How Does Weather Affect Cell Phone Reception

Weather affect cell phone reception in that heavy rain can absorb the electronic cellular signals, snow can refract the waves, and wind and lightning can destroy communication equipment.

Cell phones are essential communication devices that allow you to communicate with others even when far away from them. The introduction of cell phone devices was a game-changer in communication whereby people began communicating with each other in real-time. Cellular companies rely on cellular boosters to send signals between mobile phones. However, signals can be hindered by weather elements such as precipitation and strong winds. But how does weather affect cell phone reception?

Before we talk about how weather affects cellular signals, knowing a little history of telephones is vital. Initially, we had telephone lines whose coverage was not everywhere. And by the way, telephone lines were not convenient for international communication. People relied on telegrams to communicate to others across the borders. Telco companies distributed telephone booths in various locations in towns and small urban centers where people went to call their loved ones.

However, despite the telephones relying on wires, there were still issues that affected communication, such as vandalized or faulty wires. Also, the phones were not suitable for dealing with emergency issues, unlike mobile phones, where people can walk around with phones and receive calls from their friends and families conveniently. However, most rural areas get challenges in communication due to poor infrastructure, whereby people are far away from the nearest tower.

How do phones communicate?

The process by which phones communicate is complex, although it can be explained simply. Usually, phones rely on cell phone signals that help connect phones where necessary. When you make a call, your carrier then uses systems to connect you to the person you are calling through the unique number called a phone number. The SIM card in your phone attaches to a specific number that others can use to reach you.

The carrier connects the recipient through the nearest cellular tower during the connection. You can then communicate with each other. Sometimes, the recipient may not be near a cellular booster, making communications difficult.

People in poor network areas can easily improve cell phone reception by buying cell phone boosters and mounting them in their homes to aid them in their communication activities. 

Similarly, your call transfers to the nearest cell phone booster and the recipient when you call someone. If you are in a poor network signal area, you may not be able to make calls. That is why you also need a cell signal booster for the same.

We have different kinds of signal boosters. Some are immobile and can boost cell signals at home or office, while others are portable and can be mounted on a car to keep you connected.

What factors affect cell phone signals?

weather affect cell phone reception

Sometimes you may be near a cellular tower and experiencing poor signals due to some factors. Various things may affect your cell phone signals, including the following.

i) Physical features

Things such as mountains, hills, and ridges can affect cellular signals in a big way. If the cellular tower is on the other side of the mountain or hill, you may get poor signals or not get them at all.

The physical features act like barriers that block signals from reaching your device. Your phone may display emergency calls only, meaning that you cannot call or receive calls. You can solve the problem by using a cell signal booster to boost cell signals at home for free.

ii) Faulty phone

Some manufacturers make fake phones that can be a reason why your phone does not receive signals properly. You might find a scenario where your friends get quality calls after receiving messages and an excellent internet connection while yours remains pathetic. In such a case, you have to replace your phone. 

iii) Weather

Weather elements can also lead to poor signals. If you are within an area with bad weather, you will see poor cellular signals. Rain, strong wind, snow, fog, and mist are some of the weather elements that can lead to poor signal reception.

iv) Being far from the nearest cellular booster

If you are far away from the booster near you, you may experience poor signals due to the distance. The signals cannot travel beyond a certain distance. Thus, you can only correct the issue by moving near the booster or getting a signal booster.

For instance, you can get a portable cell phone signal booster for hiking if you go far away from home to hike on the slopes. That way, you will still get in touch with your friends and family members.

How does weather affect cell phone reception?

The weather has significant effects on the quality of cell phone signals. Since water in the atmosphere comes in between your phone and the nearest booster, then there must be interference. The cellular signals are in the form of radio waves, and water can absorb them, impeding the signal strength.

Water is a good conductor of electricity. Since the signals are electronic, it becomes easy to conduct them. When the water in the atmosphere conducts the electronic signals, that causes signal impedance, which experts call the “propagation delay effect” since the signals cannot move as expected.

The result is having dropped calls, delayed message reception, and poor internet connection. In such a case, even the cell phone booster may not be of significant help since it will experience the same issue with network signal reception.

Weather elements affect cell phone signals differently due to the varying degree of moisture in the air. The following are ways various weather conditions affect cellular signals.

1) Rain

Rain affects cell signals, leading to poor internet connection and even poor calls. If you experience rainstorms in your area, you are likely to have a bad cell reception because water vapor density can absorb a lot of the waves. That means the heavier the rain, the higher the impact and vice versa.

Again, atmospheric water vapor reduces your cell phone reception by absorbing energy from the radio waves. The radiations convert into heat energy which is of no use to your cell phone. 

2) Snow and Hail

If you live in the polar regions, you can testify how snow and hail can be messy. Even though their effect on cell signals is less than rain since the ice, in the form of hailstones or snowflakes, is less dense than water in liquid form. However, they usually affect cell phone signals by refracting the radio waves.

3) Lightning

Lightning can damage towers as it can strike and burn critical equipment leading to poor cell signals. Furthermore, lighting can cause electrical interference, thus weakening the cellular signals. However, their effect may not be much since lightning does not occur continuously.

4) Fog and Clouds

These have little effect on radio waves compared to rain. However, they can still affect cell signal quality by scattering radio waves.

5) Temperature

Temperatures refer to the hotness or coldness of a place. It does not have a direct effect on cell signals. However, it can determine the nature of water vapor in the atmosphere due to humidity changes. When it is hot, there is a lot of water vapor in the air, meaning signals may be of less quality than when cold.

6) Wind

Experts argue that wind alone may not have significant effects on cell signals. However, when combined with other conditions such as rain and fog, there can be issues with cell phone signal quality. Also, winds can directly damage communication equipment, thus affecting local communication.

How to solve the poor signal menace?

If you are experiencing poor signals in your locality, then you should not worry since there are ways you can solve the issue. Rural areas are more likely to get poor signals compared to urban areas. The best solution is to buy a cell phone booster. You can have the best cell phone booster for rural areas from reputable companies like WeBoost and SureCall.

You may wonder how the device works to improve signals. The operation of the machine is straightforward as it receives weak signals, amplifies them, then broadcasts them to the surrounding devices for use. Even mounting the systems is not that complicated, and you may not need an expert to help you with that.

A cell phone booster has three main parts. We have the external antenna, the amplifier, and the internal antenna. You mount the external antenna on the outside to receive signals, then the house’s amplifier and the internal antenna. You must ensure that the amplifier is near a wall socket.

Once the system is ready to work, you power on to start receiving signals. The amplifier receives weak signals from the external antenna, amplifies them, and then relays them to the external antenna. The internal antenna then broadcasts them to the surrounding areas. But how does an internet booster work?

Usually, the cell phone signal booster improves voice calls, message delivery, and internet connectivity. Therefore, there are no specific internet boosters that you can use. However, for WiFi internet, you can use a WiFi extender to boost signals over a large area.

Bottom line

Cell phones are devices used for communication. They rely on cell signals to communicate with one another. The cell signals are what connect the devices under the control of the cell phone carriers. We have cellular towers that boost signals within a given area. You may experience poor signals due to being far from a booster, having a faulty phone, living behind a mountain, or bad weather.

Paula Beaton

Paula Beaton