Why can’t we get good reception of LBC 97.3?

Over the last few weeks we’ve not been able to get any kind of good reception from LBC 97.3. Sometimes the interference is so bad we have to switch off. We have a Roberts radio and DAB.
– Susan

Interference can be very frustrating when trying to listen to a radio station. Radio interference can come in many forms and from various sources.

The interference might be in the form of another radio station which is broadcasting close to the FM frequency you are tuning into. Another radio station could even be broadcasting on the same frequency. Although frequencies are assigned so that two legitimate stations should not interfere with each other, this doesn’t prevent a pirate radio station from broadcasting on the same frequency as a station like LBC.

During particular weather conditions FM signals from elsewhere in the UK and even Europe can interfere with the reception of local radio stations. This can also affect DAB and Freeview stations.

Interference can also come from another electrical device in your home. We have seen an issue where signal is temporarily lost due to a central heating boiler switching on.

The BBC has a very helpful page about interference and reception problems for FM radios on its website. It’s worth following these recommendations and if the problem persists consider contacting Ofcom to report the interference.

Receiving LBC in London

You mention having a Roberts radio and DAB. If you live in London you may be able to receive LBC on 97.3 FM as well as DAB digital radio. If the Roberts radio offers an FM mode and a DAB mode, it’s worth ensuring you are listening to LBC in the DAB mode.

For the best reception the aerial should be fully extended and vertical. LBC is transmitted with talkSPORT, Absolute Radio, Classic FM and Magic on DAB digital radio. If you can receive these stations without any issues on DAB you should also receive LBC.

If the interference appears to affect LBC on DAB digital radio it could also be that the signal is too weak. Many digital radios have a display button to toggle through different information which can be shown on the screen. One of these options is a signal meter. If there are only a few blocks on the signal meter you could try moving the radio and ensuring the aerial is securely attached. Some Roberts radios have a removable aerial which could have become loose over time.

If the interference issues persist and you cannot receive a satisfactory DAB signal you may need to listen online instead. If you have a smartphone or tablet you could install the LBC Radio app. Alternatively you could consider a digital radio which also has WiFi built in and stream the station online. You may have heard that LBC is also available on smart speakers, such as the Google Home and Amazon Echo devices. These small devices are often half the price of a WiFi-enabled radio, but you will have to speak to the device and go without a display.

LBC can also be found on Freeview, Freesat, Sky, Virgin Media and TalkTalk TV. LBC London News, the sister rolling news station, is available on DAB digital radio in London as well as medium wave and online.


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