12-11-2013 9:32 AM
The problem may not be the remote, but IR interference from your TV or lighting. Do you have more than one U-verse TV Reciever? If so, try using the other remote to control the reciever (not the TV because it won't be programmed for that) and see if that's any better.
If so, then maybe it is the remote. If not, and the original remote works better in the other room, then you have to deal with the IR interference issue. After you've done this test, come back for more.
12-11-2013 2:06 PM
12-11-2013 7:27 PM - edited 12-11-2013 7:30 PM
JefferMC, thank you for the suggestions.
We only have one U-verse TV. We've never had cable or any other non-broadcast feed before, so this is all new to us.
I hadn't thought of interference from the TV or room lighting, so I'll experiment with that. The gateway box sits beside and a bit behind our ancient CRT-type TV, so that's probably not a source of much interference. Room lighting seems more likely.
12-11-2013 8:01 PM - last edited on 12-11-2013 9:14 PM by Phil-101
Aviewer, that's a lot of information. Let's see whether I can sift through it.
Yes, I used the term "remote" in a very general sense. At this point I don't know how to separate a failure in the controller from a failure in the receiver or interference in between.
Weak batteries are not the problem. The controller is brand new, but, just to make sure, we tested the batteries (good) and even tried a different set.
You mentioned a worn-out button. That can't be the case because when it quits working ALL buttons except the power button fail to work.
I will attempt some tests for IR interference, but I'm not hopeful. I'm not sure that a definitive test can be run. The controller will work perfectly for several hours, then abruptly quit working and stay that way for some time. I'll have to prepare my test and wait for it to quit.
When you refer to the possibility of the sensor being too sensitive, are you referring to the sensor in the base unit (the gateway) or the transmitter in the controller?
You refer to an STB. I have no idea what that is. Please clarify. Is the "set top box"? If so, I assume that's the same thing as the gateway. You also seem to refer to the DVR as an STB. We're new to all of this, so the terminology is tripping us up.
When you refer to taping over the sensor, is that on the gateway? There's also a sensor in the DVR and another for the TV.
Partway through your message you switch from IR to RF. I thought all of this equipment ran on IR. What part is RF? There's also a reference to a dongle, but I have none that I know of. (I was ill the day this was installed, so I may have failed to absorb some of the technician's explanation.)
One last tidbit. AT&T called today to see how I liked the new U-verse installation. I told her about the remote problem. She had me go turn it on and try pressing buttons. It came on and gave a screen that said to press "OK" to watch TV. The "OK" button, and all others, were ignored when pressed. She had me press that "AT&T" button and try again. No joy. Finally, as she continued to talk, I started pressing "OK" over and over again. After about 20 presses the controller started working again, and at that point EVERYthing worked. I told her this was exactly what it had been doing for days. Her response was that, since it was now working, the tech support was successful and no more needed to be done. At that point I was starting into a coughing spell and couldn't argue the point. I'll call them again tomorrow, but apparently they view intermittent problems as non-problems since sufficient persistence "fixes" the problem.
Many thanks for your suggestions. I'll experiment with the IR sensitivity tomorrow.
[edited for privacy]
12-12-2013 6:40 AM - edited 12-12-2013 11:55 AM
jdunham - Thanks for the detailed comeback. It is a lot of info & it is complicated. Starting by saying you are really talking about multiple things, not just the remote itself was just what came to me to open up the subject. I actually did not go far enough, naming three areas, there is a fourth - delay. More on that later.
Back to the beginning - Thanks for the details on the remote (itself) issues. I think we can rule that out for now.
IR interference test - I believe the tenting method is a definitive test for IR interference. If the tent blocks out all outside light from TVs or CFLs or whatever - If the STB responds well when tented & not well when open to the air, there is something in the air that is interfering with the IR signal.
Terminology - STB is Set Top Box. DVR is a special STB. The one with the hard drive storage built in. The IR sensor is on the front of these boxes. They are usually near the TV & the remote is pointed at them. The gateway (aka RG) has no IR function.
So, I am talking about the sensor on the STB/DVR that is acting up. If it is too sensitive the tape will correct the problem. I am not making this up. Many people are very skeptical. When you see it for yourself you will be amazed.
If you have IR interference, it may be hard to track down. If it is the TV you may or may not be able to fix it with a setting. Other sources may be even harder to find & change.
The good news is the somewhat transparent tape appears effective for both IR interference and over sensitivity of the sensor. This is not 2+2=4. Nor, is it scientific. It is only suggestions based on aneccdotal experience.
It probably was not a good idea to include the RF in my response. That is the next level in the saga. You can ignore it for now.
One last tidbit - Your call in for support. They are not prepared to address this issue. You may find an install/repair tech that visits the house that may have an idea about this. Your call reminds me of one I had - After some work I got a courtesy call about how everything was working now. I said the repair was a success. Then was asked if there was anything else. I said yes I had a problem from time to time. When it started going in circles I was asked if it was happening at the moment. When I said No, I got - be sure to call in if it happens again.
I believe your experience of having a period of no remote response, followed by it clearing up is the delay issue. The STB was simply backed up. When the queue cleared it responded. When pushing a remote button, watch for the green oval light on the STB to blink. If it blinks, it validates the IR signal. Further delay is in the STB process. Wait for it. If you press the button again, your original request may appear briefly & then be removed quickly by that second press.
When testing IR be sure to work one press at a time - watch for delay in the STB.
Please try the tenting & try covering the front of the STB. I think you will find it works best just before it does not work at all.
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