Question about Radio Shack Pro-2096 Base Scanner

2 Answers

Squelch is open all the time

When powering up the scanner, the squelch is open all the time. On digital channels, you hear a steady "burst" of squelch as the scanner is scanning. On a conventional channel, squelch is open all the time and the squelch adjusment has no effect. There are times when this problem goes away, but not for long. It always returns. VERY annoying. I have uipgraded firmware to 1.4 and tried resetting, re-initializing and re-programming again and again with no luck. Anyone seen this before? Thanks

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  • Bud K Jan 03, 2008

    I have had the pro 2096 for 13 mo and my scanner started the same problem about a month ago. Turn the unit on and it is fine till it locks on the 1st freq., at the end of transmission all I get is white noise(open squelch). Makes no difference what I try, squeclh control has no effect.

    Bud K.

  • kben73 Apr 06, 2008

    I have an Australian DSE version of the pro96 (i think they are identical)with the same problem. on screen shows a lightnig bolt simbol that i am told indicates that the "squelch is off (low) or squelch level has been broken". no matter how i adjust the squelch nob nothing changes. I have re-initialized the scanner and have chesked the frequencies with a an older scanner running simaltaniously. the older scanner picks up but pro 96 does not.Any help would be appreciated.

  • Anonymous Jan 06, 2009


    Same issue, well almost the squelch "acting up" in that i have to move the knob further to the left that I have had to in the 20 or so months I have owned it. I suspect the issue will progress to the point of having it repaired.

    Looks like some sort of global issue and perhaps that is why there are many of these radios for sale on ebay!

  • Anonymous Jan 18, 2009

    Raduishack Pro 136 base scanner won't scan, the squelch stays open all the time.

  • Anonymous Feb 05, 2009

    Same thing, worked fine for 2 yrs, now I have the squelch adjusted to nearly the end of the range and at some point I will run out of adjustment.



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Often the potentometer (squelch control) becomes worn or dirty, this can be sometimes cured by spraying a WD40 or similar oil and then rapidly moving the control down and up. Do not use oil that is conductive.

Posted on May 21, 2014

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I had the same problem on a pro-2096. Luckily I work at RadioShack, so I was able to send it out for repair for free. Our repair center replaced the PCB, and it works fine now.

Posted on Jul 08, 2008


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I can't turn off the squelch on my Radio Shack Digital Trunking scanner.

On all channels, or on one channel ? Some channels are "birdie" channels, check your user manual. Others are problem channels receiving false signals from computers, monitors, receivers, internet equipment, FAX machines, etc. If your in conventional mode, if in Digital mode the squelch is set by the processor, and I don't believe the squelch has any effect in that mode.

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What did you mean by change the squelch?

The squelch control gets rid of the hissing on a blank channel. Finda blank channel, turn up the squelch control until the hissing stops. The scanner should then scan the channels and stop on a busy one.

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How can i stop the squelch ive tryed turning the sqcuelch doesnt help

Plug the AC adapter into the back of the scanner and into a wall electrical outlet. Screw the antenna into the receptacle on the back of the scanner (extend the antenna to full length for best reception).

  • 2 Set the squelch level to allow signals to be heard by turning the squelch knob counterclockwise. Rotate the volume knob clockwise until you hear static. Slowly turn the squelch knob clockwise until the static noise disappears.
  • 3 Start programming frequencies into the scanner by pressing the "Manual" button.
  • 4 Press the up arrow or down arrow key until the channel you wish to program is visible on the display.
  • 5 Use the numbers on the keypad to enter the frequency for the local transmitter you wish to receive.
  • 6 Press the "E" key to complete the process of entering the frequency.
  • 7 Repeat steps 3 through 6 for each additional frequency you wish to monitor.
  • 8 Press the "Scan" key to start the scanning process. The scanner stops on a channel when it detects a signal strong enough to hear over the squelch setting. Two seconds after the signal stops, the scanning process resumes.
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    Scanner acts like it doent have squelch control

    If your scanner is open squelched on one channel, try blocking that channel out. Some times a channel can get jammed if someone has a mic cue button stuck or something similar.
    Try locking out that particular channel and see if you get your squelch control back.

