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Really Bad FM Reception?

41461 Views 35 Replies 21 Participants Last post by  NickD
Anyone else had this problem?

Recently it seems that my FM reception for radio is really spotty... I checked the whip antenna at the back, it was a tiny bit loose, tightening it made a bit of a difference, but not much..

Radio stations that were crystal clear before (and on any other car) are now giving intermittent static and stereo drop outs..

I figure I will bring it up with the dealer when I eventually get my recall notice.. but if there is something i can check now to remedy it, I would be open to suggestions.

The only thing I have done to my car aftermarket is had the car underbody sprayed with a sealent.. i can't believe that that would affect anything.. but just incase.. I mentioned it.
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...did you have the car washed at an automatic car-wash recently?

...if *yes* then check & clean the place where the removeable antenna screws into the base-mount on the car roof, it could have soapy residue left in the threads from the car-wash cycle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
MAY have found the culprit

The culprit may have been the 12v USB charger, when i took out the charger it was substantially reduced (still not perfect, but reduced)

Is that because the charger isn't shielded properly?

To Clarify, this is 12vc Cig lighter usb charger, I don't have the built in aux port
 

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...all GM products and Cruzes = Yes.

...all other vehicles = maybe, depends upon manufacturer.
 

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Anyone else had this problem?

Recently it seems that my FM reception for radio is really spotty... I checked the whip antenna at the back, it was a tiny bit loose, tightening it made a bit of a difference, but not much..

Radio stations that were crystal clear before (and on any other car) are now giving intermittent static and stereo drop outs..

I figure I will bring it up with the dealer when I eventually get my recall notice.. but if there is something i can check now to remedy it, I would be open to suggestions.

The only thing I have done to my car aftermarket is had the car underbody sprayed with a sealent.. i can't believe that that would affect anything.. but just incase.. I mentioned it.
I am experiencing the bad reception right now. All of a sudden I get just static on most of the FM stations really bad can't even here the station. One or two work but poorly. AM and XM work fine. Only 1,400 miles on the car.
 

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The culprit may have been the 12v USB charger, when i took out the charger it was substantially reduced (still not perfect, but reduced)

Is that because the charger isn't shielded properly?
It could be either one of two things:

1. Poor shielding on the charger and it's causing some kind of interference when plugged in, or

2. Poor shielding in the car's electronics. But then practically anything you plug into that charger would cause poor reception.

The rest of the poor reception could well be compromises in the antenna design. The Cruze is using a single antenna mast to pick up AM, FM, cellular (for OnStar), GPS, and XM. All of those operate on different bands. No way are you going to get a single antenna whip that works well for all of those. For everything but AM and FM you might not notice it much since the signals are digital and have some error correction built in.

For really good AM/FM radio reception the Cruze would have to have either one of those old fashioned long whip antennas cars used to have (which wouldn't look very good and wouldn't work for GPS/OnStar/XM), or one of those integrated antennas that are "baked" into the rear window (expensive).
 

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Anyone else had this problem?

Recently it seems that my FM reception for radio is really spotty... I checked the whip antenna at the back, it was a tiny bit loose, tightening it made a bit of a difference, but not much..

Radio stations that were crystal clear before (and on any other car) are now giving intermittent static and stereo drop outs..

I figure I will bring it up with the dealer when I eventually get my recall notice.. but if there is something i can check now to remedy it, I would be open to suggestions.

The only thing I have done to my car aftermarket is had the car underbody sprayed with a sealent.. i can't believe that that would affect anything.. but just incase.. I mentioned it.
I'm having the same issue with my 2012 Eco w/ Nav. I'm getting intermittent static and the range of reception for some stations isn't nearly as good as any other car I've ever had. So I'm wondering if there's something I should be checking or maybe have the dealer check out? I'm not running a cell phone charger either.
 

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Anyone else had this problem?

Recently it seems that my FM reception for radio is really spotty... I checked the whip antenna at the back, it was a tiny bit loose, tightening it made a bit of a difference, but not much..

Radio stations that were crystal clear before (and on any other car) are now giving intermittent static and stereo drop outs..

I figure I will bring it up with the dealer when I eventually get my recall notice.. but if there is something i can check now to remedy it, I would be open to suggestions.

The only thing I have done to my car aftermarket is had the car underbody sprayed with a sealent.. i can't believe that that would affect anything.. but just incase.. I mentioned it.


tvicars,
I would suggest that you take your vehicle into your dealership and have them look into this for you. They are in the best position to diagnose any issue you may be having. I would like you to keep me posted on the outcome of you visit to the dealership. If you have any further questions please feel free to message me.
Thank you,
Stacy Chevrolet Customer Service
 

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I am experiencing the bad reception right now. All of a sudden I get just static on most of the FM stations really bad can't even here the station. One or two work but poorly. AM and XM work fine. Only 1,400 miles on the car.
gmarcucio,
I would also suggest that you visit your local dealership. They will be able to look into this issue for you. If you have any additional questions please feel free to message me. I would also like you to keep me updated on your visit to the dealership.
Thank you,
Stacy Chevrolet Customer Service
 

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I'm having the same issue with my 2012 Eco w/ Nav. I'm getting intermittent static and the range of reception for some stations isn't nearly as good as any other car I've ever had. So I'm wondering if there's something I should be checking or maybe have the dealer check out? I'm not running a cell phone charger either.


