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Bloody GPS don't like my windshield

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  • Bloody GPS don't like my windshield

    finally got my USB GPS Mouse (from ebay) in and plugged it up. Course, after all these years of IT work i guess i still haven't learned that you never close everything up until you test it as it most certainly won't work if you do.

    Got it all run through my dash and everything all nice ... had the GPS receiver laying on the dash at the bottom of the window ... and no lock. So i tore everything apart this weekend ... if I hold it outside, it locks on 6-8 sats right away. put it on the dash, it will struggle with 4 and 5 and then go to 0. (still knows about 9 or 10 of em are there, but won't talk to any).

    what the hell? I've got a jeep cherokee, so I know the windshield isn't as angled as most cars, but the thing can still see a lot of sky. I don't think I have anything special in the window that would block the signal.


    Anyone have any ideas or suggestions on what I can do?
    My JeepPC Install

    "there are no stupid questions, just stupid people."

    "it's been agreed the whole world stinks so no one's taking showers anymore"

  • #2
    Is it always on the same place on the dash, possibly sitting on top of some electrical components?

    Also, you might want to try placing it in the side or back window, just in case you have a vehicle with the coated glass. I do not thing Jeep ships them like that, but some relpacement windshields have it.

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    • #3
      at first it was right in the center on top of the defrost vent right in the crack of the window. i thought maybe the wiper blades were interferring so I moved it up to the top of the dash and still no better. If I held it against the glass way up high above the rearview ... it seemed to lock easier but would lock for a second, then unlock, then lock again ...etc.

      The rear and side windows are all straight up and down so I didnt' think it'd get a good view. Also they're all tinted.

      I didn't think there was anything special on the front windshield either ... it's a 2001 and i'm the only owner ... so it's the original shield.
      My JeepPC Install

      "there are no stupid questions, just stupid people."

      "it's been agreed the whole world stinks so no one's taking showers anymore"

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      • #4
        this may sound like a stupid suggestion but have you checked the usb cable? is it plugged in all the way and does the usb cable have any cuts in it perhaps?

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        • #5
          And is it plugged into a powered or non-powered hub?
          *******************************
          *******************************

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          • #6
            I had the exact same problem in our family SUV. On the dash it would get 4-5 satellites some times, but mostly it would get none. I relocated it to the roof through the rear hatch, and bang. I was getting 11 out of 11 satellites with high amplitude.

            Location, Location, Location.

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            • #7
              yeah the usb cable is fine .. like i said when i hold it outside it locks on 6 or so sats right away. put it in the windshield and nothing.

              it is plugged straight into the usb root hub on the mobo

              i plugged in a 10ft extension cable and held the receiver in different places in the car. reception pretty much sucked everywhere inside.

              NewTechFool ... i may do as you said and put it on the roof running the cable through the crach in the rear hatch. have you had any problems with the receiver getting wet when it rains?

              course it would have been nice if i knew i needed to do this when i was installing all my audio equipment and had all the rear trim removed!
              My JeepPC Install

              "there are no stupid questions, just stupid people."

              "it's been agreed the whole world stinks so no one's taking showers anymore"

              Comment


              • #8
                Do you have a sunroof? Mentioned this to my boss because he too has a Jeep Cherokee, 2000 though, but he has no problem using a garmin GPS in his. His has a sunroof and suggested that if you have one too, to try opening it to see if that works. We also talked a bit and remembered that some auto manufacturers had "glazed" the windows with a very thin coating of metal and used that for defrosting. We don't recall Jeep being one of those vehicles, but if they were, that wouldn't allow the GPS to work nor would it allow radar detecors to work.
                Just a couple of thoughts, hope you get it figured out.
                2006 Chevy Colorado: VIA M10000 EDEN, 1 GB RAM, 80 GB 2.5" Seagate HDD, USB Slim Slot DVD/RW, Holux GPS, MobileVU 10.4" LCD (touch not working yet), VOOMPC Case (blue), 70W DC-DC supply.

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                • #9
                  thanks for asking around jackso. unfortunately i don't have a sunroof. i have the limited and they instead are equiped with a full length console on the roof. So no sunroof option. That would be nice as I could just set the receiver outside of the sunroof when i wated to use it.

                  yeah i have an 01 ...and while i know nothing major changed between 2000 and 2001, it's very possible they used different glass for the windshield.

                  it could also be the receiver ... i think garmin receivers are pretty good yes? i mean you can't expect too much from a $60 receiver off eBay (mine).

                  so your boss sets his on the dash then?
                  My JeepPC Install

                  "there are no stupid questions, just stupid people."

                  "it's been agreed the whole world stinks so no one's taking showers anymore"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    My 98 grand cherokee does the same thing with my earthmate. Very poor reception when on my dash, but if i move it to my roof i get excelent reception. I have also replaced my windshield if that has anything to do with it.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by shakes
                      NewTechFool ... i may do as you said and put it on the roof running the cable through the crach in the rear hatch. have you had any problems with the receiver getting wet when it rains?
                      I live in Seattle, so my Deluo GPS on the roof sees lots of rain. I have had no problems at all. The Deluo also has a small magnet, so it stays up there.

                      I don't know how the case is going to look like a couple of years from now, but Deluo has a 'repair kit' that includes a new case, so I am not too worried.

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                      • #12
                        I had a similar problem with my DeLorme. My reciever sits on the rear deck of my 94 Chrysler Concorde, it's a huge rear window and the defrost lines don't bother it. One day after it had rained the night before I found my reciever would no longer lock even though it could find a couple of weak signals. I washed the rear window and the damn thing worked again. Check that out.
                        http://www.arizonasportcompacts.com

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                        • #13
                          Just a thought, have you ever seen, old car arialss that attached to your door
                          windows. the arial was attached to a "U" shaped bracket, that would slip over
                          the top edge of the window.
                          the bracket was thin so you could still close the window.

                          This was before electric windows so you would have to be careful not to open the window fully.

                          Maybe you could made a bracket like that to hold the GPS unit.
                          Would that work for you?

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                          • #14
                            That might work, but wouldn't it look cheezy?
                            http://www.arizonasportcompacts.com

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                            • #15
                              Just a bit!!
                              But if thats the only way it will work!!

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