Erratic Radio Signal

I switched over from Monitronics and installed a verizon 3g communicator in my 2gig panel on Monday. The installation went fine and my radio strength was around 16. Some of the commands I sent from the app didn’t seem to go through (it’s likely I was just sending too many commands though) so I checked the signal strength on Tuesday to find the radio button was yellow and registering a 6. I power cycled, reseated the communicator and antenna connector, and conducted some cell phone tests. It eventually started working fine, and I was pleased to find that the signal strength was around 22.

For most of tonight my radio signal has been 0, although I’ve still been able to send arm disarm commands, activate lights, adjust the thermostats. I just checked again and it’s back to 22. My verizon cell phone has been registering between 2 and 3 bars, which isn’t great but it has been consistent.

Are there any possible explanations for the erratic signal?

I don’t recall having any signal problem with monitronics and the 2g communicator. The panel is in the same place monitronics installed it, but then again I never checked the radio signal as frequently as I have been the past few days.

You didn’t use a Verizon cell module with monitronics if it was a 2G GSM module (it was probably AT&T GSM6)

Your cell phone uses LTE/VLTE, and the panel module uses 1X/CDMA. You cannot accurately compare a mobile device’s signal quality to that of a M2M device.

if your signal averages between 0/31 to 6/31 or is less than 16/31 then that is a poor signal. you want a steady and consistent signal between 16/31-25/31. You should not be using the small black in the panel antenna with the new 3G module (which goes into the panel).

You should be using the antenna on the LEFT (which should be running into wall behind the panel, and should not be curled up in the panel), if you are using the correct antenna, and it is properly installed, then you may want to install the AT&T HSPA 3G module.

Signal on the account looks like it is reporting 24 at the moment.

The antenna distinction is very important. I have tested using an old antenna myself for an extended period and it only sort of works. You will see varying degrees of quality.

Another thing to remember, if you have been working on the panel, going in and out of programming and power cycling the panel, it will often take a short while to register the proper signal strength. If you are checking too soon after power up, you may notice it as zero, then suddenly jump to what you were expecting to see.

That makes sense. I’ve been adding equipment and tweaking the programming the past couple of days, so I’m probably just not giving it enough time to properly register the signal.

I do have the new antenna installed inside the wall. Good to know about the difference between my phone reception and the communicator reception. It was the only way I could think of to verify if it was a Verizon problem.

Thanks all.