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8 Reasons Why Cell Phone Signals Suddenly Go Bad

on September 25, 2018

And What You Can Do About It

You’re sitting on your living room couch, walking in your neighborhood, or sitting in your car waiting for your kids to get out of school. You’re texting or chatting on your mobile phone, when suddenly your call drops off or your conversation disappears.

Poor signal again?

You think to yourself, “I’ve got to change carriers.” Not so fast! Chances are your carrier is not at fault (well, not always).

1. Heavy Cellular Traffic

Take a look at all the other parents sitting in their cars in front of the school, or all those other people caught in rush hour traffic. Chances are, most if not all are doing the same thing you are: texting or talking on their phones.

All those signals are fighting for space on the nearest cell phone tower. Once your phone has linked to a tower, you are unlikely to lose your call, but the more phone traffic that fights for a spot, the weaker your signal can become.

If your call is transferred to a tower that’s already full, your call could be dropped.

2. Building Material

The building material of your house, car, place of work, or run-of-the-mill shopping mall is the number one culprit for weaker signal in America. Metal and new-fangled tinted, low-E glass are the two materials most responsible.

If you routinely notice service fading in and out as you walk around your home, or if your signal improves when you stand near a window or door, it’s likely your signal is being blocked by metal construction material.

Read more on the materials responsible here.

3. Low Battery

If you’ve been putting off charging your phone battery, you may find yourself with a weak signal when you need it most. Your phone needs energy to maintain a connection with a cell tower, and it may struggle when its battery is low.

4. Bad Weather

Cell phones transmit and receive electromagnetic waves, which can be affected directly by weather phenomenon such as humidity, heavy cloud cover, thunder, lightning, wind, rain, snow and ice.

5. Blocking Your Own Antenna

Close your eyes and picture the early days of mobile phones. Sure, they were as big as shoe boxes, but they also had exterior antennas. The phones were heavy and unwieldy, but their signal was pretty consistent. That’s partly because of those exterior antennas. Today’s phones have antennas embedded inside the phone. If you’re not careful how you’re holding the phone, you can block the antenna, and lose your signal. Where exactly your embedded antenna is depends on you phone model, but a little bit of searching, and you should be able to find it. Now that you know where it is, you should have no trouble avoiding this issue.

6. Mother Nature

Did you just walk into a grove of trees? The leaf canopy can block some cell signals and cause your call to fade or drop altogether. If your home is surrounded by large, coniferous trees, these can be causing a massive drop in your cellular reception.

7. Hills and Valleys

Geographic features are a common reason for cell signal obstruction. If you live on one side of a mountain, and the only cell tower in your area is on the other, you’re not likely to get good reception.

8. Cosmic events

Eruptions on the surface of the sun send plumes of gas into the atmosphere, and have been known to disrupt mobile phone communications. These so-called solar flares produce shock waves that travel through space.

They can disrupt the signals sent to and from a satellite, and produce changes in the Earth’s magnetic field. Obviously, this does not bode well for your cellular signal.

The Solution

While we can’t stop solar flares, bad weather, or heavy cell phone traffic, we can recommend a way to mitigate their effect. Plus, this will help with all the other items on this list, too!

Everything changes with a cell phone signal booster.

They're legal, FCC-approved devices that increase your weak signal up to 32 times, whether at home, in your car, or in a public place such as an office building.

A signal booster takes a weak cell signal, whether 3G or 4G LTE, amplifies it multiple times, then rebroadcasts the boosted signal to an area inside your home or car, which your cell phone picks up.

The results? Improved carrier service. Faster internet. Better talk & text.

Here are all the features and benefits of using a cell phone booster:

  1. Works for all cell phones & cellular devices.
  2. Carrier-proof: Works for all carriers in USA & Canada.
  3. One-time purchase, no monthly fees.
  4. No need for wifi or any broadband connection.

Below are the top signal booster models for increasing your phone's signal and service at home, your office, or your vehicle.

Best phone Signal Booster For Home

Our Pick 

weboost connect 4g signal booster

weBoost Connect 4G (470103)

  • Boosts Voice, Text Messages, Internet 3G & 4G LTE Data
  • For Whole Home Coverage
  • Up to +65 dB Gain
  • Works with all Carriers, Networks, and Phones

Our Review:

The weBoost Connect 4G has been the bestselling home signal booster for 5 years and counting. 

Although possible for users to enjoy up to 5,000 square feet of signal boost coverage under the best conditions, our customer feedback shows an average of around 2,500 to 3,000 square feet, which covers the average-size of most American homes.

Rural areas should experience a little bit less coverage because of the lack of quality signal.

For most homes, small offices, and small buildings, this is the model you want to get, and why we generally recommend the weBoost Connect 4G to most customers. 

Ratings: 4.4★ out of 5 (930 reviews).


weboost connect 4g-x commercial signal booster

weBoost Connect 4G-X (471104)

  • Boosts Voice, Text Messages, Internet 3G & 4G LTE Data
  • For Large Building Coverage
  • Up to +70 dB Gain
  • Works with all Carriers, Networks, and Phones

Our Review:

The weBoost Connect 4G-X is the most powerful home booster from Wilson Electronics.

