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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.

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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
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Freeview reception has changed?5
Two frequency interference 6

Thursday, 13 January 2011

10:16 AM

Laura: You will get better signals from a rooftop aerial. You also have the choice of three transmitters, so you should choose the one with the least interference.

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Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag
11:10 AM

I'm not sure we get a choice...? I have noticed that during and just after the interference the diagnostics have a warning saying "Not able to receive NIT". Not sure if this alludes to another issue.

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Laura's 4 posts GB flag
12:10 PM

Ok will do. Thanks for your help

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Laura's 4 posts GB flag
Sunday, 16 January 2011
1:08 PM


I bought a freeview recorder box, which was working perfectly fine. But recently the sound has gone funny, it is like the people talking has hiccups and it is constant. Even on recorded programmes in my planner.

I have no mobile, power tools or washing machine interference nearby, it is in my daughters bedroom.

The aerial is on the roof and we have never had a problem like this before.

I am hoping it is not the box, it was second hand you see.

Any help would be great

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Elaine's 12 posts GB flag
Monday, 17 January 2011

7:00 AM

Elaine: You could try changing your aerial "fly leads".

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Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag
paul king
10:46 AM

I purchased at XMAS a new 22" digital tv (with built-in DVD) & continue to have intermittent loss of sound which is annoying. Have taken the TV back to retailer twice who exchanged & still problem occurs (venturer & Ferguson makes).

Had an engineer check the aerial reception & this is fine. Tried it in other rooms that already have digital TV & problem still occurs although the TV's already in there are fine.

Can't fathom out what to do next?

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paul king's 1 post GB flag

1:42 PM

paul king: Any you have done everything at the top of the page?

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Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag
Wednesday, 19 January 2011
E Barron
3:25 PM

I still have ITV 3 which freezes with a perfect picure. There is practically no sound. I have no other appliances except the Central Heating. Five USA is also affected. Other digital programmes are fine. Any ideas?

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E Barron's 2 posts GB flag
E's: mapE's Freeview map terrainE's terrain plot wavesE's frequency data E's Freeview Detailed Coverage

3:37 PM

E Barron: If you are using the Emley Moor transmitter, you might expect this to happen with multiplex A until switchover.

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Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag
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