NOAA Weather on 162.400 MHz

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scansomd

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May 16, 2002
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For the past several years, I have been using 162.400 on my weather radio. It worked fine, lasted a long time. Until sometime last month. Then my weather radio couldn't receive a signal anymore...... 'My weather radio is on the fritz or the NOAA station is down for maintenance' I sez to myself.... After a week of this, I used several scanners, attached to different antennas, from different areas in the county where I live. NADA.....

I realize skip has come to the Eastern seaboard in last couple of weeks, but I don't think that is my problem.

Could any of you who live in the Saint Mary's County (Maryland) area give a listen and tell me if you can hear anything on 162.400 MHz besides static?

Thanks in advance,
Richard
 

jim202

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Mar 7, 2002
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New Orleans region
You need to check with a few other people. Problems do crop up
and the transmitters do go out from storm damage. While I was
living north of New Orleans, the transmitter would take a lightning
hit and no one would know it. Problem was I was on the fringe of
the reception area. So any change in the antenna or the transmitter
showed up real easy.

I use to call the weather office each time I couldn't hear it anymore.
I always got thanked by the forcaster that answered the phone. They
could still hear the transmitter just fine.

Guess they got tired of my calls, as they installed a new transmitter
that was much closer to me on another frequency.

You might try another channel. They have someting like 7 frequencies
that they use. Look around and see if there is another channel that
works at your location.

Jim



scansomd said:
For the past several years, I have been using 162.400 on my weather radio. It worked fine, lasted a long time. Until sometime last month. Then my weather radio couldn't receive a signal anymore......

Thanks in advance,
Richard
 

bwhite

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Dec 10, 2004
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Location
Balto/Carroll, MD
I initiated a post on this same subject about a year back.
I did at some point get hold of a honcho at NWS, they say they do have problems in Pikesvill with groundstraps coming loose, etc which degrade their signal but they don't know this until they get complaints. Their monitoring devices are right next to the tower so they only pickup a total failure. I don't have the number anymore, but, I believe the contact info was about 5 clicks deep in the NOAA webpage. I believe they fixed it soon after I notified them last time. I'm not getting it now or am hearing a nearly untelligible signal on the PA line due north on any of my several radios. Let us know if you make contact and how you make out.
 

Llwellyn

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Mar 25, 2004
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Brooklyn, Maryland
jim202 said:
You might try another channel. They have someting like 7 frequencies
that they use. Look around and see if there is another channel that
works at your location.

Jim
Unfortunately, here, we need to listen to the specific station we're trying to pick up as they do not overlap coverages across the different transmitters we can receive. Also, the transmitter to north of the malfunctioning one does not give marine reporting at all, and the one south does not give marine reporting for this far north most of the time.

Hopefully, someone can find the contact info and let them know there's an issue.
 

scansomd

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Southern Maryland
bwhite said:
A quick search of the maryland forums listed 2 lengthy discussions that I didn't read thru (Search the md forums for 162.4 if you wanna).
Anyway, here is the key info you want, let us know how it works when you contact them: http://www.nws.noaa.gov/nwr/outages.html
I did leave a voice mail and an e-mail with NOAA two days ago. Thus far, I haven't received anything back from them.

Yes, I can pick up other NOAA frequencies. They are not very strong and - more importantly - do not carry weather specific to my locality.

I will let you know if I hear anything back from NOAA or if the frequency comes back online.

I'm hoping someone who actually resides in Saint Mary's (I can't believe I am the only one on this board) can comment on their reception.
 

baydog

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Location
Severna Park.MD
I emailed the SkyWarn volunteer coordinator and received the following reply yesterday afternoon:

"I'm one of the Electronics Technicians here at the Baltimore/Washington Forecast Office. Right now, the PikesvilleTransmitter sounds good when I monitor the transmission remotely, and the weather observers at BWI airport are receiving it loud and clear.BWI is about 15 miles south of the transmitter. Are you still having problems receiving the transmission?"

To which I replied last night with:

"I'm listening to the station right now (9:45PM) on a Uniden BC898. The signal strength is constantly wavering between 2 bars and 4 bars and is very garbled. I've also tried the reception on a Radio Shack Pro 97 and an Oregon Scientific Wx radio on both the first and second floors of our house with the same results. Sudersville and Manassas come in very strong and clear"

We are about 10-12 miles SE of BWI on the RW 33L approach path. This transmitter has had problems in the past. I've heard that it ihas some age on it and the NWS hoped to replace it. It used to constantly drop into low power as signifed by a slow beep-beep in the background of the broadcast.

I'll post if I get any updates
 

bwhite

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Dec 10, 2004
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Location
Balto/Carroll, MD
I'm getting a scratchy but intelligible signal tonight.
Something's changed, I have heard it better before
(after the fixes last year but that didn't last too long)
 

baydog

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Jul 10, 2005
Messages
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Location
Severna Park.MD
After relpying to an email asking if reception was any better I got the following from the Weather Service office

"I'm glad to see that you're receiving the Pikesville transmission now. Also, thank you for your feedback. Sometimes we're not aware of a problem until one of our listeners informs us. I think the transmitters were switched to clear the problem, and the contractor who maintains this site was called so that he can check it out. "
 
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