Usage depends on whether you're in the city or in the countryside.

For people in the city, it's mostly about getting wider consistent coverage with maximum coverage at 7,500 sq ft. People with below to average signals can expect 4,000 to 5,500  square feet of coverage. 

For people in the countryside, if you live in an extremely fringe area with great distance from the cell tower, this may be the model you need to get any signal. 

Ratings: 4.5★ out of 5 (275 reviews).


weboost home 4g signal booster

weBoost Home 4G (470101)

  • Boosts Voice, Text Messages, 3G & 4G LTE Data
  • For 1 Room Coverage
  • Up to +60 dB Gain
  • Works with all Carriers, Networks, and Phones

Our Review: 

If cost is a big factor, then the weBoost Home 4G is a decent starter kit.

Under best conditions, you may get up to one-two room coverage. More likely, you'll probably get desktop coverage, about a few feet from the inside antenna. 

So for small spaces like apartments and cabins, it'll get the job done.

If you live in a remote area, we recommend one step up to the weBoost Connect 4G model as a starter kit instead.

Ratings: 4.5★ out of 5 (69 reviews).

Got a Really Big Home or Office?

wilson pro 70 plus signal booster

WilsonPro 70 Plus (463127)

  • Boosts Voice, Text Messages, 3G & 4G LTE Data
  • For Commercial Building
  • Up to +70 dB Gain
  • Works with all Carriers, Networks, and Phones

Our review: 

Ok, so this isn't a consumer unit; however, for very large homes or people in the absolute worst of worst of fringe areas, the  WilsonPro line of commercial boosters should do the trick. They range from range from 25,000 to 100,000 square feet. The WilsonPro 70 Plus hits right in the middle, providing coverage up to 35,000 square feet; for the most part, it averages around 10,000 to 25,000 square feet depending on the configuration and outside signal.

Our professional installers and their big home customers report greatly improved service after installing this booster.

Best phone Signal Booster For Vehicle

Our Pick 

weboost drive sleek 4g signal booster

weBoost Drive Sleek (470135)

  • Boosts Voice, Text Messages, 3G & 4G LTE Data
  • For a single smartphone
  • Up to +23 dB Gain
  • Works with all Carriers, Networks, and Phones

Our Review:

This is a car phone mount that boosts signal to the phone, and it's the cheapest of all the recommended car boosters here.

✓ phone car mount.

✓ Boosts 3G & 4G LTE signal.

✓ Lowest cost.

The weBoost Drive Sleek boosts performance for a single phone when mounted on the cradle.

It uses a magnetic vent mount and when paired with a bluetooth headset, it really shines for regular talk & text and hands-free navigation. 

Newer design allows for all models of phone.

Ratings: 4.4★ out of 5 (48 reviews).


weboost drive 4g-m signal booster

weBoost Drive 4G-M (470121)

  • Boosts Voice, Text, 3G & 4G LTE Data
  • For multiple cell devices
  • Up to +50 dB Gain
  • Works with all Carriers, Networks, and Phones

Our Review:

So what if you already have your own car phone mount or prefer not to use one?

Then the weBoost Drive 4G-M is something even better. It's been the most popular & recommended car signal booster in North America for about 5 years running.

A slim outside antenna picks up signal. An indiscreet inside antenna (usually Velcroed to the driver seat) broadcasts signal inside. 

It boosts signal up to 4 cellular devices! Great for city and light off-the-grid use.

Ratings: 4★ out of 5 (184 reviews).

For Very Rural Areas

weboost drive 4g-x signal booster

weBoost Drive 4G-X (470510)

  • Boosts Voice, Text Message, 3G & 4G LTE Data
  • For multiple cell devices
  • Up to +50 dB Gain
  • Pro Model: Up to 60% more reach from and to cell tower
  • Works with all Carriers, Networks, and Phones

Our Review:

So let's say you're really deep in the boonies and almost off-the-grid. 

The weBoost Drive 4G-X has 2x the uplink power compared to the Drive 4G-M. 

So that means about 30-60% more reach to the cell tower than your typical car booster.

For drivers in extremely rural or poor signal areas, the Drive 4G-X is the top option to look at. Boosts signal up to 4 devices.

Ratings: 4.3★ out of 5 (350 reviews).

How We Can Help:

Wilson Amplifiers is the leading provider of cell phone signal boosters. They amplify 3G & 4G LTE for any phone with any carrier for home, office, or vehicle.

  • Free consultation (ask us anything) with our US-based customer support (sales@wilsonamplifiers.com).
  • Free shipping.
  • Better signal or money-back guaranteed.

We want everyone to be satisfied, so we provide lifetime technical support and a 2-year warranty. 

Read real reviews from our customers. 

Ask us anything and we'll be glad to help.

Want to learn more about cell phone boosters? Read more with our definitive guide:

Need help? Email us today ( sales@wilsonamplifiers.com) or give us a call at 1-800-568-2723. A cell phone signal expert will gladly assist you in getting better signal instantly.

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