Time To Replace Coaxial Cable ??

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JFOK

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Aug 12, 2012
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Cape Cod - MA.
Hi All,

How would I know when its time to replace the coax cable on my C Band dish ?
I'm wondering if the fluctuating signal quality I'm experiencing is due to aging coax cable, which is now about 20 years old. The signal level on my micro HD is steady at 90%, but the signal quality can vary. For instance, on the 105W NBC feeds, signal quality can vary anywhere from 37-60% and seem to be stronger during the early morning and during dry weather.
I know signal levels on most satellites vary from time to time, but I'm pretty sure they don't normally fluctuate like this. Although my dish is slightly warped, I'm pretty much on target arc and LNBF wise. My best signal strength is on 91W with the CW feeds fluctuating between 72-80%.
Any thoughts ?? Thanks in advance.

John
 

KE4EST

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If mine were 20+ years old and I was seeing that, I would replace all coax and associated hardware. Such as connectors, ground blocks, switches etc. Over the years, even a good sealed system still gets water ingress. This in turn erodes away at the conductors.
 

JFOK

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Aug 12, 2012
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Cape Cod - MA.
Michael and a33,

Thanks for your replies.
I will most likely replace the coaxial cable soon. I think I got my money's worth and that cable doesn't owe me anything after surviving 20 years of Cape Cod weather. I have no switches inline, but will review the connectors as suggested.

John
 

wvman

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Sep 19, 2014
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Hi All,

How would I know when its time to replace the coax cable on my C Band dish ?
I'm wondering if the fluctuating signal quality I'm experiencing is due to aging coax cable, which is now about 20 years old. The signal level on my micro HD is steady at 90%, but the signal quality can vary. For instance, on the 105W NBC feeds, signal quality can vary anywhere from 37-60% and seem to be stronger during the early morning and during dry weather.
I know signal levels on most satellites vary from time to time, but I'm pretty sure they don't normally fluctuate like this. Although my dish is slightly warped, I'm pretty much on target arc and LNBF wise. My best signal strength is on 91W with the CW feeds fluctuating between 72-80%.
Any thoughts ?? Thanks in advance.

John
KE4EST is correct. Coax is not all that expensive. If it's buried and not in conduit, all sorts of critters can chew on it, and over time, small stones can pierce the outer jacket and let moisture in. I have mine in conduit, but even that doesn't make it bullet proof. Moisture can still get into the conduit and stand in a low place and create moisture problems. A good water tight connector is a must for long service.

I have all new coax on my dishes, and there's some signal fluxuations from time to time, but 37-60 is a bit extreme. New coax would be a good investment.
 
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harshness

SatelliteGuys Master
May 5, 2007
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Salem, OR
The test cable thing is always a good choice. Assuming the cable is bad probably isn't a great choice as there's other goodies in play that involve sensitive electronics.
 

JFOK

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Pro
Aug 12, 2012
786
587
Cape Cod - MA.
wvman and harshness,

Thanks for your replies.
I'll replace the coax first and see what if any, improvements occur.

John
 

harshness

SatelliteGuys Master
May 5, 2007
16,409
2,601
Salem, OR
Before you go to a lot of trouble to lay the cable in and secure it, run the cable overland (through doors or windows). If the system doesn't perform any better, you've saved yourself hours of installation and you can spend that time figuring out what is really wrong.
 

JFOK

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Pro
Aug 12, 2012
786
587
Cape Cod - MA.
harshness,

My cable run isn't to long to begin with....approx 75-80 feet.
However I did plan to do what you suggested just in case the issue isn't with my coax.

John
 
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