A paid upgrade shouldn't be required for good satellite reception

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A Phoenix man says he's paying DirecTV for something he's not currently getting and he shouldn't have to pay for upgraded equipment just to get good picture quality.

If your satellite TV picture goes bad and the culprit looks like faulty equipment, you should get a free replacement. But if you're told an upgrade is needed, just to make images look clear again, that upgrade should also be free.

Benny Sanchez says after more than a year of great reception, his DirecTV picture quality started breaking down night after night.

"The TV was blacking out and then the picture would be getting distorted," Sanchez said.

Sanchez recorded video of the problem and showed it to a DirecTV technician who visited his home. DirecTV replaced his DVR with a similar model but the problems persisted. Sanchez says the DirecTV technician agreed there was a problem and suggested an upgraded 'genie' DVR would likely fix the problem.

"They told me if I wanted to get the upgraded one I'd have to purchase it for something like $100 and also sign a contract for a year," Sanchez said.

Sanchez says he shouldn't have to pay for an upgrade and extend his contract just to get good picture quality. He's already paying for that.

"I don't like it because I'm paying for a service that I'm not getting," Sanchez said.

With no fix in sight or free upgrade, Sanchez says he wanted to cancel but DirecTV told him he'd owe early termination fees if he did. Right now he just continues to pay for poor picture quality.

"I want them to fix the problem because I'm paying $80 a month for lousy service," Sanchez said.

DirecTV investigated this matter for CBS 5 News and then decided to give Sanchez the upgraded DVR at no cost. It looks like the problem has now been resolved. CBS 5 News thanks DirecTV for their quick work in resolving this issue fairly.

We agree with Sanchez. You shouldn't have to pay for an upgrade just to get the basic viewing pleasure you're already paying for. 

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Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

Dave CherryCBS 5 Advocate Dave Cherry works to resolve your consumer problems and protect your money. If he can't help, he'll do his best to point you in the right direction.

Click to learn more about Dave.

Dave Cherry
CBS 5 Advocate

Dave was born and raised in Philadelphia and considers himself one of the biggest Philly sports fans. At 6-feet, 5-inches, he's probably right! Dave started on a different career path before fulfilling his lifelong dream of reporting the news and helping consumers. Dave graduated from Philadelphia University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting; he later earned an MBA degree in Finance from Temple University in Philadelphia. Dave also spent ten years as Vice President and Director of Sales and Marketing for two of America's leading real estate franchise companies. Dave started his 21-year news career at WHP in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, as news anchor and reporter, then moved to KOLD in Tucson, as the morning news anchor. From Tucson, he went to KRON in San Francisco as a freelance news reporter before moving east to COMCAST in Philadelphia as a general assignment reporter. In the fall of 2003, Dave moved west and joined KPNX in Phoenix and spent nine years as the station Call for Action Consumer Reporter. Through his on-air advocacy work in 2011, Dave and his team were able to help consumers save more than $1 million. Dave joined CBS 5 News as our CBS 5 Advocate in December 2012. Dave is a vegan and likes to eat the amazing vegan food prepared by his lovely wife, Carmen. Dave's also a big Bruce Springsteen fan (he's seen more than 70 shows!), the man who inspired him to learn the guitar. Besides playing many of the boss' songs, Dave writes and sings his own songs and recorded a CD of original music.

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