It’s easy to find nearby cell towers plotted on a Google Maps display. First, navigate to one of the cell tower finder sites we’ve listed below. Then enter your location. Finally, click the “Go’ button to find nearby cell towers.
I’ve discussed before some of the things you can do immediately to improve poor cell phone reception. If you want to, you can read that post here. bit.ly/1HqOdwZ
As I noted then, one of the simplest and most helpful things you can do to improve cell reception is to find the location of your cell tower. When you know where the cell tower is located, you know which direction your signal is coming from.
Once you know that, you can more effectively implement the suggestions from that earlier post. Knowing the origin of your cell signal can help you understand why you have poor reception, and how you may be able to improve it.
Tools to Help Find Your Provider’s Cell Tower
Of course when I say ‘your’ cell tower I mean your carrier’s tower – the one providing the signal your cell phone uses so that you have service. Normally that will be your carrier’s tower closest to your location. So how do you find it? Fortunately there are some very good – and free – resources to help with that.
The selection of tools below can help you find all major carrier cell towers including Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint, AT&T, and many more.
One of my favorite resources is antennasearch.com. You can enter your location by street address and the search engine will return a list of all towers within a 3 mile radius. The site also plots all the towers on Google Maps. For those towers that were registered with a street address, it will display the address.
If no street address was entered at the time the tower was registered, you’ll have to make do with GPS coordinates. You also can see additional data like the tower’s owner, height and date of construction.
The only drawback is that this is a comprehensive database. It includes all towers in your area – TV & radio stations and even private comms towers, in addition to cell towers. So you may have to wade through a fair amount of data to find the tower you’re looking for.
Another very useful site is cellreception.com/towers/. Enter your city and state and click Go. The search results are a Google Maps display with all nearby towers plotted. An awesome feature of this site is the filtering capability. You can filter the plot display by carrier. So you can show only the locations of Verizon towers plotted on the map, for example.
This filter feature is particularly useful because, again, all towers, not just cell towers, are included in the unfiltered results.
If you’re looking for a simple phone app for Android, there’s Cell Map. I like Cell Map for just that reason – it’s simple and super easy to use. This is a free download and as far as I can find out is available for Android only.
Fire up Cell Map on your phone and you see your own location and the locations of nearby towers displayed on a map. If you want, you can toggle between the map and a satellite photo of the area showing the tower locations.
Cell Map also displays your carrier and type of signal you’re receiving (LTE, CDMA, etc) as well as the RSSI (Received Signal Strength Indicator) reading in dBm.
One feature I particularly find interesting is Cell Map’s ability to cache tower locations and display the cached data on demand.
If you’re wondering about other tower locator apps for your phone, there are a bunch. I’m going to do some research and find the one or two I really like. I’ll make that the subject a future blog post.