TV Signal Guide-Typical Analog Reception Problems

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Snow – This can be described as a faint image that sometimes fades to black
and white. This most often is a sign of weak reception. A solution might involve
raising the antenna higher to clear any nearby obstructions, adjusting the direction
the antenna is pointing, installing an antenna with a higher gain or installing
an amplifier of some type.

Ghosting – This is a very
common problem in areas with large buildings, tall trees, hills or valleys.
The signal bounces off of various surfaces and creates multiple images. This
is called "multi-path" to describe the multiple signals that reach
the antenna. In extreme cases, you may see six or more distinct clear images
side by side overlapping each other. The problem can usually be resolved by
installing a more directional antenna or by raising your antenna higher to receive
a more direct signal. It can take a considerable amount of manipulation to.
In some areas, particularly Southwest Knoxville terrain is responsible for significant
“Ghosting” of the channel 8 signal which is very difficult to tune
out or cancel. Sparkles – Sometimes referred to as bright dots in the picture.
Most often, this is interference caused by some type of electrical device. Typically,
a poorly shielded wire or loose connection on an antenna is to blame.

Antennas degrade with age. As the
rivets become loose, elements can move in the wind and cause poor connections.Most
TV reception problems can be improved with a good quality professionally installed
antenna system. Make sure the retailer you choose understands TV antennas as
a product, rather than just an accessory to a satellite dish system. They should
also have the proper test equipment for measuring signal field strength. A little
research up-front can save you from buying the wrong antenna system for your

Q - I Have Some Type of Problem,
Where Do I Start?The WVLT tower is located in North Knoxville on Sharps Ridge
approximately 0.25 miles south of the I-75 / I-275 / I-640 interchange on the
West side of Sharps Gap. Some other local stations antennas are located on Sharps
ridge on the East side of the gap about 1 mile due east of WVLT. For homes close
to the antenna systems, this may create a problem.

The first step to resolve this
should be to answer a few basic questions:

  1. Can I get my antenna any higher
    above the ground? More height will enhance the reception of all TV signals.
    The higher, the better.

  2. Do I have a good UHF component
    on my antenna? Is it a combination or VHF only antenna? Are all of the elements
    intact and fully extended? Many antennas sold in this area in the past have
    been VHF only, or are very strong for VHF and poor for UHF reception. Since
    most digital TV stations are UHF, it is probably a good time to have your
    current system evaluated.

  3. What direction is my antenna
    pointed? Our tower is in north Knoxville. The easiest solution is the installation
    of a fixed antenna pointed toward our tower. The difference in mileage may
    also require some amplification or a higher quality antenna.

  4. Who can I trust to sell me the
    right antenna? In the old days, antenna installers were all very knowledgeable
    and would offer the best advice. Unfortunately, the explosion of cell telephones
    and satellite systems has changed the business climate. Many of the antenna
    retailers have changed their focus to selling the higher profit telephones
    and satellite systems. Ask friends who have a system that is working adequately.
    Experiment a little on your own. Ask the retailer many questions and make
    sure they have the proper test equipment to determine your needs.

  5. When do I have the time to get
    this resolved? There is no time like the present with the sports season fast
    approaching. Some specialty antennas take a few weeks to receive. It would
    be a shame to miss that UT or SEC football game while you are waiting for
    some else to solve your problem. Fix it now, and then forget it.

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