While I’m at it, I’ll rant some more.

Last night I came home to find that the televisions in my apartment were no longer receiving signal. I have AT&T U-Verse which uses a set top box at each TV. In my installation, the set top box connects to an IP home network over coax (Home PNA). A quick bit of troubleshooting showed that the set top boxes were not receiving a signal on that coax.

The router they provide feeds the signal in the coax network, so I checked the router’s web status page. It showed 0 HPNA clients. So my first troubleshooting step, unplug router, unplug receivers, re plugin router then receivers. A few minutes of boot time and still not recognized receivers.

Then I think what else could have happened. I realize a new neighbor moved in to the apartment adjacent to mine over the weekend. Perhaps they got television service connected. So I went across the hall and asked. Sure enough they had a DIRECTV installer out that day to setup their satellite service. He left their apartment with a non-operational install stating he didn’t have the proper equipment.

So now I’m 99% sure this guy broke my TV. Why? Because when my U-Verse was installed the AT&T’s installer walked me through the process and showed me that in my closet there is a panel where all of the coax cables for my apartment and the adjacent apartment meet in one wall. The adjacent apartment has the same panel in the same place so if both are removed you can see from one closet into the other.

I told my neighbor that I would open my panel and take a look to see if it is an easy fix for me, otherwise I will call U-Verse support. As I was taking off the panel my neighbor returned to tell me that there is a bunch of wires coming out of the wall in his closet and he invites me to come take a look.

When I looked I was surprised to see about 10 coax cables all coming out of his access panel and not 1 is connected to a splitter or any other device. So this DIRECTV installer disconnected all of the wiring for my apartment and my neighbor’s apartment and then left for the day.

This installer definitely needs better tools! I know the AT&T U-Verse installers had tools to connect to a coax jack in the wall then identify which wire in the panel is the other end of that jack. If the DIRECTV installer had used a tool such as this they would not have disconnected my unrelated service!

My neighbors apologized (although it was not their fault) and stated that they would tell the DIRECTV installer to correct the mistake when returning. I have my doubts so I called U-Verse technical support and asked them to schedule a service call to repair my install for the day after the DIRECTV installer was supposed to return.

I know technical support has questions they have to ask to troubleshoot a problem but I explained the problem exactly in this manner then they still had to ask me what lights were on, on my modem, on my receivers, etc.

We’ll see if the DIRECTV installer corrected the mistake when I get home tonight!

See Comments for updates from me.