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    Turn the scanner on and volume up all the way, turn the squelch until you hear static, then turn the squelch down slowly until its silent, press scan, has it ever been programed? Just a thought. hope this helps..

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    First you'll need a list of frequencies to program. For a comprehensive database of active frequencies in your area, visit:

    Once you have your freq list, power the scanner ON,and:

    1. Press PGM. Then enter the channel number (1-200) where you want to store a frequency, then press PGM again.
    2. Use the keys to enter the frequency (including the decimal point) you want to store.
    3. Press ENT to store the frequency into the channel. Press DELAY if you want the scanner to pause 2 seconds on this channel before it proceeds to the next channel after a transmission ends.
    4. To program the next channel in sequence, press PGM and
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    • To listen to a weak or distant station, turn SQUELCH counterclockwise. If reception is poor, turn SQUELCH clockwise to cut out weak transmissions.
    • If SQUELCH is adjusted so you always hear a hissing sound, the scanner will not scan or search properly.

    Need the full manual for your scanner? You can download/print it here:


    Jan 09, 2010 | Radio Shack Pro-2018 Scanner

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    I don't have the manual for my Uniden Bearcat BC 855 scanner.

    You can download/print the complete manual for your scanner by following the link below. It's a free download, and it provides detailed programming instructions. If you're programming a channel that is "empty" (showing 000.0000) just enter your frequency. Empty channels automatically show LOCKOUT but it clears with programming. The squelch setting will vary according to the strength of the signals you receive. Once you start scanning, turn the squelch down until scanning stops and you hear a hissing sound, then turn the control up slowly until scanning resumes.

    For a comprehensive database of active frequencies in your area, visit:

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    My Pro 96 does not come out of Squelch mode on any channels

    Are you hearing any communications at all? Sounds to me like someone has programmed the ctcss tones for each frequency. Try programming a frequency without a tone and you should get a squelch. If not then you probably have to return to the repair shop. GOOD LUCK.

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    Scanner wont scan

    provided you turned the squelch know and it didnt help, i would trace back from the squelch control to the first and second transistor you come to and that should be the squelch circuit. if you know how to check them with an ohm meter you can find out which one it is, if not you can just replace them both for under 5 bucks.

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    Radio Mic

    Check the squelch on your radio thats not recieving. If there is a monitor button ( when pushed you will hear static) try pushing it.. then get someone to call you so you can check if you can hear them. On these radios you have 2 types of squelch....1 is called carrier squelch.... it basically opens when there is a strong enough signal. This lets you only hear strong signals and "squelch out" the distant ones and background static. The2nd. is "tone squelch" ... with your radio they are often called privacy tones. If you have 2 radios set with the same privacy tones you will only be able to hear each other... only radios that are transmitting with that privacy tone will be heard on your radio. Its a high frequency tone that can't be hear by the human ear that gets "embeded" with the transmitting signal. The recieving radio hears it and opens the squelch. So... if the radio thats rxing (recieving)your signal has its squelch set for just carrier squelch it will hear any signal thats strong enough to break the squech open.... basicaly any radio within a certain range. But if your radio (one with problem) has its squelch set for privacy tones you will not hear any other radios except the ones set with the same privacy tone.... the squelch will not open until it gets a tx signal with the right tone.... so if the txing (transmitting) radio is not using tone squelch but is using carrier squelch.... and the rxing radio is set for tone squelch... the rxing radio will not hear it. With tone (privacy tones/codes) squelch you need a tone to open the squelch and then the audio can be heard... with carrier squelch the squelch will open if ANY radio is within a certain range. Check the squelch setting on the problem radio... it could have a privacy tone set. Try pushing in the monitor button so you can hear static ( you want to hear everything including static) on both radios... tx on one radio at a time and listen if it can be heard on the other with the monitor button pushed. If you can't hear any audio when the broken one is transmitting then it COULD be the mic.... if you can hear both radios with the monitor button activated than the radios are txing and have tx audio and are working... if thats the case its the privacy tones that are the problem. Take care

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