Where's My Tower?

Ever wonder where or how far the cell tower is from you? There are a couple of ways of doing this.

First, call Sprint (or Verizon) and ask. Yup, just call the regular 800 number and when you get a CSR ask . They will give you a general location based on your address.

Now, if you want a more precise location you'll have to do a little more work. Go to www.antennasearch.com and type in your address. You will get a map of all the cell and antenna towers in your area like this:

Keep in mind that many cell company's do not own the tower but rather lease space. You will likely notice this when getting the info on the towers you find. Drill a little further on the tower information and you will find references to emails that can give you a hint what cellco is using it.

Now, armed with that information, maybe you have several towers around you and don't know which one you are connected to. You can find out by using the Debug feature on your connection manager.

As before, hold the mouse pointer over the "+" sign and type ##DEBUG. You don't have to disconnect for this. This screen will appear:

In the lower right of this screen you will see the Service Pilots. Those are the cell tower sectors around you. The sector highlighted in Red is the one you are connected to. If you see more than one red number your signal is bouncing between sectors on the tower or a completely different cell site. Not good. You ideally want to 'lock' on the strongest tower sector near you. The 'Energy' column in that screen shows the strongest via the lowest -dB number. What can you do about it? Not much, if you have a directional antenna you can try to target that tower. The condition will clear up on its own eventually.

My tower is about a mile away from me.

No matter what kind of antenna I use, omni, yagi, or panel I can't tune to any other tower because the signal completely blocks everything else out. The only way I could get another signal would be for my tower to go off line. So, I have to try to maximize my connection to it.

You can verify what you see in that debug screen by taking a laptop and driving up to a tower and see if the Red number matches what you get at home. Then you know where and which tower you are connecting to.

If there was a database out there that showed service pilot numbers with locations this would be much simpler. I have not found one though.