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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?
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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
Digital Region Overlap4
Freeview reception has changed?5
Two frequency interference 6

Tuesday, 28 February 2012
6:07 PM

Thanks for that ,managed to get my tv back to the normal channels but its still heavily pixelated.My aerial sits below my mums aerial on the chimney stack, never had any problems until now.This tv doesnt let me manually do programmes ,all I get is a blank screen when I try.Any other help appreciated :-)

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Julie's 8 posts GB flag
Julie's: mapJ's Freeview map terrainJ's terrain plot wavesJ's frequency data J's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Dave Lindsay

6:35 PM

Julie: Can you try your TV on your mother's aerial?

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB flag
Wednesday, 29 February 2012
12:05 AM

Have done that and its okay on hers ,I don't know for sure if hers is above mine or below outside,I know the aerial guy fixed them together 4 years ago now

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Julie's 8 posts GB flag
Julie's: mapJ's Freeview map terrainJ's terrain plot wavesJ's frequency data J's Freeview Detailed Coverage
4:57 PM

Had to get a repair guy in,turns out its the freeview tuner in my tv so I have to buy another digital box.Thanks for all your help though, much appreciated.

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Julie's 8 posts GB flag
Julie's: mapJ's Freeview map terrainJ's terrain plot wavesJ's frequency data J's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Thursday, 1 March 2012
gerry wright
8:55 AM

i am in boscombe down in amesbury wiltshire .
since switchover all the channels found when retuning are pixelated and unwatchable .
the t.v. is a relatively new lg flatscreen
and the information in the diagnostics menu shows that the signal strength is at between
80 and 100% but the signal quality is between 0 and 20%. can anyone help please .

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gerry wright's 1 post EU flag
Dave Lindsay

10:04 AM

gerry wright: What transmitter is your aerial directed to? Is it Hannington?

See here:

Freeview signals: too much of a good thing is bad for you | - independent free digital TV advice

You might need to remove any booster you have.

I put the post code for MOD Boscombe Down in to the Digital UK Tradeview and it gives 100s for most multiplexes from Mendip:

Postcode Checker - Trade View

With that in mind, check that it hasn't tuned to Mendip (hence the signal is coming from a direction from which your aerial does not face).

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB flag
Sunday, 4 March 2012
12:22 PM

Dear persons, my neighbour and I are finding that we can not watch tv BBc1 &2 the picture starts to discolour and jump why?

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MAGGIE's 1 post GB flag

1:26 PM

MAGGIE: As this type of question is one involving a reception issue you will really have to indicate your location, (pref: post code) this to enable the signal levels expected in your area to be assessed and the station they are coming from.

Are you viewing on an analogue TV?

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jb38's 7,179 posts GB flag
Thursday, 8 March 2012
kim trehane
10:39 AM

Hi Is anyone else having this problem? I am trying to help my parents sort their tv pixilation problem out. They live in Bognor regis and from 5.30pm - 8.30am every evening for the past few weeks can only watch BBC as the pictures is so badly distorted on all the other channels, it only happens during tis time, during the day all channels are fine. I know the switch over is happening in this area now, but can this be the problem, if it is any idea when it will finish?
Many thanks

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kim trehane's 1 post GB flag
Saturday, 10 March 2012
KB Aerials

8:23 PM

Kim Is there an increase in traffic around the property at these times - could be impulse interferance caused by vehicles passing
Or could be mobile phone interference which sounds daft but I have known amplifiers to be swamped in the past and the picture deteriate due to this - noticed it when I didn't have a clue what was causeing a problem for this customer - I received a text message and at the same time the tv picture froze - we tested it by phoneing my phone and every time it rang the picture went off - and the customer lived next to a main road reported the problem happening around rush hour traffic - allthough we didn't put 2 and 2 togeather untill I got the text - I swapped the amp and as far as I'm aware problem solved

Keith KB Aerials sheffield

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KB Aerials's 274 posts GB flag
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