People in my electorate often contact me with concern and frustration about their poor television reception.
My office has been in touch with the Minister’s office regarding this issue a number of times.
In recent years, new towers have been erected locally or upgraded to boost the amount of people who can receive signal from them. However, the problem continues for many.
I understand that for some people poor television reception is a source of great frustration. For others it's even more - it can mean total disconnection from the outside world.
For these reasons my office has compiled this list of tips to help people get the best out of available television reception, as it stands under the Turnbull Government.
This website will allow you to put in your address and find out which television towers will provide you with the best signal. Most properties will be able to receive a signal from a tower other than Newcastle. It is recommended to not use the Newcastle (Mt Sugarloaf) tower if possible, as this tower has issues with ‘ducting’, while the others do not.
If your antenna is directed at a tower other than Newcastle, it is important that your TV is re-tuned manually to the frequencies outlined on the MySwitch website, as the strong signals from Newcastle could cause those channels to be used in an auto tune, which will again result in poor reception issues.
The Government recommends seeking the advice of a reputable antenna installer. Reception problems can be caused or exacerbated by antennas, cabling or connections that may be inappropriate, poorly maintained, broken or incorrectly installed. Another cause may be that a television or set-top box has been tuned to the wrong transmission site, sometimes as a result of auto-tune functions locking on to less-optimal services.
Other factors that can contribute to reception problems include weather conditions, electrical interference (sometimes caused by nearby electric motors or LED lights) and obstructions such as buildings or trees. An experienced antenna installer can make recommendations on antenna type, placement and orientation and will have the equipment and knowledge to address individual situations.
More information on ducting is available here:
This link also has information on the Government’s “VAST” service, whereby you can utilise satellites to get TV reception. If all else fails, this may be the best option for you. While it is expensive, it uses satellites to ensure that you are able to get a solid signal to your TV.
In addition, an interference check may need to be carried out. If the antenna installer has formed the opinion that your TV reception problem is the result of external interference, beyond the control of the viewer, the antenna installer should help you to complete the interference investigation form. It can be completed online on the ACMA website:
The Minister’s office advises the above procedures if you are experiencing TV reception problems.
I hope that some of these tips help you enjoy your television more.