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12 Signs It’s Time to Upgrade Your Two-Way Radios

Signs it’s time to upgrade your two-way business radios

Two-way radios are extremely useful tools for a wide variety of occupations. Florida patrols use them especially often around the beach for easy, quick communications. They’re an affordable, effective tool for communication that provides a rugged utility.

While rugged, they won’t last forever, with the average 2-way radios radios lasting for years. If you’ve been looking into the signs that you need to upgrade, we’re here to help. Here are twelve signs that you need to look into upgrading your Motorola Florida radio.

1. Cracking Antenna

One of the easiest to spot is visible damage to your antenna. The antenna of your two-way radio is responsible for transmitting and receiving signals. Needless to say, it’s a vital component, so damage to it is a bad sign.

If your antenna has begun to crack or is showing signs of cracking, begin thinking of a replacement. A cracked or damaged antenna can cause difficulties with receiving signals and communicating.

Damage may come over time from constant use. It might also happen from a drop or other accident with the radio. Keep your eye on the antenna to make sure no cracks are starting to show.

2. Debris in the Grill

The grill of your radio is an easy place to get debris or other unwanted materials stuck in. This can depend heavily on your place of work. Machining shops or mechanics, for example, commonly have to deal with metal shavings entering the grill.

Here in Florida, the most common is usually sand. This is often easy enough to blow out with enough force, but it can cause lasting damage. A messy grill can impact sound quality and is a good sign that you need to find another radio soon.

3. Difficulty Reaching Max Range

Some problems may not have a visual tell to them at all. You might find yourself struggling to get the full use out of your radio for example. Difficulty using your radio around its maximum range can show that a replacement is needed.

If you’re struggling to use your radio to its full ability, it likely will need replacing soon. As general wear and tear kicks in, your radio won’t have the power it had out of the box. Consider replacing your 2-way radios if they aren’t communicating at the strength they should be.

4. Battery Draining Quickly

Many radios are rechargeable and have an internal battery rather than needing external batteries. If this is the case, models typically will drain their battery quicker as they age. If you find your radio is chewing through its battery life quicker than it should, you likely need to replace it soon.

This is the case with those that use external batteries as well, though. You might find the new batteries you put into your two-way radios are dying much quicker than before. Such problems can leave you without battery life when it’s needed, as well as cost too much in battery replacements.

5. General Damage

Your antenna and grill aren’t the only things that are going to see wear and tear. If the body of your two-way radio is starting to show obvious damage,  you should begin looking at replacements.

This will generally happen over time. Constant use, especially over years or in a rugged environment, will cause wear and tear to your devices. 

However, if you find yourself having the damage come all at once, the principle is the same. Dropping or otherwise damaging your two-way radio can force you to need a new radio. Keep an eye out to make sure there isn’t severe enough damage to affect performance.

6. Issues Receiving

You could find yourself having issues receiving communications on your two-way radio without any visible damage. There are a number of causes for this, and it’s often hard to pinpoint exactly what. A loose antenna or damage to the internal circuitry, for example, may affect communications.

Whatever the cause, it’s an excellent reason to upgrade your device. If you find yourself unable to receive communication on your radio, you won’t want to use it much longer. 

That said, repairs can sometimes end up as simple tasks. Consider taking it into an electronics shop or trying to fix it yourself. You may not want to open it up and poke around the circuitry itself, but a loose antenna is often easy enough to fix.

7. Staticky Conversations

One of the many signs is hearing static in your conversations. A lack of a clear signal can show several different issues. This includes a damaged antenna, clogged or obstructed speaker, or internal damages.

Whatever the cause, it’s worth bringing your two-way radio in for repairs. It’s a good sign that you’ll need to look into a replacement as well. There are plenty of issues that can cause the static, and upgrading could end up the only permanent fix to getting rid of it.

8. Clogged Outlets

Your speakers aren’t the only thing that can get debris and sand to clog it. Any outlet or indent in the body is a candidate to get clogged with some sort of debris. Something as simple as pocket lint or thick dust can even clog up your outlets.

This is especially the case for two-way radios that are rechargeable. The recharging port especially is a dangerous place for debris to settle and clog. Battery packs, headphone jacks, button ports, and other such areas are likely as well.

When this happens, a simple cleaning out is likely all that is needed. However, this debris can also cause damage or prevent charging. Sometimes the issue could only show on an aesthetic level and not affect performance at all.

More severe clogs can prove difficult to remove or have already caused damage. When this is the case, it’s a perfect time for an upgrade. Consider changing in your two-way radios for an upgrade if the clogs are becoming unusable or a hassle to clean.

9. Sandy Screen

Another place where debris can easily end up is behind the screen. Smaller particles like sand are especially common here in Florida. This can make it difficult to see or use a two-way radio.

Some more advanced two-way radios even use touchscreens for some controls. If this is the case, sand behind the screen can easily make your radio unusable entirely. 

Seeing sand behind your screen is usually a sign that there’s a crack somewhere in the screen. Even if it’s not visibly cracked, unseen damage can slowly spread throughout the screen and let sand in. Cracks in the housing can also let sand and small particles in.

Whatever the entry point for the sand was, cleaning it can require complete dismantlement to get to the screen. If there’s no damage, you can likely take it in for repairs to have it cleaned. It’s easier to have a professional handle it than to fully break your 2-way radio push-to-talk radio trying to fix it.

However, since the sand could also mean hidden damage, it’s sometimes easier to simply upgrade.

10. Busy Season Incoming

Sometimes your device is performing well but an upgrade is still needed. A good time to upgrade is when a busy season is coming in for your industry.

Here in Florida, the summers are often exceptionally busy as tourism kicks up. You might want to look into upgrading your communications so that you have new equipment. This helps make sure that nothing suddenly goes wrong in the middle of a busy day.

11. Outdated Tech

Two-way radios can last a while, which means they can sometimes get outdated before they need replacing. If your radios aren’t able to keep up, it’s time for an upgrade.

Better communications and features come out frequently. Two-way radios are growing in popularity and vital to numerous industries. There’s a high chance that you can upgrade your outdated radio to a new, more effective model.

12. Need More Functionality

Whether you want to upgrade for functionality or not, you might need to. While outdated doesn’t always mean obsolete, it sometimes can. 

You might find yourself in a situation where the others communicating with you have upgraded well past your model. This can cause compatibility issues, inability to communicate, or simply a radio that can’t do what you want it to.

If this is the case, you might need to upgrade to a model with better functionality. Wider frequencies, easier switching, clearer communications, and plenty of others are tempting choices. Keep an eye on what new models can do to see if it’s worth an upgrade.

Using Two-Way Radios

Whatever your reason for upgrading your two-way radios is, there’s nothing like brand new equipment. Looking into categories like Motorola radios Florida is a great way to find your next two-way radio.If you have more questions about Motorola radios in Florida and beyond, feel free to contact us. You can also browse our extensive blog for more information.