You can reset a malfunctioning DirecTV box.
Some DirecTV boxes develop a problem in which they cannot regain the satellite signal after being disconnected. In such a case, you will see a message on your TV screen that says “Searching for signal.” This problem happens primarily in apartment complexes or other buildings in which multiple customers are sharing a single antenna. To avoid having to call out a repairman, try a few steps on your own.
1. Check the cable connections. In particular, verify that the “Satellite In” and the “Satellite Out” cables are connected to the proper ports.
2. Check to make sure that the box is connected to a phone outlet and that the phone line is working.
3. Check that your satellite dish is properly connected and has not been blown out of position by weather.
4. Press the “Reset” button on your DirecTV box. This is a small red button located next to where the account card is plugged in. See if the unit resets properly and finds a signal. If no signal is found, proceed to Step 5. Some boxes have a defect that causes them to search for a different satellite dish signal when they boot up. The following steps bypass this boot-up glitch, forcing the box to accept the existing signal.
5. Disconnect the “Satellite In” cable from the box.
6. Unplug the DirecTV box from the wall. Wait five minutes and plug it back in.
7. Turn on the box and let it boot up. Wait until you see the white screen with a message that says “Searching for signal.”
8. Plug the “Satellite In” cable back into the unit. You should now have a signal.