While out at sea, being able to communicate using marine antennas is of vital importance. Whether it’s for commercial fishing or for recreational use, a marine antenna is a vessel’s lifeline to the outside world. Your boat’s marine antenna is something that you don’t want to take for granted. While many people do their best to predict weather patterns and swear that their own experience has taught them enough to be safe at sea, the fact remains that the ocean can be a highly unpredictable place where effective communication with the outside world is a necessity.
A simple visual check of your boat’s marine antenna is another easy way to get an idea as to how effective your transmissions will be. Look for wear and tear on the marine antenna itself. Large fractures or cracks in the antenna’s casing can highly affect system performance. A boat’s marine antenna can take a real beating while out at sea. Harsh weather conditions and an unruly sea can cause excessive damage to a boat’s antenna and hinder its ability to communicate properly.
Also, check to make sure that there are no signs of corrosion in or around your boat’s antenna, and look for loose connections to the antenna itself. Excessive corrosion and loose or damaged connections to the antenna can result in poor transmission performance and can endanger the lives of anyone on board the vessel.
You can also test the antenna by disconnecting it from the radio and seeing how its signal weakens or disappears. Slowly reconnecting just the tip of the coax connector should slowly increase the signal. As you insert the coax connector, the signal strength should increase. If it happens to disappear again, there may be serious problems with the antenna or connector. If jiggling the connector produces significant changes in signal strength, your antenna’s connection to the cable itself could be faulty.