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Nothing to Scan


"Nothing to Scan" is a message which is sometimes seen, and often asked about, in regard to the BCD396T (and other Uniden Dynamic Memory Architecture scanners); here's an explanation of what it means, and how to fix it:

General Description

"Nothing To Scan" will appear on this scanner under various situations, each of these has a different solution so I will address all that I am aware of and how to avoid or fix the problem in each case.

  • 1. Nothing in the scanner - If the scanner has nothing programmed in it, of course it has nothing to scan, so this is most obvious reason. The solution is to program some systems and scan away.
  • 2. Everything is locked out - This happens if everything in the enabled systems are actually locked out. Note there is a difference between locked out and disabled. Locked out happens if you program something as Locked or press the <L/O> key. Disabled happens if you press a Quick Key (System or Group) and toggle the system or group off. The solution in this instance is to unlock something in the system so that the scanner has something to do.
  • 3. All Systems are disabled - This happens if you toggle all currently programmed systems to Off. Since you have turned everything off, the scanner has nothing to do; the solution is to enable a system and the scanner will happily carry on scanning.
  • 4. All Groups are disabled - This is different than above and seems to cause the most problems with people understanding what has happened. The best way to understand this is a hypothetical situation. Say you are scanning a single conventional system programmed to one SQK (System Quick Key), let's use SQK #3 for example. All other SQK's are disabled and this system has 3 groups of frequencies on GQK's 1, 2, & 3. If you disable all three GQK's the radio will then properly state it has "Nothing To Scan" because you have turned everything off. The problem that seems to confound everyone at this point is that in addition to the "Nothing To Scan" begin displayed, the GQK disabled icons " * " are no longer displayed either. In other words although the System shows to be active (the #3 is showing along with "S0:"), there are no groups displayed. The solution is quite easy, press and hold the <Function> key, turn the scroll knob and find the system covered by SQK #3, the GQK icons will be present and while still holding the <Function> key press 1, 2, or 3 and the scanner will be able to scan again.
    • You can avoid this "disappearing icons" situation in two ways:
      • A. Don't ever disable all GQK's in a conventional system.
      • B. Program at least one frequency in the "default" group (one not assigned a GQK #) and do not lock it out. It can be a frequency you want to monitor for this system or it can be a frequency that is unlikely to have anything on it (like 1300 MHz).
      • Note: This problem does not happen on Trunking systems because the scanner will always scan the frequencies programmed even if you disable (or indeed lock out) all of the Talk Groups.

Quick Questions and Answers

Disabled all GQKs - how to re-enable?

  • While in SCAN mode, hold in the FUNC knob, scroll to the system (by turning the FUNC knob), and while holding the FUNC knob, hit the number of the GQK you want to enable.

Disabled all SQKs - how to re-enable?

  • While in SCAN mode, press a number to enable SQK 0-9, or ".##" to enable SQK 10-99

Locked out all GQKs - how to unlock?

  • Locked out GQKs must be unlocked via the MENU. MENU / PROGRAM SYSTEM / (select system) / EDIT GROUP / (select group) / SET LOCKOUT / UNLOCK

Locked out all SQKs - how to unlock?

  • There are 2 methods:
  1. While in SCAN mode, push and hold in the FUNC knob, scroll to the system (using the knob), and while holding the knob in, hit L/O.
  2. Via the MENU - MENU / PROGRAM SYSTEM / (select system) / EDIT SYSTEM OPTION / SET LOCKOUT / UNLOCK


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