According to information released by the Federal Communications Commission, approximately 1,000 television stations nationwide that have or will be transitioning to new frequencies in phases during the upcoming weeks.
Viewers in Middle Tennessee who watch TV for free with an over-the-air antenna will soon need to rescan their TV to continue receiving those channels.
The reason why television stations are changing frequencies is to make room for new 5G and other mobile broadband services. Nationwide, millions of U.S. households watch TV exclusively over-the-air with an antenna on local channels affiliated with the major networks and hundreds of independently owned-and-operated television stations. Cable and satellite subscribers aren’t affected by these changes.
The FCC has provided a variety of online materials to help inform consumers about the rescan process. To find a video from the FCC showing viewers how to rescan their TV, visit www.fcc.gov/TVrescan. Once you have loaded the website, press resources, consumer toolkit, interactive map, transition schedule, and FAQs.
Jean Kiddoo, chair of the Incentive Auction Task Force at the FCC, said, “As an over-the-air TV viewer myself, I know that consumers sometimes need extra help re-scanning televisions when broadcast stations add channels or change frequencies. That’s why it’s so important to make both online information and telephone assistance like the consumer help line available to viewers during the ongoing broadcast transition.”
In the Nashville area, seven TV stations will be transitioning to new frequencies by Friday, Oct. 18. Those channels are:
• WZTV-TV (FOX17)
• WJFB-TV (Total Christian Television Network 66)
• WHTN-TV (Christian Television Network 39)
• WNPX-TV (ION28)
• WPBM-CD (Religious 31)
• WTVF-TV (CBS5)
• WNAB-TV (CW58)
FCC offers the following instructions and tips to help TV viewers rescan their TVs:
Most viewers don’t need any new devices, equipment, or services to rescan their TV.
The FCC has posted an instructional video showing viewers how to rescan their TV and information for consumers and the press about the rescan process.
To rescan, viewers will need their TV remote control or analog TV converter box, then choose “Channel Scan,” “Channel Tuning,” or “Auto Search” in the “Setup” or “Channel” menu. Once you find either the “Channel Scan” or “Channel Tuning” buttons, choose the automatic option to rescan.
By rescanning, viewers who watch TV for free using an antenna will keep their existing channels, and may even discover new channels in their broadcast area.
TV stations are changing frequencies on a rolling basis, so consumers will likely need to rescan their television more than once.
For further assistance, TV viewers can visit www.fcc.gov/TVrescan or call the consumer help line at 1-888-CALLFCC (1-888-225-5322) and press “6” to speak with a dedicated help desk representative, seven days a week, from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 a.m. (EST). The call center is available in English and Spanish and the information on the website is available in English, Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, and Tagalog.