Satellite television is usually a reliable way to watch TV, but even a well-installed system will struggle in a torrential downpour of rain. Loss of satellite signal during severe weather is called "rain fade" and it happens because satellite TV broadcasts at low power -- compared to digital terrestrial television and heavy rain -- "block" the signal. Poorly installed satellite dishes are particularly vulnerable to weather-related problems, such as signal loss and picture break-up, so check that your system is properly weatherproofed.
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Things you need
- Self-amalgamating tape
Switch off all satellite TV equipment and disconnect from the AC power supply.
Inspect the full length of coaxial cable from your satellite receiver to the satellite dish and check for holes and fraying. If it is damaged, replace it.
Access your satellite dish safely with a ladder, platform or steps.
Identify the low noise block (LNB) at the end of the dish arm.
Check that the coaxial cable is firmly attached to the output socket of the LNB and tighten if required.
Check that the LNB socket/cable joint is properly weatherproofed with either a tight rubber "boot" or securely wound self-amalgamating tape. Replace with new tape if necessary.
Ensure your satellite dish is properly aligned to the transmitting satellite. Loose bolts or screws, and the cumulative effect of exposure to the elements, can lead to dish movement over time.
Ensure the dish is securely fixed to its mount, tightening screws and bolts if necessary.
Check the mount is properly attached to the wall, again tightening bolts and screws where required.
Carefully examine the LNB and check for damage, particularly warping or cracking of the plastic casing. If it is damaged, you will need to replace it.
Tips and warnings
- If your satellite dish is in an exposed location, consider buying and fitting a "rain hood" to the LNB.
- Always disconnect satellite TV equipment from the AC power supply before carrying out any checks or work.
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