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8 Common DIRECTV Problems & Fixes



DirecTV problems can stop you from watching a huge game, your favorite reality show and lost signals are only the start. We’ll walk through common DirecTV problems and how to fix them without waiting on hold with DirecTV support or waiting for a technician to show up and fix your problems.

If you lose signal, your remote no longer works or your receiver is slow this is what you need to do. Most of the time you can solve DirecTV problems on your own, to get your signal back, fix a stubborn DirecTV DVR or start watching DirecTV on Demand again.

Here is how you can fix DirecTV problems on your own and where to look for fast support if you need it.

How to Fix No DirecTV Picture or Sound

One of the most common DirecTV problems is missing sound or a missing picture. If you experience either of these problems there are three steps to take before you try anything else.

  • Restart Your TV, DVR and sound equipment.
  • Check the cables between your devices.
  • Try a new cable between your DVR or DirecTV box and your TV.

Most of the time simply restarting the items or switching to a new cable will solve the problem. If none of this works you may need a new DirecTV box.

DirecTV Receiver Doesn’t Turn On With Remote

One of the most common DirecTV problems we’ve run into with a Whole Home DVR connected box is that the smaller boxes don’t always turn on when we press the power button. This leaves the TV on, but the DirecTV box off.

If your DirecTV receiver won't turn on, try this.

If your DirecTV receiver won’t turn on, try this.

Instead of getting up to press the power button or unplug and replug the small box in, you can often fix this by holding the channel up button on the remote for three to five seconds.

After you hold the channel up button the receiver should power up and work normally. If this doesn’t fix it you may need to unplug the box from power for 30 seconds and then plug it back in.

No DirecTV Signal

You don't need to go up to your roof to fix DirecTV signal problems.

You don’t need to go up to your roof to fix DirecTV signal problems.

Another big DirecTV problem is when you cannot get a DirecTV signal. One of the messages is DirecTV error code 771, but there are others that you may see.

If you see these error messages frequently it is not likely something you can fix. You may need to have DirecTV come out and change the position or placement of your satellite.

We see this error occasionally during very bad weather. If there is heavy rain, snow or hail the only thing you can do is wait for the weather to pass if you want to watch live TV on your HDTV. You can use the DirecTV app to stream Live TV using your internet connection and you can still watch on demand and recorded shows.

If the weather is good there are three steps to take to try to fix DirecTV error 771, or error code 775, without calling for help.

  • Check that the cable connection is tight to the box. If there are any adapters connected, check those as well.
  • If you have a SWiM Power Inserter, a small power brick like device that includes two cable connections, unplug it from power for 15 minutes.
  • Make sure nothing is blocking your satellite. If something is blocking it you can call DirecTV for help, the company does not recommend climbing on your roof.

If you continue to have problems with getting a DirecTV signal you will need to make a call or use webchat.

How to Fix DirecTV Error Code 721

If you get error code 721, it could mean that the channel you’re trying to watch isn’t included in your subscription package. If you’re certain you get the channel, it may be that your receiver is unable to get the programming information.

If you’re positive you get the channel, try refreshing your service via DirecTV’s website. You’ll also want to try restarting your receiver.

Fix DirecTV Remote Not Working

When you sit down to watch TV and your DirecTV Remote is not working you should first check the batteries, but many times the remote is simply not paired to the receiver anymore.

Fix DirecTV remote problems in seconds.

Fix DirecTV remote problems in seconds.

Here’s the fastest way to fix DirecTV remote not working problems without changing batteries or ordering a replacement.

Point the remote at the receiver and press and hold Mute and Enter until the screen shows Applying IR/RF Setup.

This is a step we take about once a month on one TV and once every few months on another. It happens most often on the small Genie Mini receivers.

DirecTV Problems with On Demand

If you have DirecTV On Demand problems you are not alone, but many times it is an issue with your Internet connection or your home network.

One of the first things you can do if you experience slow DirecTV On Demand downloads or see an error that you cannot connect is to restart the DirecTV DVR or box. If downloads are slow, you may want to restart your Wi-Fi router, by unplugging it from power for 30 seconds.

Make sure you are connected to the Internet, or reconnect.

Make sure you are connected to the Internet, or reconnect.

If you see an error about no internet connection, you will need to go to your DirecTV menu. Then go to Settings & Help.

Select Network Setup and Connect Now. Choose your wireless network and enter your password. Or, you can use push button setup if that is easier. With that option you need to go push a button on your router after you choose to connect on your DVR.

Most of the time, setting up the Internet connection again and or rebooting the router will solve the problem. If you constantly have slow downloads and issues you may need DirecTV to help or you may need a faster or more reliable home Internet connection.

How to Fix Poor Quality DirecTV Video

One of the most annoying DirecTV problems we’ve experienced is most often found on the Genie Mini devices that are in the other rooms. If your DirecTV video quality on these looks poor, it may not be a satellite or connectivity issue.

In our case, it’s often a problem with the quality settings. Every few months the settings revert to 480P, instead of 720P or 1080, and we need to turn the settings back on.

