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Freeview intermittent interference

When you get occasional sound loss or picture freezes

When you get occasional sound loss or picture freezes
published on UK Free TV

There are several different types of interference that cause problems. This page deals with the situation where:

  • Freeview reception is perfect or near-perfect most of the time
  • The audio on TV and radio channels mutes momentarily a few times each minute
  • The picture on a Freeview channel freezes a few times each minute

There are two main causes of this type of intermittent interference:
  • 'Induction' interference
  • Mobile phone interference

Induction interference

Induction interference is caused by mains-powered household devices that contain a large motor, such as:
  • Washing machine;
  • Tumble dryer;
  • Central heating pump or combination boiler;
  • Fridge;
  • Freezer;
  • Power tools (drills, jigsaws etc)
  • Vacuum cleaners;
  • Water pumps;
  • Automatic doors

You can identify if one or more of these devices is causing the Freeview reception problem by powering off the devices.

If one of these devices is causing the problem, then the reception problem can usually be solved by using a mains filter device and use it on the Freeview boxes mains connection.

Such as device is this: Maplin: 6-Way Flat Screen and HDTV Surge Protector and Mains Filter.

Mobile phone interference

If you keep a mobile phone by your Freeview box or digital television, keep it further away!

This also applies to other transmitters such as baby monitors, video senders, walkie talkies, and portable phones.

Help with Freeview, aerials?
Can I attach a Freeview digibox to a Combi TV/Video unit?1
My high gain aerial can't get all the Freeview channels I expected2
I can't get Freeview yet, when will it start in my area?3
Are there plans to extend the range of regional variations on Freeview?4
How can I Receive Freeview on two TVs using one box?5
In this section
Official aerial installers guide to the TV spectrum future1
Which free digital TV system will give me the most reliable reception?2
High pressure causing channel loss through "Inversion"3
Digital Region Overlap4
Freeview reception has changed?5
Two frequency interference 6

Thursday, 7 June 2018
12:49 PM

H M Skardhamar: Which channels do you mean by live channels? Have you checked for any loose or damaged cables or connections behind your TV?

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StevensOnln1's 1,877 posts Gold Gold GB
Mark Heselden
6:05 PM

Has anybody any ideas about combating interference from passing aircraft. It's not a big problem but causes occasional momentary drop-outs mainly on HD channels. It's either a signal reflection or blocking problem, I guess. Would using two aerials combined help at all? The airport is Gatwick and the transmitter Reigate.


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Mark Heselden's 1 post GB
Thursday, 28 June 2018
David Johnson
10:40 AM

I have been suffering picture/sound breaking up for the past two afternoon/evenings. Could it be the abnormal weather?

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David Johnson's 1 post GB
12:34 PM

David Johnson: The current weather conditions are a possible cause. It's also worth checking for any loose or damaged cables/connections behind your TV. Do not attempt to retune.

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StevensOnln1's 1,877 posts Gold Gold GB
4:41 PM

David Johnson:

The current warm weather is not 'abnormal' and occurs every year to differing degrees. This year happens to be a fairly hot period, but that is as expected in summer.

Tropospheric lift is a natural event occuring regularly in hot weather and is not unusual at all.

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MikeP's 2,182 posts Platinum Platinum GB
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