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Cell Phone Tower

Discussion in 'Northeastern US Wireless Forum' started by bfbchief, May 14, 2002.

  1. bfbchief

    bfbchief New Member

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    What is the range of a Cell Phone tower (in Miles). I have SPCS and there is a Tower that is just a little over 3 miles from my house, yet I can not get a signal in my house. Outside in my front yard is not a problem...but inside that is a different story

    Thanks
    Josh
     
  2. Jack

    Jack Silver Senior Member
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    was the tower just resently built?? have you done a software update for your phone??

    Jack
     
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  3. BillRadio

    BillRadio Wireless Consultant
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    Josh,
    I have 3 Sprint PCS sites all located exactly 1.2 miles from my house. I cannot use Sprint at my house because of so many dropped calls. In (Flagstaff) Arizona, I was able to access a Sprint site, located on a mountain, solid, over 20 miles away. So it all depends.

    I wouldn't count on service indoors unless I was within a mile of a site. Of course there are exceptions to that, especially where the site isn't so busy. So 3 miles may just be too far. You may not be a good candidate for Sprint.

    -Bill Radio
     
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  4. larry

    larry Sprint loyalist and former mod
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    The most important factors for the range of a Sprint tower are height and surrounding terrain. In heavily populated cities a tower can have a range anywhere between 3/4 mile and 2 miles. Out in the desert a tower can have a range of up to 10 miles. Where I live in Orange County, CA Sprint usually places towers about 1 mile apart.
     
  5. bfbchief

    bfbchief New Member

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    The tower is pretty new...but I don't think I need a software update. Phone is also pretty new. Like I said I can go out in the front yard and get a good signal. Just was hoping to get something in my house. It's like nigth and day. I can stand out on the front steps get a signal make a call. The minute I step in doors I get nothing LOL.

    Thanks for the replies guys!!!
     
  6. KevinJames

    KevinJames WA's 1st retired mod
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    What he didn't tell you is that his house is lead-shielded. [​IMG]
     
  7. bfbchief

    bfbchief New Member

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    I am begining to wonder myself. LOL I find it so hard to believe there is that much of a difference from my front steps to just inside the door way.

    It has to be the house LOL
     
  8. bobolito

    bobolito Diamond Senior Member
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    Under optimum conditions a tower can reach as far as 10 miles or so. That is provided that there is a clear line of sight directly from the phone to the tower. I was able to prove this on my way to Key West, FL when I was driving past the 7-mile bridge I was getting the signal from the same tower all the way to the other end of the bridge and a couple of miles more. This is because the signal was going over water. However, this is not the case for the rest of the United States. Buildings, mountains and the general terrain geography make coverage more difficult than it seems. Over flat land the signal can reach about 4 to 5 miles provided there are no trees or anything blocking line of sight.

    However, in the other extreme, in the mountains of North Carolina or between the skyscrapers of New York City, the tower range can be as little as 1/4 of a mile radius depending where you are. Another factor to be considered is the band your provider operates. 1900Mhz carriers like Sprint have more difficulty penetrating obstacles than 800Mhz carriers.

    Kev just brought up an interesting point and it is that if your building is shielded then you may not get a signal as soon as you step in. Electromagnetic waves just bounce off metal just like light does so the signal cannot penetrate your building. So I believe this is most likely the case since you say you get good signal outside. You might remember the old days where beepers didn't work inside certain places.

    Also, beware that not all towers have your carrier's antenna on it. It may be for a different company so your phone just ignores those towers.
     
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  9. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Kev,
    Why lead?

    Aluminum siding would probably be enough.
    Even possibly aluminum faced insulating board underneath.
    Both would be a real mess!
    Doesn't take much!
     
  10. KevinJames

    KevinJames WA's 1st retired mod
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    anonymous: agreed. My post was intended as tongue-in-cheek humor. From what I hear even brick (I thought that was highly porous) and cement can be a problem. My house is your typical Californian run-of-the-mill wood frame and stucco. (Forgive my spelling, I'm feeling lazy today.)
     
  11. Jack

    Jack Silver Senior Member
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    Interesting

    Jack
     
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