Double check settings to fix DirecTV quality issues.

Double check settings to fix DirecTV quality issues.

To make sure that your DirecTV receiver sends the best looking picture to your HDTV you need to go to the DirecTV menu. Then go to Settings & Help and choose TV resolutions.

If you own a newer TV, it likely supports all the resolution options. Check those you want to see and then when you watch something the DirecTV picture quality should be better.

How to Fix a Slow DirecTV Reciever

Sometimes you may find that you’re dealing with a slow DirecTV receiver, which is frustrating. If you have an older model, it may simply be time to get a new one, but there are some tricks you can try.

One of the common suggestions is to clear the NVRAM. To do this, go to Channel 1. Once here, push Red, Red, Blue, Blue, Yellow, Green in order.

This may help, but some versions of the software on older receivers are simply slow and you will need to upgrade or ask for a free replacement.



  1. Nerrujhol

    12/05/2015 at 7:45 am

    15 my best friend’s step-sister makes $62 every hour on the laptop . She has been without work for 6 months but last month her pay check was $14905 just working on the laptop for a few hours.
    you can try here…. See More

    • Stan Williams

      04/21/2017 at 1:35 pm

      My tv isn’t working because my direct tv remote won’t let me go from ANT-1 to SAT. This has happened before but this time it’s stuck on ANT-1.

    • YourMom

      12/01/2018 at 6:47 am

      What does that have to do with TV, are you retarded?

      • YourMom

        12/01/2018 at 6:49 am


  2. bedleysmutler

    05/03/2016 at 12:21 pm

    The apps that show up on the right side of my Samsung Smart TV via Directv have not come uo for weeks . DTV says they are working on the prob. Actually I have had nothing but probs with this service — the apps–(what’s hot, scores, weather) ever since they initiated the service. No patience left

    • Tom Holloway

      06/04/2016 at 3:59 pm

      Other than weather once or twice a month, I never use it. I accidently go there way more than deliberately and would like to disable it.

      Does anyone know how, please?

    • Mike

      04/05/2017 at 1:30 pm

      Lol directv has NOTHING to do with your Samsung smart TV apps at all. I don’t know why they would Tell they are fixing something they have no control over lol

  3. J

    05/03/2016 at 8:05 pm

    Dtv wont let you watch new episodes on phone, laptop or tablet. You have to wait about a week or watch it when you get home. Pretty shitty!

  4. Elvie conner

    07/13/2016 at 6:56 am

    The apps have been wrong for months. I have reported this several times with nothing being done to fix them. Gave up. Don’t believe them anymore.

  5. Klaatu GORT

    09/01/2016 at 12:22 pm

    My DVR is now two years old, but for some reason is still the most current model. When I got it, it was obviously a refurbished unit, because it was already removed from its original packaging, so no telling how old it really is. From day one it was sluggish, sometimes taking 4 or 5 seconds just to respond to a command from the remote. The “jump-back” feature is supposed to be a 6-second jump, but is actually slightly less than 4. What good is a programmer who can’t even count to 6? The TV apps regularly fail to load for no apparent reason. The hardware is seriously out of date now, but don’t hold your breath waiting for AT&T to do anything about it.

    DirecTV has started coming apart at the seams since being acquired by AT&T, which unfortunately is exactly what many folks expected.For 2 years prior to the acquisition, DirecTV gave me the opportunity to get the NFL ticket at a discount by paying early. Typically, as soon as AT&T took over, that money saving option was no longer offered to me. Why? Because AT&T is only interested in maximizing profits, period. Service, support, customer appreciation – everything that made DirecTV superior to other products – is now at risk, thanks to AT&T’s lack of concern with keeping their customers happy.


  6. Kristi

    09/10/2016 at 6:35 pm

    The Swim adapter has been our chronic problem. This is the first place I’ve seen to unplug it for 15 MINUTES. I’ve seen 15 seconds, or 30 seconds, but never for this long. But gratefully, this seems to have resolved our issue. Thank you!!

  7. Betsy Fields

    10/16/2016 at 10:57 am

    My picture is replaced by the logo about every 5 minutes while watching INSP…….Why, that’s not what I pay for.

  8. Kathryn Malson

    12/28/2016 at 5:15 pm

    I have a genie & 2 mini’s. The main genie & one mini work perfect. The other one makes the TV picture blink on & off constantly. The repair men have been out here 3 times & said it was the TV so we put a new TV in there while they were here & that work great for a week & now the new TV is doing it. I changed out the power strip & HDMI cable…still doing it. What the hell…we have a new house so I don’t think it is the wall plug since the other 2 TV’s work fine. Any ideas??????????????? HELP!

    • Steve

      07/15/2017 at 7:04 pm

      Got the same problem. Direct tv is no help. Can’t wait for our contract to run out. Getting rid of this terrible/ over priced service as soon as possible. DIRECT TV IS THE WORST!!!!

