I have to admit that I’m not used to watching TV, at least in the traditional way. DTT (Digital Terrestrial Television) is something anecdotal in my daily life and only news or a specific program usually occupies my schedule between streaming hours via Netflix, HBO Max and others. But in those minutes, sometimes I encountered signal outages or a family member asked for my help in this regard. This is why it may be interesting to see what can be done in the event of a breakdown of DTT.

Failures with DTT are usually related to signal problems. And we can try to correct them as long as they are not related to a fault in the antenna, installation or amplifier that we have in the community of neighbors (in individual houses it can also be corrected).

Problems at home or in the community

In cases where the DTT signal starts failing, we may encounter different types of errors. Either the screen appears black with no signal text in one area, or the image is pixelated showing some kind of small boxes that make viewing difficult.

Failures that can occur both if an external DTT receiver is used in older televisions and one that is already integrated in the most recent models. Defects that are generally related to the signal and the first thing to do is to check its quality.

To do this, we just have to move through the system menus and in almost all televisions we will see how the possibility of seeing a bar indicating the quality of the signal appears. In my case, on a Sony, it’s by pressing the “Help” button on the remote, then selecting “Diagnostics”.

Of the two sections, the quality is the most important, because although we have a high quantity value, if the quality is low or medium, viewing problems may occur.

This is the first thing we can check, but it is not the only thing that can cause breakdowns inside the house. Another important point is the wiring and many antenna cables are old or in poor condition. In this sense, it is important to check that the cables are well connected, that there is no slack in the connections and that the cables are not broken, in poor condition (gnawed, passed…) or coiled, because the wiring in the form of a loop, it can act as an antenna and pick up radio frequencies from the outside. It should be borne in mind that if a single hair of the mesh of the coaxial cable touches the metal, reception problems may be generated.

If it is necessary to replace the cable, try to obtain a quality coaxial cable which generally has better gain and filters which avoid signal problems.

In addition, it is also important to check that the television sockets have not suffered any problems. Both the socket on the device itself (receiver or television) and, above all, the installation that is on the wall.

Regarding the installation, one consideration should be made and that is that all electrical conduits should be separated from the coaxial cabling (and also the fiber), because if they are together they can lead to quality degradation. .

If at home we have several televisions connected to different sockets, it may be interesting to check if they can access the same DTT channel that gives faults and check the signal. If there are differences, it is an internal installation problem in the outlets or the wiring, but if the same error appears in both, the error may already depend on the community installation.

Por eso puede ser interesante preguntar if estos problems de recepción afectan al resto de vecinos del edificio, en cuyo caso probably se necessario ar adaptar la antena colectiva o cambiar el amplificador de señal debido a un fallo de funcionamiento o cambiar alguno de los módulos que puedan dar problem.

This is the case of the neighboring blocks, because in the case of a single-family house, everything depends on the owner: the whole installation and the antenna. If the latter is an old model, it may need to be changed or it may need to be reoriented because it is not correctly oriented or in the current location it receives signals from two repeaters. This is also what had to be done with the arrival of the new DTT channels, where communities had to reorient their antennas in many cases.

Other causes of a bad signal

Also keep in mind that some common household appliances can cause interference. This is the case with poor quality LED lighting, routers, refrigerator motors, washing machines…even malfunctioning boiler or water heater thermostats can cause interference.

Even nature can work against us. If there are tall trees nearby, they can weaken the incoming signal. Also, birds perching on the antenna can affect reception.

Alternatives to DTT by antenna

There are several possibilities that allow access to DTT via the Internet and without depending on the antenna. Whether it’s the sites and applications of each of the television channels, to the web pages and applications that bring all the channels together in one place.

Thus we have seen options such as TDT Channels, Photocall.TV or Tivify which allow access to all TNT channels with an Internet connection. Another system is to use a SATTDT receiver to watch all national and regional channels. It’s DTT via satellite.