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I have a 2002 Diplomat purchased used that has a RM-8000 system. Looks like the AS-2003.
This system was working fine until about 2 months ago. Not sure if it is a coincidence, but we first noticed the failure was after we had 6 inches of snow.
We are using a DirecTV receiver, so we would be looking for Satellite 101. The signal meter on the receiver shows that we peak and lock on the signal, but the satellite dish doesn't stop, keeps searching and we lose the signal and lock.
We have a work around that when the signal is peaked, we press the 'OFF' button, however it's a catch as catch can as our timing isn't always good and we miss the 'peak' and end up with no signal at all, and must start the searching / peaking / stopping again.
I see that someone else has a similar problem with their AS-2003 and Dish network. I'm not sure about the Satellite 77 that was referenced in their post.
Any assistance or suggestions is greatly appreciated.
The satellite at 77 can be part of your issue. The RM-8000 was replaced by the AS-2003 so new satellites will also create some problems for it in some locations.
However, there can be several other things that can cause something like this.
Have you ever hear the unit pop or click up on the roof while it was searching?
This can be broken gears which can cause the unit to "get lost" while searching. The symptom is just what you are describing.
Loose set screws on the gears can also cause this symptom. If you are able to get on the roof I can try to talk you through opening the unit and tightening the set screws.
This can also be caused by the unit by being off level but that tends to be noticable.
I'm not aware of any 'clicking' during the search. I will have to test that. I was up on the roof looking for any obvious problems yesterday so access is not a problem.
So, talking about this elusive 'Satellite 77'. Has it come into existence since late November 2008?, which was the last time this system worked correctly.
Is there a board upgrade or microcode update to the electronics to take into account this new Sat 77 ?
I would think there are a LOT of older RM-8000's and AS-2003's owners out there that are now having fits because it won't lock on to either their DirecTV or Dish satellites. Having to replace the whole unit because of a new satellite doesn't make much sense to me.
What are the newer automatic systems doing to get past this new Satellite 77 ? If it wasn't in existance before November/December of last year, aren't they also having problems ?
The issue only appears in certain parts of the country and with the coach facing certain directions when the search starts.
Winegard only became aware of this a causing issues very recently. At this time we do not have an update to add the new satellites. The newer systems use a different method to recognize which satellite they are looking at.
The RM-8000 and the AS-2003 use three or more satellites plus their GPS antenna to determine where they are and which satellite they have found.
The newer systems 'read' the satellite signal and use it to determine which satellite they are looking at. For this reason, the newer systems do not see this issue.
Thanks for the update. What you said does make sense in terms that the newer GPS units can 'read' the satellites.
Any clue as to the direction that it seems to fail in most? I'm on the West Coast. If I know in advance the 'best' direction to face when starting the search it would help.
As I said, I do have a work around. It's just not quite as convenient to have to 'catch' the signal at it's peak since there seems to be a timing delay, and it could very well be on my part , to press "OFF" to stop the searching.
We had the opportunity to test again yesterday using both our original DirecTV receiver ( from 1995 ) , and a newer Hughes Platinum receiver we purchased probably around 2000.
The failure was consistent with the DirecTV receiver. The satellite would scan, find the signal, lock on the signal, peak on the signal ... then continue to scan.
With the newer Hughes receiver it would scan, find the signal, lock on the signal, peak on the signal and STOP scanning.
Problem apparently is with the receiver we were using and not the Winegard RM-8000. Why this manifested itself starting in January and coinciding with Dish Satellite #77 is still a mystery. When we checked with Winegard support last week, my husband was told that Sat #77 was for the East Coast ... we are on the West Coast.
Patd, I am also having the same problems as you with my As-2003 and Dish TV. No apparent popping or noise while searching and was told the problem was probably the sat 77 issue. I live in Houston TX and my As-2003 worked perfectly in May of 2008 in Destin FL, but the trouble started late last year here in TX. I have not tried another Dish receiver as you have nor have I tried tightening the set screws on the motors either. I have another call in to Winegard technical to get some more details on this process since I will have my RV home this weekend. If it truly is an issue with Sat 77 I would think that Winegard would have some work around for this problem other that to upgrade to a new satellite system.
I am also having the same problems with the RM-8000. My unit was purchased 9/11/2006 and it would not work last Spring. That's only 1 1/2 years for a $1400.00 dish. Occassionally I can get Sat 110 but I have to watch the signal and push the stop button to lock on. When Winegard was contacted, I was told I would have to buy a new unit. They at first said it was the mother board and there were no replacements for it. Then they said I needed to buy a new unit. I'm not real happy about this but is there an alternative?
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