10 Steps for Troubleshooting the RV Antenna System

People adore taking RV trips because they can take their home comforts with them wherever they go. But occasionally, RV owners encounter problems with TV antenna reception and other things.

An antenna may be harmed by a variety of factors. They consist of knots, frayed wires, and loose connections. Sometimes the wall plate does not work properly and cable voltage also could be an issue. Identify any issues and fix them

Here are the most prevalent causes of RV antenna problems:

RV Antenna Problems

Why Is My RV Antenna Not Working?

Numerous things can harm an antenna. They are made up of tangles, frayed wires, and loose connections. The cable voltage can also be an issue and the wall plate can malfunction occasionally.

Sometimes if for whatever reason your amplifier is turned off, your antenna will pick up significantly fewer channels than it would if it were turned on.

Wall Plate Not Working

The voltage of the wall plate can be checked. Due to the fact that wall plates may malfunction.

If there is no voltage in it, that specific component might need to be replaced. It is preferable to seek the advice of a technician for a potential repair or recommendation on replacing the wall plate if there is a problem.

Coaxial Cables Not Working

No reception at all may be caused by corroded cables or poorly performing coaxial cables. Check the cables for any indication of miswiring or disconnections before evaluating this factor.

Additionally, you should look for disconnected or damaged cables. Check the cables for loose contacts or any other electrical issues. To determine whether the cable is functioning properly, you can also use a voltmeter.

Problem with Cable Voltage

When a campground wire in 220 volts when it should only be 120 volts, it occasionally causes high-voltage issues like smoked wiring and burnt-out electronics.

On the other hand, low voltage in your RV from an RV park’s electrical system can be a problem as well, which can result in unanticipated damage and costly repairs.

Failing Antenna Amplifier

Keep in mind that the antenna itself contains the amplifier, also referred to as a signal booster. Taking this into account, there is a good likelihood that your antenna may be to blame for any amplification problems.

If the coaxial wire begins to fray or is harmed. The amplifier will then encounter issues as it struggles to receive all the electricity.

The power supply failing is another frequent factor that might cause the amplifier in your RV to stop working.

rv Antenna problems (Head)

The antenna’s head being shortened is frequently to blame for poor reception or an antenna that won’t work. In this situation, you can turn on the wall plate after unplugging the antenna head.

10 steps for Troubleshooting the RV Antenna System

Step 1

Make sure the light is on by turning on the wallplate switch (booster).

Step 2

Disconnect the coax cable from the antenna head while standing on the RV’s roof. Take a look at corrosion.  

Step 3

Attach the positive lead (red) to the coax’s center conductor and the ground lead (black) to the connector’s exterior. It should register around 12 DC volts.

Step 4

If there is voltage, it means the coax cables and wallplate switch are in good condition and functioning properly. The amplifier inside the antenna head is most likely the source of the issue. It’s time to swap out the antenna head.

Step 5

If the antenna head doesn’t have 12 volts, you must check the voltage on the rear of the wall plate switch.

Step 6

Disconnect the coax cable from the board-mounted coax connector on the wall plate switch and remove the wall plate switch from the wall. When viewed from the back, with the coax jacks pointing up, this connector is on the right side.

Step 7

The voltage on this jack should be measured while the switch is still on. It should have a dc voltage of about 12 volts.

The positive (red) line should be attached to the wire or paper clip that you previously inserted, and the ground (black) lead should be placed on the outside of the jack.

Step 8

If you have voltage at this location, the coax cable between this location and the antenna head is where the issue is. The coax connection under the baseplate on the roof is where it will most likely be found.

Step 9

Pull the boot away from the boot collar on the baseplate to gain access to the connectors by pulling on the coax cable. Check for corrosion and repair these connectors as necessary.

Step 10

The wall plate switch needs to be replaced if the light is on but there is no voltage present on the coax jack on the back of the switch.

Guidelines and Caution

  • If your RV TV antenna isn’t working properly, your only options are to replace the antenna or a defective cable.
  • If you lack a firm understanding of electrical systems, avoid attempting any difficult repairs.
  • When working around electrical lines in or around your RV, put on safety gloves.
  • Recall that outside antennas provide far better reception when choosing between inside and outdoor RV antennas.
  • Lower the antenna to protect it if you’re traveling in an RV on rugged terrain or through dense forest.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why aren’t my RV’s channels being picked up by the antenna in cities?

Check to see whether your amplifier is on if you’re camping in a city and your TV can’t locate any channels when it scans. If not, turn it on and perform the scan again.

Why is my RV’s antenna not picking up a signal?

The signal being picked up might not be strong. Make sure the coaxial cable connection is secure and avoid utilizing a signal splitter while using an over-the-air antenna. To enhance the signal, the antenna might need to be changed. Make sure the connection to the TV’s back is secure whether utilizing cable or satellite.

READ ALSO: Predator 3500 generator problems and how to fix them?

Final Words

If you are in a place with poor coverage or reception issues, you may experience no signal or weak signals frequently. Additionally, if you want a better-quality image, always spend money on a sturdy antenna and a booster.

You can troubleshoot your antenna on your own, but if it becomes too difficult or you’d just rather have the work done elsewhere, a professional can assist you with upgrading your entertainment system and installing it for you in addition to assisting you with your RV TV antenna.

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