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CB Radio Problems

Posted by Pat Haggerty updated

While the majority of CB-related issues stem from improper antenna installation and high SWR, radios can cause problems from time to time. The following are the most common radio problems and how to address them.

Radio Doesn't Power On

If your radio doesn't power on, you'll want to check the in-line fuse found in the CB's power cord. If it's burned out, this will prevent your radio from powering on. You'll also want to hook the CB power leads directly to your battery terminals, black to black and red to red. This will help rule out a wiring problem between the radio and the battery.

If the fuse is fine, and the radio still doesn't power on when connected directly to the battery, you have a defective radio and will need to contact us for a replacement.

Electrical Interference

If you're experiencing engine or electrical interference with incoming CB signals, please see our article on Troubleshooting Electrical Noise.

High SWR Readings

High SWR is caused exclusively by the antenna, coax connection, installation or vehicle's ground plane. It is NOT something that is caused by the radio. If you are experiencing SWR problems, please refer to our High SWR Troubleshooting Guide.

All Other Issues

Radio issues or problems not mentioned above will likely require repair or replacement to resolve. Unlike antenna and SWR issues, radios are much more difficult to work on, repair and diagnose. We guarantee all radios and will replace all defective units (Galaxy models excluded) within 45 days of purchase. To have a defective radio replaced within this period, please contact us.

Additionally, all new radios come with a 1- to 2-year manufacturer warranty, which covers defects after the initial 45-day purchase period. To receive warranty service for radios after the initial purchase period, please refer to the respective manufacturer's warranty and repair information below:


Pat Haggerty

About the Author

As the owner and operator of Right Channel Radios, Pat Haggerty has been helping customers find the best radio solutions since 2008. He is highly knowledgeable in all mobile radio options and setups, including CB radios, GMRS radios, and HAM radios. His wide library of how-to and help articles is frequently referred to as one of the best resources for CB radio installations and technical support online. When he's not assisting radio enthusiasts online or on the phone, you can find Pat enjoying all that Montana's trails have to offer on his skis, mountain bike or Land Cruiser.

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