An RCA 2-way handheld radio rests in its charger on a desk.

3 of the Most Common 2-Way Radio Problems and Their Solutions

Troubleshooting your 2-way radios can be time-consuming and frustrating if you don’t know what you’re looking for. The good news is that there are many instances when problems can be resolved in-house instead of sending affected units out for repair or replacement. Here are three of the most common ones you may encounter, and what to do about them.

Problem #1: Your brand new radios or replacement batteries are malfunctioning.

Solution: If you have brand new radios with brand new batteries, or you’ve recently purchased brand new replacement batteries, make sure that the first time you charge them is at least 12 hours. It doesn’t matter if you have rapid one-hour chargers (even if the light turns green to indicate the unit’s charged) or overnight chargers where the light constantly illuminates a steady red. They still need a full 12 hours to initialize properly, ensuring that you get maximum performance and the longest life span possible.

Problem #2: Your battery only lasts a few hours on a charge.

Solution: The first step is to make absolutely sure that the radio is turned off while it’s on the charger. Leaving the radio on will not only prevent it from charging properly (if at all), it will quickly destroy the battery itself and require you to purchase new ones. Plus, those damaged batteries won’t be covered by the manufacturer’s warranty when you go to replace them.

The number one rule to prolong battery life: don’t use the charger as a stand! It may be tempting — especially for office workers who have chargers on their desks and like to keep their radios plugged in the entire day — but it’s ultimately detrimental to performance.

Tip: Almost all problems occur from a battery that is not fully charged.

Problem #3: Your radio constantly beeps.

Solution: First, check the areas that seem like “common sense.” You’ll want to verify that: a) your battery has been placed correctly in its charger and is charging properly; b) the charger is plugged correctly into the wall outlet; c) that outlet is receiving power; and d) the plug in the back of the charging cup is inserted correctly.

Then check to see if any of the following is taking place:

  • Are the contacts on the back of the battery making contact with the terminals in the charger?
  • Is the charger light illuminating when you place the radio in the charger?
  • Is the charger light blinking for more than five minutes after the radio is placed in the charger?
  • Does the light on the charger turn solid green (indicating a full charge) only five minutes after connecting the dead battery?

These situations are definite signs that the battery will no longer take a charge and will need to be replaced.

Tip: If your radio is beeping on one channel but works fine on another, this is an indication that it doesn’t have a frequency programmed into that channel — not that your radio or battery is malfunctioning. Many units have at least a 16-channel capacity, but the user only has one license for one channel. For example, the radio vendor may program your licensed frequency on Channel 1 and leave the rest empty. Have you experienced other issues besides these? We’d be happy to address them and let you know whether your units can be easily fixed or will need to be repaired. Give us a call at 877-978-4574to speak immediately to one of our two-way radio specialists.

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