Sun Fade Could Cause Temporary TV Interferences

Each spring and fall, cable and satellite companies experience a technical phenomenon called “sun fade.” For a few days, the sun causes “solar interference” when it is in direct line behind a satellite that is sending signals to a receiving satellite dish here on earth. When the dish antenna is looking into the sun, the interference from the sun overrides the signals from the satellite. When this happens, an outage will likely occur.

Sun outages occur during the months of February/March and September/October and can last as long as 15 minutes a day and take place over a period of 15 days.  Here are the expected sun outages for this spring:

sunfade_spring 2016

Here’s what you can expect:

  • At first, the outage is minimal, beginning as “pixelization” in the picture.
  • Gradually, it worsens to the point of total outage.
  • Once it reaches its peak, the interference will gradually decrease becoming less noticeable each day after.
  • Some channels will experience “blocks” or “freeze frames” in the picture before and after the peak times. These are the channels we receive digitally from the satellite.

This is a natural phenomenon and technology can do little to prevent it. Each satellite from which we receive signals will experience this interference at predictable times, and we apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you.