How to Improve TV Signal

There are few things more frustrating than missing your favorite TV show due to a bad broadcast signal. In addition, interference can cause TV channels to go missing. So, signal strength is a big deal for bringing television stations to your home. In order to bring the best of over-the-air TV to your antennas, it’s good to know how to improve a TV signal. This is one of the main considerations that you should keep in mind when looking for the best TV in the market.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • A weak TV signal is usually due to an issue with the antenna.
  • Most fixes involve adjusting either the placement of or connection to the TV antenna.
  • In extreme cases, you may need to replace your antenna or buy a signal booster

How to Improve My TV Signal

If you are dealing with a weak signal, there are easy ways to clear up your chosen channels. Most solutions involve adjusting antennas, but there are some that will require you to use your TV menu. In some extreme examples, you’ll need to replace your antennas or find your local broadcast towers through the internet. You can also check to see if you can watch TV without cable. Read on, and we’ll walk you through each way to improve television signal strength.

Check Your Antenna Connections

For over-the-air TV, you have to use an antenna. There are two types of television antennas: indoor and outdoor. Both receive signals from broadcast antennas and each can suffer from interference.

Outdoor Antenna

An outdoor antenna is best placed on the roof or even on a balcony. The wires that run from your home to the antenna can become worn out by the elements over time. If you notice any frays or tears in the wire, change it out for a decently quick fix.

Indoor Antenna

Indoor antennas are smaller and usually work best on top of your television. If you have pets, your coaxial might have been chewed or frayed. Also, you might consider upgrading your cord if you haven’t in a few years. Newer cables are better at picking up digital signals.

Do a TV Channel Rescan

If you haven’t updated your channel list in a while, it might be time to do a channel rescan. If you’re dealing with missing stations, this is probably the culprit. Use your TV remote to access the “Channel Scan” option and select it. The scan will complete automatically and will fix any outdated broadcast frequencies.

Insider Tip

Use your TV remote to access the “Channel Scan” option and select it.

Move the Antenna

Antenna placement is key when aiming for a solid broadcast signal. For an outdoor antenna, make sure to place it free of any trees or buildings. For an indoor antenna, you can simply change the angle of the antennas. A small move goes a long way and it is best to wait for a few minutes to see if you’ve improved your picture quality. In addition, some digital tuner boxes have a signal detector that will help measure the current broadcast strength and range.

Use a Signal Amplifier

While not usually required, a signal booster or signal amplifier can help when you’re on the edge of the local broadcast signal range. These small black devices are usually under $20, so they are a potentially cheap fix to improve a TV signal. Simply screw the signal booster into the TV and your antenna coaxial cable into the signal amplifier.

Buy a New Antenna

While the TV antenna is a pretty basic device, technology tends to get better with time. If you’ve held on to your antenna for many years, it may have simply worn out. If you notice any corrosion or rust on the ears of your antenna, then it is time to find a replacement. Most antennas are pretty affordable, especially indoor ones. If all of our previous tips have failed, an antenna replacement might be the best choice. In some instances, you may have to replace your old TV if all else fails. You can check out how big a 32-inch tv is and if it is the right fit for you.

Warning

The wires that run from your home to the antenna can become worn out by the elements over time.

F.A.Q.

What Affects TV Reception?

TV reception can be affected by weather, distance from broadcast towers, and the condition of your antenna.


What Antenna Do I Need?

For over-the-air television, you need an antenna and possibly a digital tuner.


Do I Need Cable Service for TV?

You do not need a cable provider to watch TV. There are many great options for over-the-air television.



STAT: As of the 2016–17 television season, there are an estimated 118.4 million households in the U.S. with at least one TV set. (source)

STAT: In general, an Outdoor antenna is always recommended over an Indoor antenna, since TV signal reception can be reduced by as much as 50% when TV signals enter a home. (source)

Christen Costa

Grew up back East, got sick of the cold and headed West. Since I was small I have been pushing buttons - both electronic and human. With an insatiable need for tech I thought "why not start a blog focusing on technology, and use my dislikes and likes to post on gadgets."

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