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KGW improving antenna and over-the-air signal

Here's how to tune up and rescan your TV to get all the shows you love

OREGON, USA — If you watch KGW with an over-the-air antenna or use a digital converter box, this article is for you. 

KGW is currently doing work on the tower and transmitter that sends the signal to your TV. Some over-the-air antenna users may lose our signal for a little bit during installation because we have to go to a low power mode. This is temporary and an improved signal will appear shortly.

In the meantime, you can always stream KGW for free on KGW.com, the KGW mobile app, and on Roku or Amazon. If you watch KGW on cable, satellite, or other streaming services, you will not be impacted by these updates.

RELATED: KGW has a new app! Download it here

RELATED: Get KGW on demand in your living room with Roku & Fire TV

How do I rescan my TV?

While the current work being done to the KGW tower will not require you to do any tune-ups or rescans to your TV, here are instructions that might come in handy in the future.

It sounds complicated, but it’s just a few quick and easy steps to rescan your TV.

  1. Press the MENU button on your television or converter box remote.
  2. Go to SETUP or SETTINGS.
  3. Go to INSTALLATION or SYSTEM or CHANNELS.
  4. Go to AUTOPROGRAM, AUTOSCAN, AUTOTUNING, PROGRAM CHANNELS, or SCAN CHANNELS.
  5. Press ENTER, OK, or SELECT to start the scan.
  6. Some televisions may warn you that starting a scan will reprogram your channels. That's OK! Reprogramming your tuner is exactly what you want to do to access the upgrades and new channels.
  7. Once the scan starts, it can take just a few minutes or 15 – 30 minutes to complete. DON’T stop the process once it starts.
  8. At this point, your scan should be done. Many televisions quit the process on their own, while with others, you may need to select OK or EXIT on your remote.

NOTE: Some manufacturers have you use the LEFT/RIGHT arrow to access menu functions. Sometimes they throw you a curve ball and make the CHANNEL UP/DOWN and VOLUME UP/DOWN double as menu navigation. It can be a bit tricky, but if you're familiar with your television remote, you already know this stuff.

Related:  FCC How to rescan your TV FCC

Related: FCC information on antennas and digital television

What are the different types of antennas and their effectiveness?

The type of antenna makes a big difference.

An old fashioned, large pole mounted antenna usually works best outdoors. They can also be mounted in the attic, but the reception is not as strong.

The smaller, square antennas -- often advertised as “digital” -- are not necessarily designed for VHF HD signals and have been known to cause intermittent viewing issues.

Unfortunately, “rabbit ear” antennas are probably the least effective way to receive a digital signal, however in some situations they may be a viewer’s only option.

If a rabbit ear antenna is the only option, those with a built-in RF amplifier to boost the DTV signal would be preferable.

Which direction should my antenna face?

The direction your antenna points will impact your signal quality. Antennas should be pointed toward our transmitter in which is near the Oregon Zoo.

If you live in the area around the KGW antenna, you may have seen a helicopter being used to remove the old antenna and then install a new antenna.

Does the condition of my equipment matter?

Yes! There are a few things to check if you think your equipment might be in poor condition.

If the coaxial cable is in bad shape, moisture may have created a weak spot in the cable from the antenna into the house, lowering the signal strength.

The connectors at the end of the coax can be problematic as well.

If you have an outside antenna, it is a good idea to check and make certain the coax cable from the antenna is in good shape and protected from the elements (extreme sun, rain, etc.).

Is your wiring “split”?

That is important because how many times the signal is split before reaching the TV/receiver may also result in low signal strength.

Multiple splitters or anything more than a two-way split may cause issues.

We recommend installing a signal amplifier splitter from the antenna before branching to other splitters, receivers, or a TV.

This should boost the signal evenly to the devices.

Other help and resources

To help solve an issue you are having viewing KGW, please refer to our troubleshooting tips at kgwviewer.helpdocs.com or you can email us at antennahelp@kgw.com.