johnm4,
It would be in your interest to contact your local dealership. They can look into this for you and fix any issues you may be having with your audio system. Please keep in updated on the outcome of your visit to the dealership. Please message me with any other questions you may have.
Thank you,
Stacy Chevrolet Customer Service
 

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Amazes me how electronics has changed in the 55 years I have been in it, from vacuum tubes and relay logic to sub micron ASIC's. FM has changed from staggered tune IF stages to frequency synthesis, phase locked loop, and all microcontroller controlled logic with IC pin spacing reduced to 20 mils. To jam more within the confines of the chip, use vertical integration. All robotic assembly, way to small for human hands. An improperly passivated chip can be your problem.

We couldn't even repair the stuff we made, just did a careful watch on yield rates, or to put it another way, this stuff is throwaway as is your entire radio. But there, complete assemblies can be replaced with all testing accomplished by dedicated computers.

My daughter's 14 month old 800 buck Sony laptop out or warranty crapped out on here. Took it all apart and found very minor corrosion in the many internal connections and got it working again for her. But told her, that was pure luck. She must have spilled a drop of water on it.

In brief, take it back to your dealer and have them install a brand new radio.
 

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In brief, take it back to your dealer and have them install a brand new radio.
...GM has had problems with their antenna cables, so I'll bet they go that route first BEFORE they even consider replacing the whole radio unit.
 

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...GM has had problems with their antenna cables, so I'll bet they go that route first BEFORE they even consider replacing the whole radio unit.
Good tip, thanks. Can you offer any specifics about problems with antenna cables? Anything I can attempt to diagnose myself? Or a specific thing to ask the dealer tech to measure such as SNR at the head unit? I'm envisioning going in to the dealer, the tech turns on the radio, and saying "sounds fine to me".

Side note: a few people in talking about the shark fin visual garage have said they got better reception. Anyone in this thread verify that? In any case, there's another group buy going on down in the Group Buys forum.... I almost missed it.
 

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I have this same problem, any updates? Shark fin any better?
 

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Hello everyone,

I am new here and would like to speak a few words on this subject because I want a lot and I believe I have information that can assist as they also seek a solution to this problem.

I have a vehicle Chevy Cruze LTZ here in Brazil equipped with a complete Multimedia Center and the FM fails precisely enough. I've been several times and in several dealerships and they insist that the problem is in the wiring of the antenna or in the media center. Some of my friends already had their central multimedia cabling exchanged and all trashed and nothing worked, the problem continued.

Well, so much research on the internet, workshops and libraries discovered something interesting about this problem, at least that happens here, it would be interesting to also evaluate you, and if this is confirmed, the statement from GM that it is a problem of the antenna collapses, then yes it is evident that this is a software problem.

This is a simple test:
- At some memory location to record a radio station that fails with frequency
- Then listen for a few moments this radio station
- When the radio station to start a fails the tuning, press the same button of the radio station memory is recorded as if selecting the memory again, much as you want

Will realize that every time you press the button, it appears that gives a boost of energy in FM tuner and briefly improves.

The reason I'm here is not to complain or speak ill of the car, I like my car, I'm just looking for a solution to this problem that GM insists on speaking it is an isolated problem and only happens with my car when in fact, when more I research, the more I see people complaining all over the world and they do nothing to solve the problem and meet client needs.

Ps.: I found a way to access the configuration data of the central muitimidia through radio buttons, just press simultaneously buttons "CONFIG, INFO, RPT NAV, AS, BACK, and FAV" for about 10 seconds, a screen diagnosing their central multimedia (to leave just turn off and on the radio, or click the home button).
And also press the "CONFIG" for about 10 seconds, enter "Test Mode", after only a few clicks on the button "SET" to see the available information (to exit, simply click the "CONFIG" for 10 seconds).

Best Regards.
 

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I know this is an old thread..but I missed it first go around. I have to be honest here..my Cruze has THE WORST reception on FM of any car I've ever owned. It's not that big of a deal..because Always have my iPod to hook up...but really..I can be 25 miles from where the Radio station is at..and this Cruze can not pick up the station...well, it does, but it's almost all static. Stations that my Mazda truck can pick up crystal clear, the Cruze can not. Like I said, not that big of a deal, but you'd think that with all the Bells and whistle that this car has, the Radio would be able to at least pick up better than it does.
 

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USB didn't work when I first received my new Cruze, could have played with, but why should I, under warranty.

Dealer has all the proper test equipment, even had to remove it brand new out of the box. And linked in with generation III. Problem was not at the console end, but at the radio end, had to remove the console to get at the radio. USB plug was not fully plugged in, antenna cable wasn't pushed in fully either. He reported this problem to GM quality control.

I listen mostly to AM, but wife to FM, in terms of overall performance and FM capture ratio, would have to say the Cruze radio is one of the best. Provided all the cables are pushed in. If on the antenna end, headliner would have to be removed for access. Can be in the radio, considered that for the USB, so why should I play with it. Not about to pay for a new radio if it was defective, but do have all the test equipment I need to test the sensitivity.

Would to that if my dealer said, they all do that.
 
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