Did you know that even the air around us affects GPS signals? You will be surprised to know that not only the air but several other surprising factors often have a lot to say about the extent of signals and their subsequent GPS problems. Thankfully, we have analyzed and come up with a detailed blog on the matter and how common it is for GPS trackers to have no signal.
With this blog, we will discover possible solutions to combat the problem and refine our GPS journey at its best.
Table of Contents
How do the GPS signals work?
Wikipedia refers to GPS, or “Global Positioning System”, as satellite-based radio navigation owned by the US government. Now, this might be self-explanatory, but we will simplify the terms to make it more clear.
GPS helps us figure out where we are on Earth. There are satellites in space that send signals down to Earth. These signals contain information like their time and location in space. Your GPS device, like a phone or a GPS receiver, catches these signals from at least four satellites. Now, your GPS device is really good at math. It figures out the duration signals took to travel from the satellites to your device. Since it knows the speed of these signals (which is the speed of light), it then calculates the distance from each satellite to your device.
So, now you know how GPS signals work. But our question is, what causes the problems with the GPS signals? And how is air related to it?
Causes of Poor or No Signal in GPS trackers
When you use your mobile phone or a portable GPS tracker, sometimes they don’t work because they are unable to get the signal they need. Just like your phone needs a signal to make calls and use the internet, GPS trackers need a signal to find their location and share data with you. This results in GPS inaccuracy.
Interestingly, there are broadly two cases that cause this problem, namely signal reception and data upload. Signal reception means the GPS tracker has issues receiving signals to determine its location. This happens if it’s in a place with a weak signal or if something’s wrong with the tracker itself. On the other hand, the data upload indicates that the GPS has received the location but faces trouble uploading that information. Even if your GPS tracker knows where it is, it needs a special way to share that information with you. If this special way isn’t working, it seems like the GPS tracker has no signal, even though it knows its location.
Not only this, Family1st provides a list of the main reasons that cause the problem of no signal in GPS devices:
One cause is the location where the GPS tracker or phone is placed. It might struggle to get a signal if it is in an area with poor signal coverage, like a remote place in the US.
How the tracker or phone is set up matters too. The signal may get blocked or weakened if it is installed upside down or near lots of metal.
Sometimes, the tracker or phone itself might have issues with its antenna or signal parts. If that’s the case, you might need to get it fixed.
Data Upload Problems
For GPS trackers, even if they receive a signal for their location, they also need a cell network to send data to you. If the network is down, it may look like the tracker has no signal.
The air causes poor or no signal in wireless communication because it sometimes weakens or blocks radio waves. Obstacles like buildings and trees obstruct signal transmission, while atmospheric conditions, such as rain or dense clouds, disrupt signals. This leads to connectivity issues and poor reception on various electronic devices.
Is it common for GPS devices to have no signal?
Well, no, it is not common to face GPS signal issues in everyday usage. GPS devices generally work well in most situations, and signal loss is infrequent for the average user. While temporary signal disruptions may occur in specific situations, like tunnels or areas with poor signal coverage, they do not commonly impact everyday GPS use. But then, this might turn into a common issue if you live in a remote place or near hilly terrain.
Troubleshooting GPS No Signal Issues
Now that we know what causes this issue, let’s see how we can solve the problem and safeguard our journeys.
Move to an open area
As we mentioned, GPS signals come from satellites. So, make sure you are in an open area with a clear view of the sky. Try to avoid tall buildings, tunnels, or dense tree cover, as these obstruct signals.
Sometimes, a simple restart resolves signal issues. Make sure that your GPS device has the latest firmware or software updates.
Check the device placement
Additionally, make sure the GPS device is positioned correctly and the antenna faces upward. Also, no obstructions (like metal objects) should block it.
Check for interference
You may try avoiding using other electronic devices that could interfere with the GPS signal. For example, turning off Wi-Fi or Bluetooth on your device may help.
Tests in Different Locations
If the issue persists, try to use the GPS device in various locations to see if it’s consistently unable to acquire a signal.
If you have tried these steps and still experience no signal issues, it’s a good idea to reach out to the US support system.
Finally, we have equipped ourselves with enough knowledge to overcome the problem of no signal in GPS devices. We saw various causes and their solutions to always have peace of mind during our journeys. We all know the importance of enjoying every moment with our family, and nothing should get in the way of stress-free travel.
Therefore, use these practical ways and safe travel practices on the road to ensure secure journeys. Book a call with us to learn more about the Family1st GPS tracker.