensure that your TV setup is away from sources of potential interference. Walls and other structures can also block or weaken signals.
  • Weather Conditions: Atmospheric conditions, like heavy rain, snow, or strong winds, can temporarily weaken or disrupt TV signals. While you can’t control the weather, understanding that it can affect reception might explain occasional issues.
  • Multipath Interference: Multipath interference occurs when TV signals bounce off surfaces like buildings, causing multiple signals to reach the antenna at different times. This can lead to ghosting or double images on the screen.
  • Broadcast Tower Location: The location of broadcast towers in relation to your residence matters. If you’re situated far from the tower or surrounded by obstacles, your reception may suffer. Use online tools to determine the direction of nearby towers and adjust your antenna accordingly.
  • Obstructions: Tall buildings, trees, and other physical obstructions between your antenna and the broadcasting tower can weaken the TV signal. Sometimes, repositioning the antenna or raising it to a higher location can help overcome this issue.
  • Satellite and Cable Service Problems: If you’re using a satellite or cable TV service, disruptions in their service can also lead to bad reception. Contact your service provider to ensure there are no ongoing issues affecting your signal.
  • Equipment Malfunction: TVs, tuners, and other equipment can develop faults that affect reception. Rebooting your TV and checking for software updates can help troubleshoot such issues.

Simple tips to help you improve your TV reception

  1. Conduct a channel scan on your TV to ensure you’re receiving all available channels.
  2. Upgrade to a higher-quality antenna designed for your area’s signal conditions.
  3. Use signal boosters or amplifiers if necessary, but avoid over-amplification, as it can cause signal distortion.
  4. Keep cables and connections in good condition, replacing any damaged components.
  5. Clear obstructions that might be blocking the signal path.
technician standing next to Fallon van

When to Seek Professional Help

If your efforts to improve television reception aren’t successful, consider seeking assistance from a professional antenna installer or TV technician. Fallon Solutions can diagnose complex issues and provide tailored solutions for your specific situation. Feel free to call and have a chat with one of our skilled technicians on 1300 762 260. We’re here to help!