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Wanted to share a relatively inexpensive fix for my GPS problem.

Like several other threads I have read including a red line through the GPS graphic on the map, I was able to determine that entering the diagnostic screen (Code 753) that I was not picking up any satellites. Siriusxm radio worked fine. Resetting my position resulted in the map defaulting to Washington DC (I don't like in DC) so I removed the sharkfin from the roof. I will note that it appears that age appears to catch-up as there were minor signs of water damage to the mounting plate in the form of rust, but not too bad. I will also note that I disassembled the sharfin looking for obvious problems and discovered a solder joint that appears to have separated. I repaired and tested and no dice. So, I moved to plan B and plugged in a $10 gps antenna I had purchased for a previous car to see if my Rover would pick up any signals and to help identify orn shed light on any upstream issues. The ebay/amazon cheapo antenna works just fine. So, here is my retrofit...

  1. Remove sharkfin from car by removing 10mm bolts above rear headliner.
  2. Carefully open the antenna by removing the torx screws.
  3. There are two antenna's in here. GPS has the blue connector on it (Yellow is SiriusXM). Since I verified my GPS antenna was defective, I removed it from the assembly by removing the 4 torx screws holding its circuit board in place. I also cut the antenna lead that routes through the aluminum plate to dispose.
  4. I could have probably kept the aftermarket antenna intact but was concerned that its protective plastic housing AND the sharkfin plastic housing would potentially result in degraded performance so I carefully removed the aftermarket housing and magnet using a heat gun to expose the actual antenna (about the size of a quarter - much similar to the OEM antenna that had gone bad.
  5. Next, I had to run the antenna wire through the aluminum plate but the factory holes were farm too small - my antenna had the connector permanently affixed. So - I bored out the aluminum plate where the base protrudes from the roof into the truck. It was plenty of room to get the connector through.
  6. With the new antenna ready to attach to the aluminum plate, In placed a decent sized glob of silicone in the approximate location of where the OEM GPS antenna was located. In then carefully set the aftermarket antenna in place and made sure that the cable was embedded in the goop for about 1/4" to help offset any tugging and gravity. Its also a great shock absorber and has dielectric properties. I then let it dry for 10 minutes because I am impatient.
  7. With the new aftermarket antenna situated, I put the sharkfin plastic antenna back on with the factory torx screws. Be careful to make sure the factory thin weatherstripping is properly set. Ready to remount to rover.
  8. Because of the noted signs of water damage coupled with the fact that I had an entire silicone tube opened from step 6, I placed a bead of silicone on the base of the sharkfin aluminum plate where it meets the roof. I also added a healthy doze around the protrusion noted in step 5 to prevent any water from getting into the truck if the outer bead failed.
  9. I then remounted the entire sharkfin assembly by feeding the wires through the roof (and reconnecting them!!!!), feeding the bolts into their designated holes, and then let the assembly loosely float on the generous supply of silicone I beaded. After hand threading the 10mm nuts onto the bolts and then tightening them while pulling the sharkfin nice, tight, and now water tight with the silicone oozing out, I removed the access silicone that squeezed out to the sides of the sharkfin and used some damp paper towels for a nice smooth and continuously sealed silicon barrier.
  10. Went back into car, entered diagnostic screen, reset GPS and position, then watched the satellites start to register.

Total spend... less than $20 bucks which includes the aftermarket antenna, the tube of silicone, and the band aids I had to use when boring out the aluminum plate because the drill bit took my unclamped aluminum platte for a ride. Took about an hour start to finish including repairing my index finger. A heck of a lot cheaper than buying a used sharkfin or (gulp) OEM. I've already been sinking money into my 08 RR SC lately - Steering Angle sensor, wheel height sensor, rough idle, brake caliper replacement, taillight replacement (don't ask), and a replacement blower motor (not gonna lie, that one hurt the pocketbook because it was beyond my skill level) so its nice to get a small victory on this.

One note: The truck seemed to take its [email protected] time "adapting" to the new antenna. It started with picking up one satellite, then picking up more and more over the course of 15 -30 minutes. The map then moved from the DC area to my planet earth position. Everything works exactly as it had previously. Should last another 10 years;

Disclaimer - the above solution worked for me because I verified that the factory GPS antenna was indeed the problem. Also, I am sure that my choice of silicone to affix the antenna within the sharkfin and my liberal usage of the goop might seem a bit bush league, but I saved a few hundred bucks, the antenna is on the roof and not something you typically look at, and I cleaned it up nice by removing excess. I should note that the base weatherstripping did seem to be well worn out so I wanted to make sure there was a nice layer of protection of the elements in place since i am fairly confident that its breakdown led to the failed antenna.
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