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Dexcon G4 - Data Loss due to RF Interference?

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by Dad_in_Canada, Mar 8, 2014.

  1. Dad_in_Canada

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    OK, here's a bit of a strange topic. Twice now we've experienced data loss (ie. missing dots) on our Dexcom G4 receiver for a hour or so, and the receiver was showing out of range (red circle & line thru the antenna icon). But the receiver was on my DS's body, in a Spibelt on his waist, the transmitter is only 3 months old, and the sensor is only a few days old. The transmitter battery is also showing as good on the receiver.

    We know the range of the Dexcom is very good (many feet), so what could be the problem?

    I think I found the culprit: RF (radio frequency) interference, and for us, it's specifically the Nintendo 3DS (and maybe even specifically when Streetpass is turned on). When we move away from the 3DS, and turn the 3DS off, the Dexcom quickly comes back into range.

    It's happened twice now, and both times it's been the same solution (turn off or move away from the 3DS).

    There could be some method to the madness: the specs on the 3DS show the transmit/receive frequency to be 2.4 GHz (a pretty common frequency). And guess what the Dexcom transit/receive frequency is (according to the manual)? Yep, 2.4 GHz.

    So I'm curious: have you had times of unexplained Dexcom data loss, that might now be explained by RF interference from something?

    Maybe Dexcom should include tinfoil hats with each receiver :smile:
     
  2. swellman

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    As of late the last few times we've had unexplained "out of range" we've forcefully pushed on the transmitter into the sensor and it fixed the problem. Maybe the transmitter is intermittently making contact with the sensor.
     
  3. Dad_in_Canada

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    That would make sense, but twice now we've come back "in range" once that darned 3DS was moved away or turned off. And no data loss either side of the 3DS play time. I checked the transmitter, and it's snapped in tight to the sensor. And I clean the transmitter contacts with an alcohol swab with every new sensor.

    It could indeed be a coincidence though. I'll be interesting if anyone else has seen any unexplained data loss.
     
  4. swellman

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    If you can't purposefully cause the data loss by using the 3DS in the same way then I would call it coincidence.
     
  5. StacyMM

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    We have two kids on the Dexcom and have had missing dots at night when the receivers are stacked on one another. We stand them side by side in a square Rubbermaid container to maximize the volume (I'm a heavy sleeper) and are careful to keep them from getting stacked, but it does happen sometimes. When it does, the one in the back loses a few dots, usually a dot or two at a time. It gets intermittent readings, basically. A few times we've had the lost connection warning after 30 minutes of no readings (based on our alert settings) and moving them apart has always solved the problem.

    My son plays a 3DS, DSi and PSP with no issues. Cinder block walls, water and stacked receivers are the only times we have regular losses of signal.
     
  6. BittysMom

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    If you look at my pic you'll see we were having out of range issues at the same exact time each day (leaving school) and while they stopped, I never did figure out what it was. It's such a curious thing.
     

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  7. SarahKelly

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    This happens frequently for Isaac when he is sleeping on his arm that has the sensor in it. I think it's a pressure issue.
    We've had receivers and transmitters replaced in hopes to fix this, but in actuality I just need to not put it on his right arm as that is the side he sleeps on.
    So, when your child plays the video game are they sitting in a certain way that might put pressure on the sensor spot?
     
  8. shannong

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    I get very curious out of range alerts all the time. Dexcom replaced every possible thing - sensors, transmitter, receiver, and nothing has changed these weird out of range alerts (my son also has the receiver clipped on him when these happen). As another poster said, it happens everyday when he leaves for school. Other times it frequently happens is: any travel in the car, gym class, and almost every day we return from school and he goes outside to play. I too wondered about RF frequency in the car when my kids usually bring their ipods, etc. On my latest list of suspicions is the cold weather. I have started to put a heating pad in his pocket with his receiver when we go outside - this sometimes seems to help. I also read on a blog site (sixuntilme) where Kerri had problems whenever she was running on a treadmill. I think lots of motion (especially running seems to cause it to go out of range), which explains why it seems to always go out in gym class even though the receiver is on him. Although it only seems to be specifically running. My son plays hockey several times a week and (fingers crossed) the Dexcom has never gone out of range, but my husband has the receiver with him on the bench. It's all very frustrating, but I have come to accept that we are just going to have out of range alerts. It will be interesting to see if warmer weather solves the problem (if we ever get warmer weather here!).
     
  9. swellman

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    In addition, I'm pretty sure that the 3DS only transmits on the 2.4 GHz channel as many WiFi devices.
     
  10. Darryl

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    Does this happen only when at home, or at school, or no matter where you are?
     
  11. BittysMom

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    This was 4 days in a row of leaving school at 3:30. At 3:30 she walks past her school's main office- not sure if something there interfered. It's her everyday routine. Then it stopped on it's own.
     
  12. Darryl

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    Maybe I should turn off the Wifi access point at night.
     

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