Do Airplanes Affect TV Reception? (Answered)

Not everyone is aware that there are some reasons that your TV reception can be disrupted. If you are using an antenna for your TV, there are some reasons that your TV reception might be disrupted. In the 80s and 90s, it was more common to see these kinds of problems with TVs, but it is still possible for this to happen.

Airplanes can impact your TV reception because the plane can reflect some of the TV signals back to earth. When the TV signal is reflected away from the antenna, the picture could be disturbed or even halted for a short time. This will only happen when a low-flying craft passes over, however.

Why Do Airplanes Impact Your TV Reception?

Low-flying aircraft can actually block and reflect some of the TV signal that is passing to your antenna. The TV signal will be reflected away from the antenna by the plane because the plane has the same wavelength, frequency, and velocity as the signal. This causes them to superimpose on one another. 

When this happens, the intensity changes and is different. The TV signal will end up looking shaky and grainy, or it could be blocked altogether briefly. Many people who live by airports are quite familiar with this effect, while those who do not might have never experienced it.

There are other things that can cause this interference, like hair dryers, sewing machines, electric drills, and even some smartphone chargers. Garage door openers are another common culprit. Make sure that you look into these other possible reasons for your TV interference if you do not think it is being caused by planes.

Can I Do Something to Prevent This Issue?

You can actually prevent this issue in most cases by installing a metallic screen or shield a few feet from the TV antenna that you are using. This will help prevent the reflected, out-of-phase signals caused by planes passing overhead. If you live in a place where this happens frequently, it will likely be worth your energy to put this solution in place.

This is a simple and affordable solution to a problem that can get very annoying if it happens all day long. You can also try repositioning your antenna to place it more favorably to avoid issues with airplanes that pass over your home. So long as you are not living right by a busy airport, you should be able to find a place to put your antenna that is not impacted by planes passing overhead.

Planes Can Disrupt Your TV Signal

If you live in a location that is exposed to a lot of air traffic, you might have trouble with your TV signal being interrupted by planes going by overhead. You can try moving your antenna to another location or you can invest in an antenna shield to help prevent this problem. This is not something that most people realize can happen, but low-flying planes can definitely cause your TV picture to be fuzzy or cut off for a short time.

This article was last updated on January 12, 2023 .

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Categorized as TVs

By Adam

The Display Blog staff account. We know display.