  9. joe

    02/22/2017 at 10:12 am

    holding the channel button worked for me perfectly… i was 10 seconds from calling, to ask them why i cant get this little box to come on, when i just got the service less than 2 months ago..

    i have to say direct tv is by far the worst service ive ever had, and ive had them all..

    thanks for the quick fix.. i never wouldve thought to us eth channel button..

    if i could find a way for the screen saver not to interupt my long movies at the climatic ending, id be almos happy

  10. Teriann Asami-Oki

    03/03/2017 at 9:43 am

    The direct tv is in connect mode, but it’s not connecting. Been that way for the past two days now.

  11. J.Shipp

    03/06/2017 at 10:15 am

    Calling DTV is useless because the call center is now in INDIA with people you can not understand and whom don’t care about us. India does like the U.S. Used to be in COLORADO with people whom spoke English and wanted to help.

  12. Jack

    03/14/2017 at 11:49 am

    I think I have found out what is causing the pixilation problem.
    After years of complaining to them after I upgraded to the Genie, DirecTV finally agreed to a free service call. I have been a customer for 21 years. The pixilation problem started when I upgraded to the Genie and High Def. The repair tech that just came out found that the previous person who installed the new antenna for the HD Genie only ran new antenna wire down to a coax connection block on the outside of my house, where the antenna went under my house and came up in my living room. I had the pixilation problem right away.
    It turns out that the old coax cable that the original Genie installer left under my house was only 180 megahertz frequency capable and the newer Genie system requires 300 megahertz coax cable. Apparently my original Genie installer was too lazy to run new cable under my house. The repair man ran new 300 megahertz antenna cable under the house and so far everything has been great! The picture even looks better. So look at the cable that runs into your receiver. If you see numbers like 1.8 or 180 mhz you need to replace it.

  13. susan

    03/19/2017 at 3:30 am

    My receiver died the other day. Two repairmen came and installed the new receiver but it was not the identical one as the CSO who told me I could switch it myself said. Connections were not the same. they left with the screen up but none of my channels working. Yesterday a guy from Directv fixed that over the phone. something to do with blocking HD channels. I have always had SD and had excellent picture quality. Now it isn’t good. I’m tempted to just get a new TV and a new HD box because it’s depressing me. I’m retired and use a walker so depend on it for entertainment. There is some fundamental problem here since the picture used to be great. I made all the display adjustments I could on my TV controls.

  14. susan

    03/19/2017 at 3:33 am

    Does anyone here have DISH. I’m thinking seriously about switching but don’t want to have the same problems.

  15. Donna shank

    03/24/2017 at 1:02 pm

    How to get snow off tv. LG tv two remotes

  16. Bonnie

    03/31/2017 at 3:51 pm

    Since the merger with AT&T the sound goes out on all of our televisions several times a day and you have to turn the televisions off to get it back on. It happens on all our tvs. What’s up?

  17. Dennis Seder

    04/02/2017 at 7:54 pm

    What about not recording the whole show. Or freezing in the middle of a show?

  18. Joan Bendokaitis

    04/13/2017 at 7:33 am

    Used the above suggestions but I get select a server comment

  19. Joan bendokaitis

    04/13/2017 at 7:42 am

    Why aren’t you giving a solution to my problem stated earlier. Been with D TV for years and pay an astounding monthly fee

  20. bonnie

    04/15/2017 at 5:01 pm

    Thank you holding the mute and enter fixed my remote Thanks from the bottom of my heart

  21. Robert Bailey

    04/22/2017 at 9:23 am

    My directtv stalls momentarily on all channels every once in awhile for a second and then continues. My older system before upgrade didn’t do this. Any ideas?

    • Steve

      01/04/2018 at 12:21 pm

      Mine does the same thing. Did you find a fix?

  22. glynn boyd

    05/01/2017 at 10:42 am

    why don’t I have a full picture?

  23. Teri

    10/13/2017 at 1:18 pm

    You got my directtv fixed in a few paragraphs. I’ve been trying for hours. Mute enter is a miracle.

  24. Sara

    01/14/2018 at 10:54 am

    Holding the mute and enter button isn’t working. Now what??

  25. Joe Mayo

    03/31/2019 at 1:30 pm

    I wanted to pitch in here with an observation – My DTV system has been upgraded to the HS17, Genie2, “Server” system. Since then, I have had more aggravation in the last few months than of all the 20 or so years I’ve subscribed to DTV. I’ve read all I can about the pixilation, freezing screen, disconnecting of receivers, etc….. No help, AT&T support no help either. Well, today I decided to do some “troubleshooting” of our system. When the new Genie2 was installed, I was told that it was a server system, a wireless broadcast system and each of the clients is wirelessly connected to it. I asked about the wireless unit installed in “the closet” and was told that it would continue to be an “extender” for the Genie2 providing an excellent signal to the whole house. I have now disconnected the power to the device and there has been no evidence from any of the three clients of any change in client/Genie2 service. Actually, all three clients seem to work better – faster channel changes, less gray/black screens when changing programming. Only time will tell if the freezing/connecting “stuff” changes.

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