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My 1997 direct tv receiver is losing certain transponders and some channels won't come in, is...

My 1997 direct tv receiver is losing certain transponders and some channels won't come in, is there a way to fix it?
steve asked this question 1 year ago
  • D Girl

    being in crg (customer retention group/save team), i am the last person you will ever need to speak with to...

    You may find you have zero signal strength on some satellite transponders (usually transponders 4, 12, 18, 20, 26 and 28). This is normal; with our new satellite we simply don't use those transponders to deliver a signal to your part of the country.

    Are you getting any error message? call 1-800-531-5000. You may need a service call.

    6 comments

    2 other experts are backing this answer

    • The Super Tech Solver

      Whenever a TV satellite is launched it has a slew of free transponders in case one stops working, so loss of signal is minimal. You'd usually NOT notice this. Year of receiver doesn't necessarily mean bad news, but it could. Your best bet is to call in (yeah, it's a hassle) and do some troubleshooting. At that point you will either get a replacement receiver free (+shipping) or more likely a service call $49+tax without protection plan. When the tech comes out he will realign dish or replace receiver. Hope it all works out!
    • S

      steve

      Thanks so much for your answers. Our situation is that we could update our receivers. Back in 1997 when we launched our service it was before the big digital switch. We live in a very rural place and did not get a signal from a rooftop antenna. We were lucky and after a lot hoop jumping, Direct tv gave us our network channels from the east and west feeds, NY and LA. From what I understand after having a service call, if we upgrade we will lose that "Grandfathered in" Network feed. What I really am trying to do is figure out a way to save our old contract and get past the transponder problem. I have spent hours making minor adjustments to the dish, I think it is aligned correctly because our other receiver works fine. The older receiver won't pick up transponders 4, 12, 18, 20, 26 and 28. Unfortunately those are some 20-25 channels that won't come in including the networks and some other major channels. Thanks again for your feedback, I really appreciate the input.
    • The Super Tech Solver

      Ah yes, the 'grandfather' issue. Nice to have someone with knowledge of what happens. As far as the network feeds, if locals are offered in your area you WILL lose those eventually. FCC regulations require it. People are only entitled to DNS (distant network services) if they have no other options. So there's food for thought. You WILL have to upgrade your plan though which I'm sure would raise your bill somewhat. The other option: 'If' (and of course we don't know for sure) it's your receiver, you could purchase another one outside of DirecTV (ebay, craigs list, yard sale, etc...). You would pay nothing extra with the exception of 'maybe' a new access card which is $20. Wishing you the best Steve!!
    • D Girl

      steve, if you do choose the route of picking up a receiver from ebay, craigs lis, yard sale, etc before you buy it call 1-800-531-5000 with the receiver id # to make sure it can be activated. alot of people sell receivers that they do not own and it had to be returned to directv. if that is the case, directv will not reactivate that receiver for you or give you a new access card.
    • D Girl

      since you have been a loyal directv customer for so long, you might be entitled to a free receiver upgrade
    • The Super Tech Solver

      VERY good point, I forget there are sleazy people out there....thanks D Girl
  • TECH

    I know the directv system up and down. I can give you an answer to anything. I've been a technician for...

    Make sure the dish is aligned correctly first and everything in between like you lnb, multiswitch, etc. just call 18005315000 and have a technician come and make sure everything is working like it should.

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  • AnswerMan

    I can Help; I've been trained by DirecTV. I have worked as a Technical Support Supervisor for DirecTV for...

    Sounds like you might need a dish alignment. Depending on the transponders you are looking at some will show zero. When you say some channels do not come in - what is displayed on the screen when you go to those channels?

    2 comments
    • S

      steve

      Thanks so much for your answers. Our situation is that we could update our receivers. Back in 1997 when we launched our service it was before the big digital switch. We live in a very rural place and did not get a signal from a rooftop antenna. We were lucky and after a lot hoop jumping, Direct tv gave us our network channels from the east and west feeds, NY and LA. From what I understand after having a service call, if we upgrade we will lose that "Grandfathered in" Network feed. What I really am trying to do is figure out a way to save our old contract and get past the transponder problem. I have spent hours making minor adjustments to the dish, I think it is aligned correctly because our other receiver works fine. The older receiver won't pick up transponders 4, 12, 18, 20, 26 and 28. Unfortunately those are some 20-25 channels that won't come in including the networks and some other major channels. Thanks again for your feedback, I really appreciate the input.
    • AnswerMan

      if your getting Searching for satellite on those channels - then you will need an alignment (having a tech come out to align your dish will not cause you to change any programming package or put you back under "Contract"). If DirecTV does not provide locals in your area you will be able to keep your distant network feeds (LA, NY). if you signed up for service in 1997; you are no longer under "contract"; however upgrading your receivers to HD would put you back on a 24 month commitment.
  • SuperAIRBORNEMan

    I've been a tech for Dish Network for 12 years & Directv for 3 years. I also was a Paratrooper (509th)...

    Hey its time for an up-grade.. U've been a great cust and deserve a up-grade... Just call 1-800-531-5000 and they will assits u.. THANK U for beiing a great cust!!!!!!!!!!!!